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 Volume #1                    November 20, 1994                    Issue #5 

                        CONTENTS FOR VOLUME 1, ISSUE 5
     Column: Incommunicado . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Robert Fulkerson

     Column: Naked People Roll Those Dice! . . . . . . . . . J.D. Rummel

     Green Poem . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dror Abend-David

     The Still Man  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Scott Cudmore

     Incident at Stapleton Airport  . . . . . . . . . Leonard S. Edgerly

     It's Snowing in Africa . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Joseph W. Flood

     Second Coming  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tim Love

     Untitled . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Paul David Mena

     Why They Run . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . David Pellerin

     like father, like son  . . . . . . . . . . . . . Thomas J. Sherlock

     Philosophy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Arthur Shotmind

     Battery Park . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Brett A. Thomas

     Call Waiting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Leonard S. Edgerly

     Untitled . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Gary E. Walker

     Untitled . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Christopher Hepburn

     Apogee . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Scott Paul Thompson

     About the Authors  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  The Authors

     In Their Own Words . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  The Authors


 Editor                               +                              Editor
 Robert Fulkerson              The Morpo Staff                Matthew Mason                  +

 Guest Editor                Reading Room Layout               Guest Editor 
 Kris Kalil Fulkerson            Mike Gates                     J.D. Rummel 
 _The Morpo Review_.  Volume 1, Issue 5.  _The Morpo Review_ is published
 electronically on a bi-monthly basis.  Reproduction of this magazine is
 permitted as long as the magazine is not sold and the entire text of the
 issue remains intact.  Copyright 1994, Robert Fulkerson and Matthew Mason.
 The ASCII version of _The Morpo Review_ is created in part by using Lynx 2.1
 to save ASCII formatted text of the World Wide Web HyperText Markup Language
 version.  All literary and artistic works are Copyright 1994 by their
 respective authors and artists.                                                

                                EDITORS' NOTES
   o _Incommunicado_ by Robert Fulkerson, Editor:
   Welcome to the fifth issue of _The Morpo Review_. This issue finds our
   staff one Editor short, with Matt being in Europe from the beginning
   of September through the end of October.
   To offset our deficit of editors, we have taken on two additional
   staff members to help us out in times of need. Both of them are Guest
   Editors for this issue, but beginning with our next issue, they will
   be full-fledged Assistant Editors for _TMR_. Let me briefly introduce
   them to you, and then I'll take my bow and let one of them dazzle you
   with his prolific prose as our guest columnist for this issue.
   First, meet Kris Kalil Fulkerson. No, it's not just some incredible
   coincidence that she has the same last name that I do -- she's my
   wife. Kris is pursuing her Master's degree in English at the
   University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and as such, we feel she's qualified
   to help us make editorial decisions about the content and direction of
   _TMR_. She's had one poem published in _TMR_, and writes in her spare
   time. She also plays a fine game of Pente and can whip up some mighty
   tasty biscuits.
   Next, let me introduce you to J.D. Rummel. J.D. graduated from the
   University of Nebraska at Omaha quite some time ago (when he had hair,
   we're assuming) with a degree in English. While he was there, he
   participated in their Writer's Workshop and continues to write today.
   He's had two stories published in _TMR_ and a few have also been
   published in Creighton University's literary magazine, _Shadows_.
   With these two fine additions to our staff, we hope to continue to
   bring you a high-quality literary magazine via the electronic byways.
   Enjoy the issue.
   o _Naked People Roll Those Dice!_ by J.D. Rummel, Guest Editor:
   I call this "The Wedding Party Issue" because it's The Groom: Bob (or
   "Bod" as he wishes he were called) Fulkerson, The Bride: Kris
   Kalil-Fulkerson (as Bob insists she be called), and The Best Man: J.D.
   Rummel-Fulkerson (which Bob hates my being called). Anyway, when Bob
   asked me if I would like to step-in and guest edit _Morpo_ for the
   redoubtable Matt Mason, who was called to greener pastures (nah, he's
   not dead, he's in Ireland), I, of course, jumped at the chance.
   When I finished the above paragraph, it occurred to me that Mr. Mason
   was in fact, co-Best Man at the wedding, and that sort of makes every
   issue a Wedding Party Issue. Mr. Fulkerson could tell you what they
   call that kind of error in a structured programming language,
   fortunately, I can get away with calling it a _faux pas_ or what I
   call errors in a structured programming language: a fuck-up.
   But, while implying one is the only Best Man at a wedding, or turning
   left when we should have turned right might be embarrassing, maybe
   even costly in terms of time or money, such failure is rarely fatal
   ("Is that a toadstool or a mushroom, Chauncey?").
   Artistic failure isn't deadly either, but it does carry an especially
   awful stink. If good art is immortal, then bad art, like a pesky
   stain, lingers. We can explain away, even lie about an honest mistake
   in most undertakings, but creating bad art cannot be so excused,
   because the act of creation is willful. Although no one sets out to
   produce a bad poem or picture, at some point the creation leaves the
   realm of intention and will be judged on what it represents to others'
   perceptions, and make no mistake, art is always about perception. All
   art forms are windows, and one view they permit is into who the artist
   is inside and what he or she understands. Because of this, we often
   judge artists unfairly; good artists are heroes and wonderful human
   beings, sometimes even gods. Bad artists are fools, a laughing stock,
   or worse. This is not the kind of logic the ancient Greek philosophers
   promoted, but at some time haven't we all laughed at someone's
   artistic clumsiness and maybe thought a little less of them as people?
   If writing a bad story can reduce your value as human being, then
   being an artist is a risky job.
   The risk to the artist is wiped out if he or she never shares their
   work, however. No art can be judged bad if no one ever experiences it.
   The problem with this tack is that what might be good art is equally
   hidden. Can art stand alone? Does it need an audience to complete it?
   An argument can be made for both sides, but the reason so many of us
   create, then submit our creations to our fellows is rooted at least
   partly in the human need to reach out and connect with others. In
   order to survive, all of us at times have to share some part of
   ourselves with the rest of the world. The potential for rejection is
   always present, but that reality can be especially sharp for those of
   us who attempt connection via an artistic expression.
   Everyone who submitted a piece to _Morpo_ certainly took The Chance.
   Believing you are creative and should be heard is one thing, but
   putting it out there on paper, canvas, stone, celluloid, stage or
   World Wide Web--actually doing the work--is wholly another. Someone
   can believe he or she is Elvis while shaking and singing in the
   shower, but we've all been to the Karaoke bar and winced as that same
   someone revealed him-or-herself to be all wet. Right or wrong, good or
   bad, self-confident or egomaniacal, talented or not, people who share
   that naked, shower-persona with an audience should be respected.
   Finally, does an audience accepting a piece really define whether
   something is good or bad? Probably not. As I stated above, art is
   always about perception. "Good art" is often just something that found
   someone who agreed with it. The hardest part of seeking connection
   through art is that we can be denied simply because our effort reaches
   a person on a rough day--maybe they've just had a bad meal or a fight
   with a spouse. We may even have a fool (or fools) for an audience. At
   best, each person knows on some level what he or she enjoys, and they
   try to find those things in the art that surrounds them. And while
   being published or produced is a kind of validation, such acceptance
   shouldn't be taken too seriously. Why? Because honestly, art is more
   of a crap shoot than anything else. Any artist who seeks an audience's
   approval is just a naked shower singer gambling that what he or she
   has created will be accepted.
   The stakes in this game can be pretty high. It's true that looking
   like a fool in public is painful, but what about those folks who risk
   it and succeed, the ones who get out there and shake their naked stuff
   for all to see and the crowd goes wild? I'm talking about the
   Springsteens, the Richard Pryors, the Harlan Ellisons, and Woody
   Allens, the ones who take that chance and stand there in their
   birthday suits rolling the bones and commanding us to pay attention.
   As a guest editor for this month I picked those things which I agreed
   with, which spoke to me. I picked the pieces that I liked. It's
   certainly possible that some genius slipped by me. Some people like
   Jean Claude God Damn movies, some don't, but the true bottom line is
   this: Jean Claude is out there doing the splits, risking the critics'
   barbs because he needs to be out there and he knows there are people
   who enjoy what he does (and even pay for it). Jean Claude and his
   audience find connection.
   So here's to all those bare-butt gamblers who submitted to _Morpo_
   this month. Some rolled sevens and made it in, some didn't. If you
   didn't make it, if you "busted" this go-round, don't stop.
   Keep dreaming.
   Keep sharing.
   Stay naked, and keep rolling the dice.

