NPM17 #1 (Checking)

The soil is real moist, probably not a problem.
We gave that guy two bucks and a smoke
—he all but called you a crook. Really,
almost anything may grow. Yeah,

almost anything won’t. Fake plants do
look better than sick plants but two in a row
—looks suspicious. Pet toys sate
what the vet won’t. No—

who says somethings are better off left
—some shit is better of unsaid later.
Don’t so much forget as never unpack.
Keep moving. Eye the street. Yeah,

I heard your two doors whispering
the night me or my therapist flaked.
Please, don’t correct me. Your brain
ain’t a dictionary. No,

it’s a sidewalk grate
everyone goes over like
meh. Nonetheless, let’s both
call more. We are good children.

Intellectual piracy

New ideas showboat, take a shot, put up,
draw attention to their nethers. Old ideas
tremor, glower, dream of virginity, sip. No idea
worth its salt cowers below deck through weather.

Ideas drink. Ideas gorge. Ideas horde maps.
Ideas lash the truth from one another.
When one confesses, wash its wounds with seawater.
If it gives none, let the rogue fester.

Ideas ink conquests and trauma. Ideas lose limbs,
get hooks and pivot on canes. Some ideas prefer
the company of parrots. No ideas retire.
All ideas leather.


My most recent prompt was pirates, in part because I’m reading Gary Barwin’s Yiddish for Pirates. Expect Yiddish in future poems.

I’ll apologize now for not keeping up a new poem online per day. Some of the poems I’ve written so far have been just too raw to share just yet.

A recommendation, fellow WordPressers: follow Adam Sol’s How a Poem Moves. He updates once a week, giving a wise and considerate read of very good poems. Great resource for anyone looking to either hone their craft, or just deepen their appreciation of poetry.

The Desert and The Flood

Horsebroke_2 Production previewProud to announce The Desert and The Flood, new poetry from Amanda Besserer, is now available for pre-order via Horsebroke Press.

The Desert and The Flood is the first collection of poetry from Amanda Besserer in nearly a decade. After a long hiatus, Amanda has made re-emerged with a voice both romantic and grounded. Her poems tour the wreckage of lunar accidents, hop Charybdis, and dangle their feet from the rings of Saturn. Most of all, this is the poetry of a survivor; of someone who has learned when to purr—and when to roar.

Amanda will be reading at the Factory Reading Series in Ottawa on Friday June 17 at the Carleton Tavern (FB link). The book will be available there and at the Ottawa Small Press Fair the next day, Saturday June 18, at the Jack Purcell Centre (FB link). Pre-orders via Etsy will ship on June 17.

Want a taste of Amanda’s work? Visit and follow Revolution From My Bed.

Having completed the development quiz on my first sober 4:20 in 13 years


Doctor I was mistaken

my son is looking for a hidden toy.

His head dug in a bin while I clear the room,

he has no interest in tumbling from the chesterfield.


There was no question whether he claps and though

he’s yet to stack he does (this is new!) tenderly

put things aside. Doctor,

does this matter?


I must end here—

he has the xylophone’s baton

and may choke and die any moment.

House of Them


Sunday morning certain mutants realize

everyone is changed. Is it right to reveal this?


To be fair, little is new. On the nose

of most folk an egg tooth has grown


with which to peck their shell. But those

who sprout no horn? They suppose


themselves dependents so pray,

tent their hands in a cowcatcher shape.