December 2, 2014


James Maxwell resides in Blauvelt, NY of Rockland County. He makes a living as a special education teaching assistant during the day and writes in the evenings. James has been writing for a little over ten years but has only recently started submitting his stories and poetry for publication. His work has been featured in Cease, Cows, Walking Is Honest, and the Ijagun Poetry Journal."

"Cake For Dinner"

Walking into a supermarket, I
Plow my pockets for the list she wrote
And finding only copper's
Grimace, gum wrapper, and
Lonely lint bushel, realize
It is still pinned to the refrigerator
A badge, now
Burden, beneath that
Magnet of a blue octopus
Sporting a black top hat, and
How odd
It feels to be here now
Purposeless, yet purposeful
Wandering like a little boy lost
At the mall

Besides a trash can, our
Cornucopia of mutual interests
I discover a white sopping
Patch of pulp
But through the streams and
Streaks of running ink I
See something that begins with
Butter, flour, milk, eggs
And for the first time since December
I felt I would
Be alright

"How The World Ends"

To think
I was once just a cry in
The thrush
Astounded by the
Sound of
Mine own voice.

I cracked all the
Teacups you
Lent me in
Sure you had
F-words over
All my

Envy in the ivy
Of my dream of you.
Weeping all your
Worry into


Where my father's frame had
Last lain, there grow bushels of
Electronic palm trees, glowing
Stalks that flourished under
Street lamps, snaking toward the
Sky not unlike squatting dogs
Baying for the return of
The Heavens

Where my father last tumbled
Stumbled, with all his
Invitations crumpled and
Cast down in the dirt
Reeking of
Motor oil, blood
And beer
There the dandelions hug
The highway, heads bowed
Listless little yellow fingers
Gloved in smog and the scent of
Jamaican patties swaddled on the
Tongue of Caribbean winds
And swept off to a
Factory in Rockland

I cannot for the life of me
Make amends with sidewalks where
There are none, or make sense of
Faulty legacies absent
Considerations: this
Cobweb, this cradle, those
Leather boots swathed in
Dust, all comprised
Within a sacred splash
On pavement

Parent and patriarch of
Old American Night
You may now slumber
Cement forever

~James Maxwell

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