Viral Cat

Subtitle

Fall 2015 Issue

Recent Blog Entries

                                Fall 2015 Issue

Table of Contents

"Black Hole Skeleton" (painting) .................................................................... Emma Sky 

"A Previous Life" (fiction) ............................................................................... Donal Mahoney

“Water Orbs” (painting) ………………………………………………...................……… Emma Sky

“Grace mightier Than Natural Law” (poetry) …………………...................……… Allison Grayhurst

“Purpose” (painting) …………………………………………….…..…...............….…….. Emma Bartholomew

“Ghost Walks 42” (poetry) ………………………………………….................….…….. Christopher Barnes

“Wind” (painting) ……………………………………………………..….…...............……. Emma Sky

“Cupped” (poetry) ……………………………………………..……..….……...............…. Allison Grayhurst

“Cant’s Slow Down” (photography) …………………………..…..………................. Foster M.

“I Dive to Rise” (poetry) ………………………….………………..…...............………… Allison Grayhurst

"Grasping a Life’s Moment” (painting) …………………………....…...............….. Emma Bartholomew

"Ghost Walks 43” (poetry) …………………………….………………..............…..….. Christopher Barnes

“Contentment” (painting) ………………………………………….…..…................…. Emma Bartholomew

“The Inquisition” (poetry) ……………………………………..……….............………. John Grey

“Wasn’t Me” (illustration) ………………………………………….…..……............…. Solomia Antoniv

“Here and There” (poetry) …………………………………………..…...............…….. Scott Thomas Outlar

“Zooey” (music video) ……………………………………………………..............……… Mining for Rain

“Hoz” (music) ………………………………………………………..........…….…..……….. Slihmm, produced by Chance Scheiber

 

 

Black Hole Skeleton   | by Emma Sky


 
A Previous Life   | by Donal Mahoney
It was their wedding night and Priya didn’t want to tell her new
husband all about it but Bill kept asking where she had learned
to walk like that. Finally she told him it was inherited from a
previous life, a life she had lived many years ago in India, not far
from Bangalore. She had been a cobra kept in a charmer’s
basket.

When the charmer found a customer, usually a Brit or Yank, he
would play his flute and Priya would uncoil and rise from the
basket. Her hood would swell and she would sway as long
as the customer had enough money to keep paying the charmer.
She never tried to bite a customer but some of the men weren’t
the nicest people in the world. You think they would know better
than to tease a cobra.

Being a charmer's cobra was Priya’s job for many years until
she finally grew weary of the tiny mice her keeper would feed
her so she bit him and he died. His family had Priya
decapitated but she was born again later in a small village, this
time as a human, a baby girl. After she matured into a young
woman, she had a walk, men said, reminiscent of a cobra's
sway.

Priya told Bill she had been married many times in
India, England and the United States but always to the wrong
man. She would give the men time to correct their behavior but
none did. As a result of their failure, she bit them with two
little fangs inherited from her life as a cobra. They were hidden
next to her incisors. Death was almost instantaneous.

No autopsies were ever performed. Death by natural causes was
always the ruling. Priya, however, would move to another state
or country before marrying again.

She told Bill she hoped he would be a good husband because
she didn’t want to have to move again. She wanted to put down
roots and have children. She was curious as to whether they
would walk or crawl or maybe do both. But Bill had heard
enough. He was already out of bed, had one leg in his tuxedo
pants and soon was running down the hall of the 10th floor of
the Four Seasons Hotel. He had his rented patent leather shoes
in one hand and an umbrella in the other in case he ran into a
monsoon.
 
It was their wedding night and Priya didn’t want to tell her new
husband all about it but Bill kept asking where she had learned
to walk like that. Finally she told him it was inherited from a
previous life, a life she had lived many years ago in India, not far
from Bangalore. She had been a cobra kept in a charmer’s
basket.

When the charmer found a customer, usually a Brit or Yank, he
would play his flute and Priya would uncoil and rise from the
basket. Her hood would swell and she would sway as long
as the customer had enough money to keep paying the charmer.
She never tried to bite a customer but some of the men weren’t
the nicest people in the world. You think they would know better
than to tease a cobra.

Being a charmer's cobra was Priya’s job for many years until
she finally grew weary of the tiny mice her keeper would feed
her so she bit him and he died. His family had Priya
decapitated but she was born again later in a small village, this
time as a human, a baby girl. After she matured into a young
woman, she had a walk, men said, reminiscent of a cobra's
sway.

Priya told Bill she had been married many times in
India, England and the United States but always to the wrong
man. She would give the men time to correct their behavior but
none did. As a result of their failure, she bit them with two
little fangs inherited from her life as a cobra. They were hidden
next to her incisors. Death was almost instantaneous.

No autopsies were ever performed. Death by natural causes was
always the ruling. Priya, however, would move to another state
or country before marrying again.