 "Green Poem" by Dror Abend-David

In the very cold winter of ninety three they even recycled the homeless
throwing them out of the subway they picked their sparse bodies at dawn
garbage trucks spilled gray carcasses across the frozen lots their
houses of paper were torn and then turned to brown paper notebooks so
popular this fall   whatever money was found was collected as taxes
unpaid   old clothed were packed neatly and sent to the needy in Burundi
and Rwanda   and flesh, I assume, was cremated and used in the spring
as it fertilized the parks   ear lobes were cut off and sent out to places
like El Salvador   used glasses were turned into glass gold fillings into
gold   hair to hair skin to skin nails to artificial nails   The subway
was later a pleasure to ride as advertisements made clear   that a clean
world is a better world   and even the streets, through the spring, were
very pleasant and unthreatening   the ragged and diseased that were seen
here and there were the few who survived and the recently poor that await
the next storm.

 "The Still Man" by Scott Cudmore

        there is a man,
        a man i know,
        who lies so very still.

            he has

        he gnawed them off
        through flesh and bone
        in a struggle to be free.

                so now he lies motionless
                next to four bloody traps,
                light as a whisper,
                small as a mote,
                and still.

he cries for the touch
of metal.

 "Incident at Stapleton Airport" by Leonard S. Edgerly

on the steps of a Hertz shuttle van
a young man fell

I was close enough to offer
my hand before I realized

his fall was a spasm
and then spittle a confusion

of muscles his artificial leg
twisted off in his pants

all this happened so fast
that Bud the shuttle driver

had no time to prepare
a corporate response

the medics came and a nurse
who calmly turned the man's face

to one side then waited
for the seizure to subside

Bud's supervisor arrived
and praised Bud for staying cool

and took notes for an Incident Report
while the man himself sat

in a wheelchair curbside
blinking his blue eyes

as if he were waking up
from a long nap in the wrong place

 "It's Snowing in Africa" by Joseph W. Flood

   Akale is an African from the country of G---, a republic on the Gulf
   of Gambia. Its primary exports are phosphates and groundnuts. Last
   year, nearly two thousand people died there in factional violence. The
   President of G--- called the deaths "a necessary sacrifice."
   Akale drives a cab in Washington, D.C.
   The taxi gently fishtailed in the slushy snow. The snow had begun
   earlier, fat flakes falling from a gunmetal sky. The snowplows were
   nowhere to be seen. The snow would freeze in a few hours with the fall
   of darkness and the roads would become hard, white ice. Already,
   traffic had slowed down in deference to the silent storm.
   The prospect of sliding down slick streets did not alarm Akale. He
   regarded snow as an unusual blessing, a sign of the power of the
   Creator to put a stop to all of man's activities. If He willed it,
   Akale would not raise his voice in protest. It never snowed in G---;
   it was a land outside the pale of the Creator.
   Akale righted his taxi and turned down the dispatching radio so he
   could listen to his tires crunching the snow. The flakes were
   descending at a gentle angle, blurring the hard corners and edges of
   the office buildings rising up around him. The street lights suddenly
   lit up, gold lanterns stretching all the way up 19th Street, towards
   Dupont Circle. Bundled-up pedestrians hurried up the unswept
   sidewalks; office workers were being sent home early.
   "Snow emergency," he heard the radio whisper. That meant fares were
   doubled: another blessing from the Creator. It would be a long night,
   but a rewarding one.
   Akale turned up "Embassy Row." He paused by the bus stop; no takers.
   Then he drove slowly past the Georgian and Tudor mansions until he
   reached the embassy of G---. The embassy was a narrow brick rowhouse
   with a crumbling turret and a tiny cobblestone drive. The building was
   shared with an Eastern European country. A bright yellow taxi from
   "Imperial Cab" was double-parked out front.
   "Imperial Cab" was owned by the Railroads Minister of G---; he was a
   Njem, a northern tribe, as was the President and most of the army. All
   the cabbies were Njem, most being former military or government
   officers. "Imperial Cab" was a major source of hard currency for the
   chronically cash-strapped nation.
   Akale glided his "Easy Fast" cab past the embassy, dark eyes fixed on
   the curtained window. The Njem had blinded his father; Akale fled the
   country under a student visa secured by a sorrowful Peace Corps
   The dispatcher barked his cab number. Akale enjoyed the authoritative
   sound of the American's voice. "Easy Fast" was practically a gypsy
   operation with its loose manner and multiracial staff: a place where
   immigrants started off. All the dispatchers were black Americans,
   however. It was their business. Whites sometimes lumped all blacks
   together, yet Akale was adamant that he was not black, not American,
   not even a citizen of G---, rather he was Hrem.
   Akale drove through the steadily darkening afternoon to the airport.
   Planes floated over the bridge. The traffic inched forward. Then the
   roar of the jet engines washed over them. Akale watched the planes
   drift down over the India ink river until they met the runway.
   Akale's fare was a big, ruddy American. Akale hoisted the heavy
   garment bag into the trunk while the American settled into the back
   seat. He listened to the shocks creak as they accepted the new load.
   The man slammed the door. He named an address in the city.
   There was a long wait to get out of the airport. Rush hour had added a
   new misery to the snow emergency. Taxis and buses crept forward, their
   brake lights aglow. The American joked that he should have walked.
   When they reached the parkway and their speed increased, Akale asked
   the American if this was his first time in Washington. Akale had
   learned English from the Peace Corps; his accent only hinted at his
   The American cleared his throat--a heavy, uncomfortable sound. "Yea,
   I'm a first-timer. Visiting my brother. He loves this town. I don't
   know where Chuck's gonna take me but I wanna do some drinking in
   "I came here six years ago," Akale said. He tried an American
   aphorism, "It's a great town."
   "Yea?" he said, the word a jab. "I'm from Miami. None of this snow
   shit in Miami. Can't believe it. Must be crazy to come up here in
   December. Man, I could be jetskiing. Miami, now that's a good town.
   Hot all the time, and humid too. During the summer it rains every day,
   like clockwork. Hey, you know, you'd probably like it."
   "No, no, no. Where I come from it is dry and hot, not humid, not wet."
   "Like Arizona, huh?"
   "Yes, but not a desert. Except in the north."
   There was a pause. Akale gave him the name of the republic.
   "That's near Thailand, right?"
   "No, Nigeria... in Africa." The traffic had slowed again. They were
   directly across the Potomac from the glowing spire of the Washington
   Monument. The snow was blowing like chaff through the cab's
   headlights. Not even four, and it was dark as midnight.
   "G---!" he shouted, falling back against the seat. "Now the name
   sounds familiar. You got that guy who shot all those other guys on the
   boat, right? He was the army chief and told the President that he had
   a cruise planned for them and then knocked them off."
   In the rearview mirror, Akale could see the American smiling and
   shaking his head, making a bitter joke about it. He knew what the man
   would say next: "What a fucked-up place."
   It was time to explain. "Things weren't good before Masuoko but the
   government left the tribes in peace. They stole from us, but there was
   no war against the people," Akale said, his mind racing ahead of him
   tribal dialect. "Masuoko is a Njem, they control everything in the
   country. Masuoko hands out jobs, money, concessions, he even decides
   where the Peace Corps goes. The Peace Corps gave an irrigation project
   to a neighboring village because they were Njem. Our little stream
   dried up because of this. No water for us! Of course there was going
   to be violence!"
   Akale remembered when their little trickle of water went dry one
   summer. The rice paddies created by irrigation glistened, wet, alive,
   while their village was dry, dusty, mothers stirring only to hike the
   two miles to the well. The elders of the village, his father included,
   asked that the Njem of the neighboring village send the water flowing
   again. They refused, the rice crop was going to make them rich. The
   District Commissioner had a hand in the project so he would not talk
   to the Hrem. One night, his father was caught scooping water out of an
   irrigation ditch. They hit him over the head with a plastic pipe until
   he was blind.
   "Masuoko is a butcher. In the past, things were divided among the
   tribes. Masuoko took everything for the Njem. That's why all the other
   tribes fight him."
   The American mumbled something, and then, as the traffic reached the
   bridge he said happily, "Here we go! Spent more time in this cab than
   on the plane!"
   They coasted over the bridge, towards the bright glow of the Lincoln
   Memorial. Snow poured out of the darkness. In a blur, Akale remembered
   the wild anarchy of those first days when he and his schoolmates
   wrecked the irrigation project and the soldiers came by helicopter to
   hunt them and burn their village and send shells into the hills after
   them. And bleeding to death, and death by dismemberment, and death by
   Akale made his way up the silent side-streets. There was a tense
   moment as the cab slid perilously close to a line of parked cars
   before Akale jerked the wheel and the cab went straight. The American
   continued his happy chatter, speculating on his visit to Washington.
   He asked Akale: "If I get sick of all this stuff Chuck's going to drag
   me to--espresso bars, performance art, book stores--you know a good
   topless place a man can go to?" Akale named a place he had seen from
   the street.
   "Thanks, guy," the American said a moment later as they reached the
   address. "Thanks for the ride and the tip. Listen, keep the change, I
   don't need it."
   The door swung open and cold air poured in. Akale opened the trunk and
   the American retrieved his garment bag. Their breath swirled in white
   clouds around their faces. The American's face was even ruddier with
   the chill, innocent blue eyes glimmering like sun-struck water. A man
   called out a name. The American waved to a silhouette in a doorway.
   Akale slammed the trunk shut and cautiously made his way around the
   idling car. The American was making similar ginger steps up the path
   towards the man in the doorway. When Akale looked up again, the two
   men were gone, the light had vanished. Snow covered parked cars, brick
   walls, windowsills.
   Akale shook the snow out of his hair as he got in. He recorded the
   ride in his log book. He drove back to "Embassy Row" and edged his cab
   into traffic. Preparing to make a turn, Akale checked his rear-view
   mirror. There, aggressively switching lanes, was a bright yellow cab.
   Akale slumped down as the taxi flew past, terrified eyes looking
   sideways. He saw the words "Imperial Cab" and a dark, intent face at
   the wheel.
 "Second Coming" by Tim Love

