Short Story Collection from the Porch

Monarchs of the Undertow, Marc Pietrzykowski.

140 pages — $10

ISBN-13: 978-0-9978706-4-0
ISBN-10: 0997870648

Small town fabula, secrets and lies, petty thieves in the mall and shotguns balanced in the lap. The sun is a beast. Everyone knows everyone. No one knows why, they try to leave, but something keeps drawing them back. Short stories for the culturally oblique.

After I nailed a board over the window, I sat on the couch and stared at it. I know I should have stopped them, the little bastards, or at least tried. I should have stopped Cheryl dressing those poor dogs up like beauty pageant bimbos, too, but I didn’t. I should’ve told my Dad “no” when he got my draft card knocked down to II-C, but I didn’t. I should have stopped after two beers and skipped the Canadian Club, too, but I didn’t, and so what, we all get to where we’re going by different roads, nothing better or worse in mine. That’s the funny thing about karma, when idiots say “what goes around comes around,” they think they’ll see justice here, in this world, but karma is longer than time, we never see it. We pay it back all the time, it’s always coming around, sure, just no point in trying to figure out where it came from. I figure every life I lived was just like this one, never been a worm or a god or anything, just a sad, tired old man the moment I got born ‘til the moment I die, over and over, the same kind of life, every time. Let the kid figure it out himself. I can always get more windows. (“A Walk with the Minister’s Son”)

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More new poetry from the Porch

So Much Noise. by Marc Pietrzykowski
79 pages – $10.00

ISBN13: 978-0997870619
ISBN-10: 0997870613

More poems about piffy, ferns, consultancy, Kentucky, crayons, and gristle. These poems are sneaky, carefully measured, narrative but layered, lyrical but possessive. Or possessed, but by someone nice and not at all demonic, except when the wind blows. Feathered, though not like 80s hair. Full of vim.

Where do we put them? In a genealogy? In a drawer?

I Can Hear Her Bones Growing, or Cracking

America always tries too hard, chewing
with her mouth open,
walking her huge, stupid dogs
right down the middle of the street,
letting them shit just anywhere.

Like a trumpet solo in C sharp
when C would do just as fine, thank you,
like the idea of soloing in the first place,
like Miles Fucking Davis, trying
way too hard, trying to be cool

while the veins in his neck and head
swole up like a garden hose
after the tap gets flipped and the water
flows. She tries too hard and then
says things like, “better to have tried too hard

than not tried at all,” as though she
was Caesar, prescribing the bounds
of logic with a sweep of the hand. Laughing
too loud, snorting, the guffaw
is an American invention. I can’t do much more

than say I love you, you big, goofy,
toothsome girl, and how strange it is
to feel older than one’s parent. I only hope
that yours are the pains of adolescence
and not the onset of early dementia.

Official Publication Date: Nov 19th, 2016

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New Book of Poetry From the Porch, via the UK….

Working With the Negatives, Steven Storrie.

51 pages — $7.

ISBN-13: 978-0-9978706-2-6
ISBN-10: 0997870621

Steven Storrie writes unadorned poems with subtle angles and a light touch, even as he rails against the sociopolitical currents dragging at his feet. Working With the Negatives offers us poems that capture experience in a way that privileges that experience as much as the poem, that steer our attention back and forth between loss and desire.

GOUGE AWAY

Just one more week
And it’s payday
Just one more week
And it’s vacation time
Just one more week
And it’s Memorial Day
A three day weekend
Thank the Lord

Soon the weeks pile up
Like dead bodies
Blank faced and unaccounted for
The days like letters
Stuffed into a shoebox

What I wouldn’t give
Just once
To be
King.

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New Book of Poetry from Pski’s Press, via Minnesota…

Bereft & the Same-Sex Heart, Samuel E. Cole.

127 Pages — $13

ISBN-13: 978-0997870633
ISBN-10: 099787063X

In <i>Bereft & the Same Sex Heart</i>, his first collection of poetry, Samuel E. Cole’s concerns range from growing up gay in a conservative Christian community to the difficulties of domesticating love, from the starkly political to the deeply intimate, and from formally innovative to searingly emotional poetics, often within the same page. Cole’s work is dizzying in the best sense of the word, exploring new love, old scars, rage, and acceptance in equal measure.

