Last Time I Babysit / Charcoal of Lola and Baby Snuffleupagus / Heidi Elkington

For the mourning

Don’t think today.
Feel the hit to the chest,
the skipping breath.
Inescapable death.
Don’t think.

Give it a name,
the squeeze, the strain,
that one pulsing fear
that’s tender, here.
Don’t think.

The thoughts, they lie—
the wandering eye,
the let-down, the high,
that disappointed sigh,
don’t think.

The truth, it lies
in the belly, in thighs.
Take cues from the spine.
In time you’ll be fine.
I think.

Sarah Avenir

Sarah is a writer, reader, and aspiring hermit; she’s @sarahavenir on Twitter, and you can find more at

Rumble Lump Comics: Softest of Tigers / Jesse Clyde / Thank you for allowing me to share these things with you.

A Little Bag

I have a little bag I carry
A small wristlet that never will swing in the breeze
Instead it’s cradled in the depths of my satchel
Whichever larger one I carry
In it there is a small compact of powder and a sponge
A mirror
Eye drops
Pale lip gloss
The bag was a gift from a coworker
The bag maker is too pricey for my taste
The bag itself is burnt orange
My coworker left in a burnt haze
While I stayed
The bag is filled with powder to hide a red nose
Eye drops to hide evidence of tears shed
Lip gloss to hide the flush of sorrow
I stayed and hid my burning
Inside a little bag.

Nancy Peterson

Rose Colored Past

I think of Death by a Thousand
Tiny Cuts as salt, vinegar, and the sands of
time drip out from my cracked skin,
running through my hands
onto the tops of my thighs.
But I don’t even regret every moment
at this hour. It wasn’t all bad; just frustrating.
Moving forward these days brings beloved relief,
but it’s hard not to hate that it’s okay to go,
without you,
like you did first.
I’ve handpicked my own destiny after
you picked me last. I waited for it.
I served you actively, gifting my patience,
but at the price of time filled shallow with quality,
which left my tongue dry and parched,
and my skin starved of touch
those last handful of months.

Sissy Miller

Cassandra / Sissy Miller
Trihexy / A fabric art piece made with appliqué, beading, and dense quilting / Beau Boaro Arty. Inquisitive. Queer. Disabled. Mostly optimistic. Sometimes smartassy. Follow me on Instagram: @beauasinhandsome

Chance and Choice

In every now a choice is made. So many nows I have slept walked through. Now I understand that I need not wait for circumstance to express a kindness. With every now a chance — a choice to set the world a right.


Hands / Heidi Elkington / "When nothing feels right, when things seem bleak...make ART. It's a surefire way back to goooood."


We are SO proud of you.

Look, I know we’ve had our differences over the years,

and I don’t know the details of all the things you’ve gone through… 

but… I can see how strong you are. And I’m sorry I don’t always show it, but… I do see it.

You’re amazing!

And I really mean what I said. 

We’re just so proud of you.

—Sara Quinn

PROUD OF YOU / Voiced by Sara Quinn
Untitled by Alexa Wilt


I awaited for the time to be w/you
Expecting to stand trial nothing, northern crimes.
None not yet to be, ever repeated
Allowing your bubbling emotional wreaths to rage forward
    & falter at the surface
As I, still lie writhing, writing within its ruins & rubble
O mutilating of lyrical trust, boundless!
O carcasses of bloodletting posies!
....again like the changing of the guards by monolithic candlelight, despairing, as to be expected.
Nonetheless fermenting within itself, these emotionless hierarchies.
I forbid the love ravished sanctity by winds of romancing agonies & hopeless change
to so even to attempting to deter our path
A pathway to the amorous beatings, similar to the ringing ballasts, surging ventricular songs in our defined hearts
Bleeding in familiarized unison
O but of the new 4 chambers of my hearts troubles
Decorated w/splintering flowers of spring!
& sages of summer’s supernatural howling breezes
Bouquets of belladonna & wolfsbane
I do not wish to exist w/out you..
But I do embrace embroidered thoughts not to deviate from our path
No matter the storm
or where the blossoming winds exchange their grievances
in my wordy stitches
& their fragrant burnt kisses
& their treasonous ways of love
by lost bee sting memories
& the moons last caress
I come to you an abomination
I left you in devastation
I returned to you for absolution
Allow me to leave a mark, where the scars don't hurt
Upon  beautiful plumes of deformed angel nymphs & conjoined witch's shadows
& beautifully placed organs, words & lost synapses hanging in wilted skies of phantoms reverberating reverie splayed out
& tethered to my firm grip of my amputated writing hand & impassioned library of musky libido...

Richard J Balog