• #11Forklift, Ohio: Issue #11
  • #12Forklift, Ohio: Issue #12
  • #13Forklift, Ohio: Issue #13
  • #14Forklift, Ohio: Issue #14
  • #15Forklift, Ohio: Issue #15
  • #16Forklift, Ohio: Issue #16
  • #17Forklift, Ohio: Issue #17
  • #18Forklift, Ohio: Issue #18
  • #19Forklift, Ohio: Issue #19
  • #20Forklift, Ohio: Issue #20
  • #21Forklift, Ohio: Issue #21
  • #22Forklift, Ohio: Issue #22
  • #23Forklift, Ohio: Issue #23
  • #24Forklift, Oeno: Bin #24
  • #25Forklift, Ohio: Issue #25
  • #26Forklift, Ohio: Issue #26
  • #27Forklift, Ohio: Issue #27
  • #28Forklift, Ohio: Issue #28
  • #29-30Forklift, Ohio: Issue #29-30
  • #31Forklift, Ohio: Issue #31
  • #32Forklift, Ohio: Issue #32
  • #33Forklift, Ohio: Issue #33
  • #34Forklift, Ohio: Issue #34
  • #35-36Forklift, Ohio: Issue #35-36
  • #37Forklift, Ohio: Issue #37


Dobby Gibson

July, July

Let us hope we are succeeded
in this world by the beauty
that preceded us.
Yes, I'm staring.
Do you remember me?
I was the one looking up the tracks
for the train, or even
just the headlight of a train,
anything that might offer
another foggy promise of arrival.
From every direction, the city
filled the neighborhood
with its surgical hum.
And then evening began to unload
its freight of infinite darkness,
or whatever spell
you were under that allowed me
to first stand there and watch
you remove your clothes.
I love you so much it's dangerous.
I don't regret a thing.
There are rewards
for which there will be no accounting.
The princess blows gently
across the surface of her apricot tea.
The storm reaches the unsuspecting coast.
Finally breaking free, the pier
is swallowed into the foam.
What boiling point?
Some collisions require no cause.
I fell into the river and, lucky for me,
now you're my wife.

Betsy Wheeler

Goodbye, Radio Girl

   for Kate Hall

Your pink sweater— how it fits. Your questions—
their wings, and their whys. All of this is remarkable
but what we remember most is the way
your eyes went there and there. Your questions
and the bees acting like ladies on lunch.
Lucky bees and your questions are numerous.
Here is an answer held to my chest.
How about all this sunshine— it makes your sweater
seem all candyish and lamby.
Eyes up here, Radio Girl.
The most memorable part was the sheer number of all of you
out there and your fluttering hands.
How many of us there are.
Next question.
Her sunglasses are a reflection of your faces
in the crowd, her highlights, yes.
Come here a moment and mind the steps up.
It's like a moving picture but everybody's smoking and nobody's eating.
Laughter, sure, but mostly in the lower registers.
Mammalian. How'd those bees find us again,
I'm sorry what did you say? The answer to that is sometimes
but I wish it was never or always when they open the snack coffin.
I've forgotten my name but I know my place.
Your earlobes, Radio Girl, they seem important.
Or is it your mouth. Your pink sweater. The way you fit here in floral.
There's a story here and I'm feeling ready to tell it.
This is the way of the tribes. Before we were here
we were elsewhere and where we are going is next,
so, Goodbye, Radio Girl! Goodbye to your holdings, our voices,
the bees and how they swarmed was the answer.

Sommer Browning

Never believe the concierge.

Mk and I drove all over hell, Long Island, to find a hotel, motel, that provided pay-per-view so we could watch the Liddell Sobral fight. Griffin and Bonnar were fighting again, as well. Last time they fought they both won. Mk and I asked the concierge if the hotel had pay-per-view, we wrote down the name of the event and he went to check. The lobby was the lobby of a plush planet of businessmen and servants. There was a bar. When a beer bottle scuttled across a table, a silk tie squeaked loose. The concierge came back; the news was grim. A child with a buoyant noodle walked by in her underpants, I noticed the staff using fake British accents.