She told Bill she hoped he would be a good husband because
she didn’t want to have to move again. She wanted to put down
roots and have children. She was curious as to whether they
would walk or crawl or maybe do both. But Bill had heard
enough. He was already out of bed, had one leg in his tuxedo
pants and soon was running down the hall of the 10th floor of
the Four Seasons Hotel. He had his rented patent leather shoes
in one hand and an umbrella in the other in case he ran into a
monsoon.
It was their wedding night and Priya didn’t want to tell her new
husband all about it but Bill kept asking where she had learned
to walk like that. Finally she told him it was inherited from a
previous life, a life she had lived many years ago in India, not far
from Bangalore. She had been a cobra kept in a charmer’s
basket.

When the charmer found a customer, usually a Brit or Yank, he
would play his flute and Priya would uncoil and rise from the
basket. Her hood would swell and she would sway as long
as the customer had enough money to keep paying the charmer.
She never tried to bite a customer but some of the men weren’t
the nicest people in the world. You think they would know better
than to tease a cobra.

Being a charmer's cobra was Priya’s job for many years until
she finally grew weary of the tiny mice her keeper would feed
her so she bit him and he died. His family had Priya
decapitated but she was born again later in a small village, this
time as a human, a baby girl. After she matured into a young
woman, she had a walk, men said, reminiscent of a cobra's
sway.

Priya told Bill she had been married many times in
India, England and the United States but always to the wrong
man. She would give the men time to correct their behavior but
none did. As a result of their failure, she bit them with two
little fangs inherited from her life as a cobra. They were hidden
next to her incisors. Death was almost instantaneous.

No autopsies were ever performed. Death by natural causes was
always the ruling. Priya, however, would move to another state
or country before marrying again.

She told Bill she hoped he would be a good husband because
she didn’t want to have to move again. She wanted to put down
roots and have children. She was curious as to whether they
would walk or crawl or maybe do both. But Bill had heard
enough. He was already out of bed, had one leg in his tuxedo
pants and soon was running down the hall of the 10th floor of
the Four Seasons Hotel. He had his rented patent leather shoes
in one hand and an umbrella in the other in case he ran into a
monsoon.

It was their wedding night and Priya didn’t want to tell her new

husband all about it but Bill kept asking where she had learned

to walk like that. Finally she told him it was inherited from a

previous life, a life she had lived many years ago in India, not far

from Bangalore. She had been a cobra kept in a charmer’s

basket.

 

When the charmer found a customer, usually a Brit or Yank, he

would play his flute and Priya would uncoil and rise from the

basket. Her hood would swell and she would sway as long

as the customer had enough money to keep paying the charmer.

She never tried to bite a customer but some of the men weren’t

the nicest people in the world. You think they would know better

than to tease a cobra.

 

Being a charmer's cobra was Priya’s job for many years until

she finally grew weary of the tiny mice her keeper would feed

her so she bit him and he died. His family had Priya

decapitated but she was born again later in a small village, this

time as a human, a baby girl. After she matured into a young

woman, she had a walk, men said, reminiscent of a cobra's

sway.

 

Priya told Bill she had been married many times in

India, England and the United States but always to the wrong

man. She would give the men time to correct their behavior but

none did. As a result of their failure, she bit them with two

little fangs inherited from her life as a cobra. They were hidden

next to her incisors. Death was almost instantaneous.

 

No autopsies were ever performed. Death by natural causes was

always the ruling. Priya, however, would move to another state

or country before marrying again.

 

She told Bill she hoped he would be a good husband because

she didn’t want to have to move again. She wanted to put down

roots and have children. She was curious as to whether they

would walk or crawl or maybe do both. But Bill had heard

enough. He was already out of bed, had one leg in his tuxedo

pants and soon was running down the hall of the 10th floor of

the Four Seasons Hotel. He had his rented patent leather shoes

in one hand and an umbrella in the other in case he ran into a

monsoon.
 
Water Orbs   | by Emma Sky

 
 
Grace mightier than Natural Law   | by Allison Grayhurst

           What if eternity was marked in a mirror,

and we lived there like animated ornaments,

reproducing each dot of matter as reflection? Especially love

drilled into the furrows of fear, or love

withstanding betrayal by latching firmly to devotion?

            What if what we perceived as solid is itself artificial

and that true existence is elsewhere, is a multi-layered

holographic construction coating our reality? As if death was

the overture of our lives, rooted in continuance and

not defeat.

            At times I can taste myself slipping into the tip

of a Cathedral ceiling.

Weapons I cannot use become suggestions,

impractical solutions, there to

analyze other highways not meant to cross.

Highways bearing bright moonlight

on their surfaces, like correspondences looked at but never read.

At times my singing is subdued, and I discover

these highways I am not welcome on,

find myself disassociated from their flat hum, from

their pavement platform and

worn-over buckling curves.

            Memories are funerals – the hours we spend

travelling their domains.

I spend my time studying trees. Some trees are not beautiful,

but are depressed growths, even in their grandeur.

When flushed with foliage

or sparse, these trees emanate an aura of monotony.

Like looking through dirty glass windows,

watching pointing fingers, listening

to a zoo of indistinct, inescapable sounds,

they have been drained of vitality.

            Ballooned and warm, I am transformed

by the pressure to create symbols to improve

an already great equation.

