Rumor of Love.

By Terry Tierney.

“Those first moments of our breathless romance / swept into the slip stream of a sixteen-wheeler / blowing out these walls so we could dance.

Two Hearts by Amy Beager.

Tonight we hide behind pseudonyms

trying to guess our subtext like literature freshmen:

should I prune my hair, will it grow more shoots?


That Christmas we found a bird’s nest in the tree,

an omen for our lives in this former pasture,


how I wrote the philosophy essay for our son,

his only C, the handful of nails I left on the deck,


my lost keys, the rusty bucket of rainwater

bursting with mosquito larvae, the hint of malice

in my runny nose, how you always carry tissue


even when I’m swinging upside down,

never forget the secret cadence of my name.


Those first moments of our breathless romance

swept into the slip stream of a sixteen-wheeler

blowing out these walls so we could dance.


Did I ever tell you I lost my keys on purpose,

that our age does not exist, that our discarded gestures

live on like a rumor no one else will ever share?

The Blood Pudding – February 19, 2024

Terry Tierney is the author of The Poet’s Garage (Unsolicited Press, 2020) and the novels Lucky Ride (Unsolicited Press, 2021) and The Bridge on Beer River (Unsolicited Press, 2023). His poems and stories recently appeared in The Bellevue Literary Review, Remington Review, Reed Magazine, Ghost Parachute, Flash Fiction Magazine, Rust + Moth, Typishly, Valparaiso Poetry Review, The Lake, and other publications. His second poetry book, Why Trees Stay Outside, will be published by Unsolicited press in October 2024. He lives in the SF Bay Area with his family, including two fluffy cats and an enthusiastic Golden Retriever. Website:

Artwork: Combining classical Grecian figures with fresh, abstract shapes, Amy Beager pays a clever homage to art history. Captivated by the “vitality” of paint, Beager uses a lively mixture of refined and fluid brushstrokes, blending acrylics and oils to create celestial paintings rooted in melodrama. Her romantic compositions, exploring themes of love and tragedy, convey intimacy and melancholy through an alluring color palette of delicate hues like moss green and flamingo pink. You can find more about her here.