   They call it birth. When chaos tosses and turns until the law of
   chance procrees a pattern should emerge, when that pattern imprints
   itself on protoplasm that struts and frets until it dries into
   crystals that soon dissolve in the minds of those who care to
   remember, then they call it death. Thus is their tragic circle
   I know my mother didn't want me, but it began well enough for her. I
   dig and patiently sieve layer upon layer of memory until I find, just
   above the bedrock, a giggle that had urged some rich client on.
   Tactfully she calls it a virgin birth.
   Precocious though I was, my first words were not, as some biographers
   have written, ``can you cut my cord now, midwife?''. No, I was not so
   stupid. I watched how the other babies on the ward slept, fed and
   cried, and did likewise for months. With my mother out all night on
   the game I could tune the TV dish to educate myself. Babycare programs
   were especially useful, showing me how to remain inconspicuous.
   At 12 I felt ready. I trotted into the local university and harangued
   a lecturing math professor into blubbering silence. The faculty
   snapped me up and give me a terminal. I was able to hold all the data
   before my eyes, shake them into random movement and shout ``Eureka!'',
   ``By Jove!'' or something similarly classical when they fell into
   shape. I had perfect recall and a knack for symmetry; all I need to do
   was watch. It would have been all too easy to get a life tenure,
   putting myself out to the highest bidder, but after a few days I tired
   of academe; there was a world to conquer. Occasionally my mother
   popped up on a chat-show but the media soon tired of her
   reminiscences, and so did I. The screen was my only love. The people
   on it were secondary. To me they were like animals imitating humans,
   pet dogs picking up the habits of their owners, except that humans
   have no owners so they invent them, calling them Gods. I am one such
   god, or so they tell me every day, 5 times daily. I am the 2nd coming,
   the 14th great prophet, the 8th boddhisatva. Or else I'm mad. They say
   that too. The difference between a god and a madman is a good agent
   and mine was the best. Countless snooker champs could testify to that.
   We bought all the latest technology, hooked into the biggest
   databases, bought influence where it mattered.
   One day he said "Why not go into films, son?" It seemed a natural
   progression; precocious metaphysics leaves the masses cold. I began
   planning an epic, something to pull them all in. And then I thought,
   why be limited to a flickering 2D image? Why not 3D? Why have an image
   at all? And so I directed people's lives; first those around me then
   whole cities. I arranged them like iron filings daily, 5 times daily.
   I folded days and nights before me like a vast chessboard, moving my
   people backwards and forwards, on and off.
   They come to me for displays of precognition and magic. Like a new
   artform I return their minds to pre-conceptual wonder. Often I'm their
   last hope; they've already tried alternate nostril breathing, jacking
   up in squats, putting tomatoes under cardboard pyramids hoping they'd
   not rot. They expect me to raise their awareness. It's easier raising
   the dead. Nevertheless I need them; my soul hungers for their flesh.
   They are my hunter-gatherers of data. As they yearn to remember, I
   fight to forget, to give myself space and time to prepare for
   Night falls; the other half of my world awakes and I dream of my final
   moves. My hand hovers over one piece then another. A mistake now could
   be fatal. A bodyguard wakes me and leads another mortal in. On a
   hidden monitor I read the output from the net-database -- his name and
   personal details. Again I employ the far-fetched analogy of the world
   as words. ``How can I help you Joe?'', I say. It's amazing how far you
   can get just by knowing people's names, my acolytes seem impressed by
   these little touches. In return they collect money for me from men
   with fat wallets and heads to match. I have studied them carefully;
   I've superimposed one on another, heart on heart until I see what they
   call love, face on face until all irregularities are canceled out.
   What remains is my chosen face, one they all recognize. I crinkle it
   into a friendly smile.
   "I am a sinner, master", Joe replied. "Long ago, just once, I
   committed adultery. The wife was pregnant, you know. Well, last night
   I had the late night chat show on and I saw her again, the whore I
   slept with. She'd hardly changed in 30 years. It was your mother.
   Forgive me".
   I plunder my strata, sinking a well until I strike water, the peaceful
   womb. I winch up my earliest memories, my mother's descriptions of my
   father. By now my computer has sniffed the mortal enough to check his
   DNA. There is no match. I can give sight to the blind but I still
   don't know my father. He'll do for now though. The time is right.
   "Father, you are forgiven". My agent rushes in, wanting to buy his
   "Let him go!", I thunder. My agent sees this as conclusive evidence
   that I'm losing my touch. Across the airwaves news is spread that I am
   the son of a mere laborer. Opposing churches gather for revenge,
   demanding blood tests. Despite the ingenuity they expend on justifying
   their gods' role in the holocaust they use the cheapest jibes against
   me. Prejudice thrives most when lofty intellect is exercised
   inconsistently. My ratings plummet as the public lose faith. I do
   nothing. In mock desperation my agent books a prime-time slot but on
   the way to the studio I am ambushed. I feign surprise and
   incomprehension to ease the conscience of my agent's hired thugs. They
   hold me captive in a rented house, demanding a ransom from my flock
   but they have mistimed their coup. These subtleties were hard to
   calculate in advance. Frustrated, they leave me in the cellar bleeding
   from their crude torture with only a screen for company. I see
   followers and enemies compete to witness against me. Their memory is
   short. Mine is otherwise.
   There's a old fallacy you may be familiar with; each of us has 2
   parents and each of those has 2 ad infinitum so in the past there must
   have been more people than nowadays. It is the same with memories; if
   they are not shared, the past will seem richer than the present. I
   have no-one to share mine with. I have been alone here for days,
   waiting for the pain to return, listening to myself being pilloried by
   some media prat or other. I'd forgotten how much they flap around. I
   suppose they think they're being expressive. But I've waited long
   enough. Just as space stops all things being one, so time is another
   invention of the devil I can do without. Too bored to close my eyes I
   open them again to chaos. The wall becomes chaos. The sunlight that
   streams in becomes chaos. Leaving my tailored, bloody skin behind I
   walk out into the littered street. I see kids playing in a burnt out
   car, secretaries walking arm in arm from lunchtime celebration. They
   hardly notice me but they'll remember. For centuries to come they will
   call it a miracle.