At its heart, Bereft & The Same-Sex Heart restores balance to imbalance, whether inherent, precarious, familial, societal, political, or religious. Equilibrium is redistributed. Tension rises and suspension falls. Private thoughts, secret desires, and risky missteps take love, loss, and disappointment on a redemption-seeking journey.

WE ALL REACH

deterioration

says a shrinking oak leaf
severed from its branch.

displacement

says a fray-winged jaybird
culled from its flock.

disillusionment

says a wilting-yellow mimulus
transplanted from its root.

desertion

says a tainted memory collector
faded from its photograph.

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More Poetry From Pski’s Porch

Poems I and II, by Fred C. Applebaum.
110 pages – $10.00

ISBN-13: 978-0692692578
ISBN-10: 0692692576

Fred C. Applebaum is a pen name for Marc Pietrzykowski, who gets bored thinking and writing from within his own name. The poems are experimental the way rockets were experimental in the 1930s, perhaps. The project will be done once there are Poems I-V, and Fred will retire and Marc’s homunculus will sprout another life. Until then, please join us!

Too Late Now

We
didn’t
notice
the
rain
until
it
was
coming
up
through
the floor.

COME SEE US AT THE VSW PUB FAIR, OCT 8, ROCHESTER NY

Official Publication Date: Oct 7th, 2016

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New Book of Poems From Bruce McRae

Like As If, by Bruce McRae

130 page — $13

ISBN-13: 978-0692731109
ISBN-10: 0692731105

Hyperbole, verging on histrionics. Hectoring lists. Mangled metaphors. Super-similes, which lean toward hysteria: as if ‘like’ and like ‘as if’. A flying fortress of images and imagery. Wordplay. Cinematic mélange. A stand-up comic’s throwaway one-liners. (Yes, humour, of the rubber crutch variety.) This collection’s main theme concerns pushing ‘poetic’ language to extremes and is dedicated to those who don’t read poetry. We venture dangerously close to the edge of a wordy abyss. Forgive yourself.

Like As If is a collection of knotty, often surreal, often hilarious poems churning with imagery and lyric propulsion. At the Porch, we were struck by the chances McRae takes in these poems–he is working from a different set of aesthetic assumptions than most contemporary poets start with, much to our delight.

A River Running Underground
In my mind is a paper mountain.
God shrugged, and that was my mind
separating one water from another water.
My mind imagined other minds.
It manufactured an idle daydream.
It made shadows after dark,
creatures without substance and form,
glass cities, ethereal fogginess,
the most beautiful of all the monsters.

In my mind is a sun weeping light.
Sparks star off an iron spike
while my mind paints jungle flowers,
highways of ice, celestial filaments,
an army of children crying:
“Toys and snowfall at Christmas!”

A vortex of quiescence,
and my mind is resting by a calm lake.
A storm’s fury and human furor
and my mind is wandering in a thick forest.
The universe is a single great thought,
my mind asleep on its downy pillow.

Where nothing, and no one, may wake it.

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New Book From Pski’s Porch

Migration, by Brian Morse and Betsy Potter

44 pages – $18.00

ISBN-13: 978-0997870602 ISBN-10: 0997870605

A wonderfully disorienting mix of nature writing and haunting surrealism, told in epistolary form, accompanied by delicately unsettling illustrations. Brian Morse and Betsy Potter have made a book  that will make readers feel slightly to the left of themselves, as they follow a narrator through a peculiar landscape via letters home to his mother (and a few other folks).

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Mother,

I think you will find this interesting: we happened upon the crow’s ghost in another card game. He was sitting with a southern panther and an Ivory-billed Woodpecker in the middle of Singer Swamps. The travelling gamblers called themselves The Doormen. They circle the country looking for exhausted ghosts willing to gamble for a chance at resurrection. If the ghost loses, they relive their death 1,000 times. It’s a sadistic sustenance for the cat and the bird.

The game is simple: each side cuts a deck of cards; whoever pulls the highest card, wins. The crow has been chasing around The Doormen since he died. That’s how he found himself at Mildred’s farm: he was closing in on them. The game took place on the bank of the river, on the gambler’s traveling crate.

We entered the scene as the paperwork was being filled out. The crow won by cutting a 10 versus the Doormen’s 4. That old wildfire burned in the crow’s eyes as he scribbled his name on the dotted line. The panther paced back and forth, the woodpecker coldly processed the work…Once the deal had been brokered, the crow greeted us dead-eyed and flew away. I wondered if he remembered how dismal his last ending turned out? The Doormen packed up their little wooden crate, respectfully nodded to us, and went in search for their next mark.

