ADVANCE REVIEW: Founding Fathers

I have been shook, and I have been rocked, and I have been swallowed by a book, and an author, and my own divisive and inclusive thoughts, after the fact.

With Founding Fathers, Nicholas Gagnier takes his readers to the darkest places where most of them have always been afraid to go on their own, and he has me leading the pack because he enthrals me and fills me with such a twisted dichotomy of ‘Oh my God, no’ and ‘Oh my God, yes’ and I am stuck, as I imagine all of his readers are, somewhere between ashamed and awed, begging for more and pleading for him to stop.
Founding Fathers hits hard, and it scrapes away any pleasantries and ‘how do you do’s’ within the first 100 pages. Nicholas Gagnier has a pulse on the times and rides the waves of our society, unapologetically and with truth so…

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Dee by the Sea – Kristiana Reed

A Global Divergent Literary Collective

This piece is a continuation of Kristiana’s former piece “Dee”

 

Dee’s tea has been sat on the counter for fifteen minutes and I am yet to take my eyes off of it. It is surely now cold but I refuse to remake it. Five times I have called, to no avail. I boiled the kettle, let it whistle a little longer than usual. I made a racket with cutlery and dishes in an attempt to wake the sleeping lion upstairs. Nothing but the sound of my own discomfort.

 

I am pouring the tea into my stainless-steel sink when Dee appears, disheveled in the doorway. She is wearing a blue denim romper – a get up of chaffing ‘comfort’ – and a bird’s nest on her head.

 

“I thought we might go to the beach.” I state – saying ‘might’ to be polite but with no intention of…

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An Interview with Kristiana Reed

Kristiana Reed is a co-founder of Blank Paper Press and the President of the Free Verse Revolution network. She is a member of several writing collectives including Sudden Denouement and the voice behind My Screaming Twenties.

Tell us about your writing process

For a start, I wouldn’t call what I end up doing a process. I look at many of my pieces as happy accidents. I am unable to sit at my desk and write. Often times, ideas come to me during the most mundane tasks – washing the dishes, making my bed, tidying up around the house. In these moments, I find a note book or my phone and write as the tide flows. Sometimes I will have a stanza, a whole poem or simply an idea. I suppose you could call that step one. Step two is choosing one of my three writing havens to edit or write…

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Queen

Darkness cups my elbows and nestles into my thighs like a lover. I part my lips in daylight innocence, giving myself away. This twilight meeting is my coronation; adorning midnight’s mantle. I become a consort of the moon; silver, shrouded in shadow, my skin, howling with lust as I’m kissed by the stars. I come … Continue reading Queen

January

When I say ‘always’ I mean I will hold you for months and months of January and weather every winter in your heart. I will ask Gaia if all timeless loves must end and their lovers part - if to be one we must be two, loving ourselves before we can begin. I will disregard … Continue reading January

Sonata: Excerpt from Eric Syrdal’s Pantheon

Incredibly excited for this upcoming release from Sudden Denouement Publishing, by the wonderful Eric Syrdal 💛

A Global Divergent Literary Collective

She has seen evidence
of the beast
everywhere around her
Through the streets
of the city
it leaves its evidence
on the grey landscape

Scorch marks on the concrete
broken scales on the playgrounds
teeth shattered and discarded
in the gutter
shades of green and brown
but often clear like ice

She hears its wings
scraping on the sides
of their tenement
at night
While everyone but she
is sleeping

She’s heard its low growl
The heavy air of its presence
in the hallway
right outside her door

Pure of heart…

Her blood formed a natural
resistance to the beast

When the pressure of
the outside world bowed in
on her
The air would thicken enough
that she could hear its voice
speaking to her in rich whispers

But her life was solid and
secure behind the ramparts
she had spent the dearest
years of her existence building

And so…

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When I’m Dead – Kristiana Reed

FVR Publishing

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These words will only mean

something when I’m dead.

When people are looking

for words about love

from a mouth

long rotten, buried

six feet underground

or scattered in ashes

into oceans and leafy gutters.

And my words

will become their words;

foreign lips breathing

life into lonely silhouettes

of love stories years old.

A writer’s legacy

which requires the voices

of others,

to be told.

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Anthology Tuesday: Charity – Georgia Park

FVR Publishing

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I drag in bits of Autumn on my

boots

tracking them all over the

summer barbecue

and trash my winter jacket,

clinging by its tag to

their mantel

how could I not offer to babysit

for the mother of four

who finally has a date

but doesn’t think she can

make it?

even across city limits

as my degree and

occupation languishes

“I’ll do it for free,”

I tell her

but oh, what charity

when she turns around an

offers me

a slice of cheesecake

timeless, rich and silky

and sews all of my hats

together

into one warm piece

with a flick of her wrist –

just a reference-

I’ll be flying

so far away from all these

jarring seasons

I’ll be getting paid

handsomely

all the time it will be

snowing

pretty landscapes

where I’ll learn to dress

accordingly

this little woven hat will lead to

mink jackets

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Sharp- A Weyward Sisters Collaboration

Always a pleasure to write with these ladies 💛

A Global Divergent Literary Collective

I am playing with knives
again
sharpening them
lovingly
against brown leather strap
admiring the way
hair splits cleanly
upon the well-honed edge
(Christine E. Ray)

Listen!
Sounds like a violin–
fine strings ‘gainst steel bow
I play concerto
splitting hairs
(Kindra M. Austin)

I’m trimming those frayed ends
sharpening those
pointy convictions
giving them a sharp edge
a serrated opinion,
ready to pierce you
where it hurts you more
(Megha Sood)

Cold steel on skin,
I blossom,
stare down the line
take aim
at friend, foe and fortune
with my throwing knives;
multiply and divide,
split and survive.
(Kristiana Reed)

I like a razor
but xyraphi sings to me
of shreds, edges, ends
sweeter than any cutlery.
An x is an eraser,
that’s why I draw it long
to keep it clean and short
and shave me complication.
Oh, how…

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All Things – Kristiana Reed

Whisper and the Roar

All things

Little girls are made of all things,

not sugar or spice

but grass stains and butterfly wings,

cloudless days and lightning strikes,

broken hearts and beating hearts,

lemonade, cuts and bruises,

calloused hands and equal wages,

respect that’s given,

love without conditions,

honey and orange bitters,

rights, opportunities

and choices.

And little boys?

Well, they’re made of the same things too;

all things which make us,

me and you.

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