 "Untitled" by Paul David Mena

my earliest recollection:
watercolors dabbed haphazardly
about a paper napkin.
that day the blurred horizon
had no vanishing point - a sky of suns
that danced in a circle,
singing songs I could no longer remember.
in my bow tie and Sunday shoes,
I never cried when I was told.
the birds were silent then,
hovering above while I counted each one.
they had no names, yet they all knew me -
they watched while I played in the sand after dark.
they scattered when my name was called,
the floodlight's reflection still shimmering
in the pool on the other side of the fence.
inside, the halls were narrow,
casting shadows at impossible angles.
I stared at my fingers
while water washed the sand away,
a clockwise swirl against the blue porcelain.
then, the long march.
fighting sleep, the contours of night
assembled behind the billowing curtains,
laying the toy soldiers to rest.

 "Why They Run" by David Pellerin

   Earl stood in the doorway of the barn, out of the rain, and watched
   his brother's truck move up the long gravel road that came from town.
   He re-lit his damp cigarette and took one pull on it, then without
   finishing it he threw the remains into the mud in front of his feet.
   He wiped a fleck of tobacco from his lower lip, then zipped his jacket
   against the cold and waited.
   Jack was driving his old Ford, a white three-quarter ton with a cattle
   rack, and he was pulling a livestock trailer. He swung it wide to
   avoid the ditch and turned into the driveway. There were potholes all
   the way to the barn, and the truck bumped and swayed, throwing arcs of
   brown water. The springs of the truck groaned as the wheels dipped and
   Earl stayed out of the rain and kept his hands warm in his pockets
   while his brother turned the truck around and lined the trailer up
   with the pasture gate. The driveway was slick with mud and the remains
   of the last snow and the rain was falling hard. There was hail mixed
   in. It was the middle of March, but it could have been late November
   or early February from the feel of it. It was cold, and gusts of wind
   sometimes blew the rain sideways into the barn and into Earl's face.
   He pulled his cap down over his ears, shoved his hands back into his
   pockets and walked out to help his brother.
   Jack was having trouble looking out the back window and the mirrors
   were spotted and streaked with rain. He had to try three or four times
   before he got the truck and trailer lined up. He backed up until he
   heard Earl thump his hand on the trailer's fender, then shut off the
   engine and set the brake. The hail coming down on the roof of the cab
   made a noise like popcorn hitting the lid of a pan. Jack sat in the
   truck and listened to the sound. He rolled the window half way down
   and got a fresh cigarette out of his shirt pocket. He found a butane
   lighter mixed in with the old receipts and scraps of paper on the top
   of the dashboard. He looked out the window at Earl. "Goddamn
   downpour," he said.
   Earl nodded. Rain came off the bill of his hunting cap and dripped
   onto the ground in front of his boots. He stood with his hands in his
   pockets and his collar up. He looked at his brother sideways. "I
   thought you was gettin' a horse trailer," he said. He looked back,
   behind the truck. "That ain't no horse trailer."
   Jack looked at the cigarette between his fingers, and scratched at a
   patch of dry skin on the back of his hand. "Goddam Harking said he
   couldn't spare one," he finally said. "Bastard said a cattle trailer'd
   be good enough." He lit the cigarette and blew smoke out the corners
   of his mouth. "Hell," he said, "I can't even count how many times he's
   borrowed my goddamn flatbed." He took a second pull on the cigarette,
   then stubbed it out against the window glass and tucked what was left
   back into his pocket. He put on his hat and gloves and opened the
   truck door. His back was hurting, and he grunted loudly when he stood
   up. He steadied himself against the open door and bent his spine back
   to make it straight. He shut the truck door and walked past Earl,
   toward the pasture gate. "Where's this damn horse at?" he said.
   Earl led Jack through the gate and across the front pasture to the
   cross fence. "She been back here all the time," he said. "Won't come
   out of the back pasture for nothin'. I been tryin' all morning, but
   she ain't moved." Earl took his hands out of his pockets and unhooked
   one end of a barbed wire gate. He pulled it out of the way and laid
   the tangle of wire against the main fence. He walked into the back
   pasture toward the horse. Jack followed, walking slower. He watched
   his brother from behind. Earl was tall, at least six inches taller
   than Jack, and wore a heavy wool coat that made his legs look thin and
   weak. He is weak, thought Jack. Always relying on someone. He looked
   back across the field toward Earl's house.
   "Where's Kate today?" he said. "Ain't she helping?"
   "She ain't here," said Earl.
   The horse was standing in the mud with its head lowered and its front
   feet placed apart and rigid. It was thin and dark- headed with black
   spots on its chest. Rain splattered on its back and formed streams
   that flowed down between the lines of its ribs before separating into
   heavy drops that splashed into the mud. The horse didn't move, but its
   eyes followed Earl as he walked up and took hold of its halter. Earl
   clipped a rope onto the halter and tried to pull the horse forward.
   Jack saw its ears go back and the muscles of its neck and shoulders
   tense up and resist.
   "She ain't movin' for you, that's for sure," he said. "You been
   fightin' her too much." He nudged Earl out of the way and put a hand
   under the horse's chin. He lifted it up until the horse's eyes were
   level with his own, and spoke to it in a soft voice: "What's the
   matter with you, eh?"
   The horse's ears twitched and stayed back. Jack pushed its head higher
   and held tight to the halter, then pushed sideways and back, throwing
   the horse off balance. It stumbled and stepped to the side, the mud
   making sucking noises as the hooves pulled free. Jack kept talking.
   "Come on, girl, ain't you want to stretch them legs? Come on, mule,
   let's keep a movin', hear?" He pulled to the side again and the horse
   continued around, backing up and stepping sideways in a clumsy circle.
   Jack worked the horse, moving in larger circles until they were close
   to the opening in the fence. He stroked the horse's neck and talked,
   but when he tried to coax the horse forward it stopped at the line
   where the gate had been and wouldn't go through. Earl stood nearby and
   shook his head.
   "Won't go through," he said. "She ain't been out of this field in
   Jack stood next to the horse and looked at the gate, and at the field
   beyond and the trailer. He shook off his right glove and pulled the
   half-smoked cigarette and the lighter out of his pocket. He held them
   for a moment, considering.
   "Does Jenkins know we're bringin' this horse?"
   "He knows."
   Jack flamed the lighter and the horse jerked its head and took a step
   backward. Jack took three pulls on the cigarette before snuffing it
   out and putting it back in his pocket. He took off his coat.
   "Hold on to her," he said.
   Earl held the halter while Jack draped his coat over the horse's head
   and covered its eyes and ears. Jack tied the arms of the coat together
   under the horse's jaw, and tucked the excess material into the straps
   of the halter. He talked to the horse again and walked it back into
   the pasture and around in a circle. He steered the horse through the
   mud, never in a straight line, until they were through the gate and
   into the front pasture. Earl pulled the barbed wire gate back into
   position and followed Jack and the horse across the field.
   Jack was huffing from the effort of walking with the horse, and from
   the pain in his back. His chest hurt and he was wet from the rain and
   sweating in the cold air. Steam rose from his shirt. He paused to
   catch his breath, and spit at the ground and looked straight at Earl.
   "Where's your wife, she ought to be doin' this. It's her damn horse."
   Earl shrugged his shoulders and looked at the house. "Ain't here," he
   said. "Ain't here, and I got to move this horse today."
   Jack looked at Earl for a long time.
   "Hell of a day you picked."
   Earl held the horse while Jack opened the back of the trailer. The
   rain had slackened to a light mist, and the air was quiet. Earl could
   hear the horse breathing under the coat. The coat had slipped down so
   the horse's ears were visible, and they twitched independently,
   Jack leaned over to put the ramp into position. He felt his back begin
   to spasm, and he dropped the ramp the last four inches to the ground.
   The noise startled the horse, and it crow-hopped to one side. Earl
   kept hold of the rope.
   "Christ," said Jack. He straightened back up with a grimace. He took
   the halter rope from Earl and tied it to the post on the inside of the
   "Better get that coat off her head so she can see what she's doin',"
   said Jack.
   Earl untied the arms of the coat and slid it off the horse's head. He
   could smell the sweat from the horse in the fabric, and the smoke from
   Jack's cigarettes. He walked around the trailer to put the coat into
   the cab of the truck and noticed the same smell when he opened the
   door. There was also the smell of grease, and the smell of mildew. And
   maybe, thought Earl, the smell of perfume. He laid the coat across the
   seat and noticed that the newspapers and scraps of cardboard strewn on
   the floor of the passenger's side were damp and muddied with
   footprints. Small footprints; the footprints of a woman. Or a child.
   Another Mexican, thought Earl.
   Jack tied a longer rope to the horse's halter and passed the free end
   through a metal ring inside the front end of the trailer, bringing the
   end of the rope back out and looping it twice around the support post
   to form a cleat. He untied the short rope from the halter. He stood
   next to the horse and pulled the long rope taut. The horse leaned back
   to resist the pull of the rope, but Jack pushed sideways with his
   shoulder to force it to take a step. The horse hesitated, confused
   about who was pulling the rope, then lost its balance and stepped
   forward onto the ramp, its hooves clanking and slipping on the wet
   metal. The horse put its ears back and strained against the rope. Jack
   pulled tighter and gave the horse another shove from the side.
   Earl stood to the side and watched. "Take it slow," he said. "She'll
   get tired pretty soon."
   Jack gave the rope another wrap around the post, tied it off and
   relaxed his grip. The horse stood with its head stretched forward,
   unwilling to take another step up the ramp. Jack took off his gloves,
   stepped off the ramp and lit what was left of his cigarette. He asked
   again, in a quieter voice this time:
   "Where's Kate, Earl?"
   Earl looked past his brother at the house and small yard. Stacks of
   tires and old shipping pallets -- the remains of last year's garden --
   leaned from the weight of a hard winter. Rusty baling wire, melting
   scraps of cardboard and rotting pieces of plywood littered the ground
   around the mobile home. Car parts -- wheels and fenders and engine
   blocks -- were piled under the living room window, next to the steps.
   "I asked you a question, Earl," said Jack. "Why ain't you answerin'
   Earl finally looked Jack in the eyes. He swallowed, hard.
   "Ain't here. Don't you get it, Jack? She ain't here." His mouth
   twitched on one side. He looked at the ground. "She's been gone more
   than a week."
   "Shit," said Jack. "That figures." He dropped his cigarette butt into
   the mud and stepped back onto the ramp. "That just goddamn figures."
   He untied the rope and pulled, harder than before. The horse struggled
   against the rope but couldn't get a foothold on the slippery ramp.
   Jack dragged the horse up, jerking on the rope and taking up the slack
   around the pole. When the horse was at the top of the ramp and nearly
   in, it threw its head violently up, scraping the skin on its forehead
   on the rough metal of the trailer roof. Dark blood dripped down its
   "Take it easy, Jack, huh?" said Earl, watching.
   Jack wasn't listening. He alternated between pulling on the rope and
   hitting the horse. He started yelling: "Come on, you damn mule! Get in
   The halter broke with a loud snap. Jack fell back with the rope and
   stumbled down the ramp into the mud. The horse caught itself before
   falling and ran for the road. It got to the end of the driveway and
   turned right. It kept running, splashing water from potholes as it
   went -- running until it was out of sight.
   Earl sat on a wet stump and put his face into his hands. Jack found
   another cigarette in his shirt pocket and lit it. His hand shook as he
   held the lighter, and his back stiffened into a tense mass of pain. He
   clenched his teeth and leaned against the side of the trailer. He saw
   that Earl's shoulders were shaking, and he snorted with disgust.
   "Christ, Earl," he said, "it's just a damn horse."

