Featured Poet: Joseph Felkers

simple machine

And if we can’t invent physics, only

discover it. If every plane is named


after some outcast, man who calls

himself priest, prophet, king. How can


we ever award prizes? Didn’t we say

that physicists are allowed to bend


the rules? And if we can redefine

axes, turn each other just the way


we like, just the way that makes perpendicular

right. The way that makes you say yeah, then I can make


you say yeah, one more time—yeah.

Time isn’t a dimension for me anymore.


In this world nothing is true but few things.

One, we can bend ourselves to our liking.


But a bend is only a bend, not a stretch.

Two, we are made in an image


of holiness and viscosity. And we are not

made, but discovered. We are not prized,


but prizes. Don’t you know who invented you?

Discovered you? Can he make you say yeah?



I used to write poems about speeding

down highway 31, but I want to slow


it down. I want to stop at yellow,

go sixty on seventy. This car ride


won’t stop if you don’t want it to.

Turn your air off. Turn your wheel


softer. Don’t sing along to this one,

because, today we got vaccinated


for an infection that I thought only

girls got. I want a doctor to touch


my flesh, decimate

but say that I’m safe now. Your curls


can’t keep me from cervix or lice,

but maybe they can cure the disorder


Michigan’s notorious for. This car ride

isn’t stopping if you don’t break hard now.


I know your name’s the love-

child of a flower & a saint, but what’s


so holy about an agnostic




Joseph Felkers is a pushcart nominated poet who’s work has been recognized the Scholastic Art and Writing Competition and Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts. He appears or is forthcoming in decomP magazinE, SOFTBLOW, and Rust + Moth, among others. He is a genre editor for Polyphony HS, a poetry reader and past mentee with The Adroit Journal, and an ice cream connoisseur at his local parlor.


About Kelsey May

Kelsey May is a graduate of Grand Valley State University and Editor in Chief of SkipFiction. She is passionate about social justice and activism, especially with issues of consent and sexual abuse or misconduct. Her work has appeared in over two dozen publications, including Broken Plate and NonBinary Review. She has also received numerous grants and awards, including a nomination for a 2016 Pushcart Prize. She would like to thank her husband, Bob, for his undying support of her ideas and career.

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