Scott Thomas Outlar

Scott Thomas Outlar is originally from Atlanta, Georgia. He now lives and writes in Frederick, Maryland. He is the author of seven books. His work has been nominated multiple times for both the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. He guest-edited the Hope Anthology of Poetry from CultureCult Press as well as the 2019-2023 Western Voices editions of Setu Mag. He has been a weekly contributor at Dissident Voice for the past eight and a half years. Selections of his poetry have been translated into Afrikaans, Albanian, Azerbaijani, Bengali, Cherokee, Dutch, French, Hindi, Italian, Kurdish, Malayalam, Persian, Serbian, and Spanish. More about Outlar’s work can be found at

In the Age of Bloodletting

Everything in that period 
was designed to be explosive

Lord, leave a sweet verse
on the whisper of my breath

Powder keg cancer in the lungs
a sci-fi radiation warzone

What was done unto one was done unto all
not a lick of care in their chemical kisses

Born with a fever into a fiery vision
a streak of rebellion emblazoned on spine

Taught me how to judge a fair story
and leave juries hung when stones are involved

Small gods upon earth and many fathers in heaven
these are the trials you’ll tie to your tale

No one else kept the score so steady
or held wisdom safely in the echoes of silence

And Streets Lined with Gold

The homeless poet
stood outside a bar
in the cold
ranting to everyone
who walked past
He waved a stack of papers
that were handed out
to anyone who showed
even the slightest hint of interest
in receiving his occultic wisdom
He said the pamphlets were free
but those with half a heart
would give him a few bucks
or at least enough spare change
to buy a cup of coffee
He was a guru
in his own peculiar way
and his words
were laced with a message
of apocalyptic strangeness –
full of velvet angels
with dark chocolate wings
descending from heaven
to punish the normal
and bring chaos to the meek
He was all mixed up inside
but that was his karmic role to play
and it was perfectly beautiful –
whether he found a bed for the night
or wound up sleeping in the street
it was all going to turn out okay
because the heralded angels
were soon to arrive either way

Prelude to a Blood Moon Eclipse

An angel, a toadstool,
and bamboo

on the side of the street

spin those three
through a dream cycle
come spring
and see what swirls/
                                or soothes with salve

What you need in your life, sonny boy,
is a little bit of ambition

at least trimmed
around the edges
so your core can shine

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