Arsenic Lobster poetry journal Issue Thirty-eight
Summer 2015
Issue Thirty-eight,  Summer 2015
Do you smell that? It’s the stench of a stunted, waxy blown-out candle. Or 10 candles. The Arsenic Lobster Poetry Journal just celebrated its 10th birthday, its 10th anniversary, its 10th year of bringing you poems and lobsters when you need them most. We got so many beautiful and wicked gifts; we’re so thankful. We want to share our best advice on a long happy life: buy your beloved gifts. Magnificent gifts. Here are our professional recommendations.

First Anniversary
Modern: a can of Goya beans / on the side, / a dash of adobo for flavor / (because too much would simply spoil it)
Traditional: cooking lessons in the long, brown hall at the community college

Second Anniversary
Modern: sulfur / and nitrate from Mr. Tom’s shed and charcoal from my dad’s back / porch
Traditional: a pair of avuncular and fidgeting contraptions

Third Anniversary
Modern: crotch-tight / miniskirts and peanut buttered smears of / lipstick
Traditional: the right side / of the yellow stitches sewn into asphalt

Fourth Anniversary
Modern: my growling, swelling belly with a tick on it
Traditional: noise. M-80s, cherry bombs, breaking out /of themselves

Fifth Anniversary
Modern: handfuls of poppies, like a limp flag
Traditional: bright orange yoga pants / on a trail between the redwood trees in Santa Cruz

Sixth Anniversary
Modern: fireflies / ghosts trailing their distant cool / fire in the fields
Traditional: clay, like the roofs / of St. Augustine.

Seventh Anniversary
Modern: a bouquet of leaves, tenderly grown, / carefully held by wooden limbs
Traditional: whatever dissolves / is also evidence of the human

Eighth Anniversary
Modern: my skin, clay desiccating in a kiln
Traditional: Lots of feral / Cats

Tap by Carol Dickerson
About the Artist

Ninth Anniversary
Modern: wire hummingbirds with plates of red and green for breast and wing
Traditional: Midwest so thick with trees, / rungs of sunlight can’t reach the ground

Tenth Anniversary
Modern: a blue heron wading / on the shores of retirement
Traditional: Toss a box of matches / into the air and see how many strike, alight
Jessica Dyer
Associate Editor, Arsenic Lobster Poetry Journal
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