In this way, I hear a toddler cry, and I think it is impossible

to grow up

and not carry as core the experiences of kindnesses

given and kindnesses withheld:

For we all know it is soothing to be tended to,

have someone wash our hair.

            So what then if there is always a camera

taking pictures? Then

it must be important to be frank in spite of

showing rough edges

that spark criticism, disappointment, or a full-body

malaise. It must be important not to falsify speech,

to be able to disregard

pleasantries or other forms of stroking public appeal.

            What if I closed the door, turned on the fan, turned on

the light, would I learn to swing or be a domino,

a causality?

            Principals move like wolves commandeering prey

or like a dozen eggs dropped - their effect built

on a single gravitational desire.

What if we are marked, already surviving

forever - each exacting

fraction of ourselves duplicated?

            God must muse through such thorough

descriptions of our lives,

an overseer of our personalized library,

defeating what seems irreversible

with forgiveness, erasing without remnant

the imprint and impact of things wrongly given, taken,

left to starve.

 
Purpose   | by Emma Bartholomew

 

Ghost Walks 42   | by Christopher Barnes

 

…Fixed paperclipped tip off

Counterfoiled by (under wraps).

Marilyn Monroe turned out to a chow down

At Peter Lawford’s, in the footsteps of President Kennedy.

Our mole quirked her slant

As utterly, succinctly Leftist…

In our lost tribe’s lingo

A shadowing forth is got by heart.

The Gatley shouter puffed from six feet under,

Cringing, gurgling, macabre.

Cramped by bog residents

At the prophetic yew.

A migrant’s Latin hexameters

Dimmed him – salt fizzle on a slug

Wind   | by Emma Sky

Cupped   | by Allison Grayhurst

 

Two bodies of water converge, merge

coalesce - incorporation.

 

Lines of symmetry formed,

synchronicity mastered.

 

Laws owed only to

controlled experimentation - devoid

of succulent flow, surprise,

tied to the many life-draining

ramifications of technique.

 

The nodes of mystery cannot be uncovered,

only the outline revealed, after that,

the root mantra gets conveyed.

 

Like futile attempts at flossing between

two great mountains bonded

by unrest and solid slates –

century-slow-permanent addition.

 

Can't Slow Down   | by Foster M.


 
I Dive to Rise   | by Allison Grayhurst

I give it up - the racing dread, erasing

the good from my garden and the dawn from my eyes.

I give it up like a heavy stone that once tied my sailor’s bones

to the earth. I dive deep into the salty liquid,

healing as I let go of the weight,

the power, the need for control.

I give it up - the undone deeds of expectation,

the ability to swim or breathe or feed on blood and bread.

I’m done with planting and days of endurance.

I’m done with mouthing platitudes of hope and guilt

that shouldn’t have been mine to bear. I’m done with self-pity

and the wages of truth.

I give it up and dive deep into the watery belly

where no footprint has ever been. Sleeping is the same

as waking is the same as staring at the minnows

and piranhas head on - the same as growing gills and talking

without sound. I give it up and give to get

a way out of these decade-old barriers, a way away from

the quarter moon heart and the vices

I hear every day like corpses rising

among the vulture birds, voices that have hands

frantic, with no where to go . . .
 
 
Grasping a Life's Moment   | by Emma Bartholomew

Ghost Walks 43   | by Christopher Barnes

 

…Behind closed doors affair.

Low-key indifference defies a once-over.

Stickybeaks tip hats,

Trade fifty-fifty badge credentials

At Sagamore Cafeteria (8th St. & 3rd Ave.).

Chum-bag jeering’s hissed.

FBI logs Marilyn Monroe’s hurly-burly…

 

The wrecking-fetch in daylight

Is a hair-on-end thunderer.

Never gore on Bodmin’s clearings;

The moor’s spiteful, an injurious meeting place.

Loosen grit, birch closes in.

Crows fume a deadly past.

Contentment   | by Emma Bartholomew

The Inquisition   | by John Grey

Cells have inflated like balloons.

A coming life scraps for space,

hounds her lungs, your blood,

into doubling down. 

What can she do but accept

this gift of rage?

 

Her husband occupies her next breath

like an obstruction in a vein.

His caring kicks and rips

worse than the baby.

 

 “It will all be worth it,”

is the family mantra.

And this, from a family

with a genius for pain.

 

She wants to be left alone…

by her insides most of all.

No more star chambers

forming at her bedside.

No more inquisition

from what doesn’t yet have a name.

 

She lies on her back,

staring at the ceiling.

A star in its ascendency

limps down around the dead.

 
Wasn't Me   | by Solomia Antoniv

Here and There   | by Scott Thomas Outlar

 

When the blackout comes,

lay down in the grass

in the middle of a public park

and let the sun

wash over your soul;

remain comatose

until the stars come out

and wash over your flesh –

one day, one cycle, one holding pattern

of being bathed by cosmic rays –

just to get a feel for God

here on this earth

where one foot

is in the source

and the other

is grounded and bound.

Zooey   | by Mining for Rain

 

 

Hoz   | by Slihmm, produced by Change Scheiber