Issue a5 · 2012



Two Poems


by John Clinton





The Sway



boy plays with the flame

transfixed on its sway

you cut through space

& flicker wildly for me

asking me to jump in

to dance with you & ignite

ever more alive with love

or demise, you are silent yet

speak to me in temptations

go forth you tell me to

burn out & not fade away

into the bleak dim night

connecting my lips together

I blow a fond & farewell kiss

to set you free my love, yet

you persist in time & memory

as I submit to your movements

ever curiouser, you have not

aroused the final light in me

for my heart is much too dark







Beat Poem 2,012



love makes you

do wild & blind things

like take planes down

to the swamps of New Orleans


to see the sun glassed

gypsy queen ridin’ the sea

horses along the Mississippi

with her fog, her weed & her poems


so serious! so what (if)

giant steps were blown by

this beat black junky man/

angel listenin’ to heavens jazz


the stoned spring fling

the stoned summer sand

the stoned fall fuck & junk

filled the rest of the winter up 


with stale camel lights & rain

drops of vanilla milk shakes

with espresso shots bebop

swingin’ joints please stop


the madness, the absinthe

the loveless, the silence

the telephone does not ring

(if) no one dials it dig?










John Clinton is a graduate of the School of Visual Arts and is currently an English Literature Major at the College of Staten Island.  His poem, “Hallucinating Rimbaud,” will be published in the Spring 2012 edition of Nomad’s Choir Magazine.  Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, he currently resides in Staten Island.