ISSUE ONE: Trams Yell Yes! | next poem →

Satan's Skull Glows White Hot

Gregory Crosby

Note the eyes. That's how it gets in, a visible buzz,
drowsy as a dying fly. Holes that no one will plug.
That glassy dark. Look. It's sort of a trip-wire,
those voids. Note how they burn
even when blown out. Bit of a shock,
really, to think about the sort of dream

behind them: a streaming, plastic sort of dream.
Your dream, singular. There's only one, always abuzz,
manic, static all at once. Like someone in a state of shock,
or a dead outlet, awaiting the trinity of a plug.
That dream goes down smooth at first, but with a sickly burn,
a torrent of mindful mindlessness, sliding down a wire,

a ninja's poison into a snoring mouth. Not like a wire
around your neck, a garrote to snap you out of the dream.
That comes later. It goes by the name of burn
. But it doesn't last. Soon the swarm is back, buzz
buzz, inside your head, and you're reaching for the plug,
all that juice, that alternating current of lust, shock,

boredom. Zap! It's funny, that great, scary shock
of hair standing on end, each strand a thin wire
transmitting your hilarious expression to another plug
somewhere: all those faces linked to the muted dream
of ubermind, oversoul; that heady Utopia where buzz
alone sets the tone. Look: your name is already starting to burn,

like a torch of enlightenment; your identity ready to burn
up in a cleansing white fire, that dizzy look of shock
consumed in an instant. Crackle crackle buzz,
O Godhead: send out a telegram, stop, wire
the folks back home the news: this dislocated dream
cradled in its surge protector, suckling at its plug.

Speak now. Note how your throat is coppery while you plug
your product, appearance, soul. Burn, baby, burn:
the impossible dream
is yours. No one now is dull enough to shock.
We're hip to it, all of us wound round with enough wire
to reach the moon. We're the static between stars. The buzz

is us. No, you can't unplug. Careful, now, you want a shock?
Careful, you really burn me up. The invisible wires,
the smoke, the mirrors. Dream, sure. Whrrr click click. Buzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Gregory Crosby's work has appeared in numerous journals (Court Green, Epiphany, Leveler, Sink Review, Copper Nickel, and Rattle, among others) and in bronze (the Poets Bridge on Lewis Avenue, in downtown Las Vegas). He co-edits the online poetry journal Lyre Lyre and co-curates the long-running Earshot reading series in Brooklyn, NY. He enjoys tracing the figure in the carpet.

ISSUE ONE: Trams Yell Yes! | next poem →

ISSUE ONE: Trams Yell Yes!

Craig Kurtz
    Index Denied
    Reinvestment Order

Erin Dorney
    This Is Not A Poem About
       Fast Food


Rose Swartz

Tim Kahl
    Plasma Globe

Alison McCabe
    I Watch Myself Loop

Dan Boehl
   excerpts from whatever
       from @emoemoji

Vanessa Couto Johnson

Valentina Cano
    Planned Remodeling

Ryan Napier
    Seasonal Affective Disorder

Terry Wolverton
    Sizzle and Chew

Gregory Crosby
    Satan's Skull Glows White Hot

Lea Galanter
    When Lost in the Woods

Jake Sheff
    Stasis in Ragtime

Angelica Poversky

Mercedes Lawry
    In Late November, There Are
       Days of False Clemency