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 &

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

A Very Leisurely Cigarette

I stopped smoking on a Monday
the week before Valentine’s Day
because there was someone
I thought I might like to kiss,
an ex-smoker with a very nice smile
and a penchant for frying fish.
but I got sick of the snow
so I went to Florida instead
where despite a sudden cold snap
it was warmer and friendlier
than New York.
My friend picked me up
and she was smoking a cigarette,
(I think it was my favorite brand)
so I figured I’d smoke along with her
in a companionable sort of way
not to mention that cigarettes
were much cheaper, almost free
when I thought of all the money
I saved by buying them in Florida
so I smoked cigarettes all week long
feeling pretty happy about it
until Valentine’s Day when
Mister Maybe I’ll Kiss Him called
just as I was inhaling
and I remembered
that I had stopped smoking.

It’s hard to admit
even to myself
that I had quit smoking
over one hundred times
which may sound excessive
to some but not to me because
I stopped using drugs every day
for over twenty-one years.

After the phone call
I began to wonder
but couldn’t decide
which in the long run
would bring me more pleasure
the smiling fish fryer
or the reliability
of a pack of Marlboros
always in my pocket
so on the way to the airport
I stuck a nicotine patch
onto my left bicep
just in case I developed a taste
for a fish frying man
but I ripped it off one hour into the flight
and forgot to clap when we safely landed
so focused was I on the vision of myself
smoking contentedly outside Terminal Five.
I caught a ride with an unlicensed driver
and insisted that he pull over
at the closest convenience store
where I bought a pack, ripped it open,
and leaned against his turquoise Buick
leisurely exhaling streams of smoke
as vapid and addictive as the city
to which I had, once again, returned.

by Puma Perl

Puma Perl
Puma Perl lives and writes in NYC. Her work has appeared in many print and on-line publications and anthologies. She has been a featured reader in various New York City area venues. Her first chapbook, Belinda and Her Friends, was recently published by Erbacce Press, She is a firm believer in the transformative power of the creative arts and a former degenerate smoker.

To find out more about her new chapbook visit her publisher http://www.erbacce-press.com/#/pumaperl/4531745901.

Viist her on MySpace at http://www.myspace.com/rubymydear916.

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