Love,

Nathan

Come see Brian read from Migration October 15th, 3pm, at Rust Belt Books in Buffalo, NY, and October 22nd, 3pm, at Small World Books, Rochester NY.

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Redesigning the website

We changed and upgraded the Pski’s Porch website this week, as you can see. We added a space for very very short reviews of books, and also an archive of Louie Clay’s list of journals and publishers that accept e-submissions, since Louie is retiring from maintaining the site. We hope to keep Louie’s archive going, and we hope to get a slew of little reviews.

We will be releasing 5 new books in the Fall, so start saving those Green Stamps.

Here is some good press for our authors:

Tim Staley reviewed in CactiFur

Catfish McDaris reviewed in Cultural Weekly

Cheers,

Pskis

 

New book of poetry from Pski’s Porch: Catfish McDaris

Available April 7th! Now!

Sleeping With the Fish
by Catfish McDaris

ISBN-13: 978-0692671320
ISBN-10: 0692671323
$13

Pski’s Porch has been busy this Spring, and is happy to add another new book of poetry to our catalog, this one from Mssr. Catfish McDaris. Besides being right tasty, Catfish has been loosing his poems and prose on the world for more than 20 years:

Phombies

Cell phone madness was driving the world insane. People walking into things, holding phones up to the side of their heads, blue gadgets stuck in their ears, finger stabbing on tiny keyboards. Folks not speaking to one another, only concerned with electronic communications. Families sitting down for a meal, each and every one of them ignoring each other caught up in their own personal world. Quick warned his daughter to slow down with all her cell phone usage. He explained his theory about phones consuming all human intelligence and conquering the world. Quick’s kid, just shook her head like her old man was hopelessly behind the times. A few days later Quick went to wake his child up, her head was covered by sheets and blankets. When she finally struggled to get up, she had no head. From the neck up was a cell phone. He yelled for his wife and they went berserk, they tried to talk to their kid, but got no response. Quick’s wife sent her a text and it appeared on her face phone. They called an ambulance and reported the incident. They were informed that Phombism was a wide spread virus. There were laboratories and hospitals working on a cure, but all cell phones must be confiscated and destroyed, before a useable vaccine could be developed to treat the Phombies. Quick looked out the window and saw people with cell phone heads stumbling down the street. It was utter chaos, he went to the refrigerator and poured a glass of buttermilk.

 

We strongly recommend you get some Catfish love before it’s all gone and the sun collapses in on itself. And no, that’s not him on the cover.

Mcdaris

New book of poetry from Pski’s Porch: Tim Staley

AVAILABLE APRIL 4th!!!

Lost on My Own Street
by Tim Staley

ISBN-13: 978-0692662335
ISBN-10: 0692662332
$12

Pski’s Porch is proud to add a new book to our catalog, this one from Tim Staley. Tim hails from Alabama, lives in New Mexico, and writes poems that blend the cerebral with the visceral:

Do You Feel Alright

When Bob Marley Jr. asks the crowd,
do you feel alright? I take it personally.
I ask my friend how she feels alright
and she suggests a six pack before bed
but there are bubbles in beer and I know
feeling bloated isn’t feeling alright.
I shoot numerous arrows toward God
bent over like a question mark and after
no word from the celestial bondsman,
I go local, drink a few flat beers and write
the president in a calm cursive.
He gets back to me quickly
with an autographed 8X10 and I feel
alright for awhile but I’m
not sure because he never stops
smiling and that’s suspicious.
I ask my wife, do I feel alright?
and she’s tying the laces of her
Jazzercise shoes really tight as she
doesn’t want them falling off
when she’s dancing. I call my mom
and before I even finish asking
she says, yes, yes, you feel alright
and you feel handsome too,
and I do feel handsome for awhile
so I restring my racquetball racket
and speed-walk the food court
but I don’t feel alright, so I
ask my brother and he says,
I got to get out of here, so I go
to the nearest forest and shut the door.
I follow a stream all the way up
a mountain into the cold mist
and feel my toes and fingers
go numb and feel myself fall in
the windblown scattering of peaks.

We have thoroughly enjoyed reading Tim’s work, and know that you will as well.

Staley

Here is Tim reading another poem from the book, “The Waiting Game”