“21.10.2018” – Victoria Hodder

The cigar smoke swells tying the knot at my neck tighter.   I am clad scantily. She is pulling me down. Down.   I am at the wrong party. Before I can vocalise my error, shame snatches at my words. That which is always insisting “What if.”   I remain silent. I let her pull me down.   I am nestled between her thighs, coming to a sense of peace.   “Oh my sweetness,” she said, “Have you heard of Below?” I sigh. She feathers her fingers through my hair. “No, I don’t think so.”   “What about… Burroughs?” I smile, I am caught where, in fact, I want to be.   I shake my head, nose brushing against. “No, definitely not.” “Wow,” she hums. “That’s crazy. Unbelievable.”   She leads my chin in. I smile, I am caught where, in fact, I want to be.

“Coming to” – Luke Swenson

Steel flashes softened by ascending fog above the rising waters there the bent white neck. Waves beating against porcelain walls. Swirl. Slant. Swish. Bubble. Rebubble. Turn. Huddled tight & permeable, what pink froth now lies exposed atop high places nestled in the valley’s gentle bushland cleft against fleshy cliffs at low water. Blood rushes to the damp head with a blink long & how & when tides rise up the chest & seep into the slits of the high drain. Ten pruned fingers against two slick knobs turn. Where does the inflow go now? What suction drains the black that now floods younder iris?