Thomas Locicero – 3 poems 

The Two Will Become One Flesh

Should we believe that we were meant to live
inside each other, we would then forgive
our sins, old and new, and petty differences
and feed each other words, not inferences.
Let our disagreements help each other learn
love is not a given but a gift we earn.
I will not search for a mate for my soul.
What of my mind, body, spirit, the whole
of me? But I cannot tell you what to seek,
though, as you do, I might hide what is weak
in me, my shortcomings, my scuffles with sin,
those rounds I’ve never been able to win.
But were your flesh and mine to become one,
we will fight as such till our battles are won.





I would be tied up in myself,
a thousand knots threaded as one,
and you would unravel but not
unravel me. You stood thick
about me, drawn aside, arcane,
unable to be decoded. You with
your coal-dust voice. What did
you trade for it? You said you
wanted better for me, yet you
insisted I follow you in. I went
to bed in the dark of night me
and woke in the dark of day you.




Further Evidence That Hell Visits Earth


To spill your secrets to a friend who shares them,

To profess love to one who loves another,

To confess sins to a righteous condemner,

To share your life with a selfish lover,

To argue anything with the ignorant,

To have salvation faith but not healing faith,

To fall in bed exhausted and not find sleep,

To work your whole life and live in poverty,

To not have pondered the color of water,

To never have had a garden or a book,

To know, like Keats, the meaning of blood’s color,

To not have known and then to be blindsided,

To not have made peace before your voice ceases,

These are evidence that hell visits Earth.




Thomas Locicero’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming inRoanoke Review, Boston Literary Magazine, Long Island Quarterly, The Good Men Project, Adelaide Literary Magazine, Jazz Cigarette, Quail Bell Magazine, Rat’s Ass Review, Antarctica Journal, Scarlet Leaf Review, Tipton Poetry Journal, Hobart, Ponder Review, vox poetica, Poetry Pacific, Brushfire Literature & Arts Journal, Indigo Lit, Saw PalmFine Lines, New Thoreau Quarterly, and Birmingham Arts Journal, among other journals. He resides in Broken Arrow, OK.


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Simon Robson – 4 poems 



Oh to be in love with blessed baby red sleeves,

no bad smells from the fabric,

Kentucky fried chicken left-overs

from the weekend shift, their eating habits,

takeaway tinfoil wrappers infiltrating the hairs

inside your nostrils, brain,

no irritations to your sensitive nostrils,

sneezing fits,

everything in one place, composed, clean –

all your investment strategies coming off,

a rich, fat wage and respect in retirement,

enormous cabbages on your allotment,

when I get there –

first find a safe work area, no hazards,

apply the brake,

secure Velcro straps,

everything clean, very hygienic –

no health and safety issues, loose straps.





A delightful Mini York Container,

hard to resist or beat,

even when I’ve got my eyes shut –

I’m getting rewarded, just over £10 an hour,

for my limited effort at packet sorting,

building baby red sleeves

for the Post Office, late shift, 

when all I require is less pressure, fuss,

stress, more time to relax and enjoy myself –

stop the loss of full-time jobs,

no more job losses –

please baby red sleeves, please.





I blame Theresa May 

in her plump necklace of pearls,

leopard-skin shoes,

the rising cost of inflation,

no increase to my wages,

corrupt Conservative government,

my rising bile, contempt for Mullers milk,

yoghurt and sour bread, about to puke.

Mullers strawberry rice.

Working in a safe area, no infringements

from managers, sharp plastic straps,

bad brake mechanisms, no labels –

a workforce facing redundancy,

zero contract hours, threat to pensions.





I want a bright, spectacular, 

full of exploding fireworks, future,

where I can stay drunk all the time

on whiskey, listening to Canned Heat,

Rollin’ And Tumblin’ –

PPI, hand-stamping, meter, mixed packet mail,

no more Mini York Containers, propaganda,

all the correct procedures, health and safety,

shifts, working patterns, spectacular –

I’m in love with baby red sleeves.




Simon Robson