 "like father, like son" by Thomas J. Sherlock

fatherless son, who seeks to be
not his father's son but his own man,
follows his father's footsteps,
living out his father's life as if
fatherandson were one and the same,
as if his father had decided to relive
his own life again.

 "Philosophy" by Arthur Shotmind

     My childish friends are outside
     Playing games with philosophy.
     Where is my catcher's mitt?

     An errant hypothesis crashes through the neighbors' window
     And lands in the living room.
     All are afraid to retrieve it.

     "Ye gods," cries the transcendalist,
     "We'd better make tracks."

     Here it is.  My mitt was under the chemistry set.
     Acid holes in the leather.
     Toss me a paradox.

 "Battery Park" by Brett A. Thomas

She walks ahead of me.
Small, but sure.
In my life she is a giant
who could crush me without a thought.

Statues of monkeys play at my feet.
There are two at the edge of a fountain.
On sinks, the other grasps.
A passerby wonders:
"Is she rescuing him?  Or pushing him in?"
I wonder, as well.

So strongly I wish to take her hand
Or put my arms across her shoulders.
But she walks ahead of me, quickly,
and it is all I can do to keep her in sight.

I neglect the statuary in my haste to keep up.
I lose further ground staring at six children and a man.
"Two steps forward," the man says.
A foolish child follows the instructions,
and is chided by his peers and his elder.
I take many steps forward, closing the gap, though Simon did not say.

She waits for me at the end of a wall.
She chides me for not taking enough time,
for not paying attention to park and statues
and children.

In the river, boats drop anchor.
There is a ramshackle houseboat here.
Blue and pink and love and scavenging.
The _Times_ says the people who live there
are circus performers, and pay no taxes or rent.
But she is sure it's a different craft.

She won't meet my eyes, because we see different things.
To me, it is a blue and sunny day with the one I love.
To her, it is a moment with the cloying and indecisive man
who follows and desires her.

The park ends in a pond, with a poem.
It speaks of life and love and loss.
The late sun makes the granite letters unreadable.
I skip it, and am again chided for my lack of caring.
But I am too busy trying to keep up with this woman,
who wishes to lose me with her fast, short stride.

 "Call Waiting" by Leonard S. Edgerly

apparently that poem
by Philip Levine
was not ready to be read

my mother this morning
got a phone call from her roofer
then a call waiting call
from someone else
so she was talking
waiting bouncing between
the two phone calls while
I waited to read Levine's poem
not long enough though
        a silly sullen boy
I left her stranded
on her own politeness

I left her on the phone
telling the call waiting call
"I have to go now"
in that little voice of hers
she uses when everything
is falling apart

so I left the poem                [begin new stanza]
for them to read
on their own damn time
in between call waiting
and any roofer who might
have pressing business in the morning

was I this much a tyrant
forty years ago wanting
to show what I found
all on my own
and wanted to share with her
before call waiting was invented?

my father naturally
calls up to the third floor phone
to say how great the poem was
he read it to her
when she got off the phone

I can imagine
a kid as bright as I was
always wanting to show
what he had discovered
and the poor tired mother
saying yes, yes - that's
wonderful dear
but needing to write
a grocery list call a sister
and pay attention
to everyone else too
so he never got as much
as he wanted
in the Attention Department
which may explain
how interested he became
in that odd shiver
through his whole body
after enough attention
to his emerging flesh
or the high solace
of a pine tree where
he looked out from the top                  [no new stanza]
and watched the other boys
play baseball
in the far field

and now
the sad sight of her life
pulled in so many directions
dictated to by telephones
and roofers
and details of other people's lives
her own priorities
a swirl of ones and zeros
in other people's computers
her stretched desire
to be three places at once
not willing to piss off
anyone - her small voice
saying "I have to go now"
and my ability to make her feel bad

What gives me the right?

