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The Paradox Of Ardor And Blue, by Sandra Stone

Memory, since the day you drowned, I am water.
I wash over you. In your name, I am blue.
Let me rise and subside along the canal of your spine
charged with blue
like the nighttime pulse that snags blue branches
audible from your canoe.

I scoop you, I glide drowsy
under the surge,
along the bluish parameters.
I limn your body as I would lay mine
along the blue haunches of river,
as currents do in their habit.

I will pour a jug, blue now to brimming.
I will plunge through silt for you, blood coursing,
where I see nothing detained
but a riot of flurries.

I am the blue charger that wants to replenish you,
carouse you to rapture,
flay you to seethe
under water’s strayed skin,
my blued lips draining yours.


Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 14, Issue 1.

Sandra StoneSandra Stone is a poet, writer, playwright, librettist, editor, and conceptual artist based in Portland.

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Shopping Carts, by Laura J. Martin

Loss does not hit
until you are treading
a preponderance of pine
and you hear it:


softened by snow.

Or until you return
a shopping cart. You notice
the others scattered about
as though life were too hard
not to abandon them.

Finally, when you pour yourself
a drink, and you find no drink
meets your thirst. It hits:
this burst—this wanting thing.

That is why morning is like spring.


Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 14, Issue 1.

Laura J. Martin is a writer and ecologist based out of Ithaca, New York. Her non-fiction has appeared in Conservation Biology, Urban Ecosystems, and elsewhere; her poetry is forthcoming in The Fourth River.

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After, by Doug Ramspeck

It isn’t just the uncertainty of things,

the hairline crack in the hawthorn

trunk, the grackle banging into the window

then disappearing. It is the prayer

we think of as the evening moon: grub white

and listing in the sky, unmoored.

Or the loam we imagine as our bodies:

we were formed from a clay

that we’ve forgotten. Now the crickets

are calling in the field,

beseeching us or chanting, offering

the persistence of their voices

to the stars, which will not listen. Or perhaps

the earth is a mother rocking the infant

of the moon, and this rhythm

is the rhythm of uncertainty.


Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 14, Issue 1.

Doug RamspeckDoug Ramspeck is the author of four poetry collections, the most recent of which, Mechanical Fireflies (2011), won the Barrow Street Press Book Prize. His first book, Black Tupelo Country (2009), was awarded the John Ciardi Prize. His poems have appeared in The Kenyon ReviewSlateAlaska Quarterly Review, and elsewhere. In 2009 he received an Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award. He directs the Writing Center and teaches creative writing at The Ohio State University at Lima.

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