The First Shower

Shower

L. Lamar Wilson raises a powerful memory of sameness and difference– a father-son moment that is both tender and sorrowful.

Walk to Sharpen Awareness

Awareness kevin dooley:Flickr

Ghost thoughts on the campo trail tell us, “we can play” while awareness tunes in.

On Nights Like These

Man

As much as Angel Garcia’s speaker insists “this is not about precision,” this poem is extremely precise–in its language, in its images, in its emotional resonance.

Confession

Fight

Speaking for men who are drawn to violence, Ed Harkness writes compellingly on “why we love the vein of coal /inside us” in this recollection of a harrowing bullying episode.

Your Parents Say Okay

Parents

In this poem from his brand new book, award-winning poet Stephen Mills offers a stirring commentary on same-sex marriage, token acceptance, and the politics of “normal.”

Greg Buckley, Jr. 21-Year-Old Marine Lance Cpl. Murdered in Afghanistan

Coffin

Perry Brass’s elegy for Lance Corporal Greg Buckley, Jr. demonstrates the dark truth that, in war, one can’t always know who one’s enemy is.

A Boy’s Bike

Bike

Diane Lockward uses a seemingly mundane occurrence to make a powerful statement about personal loss and, perhaps, the current state of boyhood.

Because He Reads the Bible

Bible

Dakota Garilli expertly explores the age-old tensions between religion and sexuality, parents and children.

The Day I Stood in the Command Tent Hearing of Your Death, Father

Airman

Veteran Airman Nicholas Miele skillfully juxtaposes a personal rite of passage with a personal loss.

The Antique Cast

Gorky

Dean Kostos brings together Abstract Expressionism and the beauty of the male form.

Why I Write – It’s Not Just a Guilty Pleasure Anymore

guilty pleasure

In allowing his creative writing to evolve from a guilty pleasure, practiced in secret, to something he needed to do, Shaky Shergill discovered that he had a gift, one that could serve the world.

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.