 "Untitled" by Gary E. Walker

Waking, my eyes are lidless
dried out with thoughts of
You and I, and me
And We, of course.
Stretched thin on a shadow screen
Movie stars.
(Swimmin' pools, et al.)
A serial enchantment
(a new installment every Sat.)
In a tail-eating turntable pattern
(How does his hat stay on?)
Inescapable, perfect script-written lies,
And a plot to lie in.
All stretched thin on a shadow screen
Seen for what we are,
Holes in a bright
Bright light.

 "Untitled" by Christopher Hepburn

it's ok
to watch two men
of differing sizes
small, medium, large
 and extra

extra large men
beat the  livin'

shit out of

each other
for extra large sums

of money
but it's not ok
to watch two

people fuck
why not have professional sex
different classes for penis size
  holyfield vs. bowe
for the heavyweight penis
title of the world
would it still go ten rounds?
with a judge to decide the winner
 "well I just thought holyfield

put more oomph into it on rounds

7 and 8"
and for amateur fuckers
an event in the Olympics
"and the gold medal
for welter penis goes to
Caesar Jaurez"
who when interviewed would only say
"gracias a dios, gracias a dios"
his father when interviewed would say
"I knew he was gonna be a fucker
since he was a baby
you could see it in his eyes"

 "Apogee" by Scott Paul Thompson

   Three great warriors met on the field of battle and proclaimed their
   allegiance. "To the end," they said, "And to the end, again."
   One warrior was creative and wise and he was known as Dreams. One
   warrior was shrewd and industrious and he was called Numbers. And the
   smallest of the warriors was known as Perplex. And they were all
   courageous and adventurous and most of all they were young. And all
   three cried out in one voice for the world to hear, "To the end, and
   to the end, again."
   So together they rode out into the future. And as they rode, Perplex
   screamed out thoughts for Dreams to ponder. And Dreams and Perplex
   would sit by the campfires and ponder the thoughts and play with them
   and create with them. Because of Perplex's thoughts, Dreams became a
   great philosopher. And Perplex would scream out figures with many
   decimal points and a magnitude of commas, and Numbers and Perplex
   would add them and tally them and solve problems to which nobody had
   as yet put forth the questions. Numbers became a great mathematician
   because of Perplex's unique figures. And together the three warriors
   were courageous and adventurous, and most of all they were young. And
   together they cried out valiantly, "To the end, and to the end again."
   The three's adventures were many and their bond was drawn tight. Side
   by side they rode into battle and side by side they entertained many a
   fine young maiden, winning the hearts of each and every one. And just
   as every young warrior is known to do, they lost their own hearts a
   time or two. Wherever they went the laughter was great, for everyone
   joined in. Because who could tell what these three mighty warriors
   would do if in fact they were displeased? So they drank everyone
   else's ale and they gorged on others' kills. And as they rode Dreams
   pondered, Numbers tallied and Perplex grew confused.
   It was in the twilight of their youth that they came upon a great
   desert which few men had ever crossed and fewer still had crossed
   without growing old and dying soon after. On that morn as they
   approached the great desert of which the other side could not be seen,
   they stopped. Dreams assessed the great wasteland and he said, "I know
   it can be crossed." Numbers wrote down columns of figures and said,
   "The other side is attainable." And Perplex looked at his two friends
   and said, "I am afraid my horse will tire during the long journey."
   So together they toasted a toast, and together they cried out, "To the
   end, and to the end, again." And together they started off across the
   great desert. But before they had ridden one day and one night a
   terrible storm ensued and caused the sand to spring from the ground
   and into the air. The sand bit at the three warriors' faces and
   scratched at their eyes and choked the breathe from their lungs. Yet
   even as the winds screamed "Terror," and the sky was torn open with
   bolts of black lightening, still you could hear Dreams cry, "I know we
   can make it." Just as loudly Numbers rang out, "Figures don't lie."
   And Perplex's voice was muffled with sand as he pleaded, "It's too
   On the third day it happened. The storm had forced sand into their
   faces for so long that they could no longer see each other.
   "We must stay close by using the sounds of our voices," yelled Dreams.
   "I calculate it is not much farther." boasted Numbers.
   "I can't make it," wept Perplex.
   "We can make it together, if together we stay," Dreams begged.
   "I've come half way and I've only half way yet to go." Numbers
   "I'm going back! " Perplex's voice trembled.
   "Remember our dreams! " pleaded Dreams. "Together to the end, and to
   the end, again!"
   "I figure I'll make it, " Numbers stated, "to the end."
   "Your dreams are confusing, and your figures don't add up," Perplex
   sobbed, "I'm going back."
   "No!," screamed Dreams.
   "Me!," cried Numbers.
   Perplex's voice was absent.
   Eight more days passed and wind blew its final gust and sand spit its
   last flakes. Dreams and Numbers pulled themselves up onto the other
   side of the great desert and brushed themselves off. "I made it," said
   Numbers, "And so did you." "Not without great loss," replied Dreams.
   Dreams gazed back into the great desert, then turned his head to the
   paths that lay ahead. "To the end, and to the end, again," he yelled
   with hoarse voice. "Sure," added Numbers.
   So the two rode into the village that lay on the path, side by side
   but no longer together. And as they rode down the main street of the
   village the citizens gathered on the sides of the street and giggled
   with excitement, for it had been many years since two great warriors
   such as these had ridden down their streets. Together the townsfolk
   cheered and together they yelled out, "To the end, to the end."
   As seasons passed, Dreams took his sword and instead of waging battle
   with it he used it to carve out magnificent pictures in the dirt of
   the great adventures the warriors experienced when they were three.
   And time passed too for Numbers, who found he no longer needed his
   sword to fight battles, so he melted it down into gold ingots and he
   added them together and he multiplied them. All the townspeople
   gathered around Dreams and they gathered around Numbers and they were
   awed. And they whispered as they watched, "Where will it end, where
   will it end?" Seasons passed, time went by and everyone grew older.
   Dreams' thoughts grew deeper and Numbers' ingots walled him in and
   neither one of them could remember what it was that they had done so
   much yelling about in days past.
   The day came when Dreams went to Numbers' huge golden wall and he
   called over to him. "I have dreamt the most profound thoughts one
   could possibly dream and I have shared them."
   "Who dares to bother the Great Enterprise?" the reply came back.
   "Tis I, Dreams, come to fetch my friend and fellow warrior, Numbers,"
   clamored Dreams.
   "Numbers?" came back a bewildered voice. "Oh, yes, now I recall, the
   name by which I was known in the reckless years of my youth," the
   voice laughed. "I am now called the Great Enterprise. Now begone from
   my great wall, or I may decide to divide you into two."
   "What was it?" Dreams persisted. "What was it we used to yell at the
   top of our young voices for the whole world to hear?"
   "'Invest' or 'Buy Bonds' or 'A Penny Saved is a Penny Earned',"
   Enterprise called from behind the wall. "I'm sure it was one of those.
   Take your pick."
   "No, it was something that shook the earth. Something that when other
   warriors heard it shouted they fell to their knees and saluted us."
   Dreams thought long and hard.
   "Wisdom creates as many doors as it opens, but with enough wealth you
   can afford to buy other peoples' keys. Now that is one everybody can
   live by." The Great Enterprise replied confidently.
   "It's coming back to me," Dreams said softly. "I.....Yes........I
   remember." And with a voice not nearly as strong as years ago and with
   one that had grown a little strained with age, Dreams bellowed, "To
   the end, and to the end, again." The golden walls shook with the
   ancient vibrations that had been summoned.
   "Hey, my mind and my tongue are delicate instruments and you nearly
   rattled them out of my skull with that racket. I'll ask you not to do
   that again," Enterprise seemed abnormally shaken.
   "We have erred, Numbers. In all my great thinking and in all your
   great calculations we have erred."
   "Erred?" The sound of papers shuffling. " Impossible."
   "We must go back for Perplex," said Dreams. "We must go back and then
   together go on to the end."
   "Oh, I couldn't. You've come at a really bad time, you know. I've got
   year-to-dates to do, yearly reports to get out, tax forms to figure
   and just a million things that are just too important to be left."
   "I will go alone if I must, Numbers." Dreams said.
   "I won't be here when you get back, you know," said Numbers.
   "You're not now." replied Dreams.
   And so with freshly polished sword and aged armor, Dreams set out
   across the great desert to find his friend, Perplex. Dreams crossed
   the great desert and rode into the mist of a time which he had once
   known. But the trails were all grown over and most everything that he
   had once remembered as being green with life was now brown and wilted.
   But on he rode and on. Chance brought him to a clearing where there
   were still a few vines reaching out their emerald hue across barren
   earth. Climbing down from his horse, Dreams heard ever so faintly
   someone speaking.
   "Let it end. Let it all end."
   Dreams unsheathed his sword and walked to the brush from where the
   voice had uttered. There in a pile, with his hands over his head, lay
   Perplex. Dreams tapped him on the shoulder with the broadside of his
   sword. "Time to go, old buddy." Dreams reached out his hand to help
   Perplex to his feet.
   "Dreams! Oh, Dreams, I've forgotten the words. How do they go?" Tears
   ran down Perplex's cheeks.
   "To the end," Dreams softly said each word. "And to the end, again."
   "Yeah, that's it." Perplex smiled. "That's how it goes. I'd
   "No. You hadn't forgotten. You just needed reminding."
   Dreams helped Perplex onto his horse and together they rode, dreaming
   dreams and sharing adventures, again. And as they grew old, it is said
   that they had to remind each other of the words many times, but when
   they did, wherever they were the ground would shake with the words,
   "To the end, and to the end, again."
   Now, this should be the end of the tales of Dreams, Numbers and
   Perplex, but after all, the end is so very far away yet.



