Morning in Tal Afar, 2005

Silent dew on everything
the men under gear
spread out like shells after a storm.

They sleep under a heavy
mat of exhaustion
like grounded kelp beds, wasted under early sun.

I sit re-typing old poems,
sifting through sea-wrack,
and I my teeth want to know

why sleeping men look dead?






TJ Reynolds writes poetry and fiction in Long Beach, CA for the vain and hopeful purpose of changing the world. He dislikes war, squabbling or even extensive horse-play. One day, TJ assumes, this will seem prudent and even kind to his three small children.

Eggshells and Tulips


tired of catching flies
with my sugar and honey
I’d rather have one butterfly
than all your lies
I tiptoe through eggshell tulips
only to have you trip me with your tongue
I’ll never do it right
so why even try
I am me but not who you want me to be
you are you and I love you
warts, worms, turds and all
but I am tired now of this cowboy and Indian game
Bang! in my heart shot
the ball is in your court
and you don’t play fair
I play tennis with a basketball and racquet
while you smack a badminton birdie with a baseball bat
so I lay down my gun and holster filled with love
the white flag I fly
is torn to shreds

Be careful the next time you walk on eggshells
for my heart is under there

teresa 2x2 (2)

Author, Teresa Bissegger

Teresa Bissegger has published poetry in Illuminations, the creative arts publication of Southeast Community College, Nebraska. She has served on the editorial board of Illuminations for four years. She is a Nebraska native, who owns and operates an antiques store, Antiques Paradise, in Beatrice, Nebraska. In addition to writing poetry, she also enjoys travel and photography.