Z.M. Wise: Poetry (Western Voices 2021)

Bio: Z.M. Wise is a proud Illinois native from Chicago, poet, essayist, occasional playwright, seldom screenwriter, co-editor, and arts activist, writing since his first steps as a child. He was selected to be a performer in the Word Around Town Tour in 2013, a Houston citywide tour. He is co-owner and co-editor of Transcendent Zero Press, an independent publishing house for poetry that produces an international quarterly journal known as Harbinger Asylum. The journal was nominated Best Poetry Journal in 2013 at the National Poetry Awards. He has six books of published poetry, including: Take Me Back, Kingswood Clock! (MavLit Press, 2013), The Wandering Poet (Transcendent Zero Press, 2014), Wolf: An Epic & Other Poems (Weasel Press, 2015), Cuentos de Amor (Red Ferret Press, 2015), Kosmish and the Horned Ones (Weasel Press, 2018), and Illinois Infinitarium (Cherry House Press, 2020). His debut play,  Bottles of Emerald for the Demon Queen (Transcendent Zero Press, 2019), was published in late December of 2019. His sixth book of poetry,  Illinois Infinitarium (Cherry House Press) was published in the early months of 2020. Other than these books, his poems, lyrics, essays, and book reviews have been published in various journals, magazines, and anthologies. The motto that keeps him going: POETRY LIVES AND LONG LIVE THE ARTS! Mr. Wise will make sure to spread that message and the love of the arts, making sure it remains vibrant for the rest of his days and beyond. Besides poetry and other forms of writing, his other passions/interests include professional voice acting, singing/lyricism/songwriting, playing a few instruments, fitness, and reading. 


Flyer Poem #236

Screaming openmouthed in Arctic darkness,
you return to the time of suspension.
Age of Ice, Epoch of Frozen Thought.
Metaphysical metal, golden and tamed,
claims the throat of those who
speak its true, unidentifiable names.
The alchemy of third eye kissing
from a sky of stone.
People awash with monotonous tones,
their accursed monogamous flaunting.
Eight rings to practice the taunting
spirits eternal students to cease haunting.
Broken flowers become his old flames.


Flyer Poem #223: The Moth

Psyche in a negative photograph,
tailored to fit any philosopher’s hypothesis.
Nocturnal emission of spectral plasm,
all congregating around the lamplight’s illuminating bliss.

The moth sees only the floodgates of the Moon,
the main attraction behind shrouded clouds.
Here to tell you off…scathing moth.
The moth hears only the flapping of predatory wings,
the sonar screecher who stands out in a crowd.
Here to tell you off…scheming moth.

Guru Moth, where will you take me?
“To the other inverted tree rings.”
Soldier Moth, what are we fighting for?
“Weapons’ ladies won over the hearts of soulless kings.”
Surrender before iron gods.
Moth Hammer obliterates the odds.

Black Queen of Winged Feats casts
a spell over the children of misguided steps.
A lifespan of incantations, precious
beyond the mating call Death’s head left.

The moth has menacing eyes on its back,
blinking when facetious mammals dare to strike.
Here to write you off…merciful moth.
The moth sings of its bipedal ancestor,
seven feet in height, deceased, yet lifelike.
Here to write you off…your son moth.

Elder Moth, what say your wisdom about love?
“Derivative adventures, fleeting moments.”
Cynic Moth, is there any semblance of hope?
“Abandon all light and burn yourself with sentiment.”

And, away it soars into the insect ether.
Take this night as your lover, passing creature.


Flyer Poem #177

Call her clay…
Stiffened Messiah names
a line of blackish grey.
Throb and bleed for us…
Blood from the stone.
Carry Atlas’s weight.
Call her iron…
Welded pariah claims
a trapezoid of regurgitating green.
Ache and long for us…
Long white on a mirror.
Inhale milk powder.
Sprint across obsidian oceans.

What if she never sniffed?

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