                   ABOUT THE AUTHORS, VOLUME 1 ISSUE 5, TMR
   o Dror Abend-David (BC05323%BINGVAXA.bitnet@CUNYVM.CUNY.EDU) graduated
   from the York Preparatory High School in Manhattan, the Israeli
   Defense Force, Tel Aviv University, and will be receiving his Master's
   Degree in English Literature this spring from Binghamton University.
   Dror writes poetry and creative criticism. His poem, _Second
   Impression_, appeared in Volume 1, Issue 3.
   o Scott Cudmore ( is a project manager for
   Information Systems Delivery of Prince Edward Island, Canada. His
   current personal project involves the rearing of four children. He
   spends much of his remaining Copious Spare Time writing poetry and
   dabbling in art. All correspondence is welcome.
   o Leonard S. Edgerly ( has poetry published or
   forthcoming in _High Plains Literary Review_, _Owen Wister Review_,
   _Amelia_, and in a chapbook, _Disputed Territory_. A trustee of the
   Western States Arts Federation (WESTAF) and the Wyoming Arts Council,
   he works as a natural gas company executive in Casper, WY. His two
   poems, _Leaving Costa Rica Before the Election_ and _SuperMenu_, both
   appeard in Volume 1, Issue 3.
   o Joseph W. Flood ( was born in Wheaton, Illinois
   in 1966. He graduated from American University in Washington, DC, with
   a B.A. in International Relations and a minor in Literature. He
   currently works at the World Bank and pursues his real love, writing,
   in the evenings.
   o Kris Kalil Fulkerson (, Guest Editor, is an
   English graduate student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln who
   works as a Research Assistant at Boys Town National Research Hospital.
   She's currently raising two cats and one husband.
   o Robert A. Fulkerson (, Editor, recently had a
   poem he wrote about his father, _Letter to Daniel Sheridan Fulkerson
   (1942-1972)_, published in the book _Voices of the Grieving Heart_
   (Moraga: Cypress Point Press, 1994). He believes he's found a topic
   for his thesis with 3/4 of the semester gone, giving him 1.25
   semesters to start and finish his thesis. Needless to say, he's a bit
   o Mike Gates (, ReadRoom Layout Designer, is a
   cyberholic who runs a small BBS in Ketchikan, Alaska. Mike is a closet
   writer who sells explosives for a living (really!) and has a humming
   room full of computers in a house he shares with his wife and two
   infant daughters.
   o Christopher Hepburn (, is a house husband
   and poet/digital video poet currently living in Albany (right by
   Berkeley) California. He graduated from the College of Creative Studies
   at University of California at Santa Barbara in 1992 with a BA in
   Literature. His video poetry has been seen at the National Poetry Festivals
   19th Annual Poetry Film and Video Festival, held in San Francisco, in 1994.
   After a false start at the creative writing MFA program at Emerson College
   in Boston, he hopes to enter the Master of Creative Arts, with emphasis
   in Interdisciplinary Arts at San Francisco State University in the fall
   of 1995. Any correspondence is welcomed.

   o Tim Love ( , born in 1957, works as a computer
   officer at Cambridge University, England. He's had over 40 poems
   published. His most recent published prose appeared in the UK
   periodical _Panurge_. You can find out more about Tim on the World
   Wide Web at
   o David Pellerin ( is an independent consultant
   and writer who lives in the foothills east of Duvall, Washington. This
   is his second appearance in _The Morpo Review_ -- his story, _B and F
   Auto Wrecking_, appeared in Volume 1, Issue 1. Find out more about
   David via his World Wide Web Page at
   o Paul David Mena ( is an itinerant computer jock by day
   and a poet by night. On the net, however, the two identities often
   merge, resulting in some very innovative programming techniques, which
   occasionally work. Paul has just completed a major physical and
   metaphysical move from New York to Minnesota, the only state in which
   the Moose outnumber the Mice. Through a series of editorial
   oversights, he has been published in _Frogpond_, _Brussels Sprout_,
   _Modern Haiku_ and _Insomnia_ magazines.
   o J.D. Rummel (, Guest Editor, is a nice guy who
   has not done anything even remotely remarkable, made any money in the
   shrimp business, nor met any U.S. Presidents. He is, however, a little
   slow, but believes he knows what love is. He is probably wrong.
   o Thomas J. Sherlock ( works a boring job as a
   consular clerk to pay for his graduate studies in Translation
   (French,Spanish -> English) at CUNY. Contracts out as a WB programmer
   and is studying the more arcane languages of programming, i.e., VB, C,
   C++ in a self-taught manner. Writes once in a Bloom Moon. His creative
   spring has been dry for a long while, but lately he feels the haunting
   presence of the Muses again.
   o Arthur Shotmind could not be reached by press time for a biography.
   o Brett Thomas ( is a full-time software
   developer, in OS/2 and C. He reads, writes, listens to weird music,
   and hangs out online. He has recently become addicted to IRC, and can
   usually be found on #quark. He is optimistic about finding some other
   woman who will dump him and therefore cause him to create more poetry.
   His story, _But For the Grace of God_, appeared in Volume 1, Issue 4.
   Read more of his writings on the World Wide Web at
   o Scott Paul Thompson ( is currently
   amongst a handful of people who live in his house. He believes for
   every drop of rain that falls a flower grows. And he still believes
   that all sides of an equilateral triangle are created equal. He is
   currently constructing a novel using the unused parts of _Readers
   Digest_ condensed novels.
   o Gary E. Walker ( is an English major at
   Coastal Carolina University in Myh, SC. He used to be a Chemistry
   major, but is feeling much better now. His poem, _Driving Past 27 Pigs
   in the Middle of June With the Windows Open_, appeared in Volume 1,
   Issue 2.

