ablaze addiction air alarm andiron aroma arson asbestos ash ashtray backdraft backfire bake ban band barbacue bellows billow blacken blaze blend bloom blow blowtorch bomb bonfire bong bouquet brand breathe brimstone bud bunsen-burner burn butt campfire cancer candle candlestick canister cannabis carbon carbon-monoxide carburetor carcinogen carton "catch fire" cauldron ceasefire chainsmoker chalice char charcoal chimney "chipper" choke cigar cigarette cigarillo cinder "coffin nail" coal combust conflagrate consume convection contain cook Corona cough crack craving cremate crematorium Cuban cure cutter dank dependence detector detonator diesel ditchweed dog-iron dopamine drill drag dragon draw dynamite ember emission engine enkindle emphysema escape evacuation exhale exhaust exit explosive extinguish fag fatwood feed fiery filtered fire firebug firecracker firedog firefighter fireplace fireproof firetrap firetruck firework five-alarm flame flammable flare flashover flickering forge freebase fuel "full flavor" fume fumigate furnace fuse ganja gasoline gasp grate grenade grill gun gust habit hash Havana haze HAZMAT headshop heat hearth hell hellfire hellhole hemp herb hickory hit holder holding holocaust hookah hose hot huffing humidor hydrant ignite incense incendiary incinerate inferno inflammable inhale iron joint kiln kindle kindling kings ladder lamp lantern lava Lent light lighter lightning locoweed log lox lung mantel marijuana match matchbook matchbox menthol nicotine oil-lamp opium oven pack parch parejo patch panatela paper "peace pipe" perfecto phlogiston pipe plume pot powder presidente puff pump punk "put out" pyre pyromania pyrotechnic quit reefer retardant ring roach roast roll "roll your own" screen scorch sear second-hand shade-grown signal singe sizzle skywriting slag slim smelt smolder smoke "smoke-filled rooms" "smokes" smokescreen "smoking a cloud" "smoking gun" smother smudge "social smoker" spark spiff spit spread stain steam stifle stogie stove strike subdue suffocate sulfur squib tabacco tallow "take a hit" taper tar tinder tinderbox toast tobacco toke torch torpedo "touch off" trigger unfiltered "ultra lights" urge vapor vat vent ventless ventilation volcano votive wax weed withdrawal wheeze wick wildfire wind wrapper yellowed yulelog Zippo 100s 420


Poetry (any form or style) and Micro or Flash Fictions wanted for an anthology on SMOKE. Not just the black clouds rising from the five-alarm fire next door, or the billowing plumes of smoke warning us of a forest fire, or the emissions from factory smoke stacks, apartment house incinerators, and crematoriums, smoke rings rise from cigarettes, smoke pours out of headshops, pipe shops & cigar stores--see that purple haze rising over the fields of poppies and marijuana we just planted--we've used it to communicate via smoke signals and skywriting, to cover our tracks and disappear with and without mirrors, combat the enemy on and off the battlefield, kill bugs, flavor food, cure illness, declare peace treaties, and fragrance our homes. Got the idea? Release it onto the page.

Guidelines: Submit up to three poems/micro fictions or two flash fictions at a time with a fascinating bio of 35 words or less, not just limited to publication credits, copy/pasted in the body of an e-mail (no attachments, please) to roxy533 at yahoo dot com & . We will also entertain up to six one-liners or 2 short stand up routines at time. Previously published work is OK as long as authors have retained the copyright, which will be returned to them after publication. Simultaneous submissions are encouraged. If your work is accepted elsewhere, and you still have obtained rights to republish, just let us know where and we'll be happy to acknowledge the other publication.

If you do not receive a response from us within a month of your submission considered it rejected and feel free to submit again. Due to the volume of submissions we cannot respond to each and every individual submission. Selection for the on-line edition are made on a ongoing basis as we receive your submissions. However, final selections for the print edition will made after the October 31st deadline. (In otherwords not everything that made the cut for the online edition will appear in print.) Please do not query. When in doubt, send the submission to roxy533 at yahoo dot com &

Friday, April 10, 2009

Wild Fire

She carried the fire in her pockets
and tapped shards of magma
like cigarette ash onto the passing trees.

She was beautiful and courteous
to the other scholars of nature.
She’d make space for the squirrels,
twitching like tweakers, to pass unobstructed;
she’d lift the hedgehogs, doleful as skin-poppers,
over the screeching train tracks.

But her face was dark and mournful
even when she lifted her blazing palms
to rub her leaking eyes,
to caress the hissing trees.

Hair cropped by fire,
they stand black and naked now
damned sentinels wreathed in shame.

She has gone, dragging the sun down
beneath horizon’s brittle crust,
its final cry turning the cloud
into a sprawling bruise, as the
sunlight gently bleeds away
into night’s quilted pockets.

by Steven Nash

Steven Nash

Steve Nash should currently be doing research for his Ph.D he is a qualified teacher but despite this earns his keep (sort of) as a musician playing to anyone foolish enough to stay in the bar.

Steven's blog is Starlight to Casual Moths.


  1. My favourite contemporary poet!!!

    I love this piece so much, the sorrow and fragility of growth is beautifully visualised in the drug/pastoral metaphors.

    Love it love it love it!!!

    Thanks for this Smoke xxx

  2. The imagery in this poem is terrific, I particularly like:
    She’d make space for the squirrels,
    twitching like tweakers, to pass unobstructed;
    she’d lift the hedgehogs, doleful as skin-poppers

    as the previous commenter has suggested the entire piece is wrapped in fragility like smoke itself.

  3. This is a great work of contemporary poetry isn' it?

    I'm impressed by the way it knits together through the alliterative repetition and keeps you rolling along so pleasently despite the subject matter.

    I look forward to ploughing through all of the contributors' poems from your right-hand list Roxanne, you have a great eye for a poem.

    Not sure my critical faculty'll ever be quite so fine tuned

  4. This was the firstpoem of this poets I'd come across but checked out hisblogthanks to your link and it's great. Thanks for the link Smoking Book.x