Each life a novel
Beginning, middle, and end
Last pages left blank

No two blanks alike
Nor where and when they get filled
Ghost writers take note

by Sharon Wood Wortman

Read more Parody


With four children, 11 grandchildren, a great grand, and a full-time husband, Sharon Wood Wortman faithfully (mostly) attends the meetings of her writing/critique group: 29thstreetwriters.com


The Skirt

Yes. For our dinner date, I'm wearing
an embroidered skirt: hand-woven, blue

as cornflowers, with white daisies stitched
in vertical rows, a family heirloom purchased

by a cousin of a cousin, repeatedly re-gifted
until it came to lucky me. Yes, the waistband

is tight. Its pleats emphasize my tummy's mound
in a way that resembles the swell of yeasted dough

in a bread pan. Do you remember the last time
I called? You hung up. Sure, it was 6 AM,

but I wanted to talk about us. Since then I've gained
a friend. She won't give her name but calls

the landline to ask about my love life.
It's wrong to lie, but I embellish,

just to hear the pickaxe in her voice.
Odd, all the flattering clothing I own,

the stretchy things that glide over my curves,
have disappeared into the arcane recesses

of my closet. This skirt was all that I could find.
And for that reason, no, I can't change

into anything more suitable for our date.
Sorry. But go ahead, have dinner

without me. When she calls,
I'll tell her where she can find you.

by Peggy Turnbull

Read more Parody


Peggy Turnbull enjoys living in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, a corner of the Rust Belt where cheese, bratwurst, and beer remain economic powerhouses. A retired university librarian, she finds poems among the algae and alewives of Lake Michigan's shore. Read her work at: peggyturnbull.blogspot.com



Love letters lure, levitate,
legend's letters liberate.
Letters label latterly
life's libretto lastingly:
Letter landscapes, lovesick letters,
lazy, lavish, lipstick letters,
letter litter, limelight letters,
loose-leaf, loose-lipped landslide letters,
linking life's lanes limitlessly,
labelling lives luminously.

Looped letters lull, looped letters lull,
looped letters lull, looped letters lull,
looped letter's lot. Logistical
letters label leaflets, lorries,
left luggage, landmarks, lavatories,
lead ladies, loonies, liberalize,
label landing lanes likewise,
livid legislator's letters,
lucid liberator's letters,
legitimizing liberty.
Lee's longhand lacks lucidity.

by Alex Dreppec

Read more Parody


Alex Dreppec will keep on copying little poems that no one would publish otherwise like YELP (“You yokel”, yelled Yasmin’s yachtsman, / yoghurt-yearning, yokeful yen. / “You yob yielded yukky yam! / Yeasty yolk!” yapped Yasmin’s yachtsman.) into what is supposed to be his bio as long as no one stops him. www.dreppec.de


When Teetotalers Go Caroling

Here we come a-wassailing awash in naught but tea.
We seldom feel the urge to puke (though frequently to pee).
Drier joys come to you, with a mug of sober brew.
May God bless you and send you a year with no beer,
May God send you a year with no beer.

We are not red-nosed revelers that lurch from door to door.
Our noses are a righteous blue the bibulous deplore.
Lemonade come to you. Ardent spirits we eschew,
Yet we ardently wish you a year with no beer.
Raise a cheer for a year with no beer.

We're morally superior to all you sodden lot.
We smugly shake our heads when you're hung over and we're not
Temperance tunes come to you as our soft drink-swilling crew
Belts our anthem that drunkards might draw near and hear
Word of year after year with no beer.

by Chris O'Carroll

Read more Parody


Chris O'Carroll has been the featured poet in Light, and has appeared in Angle, Asses of Parnassus, Lighten Up Online, Literary Review, and Rotary Dial, among other journals, as well as The Great American Wise Ass Poetry Anthology and Poems for a Liminal Age (even though he's right at the threshold of not even knowing what "liminal" means).


A Visit from St. Zachary

'Twas the week before Christmas, and all through the house
not a new piece of clothing, not even a blouse.
The papers were graded with consummate care
in hopes that my students would say I was fair.
The pencils were nestled all snug with their lead
while visions of movie screens danced in my head.
And my Lab in his collar and I in my cap
lay down on my loveseat to take a long nap,
when out on the lawn there arose such a hubbub,
I turned to my dog and asked him, Wassup, Bub?
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
tore open my notebook to show some panache.
The sun on the drops of new-fallen rain
gave a hint of the warming we hope to restrain,
when what to my bloodshot eyes did appear
but a yard full of students, some heads dulled by beer.
More sluggish than turtles the stragglers they came
and I whistled and shouted and called them by name:
Now, Jaedyn! Now, Kaelyn! Now, Lucas and Lizzie!
On, Vixen with short shorts that make my head dizzy!
Put your cellphones away, read the sign on my wall,
take those dang earbuds off—I'm done with them all!
And then, from the bushes, I heard someone say,
Is it true that we must have our textbooks today?
As I drew in my breath and was turning around,
down the driveway St. Zachary came with a bound.
He was wearing no headphones and chomping no chaw,
and he knew where to place a comma and clause.
A bundle of stories he'd flung on his back
and he looked like St. Nicholas opening his pack.
His verbs—how they twinkled! His headlines—how merry!
His leads were like roses, his prose like a cherry!
His sweet little kickers were tied like a bow,
and his nut graphs were followed by just the right quote.
He was timely and stirring, an eloquent elf,
and I smiled when I read him, in spite of myself.
His narrative leads and well-crafted heads
soon helped me to know I had nothing to dread.
He spoke not a word but went straight to his work,
not at all like some pothead or arrogant jerk.
Using no danglers, not padding his prose,
up and beyond the grade scale he rose.
At the end of the hour I gave him a shout
and told him it's time for an internship bout.
But I heard him exclaim as he walked out of sight—
It's Christmas, Professor. Go have a Bud Light!

by Margaret DeRitter

Read more Parody


Margaret DeRitter taught journalism at Western Michigan University and Kalamazoo College and is a writer and poetry editor for Encore magazine. She won this year’s Celery City Chapbook Contest, and her first full-length poetry collection is due out in 2020 from Unsolicited Press. Some of her feature stories can be found at encorekalamazoo.com/search/node/deritter and encorekalamazoo.com/features-full-life-poetry