Note from the Editors

 

   SEEING RED 

    ENDU(RED) ADMI(RED)
    DESI(RED) WONDE(RED)
    RUMO(RED) ADO(RED)
    ENAMO(RED) INSPI(RED)
    DISCOVE(RED) SAC(RED)
    HUNGE(RED) WONDE(RED)
    EXPLO(RED) FEATU(RED)
    AUTHO(RED) SEA(RED)
    DA(RED) UNCENSO(RED)
    SOA(RED) ADVENTU(RED)

 

 

    


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My Father at Twenty-Three


The same day I friendly fired my left arm from the business of my body,
I poured sugar into the gas tank of a Bell Huey Heli.
It was the day I brought government liquor to my company’s blacks
and traded two Budweisers for a Coca-Cola.
They stopped calling me “Florida,” started four-finger saluting,
and I started to play chess in a forgiving manner.
Here, the jury was still out on soft science.
I gave up drinking water through anything but tiny holes.
I gave up on lists, orders, vitamins, X- and Y-axes, the periodic table,
slide rulers, safety nets, sunscreen, ultimatums.  Eggs.
Only two pictures remain: both of me waist-deep in a river,
fending off the current—proof that the Mekong Delta flooded daily.
My tarps became blankets became field coats became rainslickers
became tents became stretchers became body bags became tarps again.
All noisy flags.  I promised a night off third post to the first man
who could get these matches dry so we could all have a smoke.
But that night a drunk with his flashlight hit a tunnel tripwire
and when his ear landed in my coffee the only thing I could do
was tip out the awful dregs because if I ever humped it back home,
if the stars ever stopped falling on us from back and to the left,
I would never watch another war movie with the sound on.



Alexander Lumans' poems have been published in Northern Lights and
are forthcoming in Poet Lore and the anthology Poets on the Object.
His poems won first, second, and third place in the 2007 Roxanna
Rivera Memorial Poetry Contest.  His fiction has been published in
Clarkesworld and is forthcoming in Greensboro Review and
Southern
Indiana Review, as well as in the anthologies Surreal South 2009 and
The Versus Anthology.  Two book reviews of his have been published in
the Crab Orchard Review.  He won Honorable Mention in the 2008 Press53
Open Short Story contest, and he has also been nominated for the 2008
AWP Intro Award, as well as for the anthology Best New American Voices
2009
.  Presently, he is enrolled in the MFA Fiction Program at
Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

 


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