Gnashing Teeth Publishing

| words that get in your teeth

Just Is by Daniel García Ordaz

It’s not enough to rename a street
Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard.
What we want is for government to cease its regard
For a system of justice that’s blind to injustice:
Blatantly biased—based on class, rank, and status—
Unabashedly obsessed with the names of one’s kin
Perpetually fixated on the color of one’s skin
Instead of focusing on fixing a broken system
That brokers a guaranteed win for the people within
Its circle of acceptance—
Where fortune favors not those who are bold
But those who are brazen enough to bow like lapdogs before old
Monuments to past lapses of leadership,
Dedicated to drive the different among us out
To face the cold, hard realization
That ours is not a nation
Of the people, for the people, and by the people,
That the Gettysburg dead may’ve indeed died in vain
Used to fight to preserve not ostensible freedoms
But to fight anyone with the nerve to redeem ‘em,
Made to fight to protect a new form of reign
That feigns liberation while built to detain.

Daniel García Ordaz is the author of Cenzontle/Mockingbird: Songs of Empowerment and You Know What I’m Sayin’?. He teaches English at La Joya Early College High School in the borderlands of deep S. Texas. Social media: @poetmariachi (Twitter/Instagram/Facebook)

Goodnight, Taj Mahal by Andre Peltier

Deep below earth, clay and sand, deep below roots and aquifers, it lies in wait. Like that silent coyote stalking her white-tailed deer through the brush, it waits patiently and

contain by Megan Cartwright

verb past tense: contained; past participle: contained 1. have or hold (someone or something) within. Similar: hold carry To have and to hold in our own microcosm, constructed of hope.

Listening to Words by Mona Mehas

Listening to words out of touch cross lily pads, one to the next my rules, a tiny picture frame debt of honor, repay the gift. Headlights illuminate the path listening

Blooming by Elizabeth Gade

Some days are easy and some days are exhausting the days you have to dig through the muck inside take more hits than a heavyweight prize fighter cling to life

Pomegranate Rose by Laura Peña

I want to feed this delicacy To my concubine A tiny spoonful at a time I want to watch the luscious sorbet Linger on the tip of her tongue Melt

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