                              IN THEIR OWN WORDS
   o _The Still Man_ by Scott Cudmore
          "This rather dark poem is about the fear of commitment which
          many people feel in loving relationships. Having never dealt
          with this fear they painfully free themselves from one 'trap'
          after another and as the last stanza suggests sometimes
          unconsciously seek out relationships with people they know
          cannot commit to them. Whew! This is getting too deep. The
          choice of a man for the main character has no special
          significance other than metrical requirements in the first
   o _Incident at Stapleton Airport_ by Leonard S. Edgerly
          "The poem is an account of an actual event that affected me
          enough to remember it vividly the next morning during my daily
          hour of poetry work. They guy writing up the Incident Report
          wasn't a bad guy, just someone put in a ridiculous position
          compared with the nurse, who knew what to do and simply did

   o _It's Snowing in Africa_ by Joseph W. Flood
          "I wrote this story several years ago.  It just sort of
          came to me.  I remember that it was winter and I was thinking
          about a line from Joyce's _The Dead_--snow was general all
          over Ireland.  Strangely, the story sprung from that.  This
          story is unusual for me because most of my work is about
          people and situations I know something about.  I've never been
          to Africa, I've never driven a cab, but once I started writing
          I knew exactly who Akale was."

   o _Untitled_ by Paul David Mena
          "This poem began as a 'brainstorming' experiment - in other
          words it was not intended to be a poem at all. I was trying to
          assemble some 'memories' on paper without regard to form or
          meter, to be massaged into a poem or haiku later on. When I
          stopped, I detected some trace of a logical flow, so I did some
          editing (which took far longer than the original word-sowing)
          and read it at an open mic, where to my great surprise it was
          well-received. Hearing the words read aloud prompted me to do
          some further tweaking, resulting in the poem included in this
   o _Why They Run_ by David Pellerin
          "This story was written some years after I experienced a
          similar problem while attempting to move a stubborn and sick
          colt in the driving rain and sloshing mud of a cold autumn
          morning. The brothers are, as they say, fictional. The
          situation is not."
   o _like father, like son_ by Thomas J. Sherlock
          "_like father, like son_ was a spontaneous composition drawn
          from a pool of half-conscious ideas, concepts, and fantasies
          and it marks the reemergence of my literary persona. The
          relationship described is less psychological and figurative
          than spiritual and literal despite the use of "as if". "as if"
          is meant to convey a feeling of hesitation and perhaps a lack
          of conviction. An alternate title could be: _Ulysses'
   o _Battery Park_ by Brett A. Thomas
          "I recently fell in love with a net.denzien who resides in New
          York City. On a visit there, it became obvious that things were
          not going to work out in any sense at all. While I was
          realizing this, we took a walk through Battery Park. Simply,
          this poem is about that afternoon, and what I saw and felt."
   o _Call Waiting_ by Leonard S. Edgerly
          "Well, writing about your mother is risky business, and I'm
          glad she's not on the net and won't be reading this poem. It
          came out of a visit to my parents' home in Cambridge, Mass.,
          where as usual little incidents touched big nerves. Or, they
          know where my buttons are, because they installed them. Mom is
          a terrific, talented woman - and the author of a new book just
          published by Tilbury House - _Women's Words, Women's Stories,
          An American Daybook_ by Lois Edgerly."
   o _Apogee_ by Scott Paul Thompson
          "I grew up with Perplex and Numbers as I think a lot of people
          have. For those of you who found _Apogee_ to remind you of old
          friends, you might find it interesting that when I let the real
          Perplex and Numbers read the story, they didn't get it."

                       WHERE TO FIND _THE MORPO REVIEW_
   Current and past issues of _TMR_ can be located and obtained via the
   following means:
   o Interactive Methods:
          The following methods of accessing _TMR_ allow you to
          interactively pick and choose what you want to read.
        o Via the World Wide Web.
              Read it on-line at
        o Via the following Bulletin Board Systems:
              The Outlands (Ketchikan, Alaska, USA)
                      +1 907-247-1219, +1 907-225-1219, +1 907-225-1220.
                      _The Outlands_ is the home BBS system for the
                      ReadRoom BBS Door format. You can download the
                      IBM-PC/DOS ReadRoom version here, as well as read
                      it interactively on-line via the ReadRoom door
                      installed on the system. There is a free 30-day
                      trial time for this system -- then subscriptions
                      start as low as $2.50 per month.
              The Myths and Legends of Levania (Council Bluffs, Iowa, USA)
                      +1 712-325-8867. _The Myths and Legends of Levania_
                      is located in the heart of the original Morpo and,
                      in fact, is a direct descendant of the original
                      _The Land of Morpo_ Bulletin Board System. You can
                      download both the IBM-PC/DOS ReadRoom versions and
                      ASCII text versions of _TMR_ here.
   o Semi-interactive methods:
        o Via Anonymous FTP.
        o Via Gopher.
   o Via America Online.
          Use Keyword _PDA_, then select "Palmtop Paperbacks", "EZine
          Libraries", "Writing", "More Writing"
   o Electronic Mail Subscriptions.
          You can obtain an electronic mail subscription and have the
          full ASCII version of _TMR_ arrive automatically in your e-mail
          box when it is released to the public. Send Internet mail with
          a subject of "Moo!" (or some variation thereof) to
 and you will be added to
          the distribution list. 
   o Via Electronic Mail Server.
          Send the message "get morpo morpo.index" to
 and you will receive instructions
          on how to use our email archive server to retrieve ASCII
          versions of _The Morpo Review_.

                      Addresses for _The Morpo Review_ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Robert Fulkerson, Editor . . . . . . . . . . . .  Matthew Mason, Editor  . . . . . . . .   Kris Kalil Fulkerson, Guest Editor  . . . . . . . . . . . . .  J.D. Rummel, Guest Editor  . . . . . . . Mike Gates, ReadRoom Layout Designer  . Submissions to _The Morpo Review_  . . . Requests for E-Mail subscriptions . . . Comments about _The Morpo Review_  . . . . . Reach all the editors at once


                         SUBMISSION GUIDELINES FOR TMR
   The Morpo Review is seeking submissions of poetry and short, unhinged
   essays and short stories for future issues.
   What kind of work do we want? How about Sonnets to Captain Kangaroo,
   free-verse ruminations comparing plastic lawn ornaments to Love Boat
   or nearly anything with cows in it. No, not cute, Smurfy little "ha
   ha" ditties--back reality into a corner and snarl! Some good examples
   are "Oatmeal" by Galway Kinnell, "A Supermarket In California" by
   Allen Ginsberg, or the 6th section of Wallace Stevens' "Six
   Significant Landscapes."
   But, hey, if this makes little or no sense, just send us good stuff;
   if we like it, we'll print it, even if it's nothing close to the above
   description of what we want (life's like that at times). Just send us
   good stuff, get published, and impress your peers and neighbors.
   Deadline for submissions is one month prior to the release date of the
   next issue, but we're always accepting submissions. If you "miss" the
   deadline for the next issue, you're just an early submission for the
   next-next issue!
   So send us your unhinged poetry, prose and essay contemplations to
   Your submission will be acknowledged and reviewed for inclusion in a
   future issue, which will be made available to World Wide Web readers,
   E-mail subscribers, Gopher users, anonymous FTP'ers, BBS users and
   We're looking forward to your submissions,
   Robert Fulkerson
   Matthew Mason

    Our First Anniversery Issue will be available around January 15, 1995.