The Mouth, The Heart / Eugene Kamensky

               THE MOUTH, THE HEART

If I read these scriptures rightly,
The heart gives nutrients, and the mind
gives daily sunlight to the tongue’s soil
Which flowers and bears fruit in its time,
And lets fall blooms and leaves too, as it must—
And so this old room is filled with dried petals,
and desiccated fragments of past fragments.
Hence the madness in these icy drafts,
When late Novembers I surprise myself
With sudden starts of passion for the gales
Who long have buffeted the creaking panes,
And swing the windows open, letting in
A hundred eddies lifting sad and lame
Old syllables babbling themselves at once.
The babbling room! whom I suppose my heart
Alone may comprehend, of all hearts,
the babbling room!—the babbling room!

Eugene Kamensky is a divinity student at the Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary. He has been long inspired by Gerard Manley Hopkins’ masterful use of poetry to praise and exalt God in secular spaces, and he hopes to follow in those footsteps.

Cigarette / Apple by Shane Ingan


Now comes the temptation
to quest after essences,
to lift the veil and
uncover what is hidden—
puff : headrush ::
crunch : honeyed tongue
smoke and sweetness, I
manipulate them, combine
them, then place them
at odds with one

another puff, another crunch.
It becomes me, the way I talk
about such things, I am told—
“attractive” “penetrating” “poignant”—
I furrow my brow, I say something
about the nature of smoke and about
sweetness, this satisfied smile
as I puff on my cigarette
then crunch into my apple,
chew, savor, comment upon
the eye that has opened up, revealing
the core: a little black seed visible now.

O Vanity: I was lost before
I ever began. Butt : core ::
Self : object of contemplation

The velvet cloak has been folded
over upon itself, its span
unaltered, its magic immune
to such feeble incantations.

I huck the apple core out into
the tall grass, the cigarette butt
smush into the ashtray,
the smoke and the sweetness
dry on my tongue.

Shane Ingan is from Indiana and lives in Detroit. His first book of poetry, Lost Loves, will be released early 2023, through Forsythia Press.

Myth-cellany / Charlie Dunn


The Wandering Christmas Hag of Austria

Long ago, on Christmas Eve, a poor old woman stole the Christmas presents from under the tree of a wealthier family, in order to supply her own grandchildren with lovely gifts. For every gift she stole, she was cursed with another pair of hands. Now she wanders around, centipede-like, hoping merely to spend Christmas with a happy family, just watching them open up their presents. Sadly, she but frightens them away, and is left all alone, to stare at the glittering giftwrap and the sparkling bows all alone, with eyes which are yellow like the Christmas lights. But she never dares to touch the gifts.

Balalleño, with the Fasciating Goat-Heads

Balalleño lives in a cabin in a wide valley-meadow. His telescoping goat heads—surely his most wondrous feature—are typically collapsed into one, except in order to look closely at something, or to crop a flower which he cannot reach, or which he would otherwise prefer not to stoop to get at, in which cases he simply enumerates his head with perfectly little effort. Of the heads, there is no certain number.
It is said that he is extremely protective of his cabin, his land thereabout, and his deformed pet hare, from whom he almost cannot bear to be long out of physical contact. Apparently, also, he cultivates several strains of gigantic flora, which he not only does not eat, but prevents others from eating in this way: he approaches the potential threat very slowly, as though but curious, and then suddenly unsheathes his many necks one from the other, biting the ear firmly until the mischief-maker is subdued, and then, forcibly opening their mouth, bites the tongue away also, and sets them free to spread the word. Likely one interfering with his hare would receive far worse treatment.

Judgment Deferred; or, A Devil Blinds Abaddon

There is a medieval folk tale which seems an attempt to explain the inexplicable delay of God’s judgment, seeing the evil state of the world. It describes a great giant in the mountains, named Abaddon, who lies prone and sleeps—and only if one were to sit long, and watch very carefully, would one take note of the slight rise and fall of the whole snow-clad body of this Abaddon, which looks simply like the mountains roundabout him. Well, they say that a devil made his way up those mountains thanks to some secret intelligence, bringing with him a great bouquet of poison flowers, and dusted Abaddon’s sleeping eyes with their injurious pollen, effectively blinding this giant, this instrument of the judgment and apocalypse, in the devilish effort to defer the Last Day, or at the very least to generalize Abaddon’s destruction, to include those innocent as well as evil.

Charlie Dunn lived in Ypsilanti, and never succeeded in publishing his work. His father and friends are doing their best to get his writing into publication. For now, his works can be found on Amazon under the title The Book of Charlie: a friend’s posthumous publication.

A Little Spider Thread / Vincent Tice


The red leaves that hang suspended in the woods
and tremble or turn or pivot at a breeze
always console me. I tiptoe and shift
to slide the little sunlight to and fro
adhering quietly to the spider thread,
no more than slips along a damp eyelid
turning away, or rounds a drop of dew—
thin shuttles of the sun’s fingers these
that ply so many and such perilous strings,
and sew so many unnecessary things.

Vincent Tice is a poet from northern California. He has been living out of a backpack for several years and working on farms. He has been recently published in PANK, and Rattle Press.

yes more covers

Iowa is a nightmare. Iowa City is a nightmare within one. Some DLM covers

I hope that some Iowans read this because I want them to know it. I hate Iowa


it’s coming along. i’m getting back to all the submissions these days. Collecting for volume 4 now. Been in the desert for 40 days can’t wait to go home (but not before I put these lit mags in all the used book stores from Pheonix back to Detroit)

FALL ISSUE COMING SEPTEMBER—it’s a damned good one, too

I’m going to print several hundred (here are a mere 25) for distribution, in September, in Detroit, Chicago, Milwaukee, Marquette, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, and ideally any of the surrounding cities. Some are stapled, some sewn beautifully by my wife, who has a sewing machine. I have yet to make the covers, but they will be as sloppy as ever. I was quite surprised by the number of submissions coming in this last month! I was sort of drowning in the slush pile for some days, but now I think I’ve hit my groove. This issue is some 6 pages longer as a result, and as far as the work itself goes, I an very proud to say that it seems to show a harmonic thread throughout, and a definite sustainment of the quality of the first mag, and even an improvement (with no offense to those first contributors).

I was too lazy to distribute the last 10 or so copies of the summer DLM, and as I struggled to pay all of our Fall contributors, I decided that it would be wisest to begin selling copies to help defray the cost of those remunerations. They are 15 bucks on my wife’s Etsy page, Alternately, you could buy a Fall issue, and prescribe the doodle, if you so desire.

Thanks to all the contributors and submitters and readers! Thanks to anyone who has said a kind word in our favor—it lifts our spirits immensely! Thanks to the bookstores putting the mag on display! Thanks!

Some more of the issues roaming about the Detroit area