The concierge was trustworthy.

Heather Hartley

Artichoke Horoscope

Vegetables are a catalyst this month-and the elected legume is the artichoke! A tenacious vegetable, gruff on the outside, leafy, tricky, not inelegant and with the sweetest, most desirable interior-like you. Let your partner know you're not won over like any old easy green bean-ten minutes of careless boiling and basta. It takes time and careful attention to pluck, savor, and suck out your breathtaking core. This month, your star-crossed moon is in the casserole.

Zachary Schomburg

You Must Choose Between Floating Eternally in a Buoyant Cage of Hummingbird Bones Down a River of Lava or a River of Blood

You must choose
between floating
eternally in a buoyant cage
of hummingbird bones
down a river of lava
or a river of blood.

Hmm. River
of lava or
river of blood.

Lava or blood.

I'd choose the river
of blood.

I'd float eternally
in a buoyant cage
of hummingbird bones
down a river of blood.


Clay Matthews

Broadcast of Another Speech About Forever

Weeks before the beginning of the next football season,
and I am sitting on the couch waiting, because sometimes
the waiting is all there is. On the television they're broadcasting

the NFL Hall of Fame speeches, and I drift in and out
of listening, while Al Davis, rebel owner of the now-again
Oakland Raiders, comes out to announce John Madden.

Or rather introduce, because now that I've said announce
all I can think about are those terrible camps I went to as a kid,
where in the cafeteria if anyone had anything to say, everyone

else would sing this song about announcements, a terrible
death to die, a terrible death to talk to death. I always hated bullshit
songs like that, and coming back to John Madden, sportscaster

extraordinaire, maybe talking our way out of this life
and into the other is the best option possible. And Madden
is a huge man, and a man I trust if for no other reason than he seems

honest, he wears that garment of sincerity like a loose skin,
which is sometimes all I think we really have to shoot for in life.
But watching him on the television now, on his day of immortality,

I can't help noticing how old he's become, squinting into the sky,
and by extension how his years reflect something of my own.
I've got a few white hairs on my chest now, and I don't mind, really,

because as a kid I was one of those who did everything they said
would put the hair there, and now that I've earned it I'd just as soon
it grow old and die in the same place it began. I'm tender

about the beginnings and the ends. And Al Davis is old, too, coming
out with a walker, still dressed in black, though, and silver, go Raiders
you bad-boy sackers of the world. Then Al speaks and Madden listens

and I listen and in Canton, Ohio the sun is shining and in my backyard
I can hear the beginnings of a quick rain. Al says Time doesn't really stop
for the great ones. And I get a chill for a minute, and get up to write it

down, and in writing it I realize that it's nothing that spectacular, probably
ten-thousand humans have said this about another, but then I realize
the greatness of the repetition of some things, and the constant promise

we offer to others to carry on some memory of the body and soul
and sound of a voice crackling on the old speakers of a t.v. set.
Like my friend, who is gone now (I know not where), would repeat:

Love, love, love, love, you sons-of-bitches. And it was more the kindness
in his voice than either end of the words, because words have a beginning
and an end, and also a spirit which carries on forever. And it carries on

beyond the page, and beyond the screen, and beyond the silence of Madden
standing up out of his chair to a stadium-full of applause, a hulking figure
growing slighter every day, in stature, that is, because the legend will live on

in bronze. And what do I have to say for myself now. I don't know.
In four more weeks my weekly ritual will begin again. I'll be watching
a game and Madden will say something terribly stupid, as is his habit,

as is his trick. And all the rest of the world will feel smarter for at least
one minute, while Madden laughs and begins another non-sequitur.
As if any one moment could logically follow another.

Corey Mesler

The Naked Man in the Tree 

kept calling down to the schoolchildren passing

asking them to please throw him for a loop.
The light shattered between the black branches
making the man appear a god of sorts, a real smart animal