Poetry: Selections from Joseph M. Gant

Yesterday’s Rent

my ass leaks
and the rent’s always late
this is how you become
yesterday’s news
the art of floating
bad checks
is lost on millennials
either way it’s hard to be clean
sober and broke
still looking for the bar
with blinders on
I never liked parties but I’d kill
for just one celebration
before the landlady comes around.

Red Planet

in war for euphoria, everyone’s expendable.
I count again on weeping hands
the casualties I’ve campaigned over,
the bodies in their temporary hours.
          husks and empty eyes and bile
everything I miss is a ghost
and will not resurrect-- memories, annular-- and vaguely glowing
shadows of the past.
they mock me in disquietudes
I sweat them in my delta wave
oblivion of night-time prisms
where calls go straight to voicemail
there is an infestation of dragons here
eggs of rot-- the flies of time
I rise from sheets of toil, a simple paper sword in hand
to meet chills and eyes, phantasmagoric fire wings and claw.
Phobos, Deimos, and war.


your day starts
with a fifteen minute countdown
to panic
it ends
in the farthest corners
of a rabbit hole
you take pills for all the
strung-together moments
that stitch the in-between
they’re prescribed as needed
but they don’t exactly specify the flavor of that need
you fear you’ve grown dependent
and maybe rehab doesn’t sound so bad
people are mostly sympathetic
the rest can fuck themselves
as you project onto a gray and non-reflective screen
get well cards and new-commer chips.

Cold Morning

in the time it takes to end this song
no children will be born
so I sing to stay alive
in early days
I ran from the sun
I’m older now and the shadows turn
there’s a hair in my hat, and it doesn’t belong to me
there are broken teeth attempting speech
but the voices all seem foreign
like a language I never learned to speak
on purpose
or the way a deaf man shouts
I walk to the start of another line
and pause to square my shoulders
the yellow dog never leaves
and the landlady won’t make him go
but I never pay rent
so I don’t complain--
I squint from the ears and it’s over


some of us love teddy bears
full of glass and tetanus.
lips of hepatitis
and these lullabies
to sanctum smiles.
we dream away the frost of Winter,
pulling knives from memory
to freeze the blood in sickle veins,
we plunge into the snow.

Joseph M. Gant is a poet, fiction writer, and cyber activist from New Jersey. His creative work has appeared in small presses and academic projects as well as books with Rebel Satori Press. His technical writing has appeared in various cybersecurity blogs. When he's not messing with Open Source and Small Press projects, he is adding to his collection of Pink Floyd bootlegs.