Anticipation of the Knife

knife

Masculinity is often tied to pain management. Here, Michael Walsh ponders whether one kind of pain can be used to manage another.

in peace we still war

Fire

Guillermo Filice Castro writes of everyone’s wounded child–and its role in perpetuating conflict.

In Case You Were Wondering

Man and Woman

Justin Hamm’s speaker confronts an insecurity common to many men and women.

An Old Man in a Blouse, At Market

Cross

In this convention-defying poem, Stephen Scott Whitaker reminds us that gender identity, sexual orientation, and clothing choice are not necessarily related.

Buddha

Buddha

In this tight little poem, Hansa Bergwall captures the ambivalence some men feel towards religion.

Childhood

Knuckles

Christopher Nelson remembers “Bloody Knuckles”—and the disturbing things it taught us about manhood.

Lacrimosa

Child

It’s not entirely clear who haunts Philip Clark’s coming-of-age poem more—the dead or the living.

At Buttermilk Falls

Ditch the Cover: A Dad’s Feelings on Open-Air Breastfeeding

Todd Davis offers a powerful poem of listening, reflection, and the natural world.

When My Father Woke

Mask

Pay close attention to Ed Madden’s poem about an invalid father; the speaker reveals perhaps more than he intends to.

The Canoe Ride

Water

Looking both inward and outward, Kenny Fries reminds us of how beauty “elevates our lives beyond mere description.”

Sunday Morning Chocolate

chocolate

Pepper Trail presents a touching slice-of-life in this jewel of a poem.

Selfie: Manscape

Manscape

Aaron DeLee uses the trend of “the manscape” to powerful effect in a poem that is clearly about more than just manscaping.

Biography of a Heretic

Pray

Daniel W.K. Lee challenges parental expectations and a son’s subtle pressure to conform.

The Foyer of a Soldier’s House

Home

Poet and U.S. Army veteran Dwight Gray captures how war changes soldiers in this poem of departure and homecoming.

Fall Equinox

Moon

Using the challenging yet intensely musical ghazal form, Scott Wiggerman takes us inside the mind of a man questioning his relationship.

A History of Violence

Violence

Alex Gallo-Brown reflects on one man’s acts of violence, and the impact they have had on his life.