Five Fleas Merch

Morning of November 11, 2022

Five Fleas (Itchy Poetry) has nominated these two works for a 2023
Pushcart Prize (Poetry). Congratulations to Robert Witmer and petro c.k.!

Wherefore Art Thou, Earth?

What is the temperature

of Mercury? What cars do they drive

On Mars? Are they stupider

On Jupiter? More taciturn

Where Saturn turns? More in tune

In the heart of June

With the fourteen moons

Of Neptune? And is Pluto no more

than a dark Venus

in Uranus?

~Robert Witmer


I booped

a Boops boops

(B. boops)

Boop boop!


Boops boops



~petro c.k.

Evening of November 6, 2022

They say

Absurdism is dead,

but I swear

I saw him swimming

in a rain puddle

ten years into

a seven-year drought.

~Kelly Moyer

opening the curtains


closing the curtains

~Keith Evetts

a wasp dies

in my glass of cranberry

 first of November

 ~Françoise Maurice

mother’s intuition

over maxwell house coffee
and all the fixings
and toasted cinnamon raisin bread
sagging under heaps of no salt butter
i knew i was dying she said bluntly
as she sawed a piece of toast in half
like a butcher attacking a carcass

~Jeffrey Spahr-Summers

a sandglass –

grains of wisdom

in Ravel’s Bolero

~Diana Teneva

stuffing the turkey

with uncertainty …

family reunion

~Bonnie J Scherer

red wine

the autumn leaves stagger

in the wind

~Françoise Maurice

a van Gogh sky one helicopter

~Joseph P. Wechselberger

domination the length of her lashes

~Kelly Moyer

crushing the clouds into the sunshine

~Mircea Moldovan

rainbows the DNA of unicorns

 ~Joseph P. Wechselberger

you are more than enough

ink on the roller

~Kelly Moyer

suburban street

a naked neighbour flings a gnome

through the glazed front door

~Keith Evetts


he shoves a rusty crowbar into my hands

i want you to climb up on the roof
tear up some of the shingles
make it look like storm damage

he guides me to the battered
aluminum ladder leaning against the house

hurry before a neighbor sees you

~Jeffrey Spahr-Summers

whatever you are

I fear

from the last one

full moon


I'm going to sleep

with the first empty dandelion

~Mircea Moldovan

this is where

I came in



kafenio's doors

~Michael Kingdom-Hockings

tongue of crow

an itch the witch

can't reach

~Chad Lee Robinson


the leaps

of her lemur

~Kelly Moyer


that day i torched all the poetry

i was a sick but determined man

i was looking for liberation like

the great bra burners of the 60s

in pajama bottoms at high noon

i dragged out the olive trash can

gathered up 29 years of poems

every one i could lay hands on

doused them with liquid starter

struck a match and tossed it in

~Jeffrey Spahr-Summers

godless month

dissolved in rain

wounded civilian

~Anna Cates


mistaking the chimera

for a paper doll

~Kelly Moyer

refugee camp

in the crook of her arm

rag doll

~Anna Cates

After the Rain

We sit alone across the table,

unable to account for the storm

driving through our lives like tourists

slowing to point at the sight of us.

~Jeffrey Spahr-Summers

cookie jar

nothing is beyond the reach

of ants

~Sankara Jayanth

ant + ant = two

~Roberta Beach Jacobson


i get back to the dinner table

to find an ant

occupying my chair

~Sankara Jayanth

Morning of November 6, 2022

winter what happens next silly

~Keith Evetts


winter until it’s not

~Roberta Beach Jacobson

Tick Box

For shamed face scar from birth clear marked,

a haematoma, red wine stain

I used to scrub, the nailbrush thick,

so cross that patch became a tick;

four digit tines at back, on call,

to carve a swathe through downy hair -

with surreptitious, hangdog look,

attention claim when seek escape.

~Stephen Kingsnorth

she wants pink

and cries when he has none

balloon seller 

~Joseph P. Wechselberger


Fire-ants are the worst 

always first to be cursed: 


they jitter and jive, 

champing and chopping they drive 

everyone mad as they arrive, 


fire-ants are the worst, 

I honestly wish they’d burst 

in borax they should be immersed… 


fire-ants are the worst 

always first to be cursed…


hold on tight to your children guns

~Kerry J Heckman

other sweeps same sky

~Mircea Moldovan


from across the street




and scratching

of metal:

house construction

~Rupa Anand

To-Do List:

1. put the toothpaste back in the tube

2. put the genie back in the bottle

3. unring the bell

4. unscramble the egg

5. close the barn door before the horses leave

6. take back all the things I said in anger

~petro c.k.


Don't let my last breath

         slip away from my lungs

Don't let the crimson love

        fade away from my heart,

don't let my mindless mind

        disappear from my soul.

~Ruchi Acharya

autumn breeze

whispering at half-voice

the gold of maples

~Françoise Maurice

I hear voices echoing silence

Twisting words

Into what I want to hear


~Anthony Ward


             the computer informs





~Keith Evetts

Afternoon of November 3, 2022

grey mortality

where twilight gathers

inside a peacock

~John Hawkhead

blue grass




~Kerry J Heckman

when grass

ripples up the hillside

where do emperors sit?


~Owen Bullock

A few thoughts

from the hillside

and then I fell

in a hole.

~F. Kate Langan

around the fire once upon a time we are

~Keith Evetts

a sign of the times fruit flies

~Lithica Ann

h o p e   a n d   c h a n g e  : :  c u l t u r e d   y o g u r t

~Jerome Berglund

the pulse

of the neon sign

in sync with mine

~Joseph P. Wechselberger

maggots all in good faith

~Lithica Ann

transcendent prose

the skitter

of bangers and beetles

~Kelly Moyer

old writing notebook

silverfish devouring

my words

~Kerry J Heckman

tail feathers

plucking the apple

from the seed

~Kelly Moyer

                    People, like apples,

                    ripen on family trees

                    into savored fruit.

                    Those not harvested in time

                    duly serve as applesauce.

~Frank De Canio

It takes a lifetime

to recover from childhood.

~F. Kate Langan

Itchy thoughts

amble through

the forest of grey matter,

coming, going,

coming, going,

faster, deeper;

I hope they're not important.

~F. Kate Langan

did you love the ground when your face was in it

~Emma M Foster

places I’ve lived seabottom

~Lithica Ann