SEC-; by Stephanie Creaghan

Stephanie E. Creaghan is a multi-disciplinary artist, writer and curator based in Montreal. Her work often explores the barriers presented when using language as a medium for expression. To learn more about Stephanie and her work visit http://www.stephaniecreaghan.com/

"The word sec means dry in French; it is also my initials, S.E.C. The term dry in English can refer to the experience of navigating life in the absence of substance use/abuse, but with the same addictive behavior, as in, a dry drunk. Two years ago I quit drinking; this is a video about what it's like to live when a layer of perceived protection is removed." 

Unpublished work by Dan Darrah

Dan Darrah's first collection published by Permanent Sleep entitled 'What else we could be doing' is sold out, to celebrate we decided to share his latest offering, a previously unpublished poem entitled Dominion. 


back in the fall i realized
that the only thing i had at my disposal
was hanging up the phone and not picking back up. 
my words couldn’t shake you
because you never believed in them. 
all i could say to you was
that i wouldn’t pick up anymore, and now
i’ve got a whole life to prove
that i meant it, that i won’t pick up
and offer up the love that people trap in jars
and get friends to hide from them, love
that comes out in wal-mart parking lots with
clear views of stars -
full, pure, stripped of complications.

i’ve been spending mornings in my kitchen
fighting with my hands.
i’ve been spending mornings in my kitchen
running through life with a brush.
i’ve been spending mornings in my kitchen
trying to reconcile in my head
all the times i wanted to kill you but
never, ever wanted you to die.
i’ve been spending mornings in my kitchen
loosening your dominion,
pulling out your planted flags from
the cupboards and counters -
the things that you made yours
with confessionals and apologies, then more confessionals, 
the things that you made yours, and remade yours, 
whenever you called.

but these days those flags are getting smaller;
they used to be full-size like at schools, now
they’re sandwich toppers for picnics, and soon
they’ll be stamps, and one day,
they’ll just be splayed paint on paper, 
colours that fade -
no longer love, just
leftover coffee mugs and hairclips
and hair on the couch, 
things that disappear on their own.

i’ve been spending mornings in the summer balm,
stuck in wide fields like they were amber. 

Unpublished work by Joseph Sulier

The following is a previously unpublished work by Joseph Sulier written in June of 2013. To keep up with Joseph and his more current work follow him @josephsulier

We should not have been where we were
as I had earlier protested
yet there we were
in a place we should not have been

As I predicted
the problems began post-haste
they called you "faggot"
and I heard them do it
but there were just too many
and none on our side
we'd never make it out in tact

"We'll catch em outside"
I said
"when they're away from the herd"
and you agreed
and so
outside we waited
on the trunk of your car
drinking beers

And there they came
the original two
with a new third in tow
no worry
were not worried

I approached from behind
with you following
full unopened beer can in my hand
I caught their attention
then caught the biggest
in the face
with the beer can
he merely teetered
so I followed with fists
and that took him down
while the other two looked on

And then it went awry

We had no way of knowing
that the cops had just been called
which evacuated the party
and we looked back
to see the horde approaching

I only knew to run
there were just too many
and none on our side

And so I ran
forgetting you behind
and not as quick
I ran til I was clear
and turned
to see you surrounded
remembered the switchblade I carried
reluctantly brandished
back into the maelstrom

The man I'd hit was close behind
but startled by knife
and backed off
worked my way towards you slowly
nervous and armed

You were among a mob
and they attacked you from behind
when pushed to the ground
you were kicked in the face
breaking into two
the cartilage in your nose
spilling veins like a faucet
flowing floods onto pavement

I dispersed the circle
then found myself in the middle
with you
drunk and disoriented
the car felt miles away

I wielded the knife in circles
as they took their shots at you
brought you back to your feet
and made the miles closer
til the car was reality
but still little help

You recovered enough
to unlock the trunk
for tire iron
but were brought down again
as I pleaded for your life
and fended off again

We were suddenly without hope
and all I knew to do
was to wield
as you lay helpless and bloody on the pavement
I felt a beer can hit my throat
and struggled to breathe
while the knife was kicked away
our luck had run it's course

But I recovered the knife
eyes welling up
from lack of breath
and heard a voice demand
"What's going on here?!"
it was a neighbor
aroused by the din
and so I continued to fend off
and pled with the neighbor
"Drop the knife!"
he said
but I could not abide

The mob was confused
and began to disperse
chaos ensued
a car window was shattered with a fist
but it was not your car
a car of the mobs

Their fear of police
overwhelmed their fear of knife
and we found ourselves alone
as the reds and blues approached
you were not communicating
awash with blood
made thin by booze
I was cited for illegal arms
but not arrested
the police successfully sweet-talked
and leaving

I loaded you into the car
and drove us to more familiar surroundings
in your car
which you never allowed to another
to handle as I did

I was so sorry to you
an endless apology
which you would not allow
we were alive
and now
we are recalling
and alive