Pushcart Prize Nominations for 2017

We’re proud, honored, and pleased to announce our nominations for this year’s Pushcart Prize. We hope you enjoy reading these wonderful works and join us in congratulating the nominees. We wish them good luck as the nominations proceed. And of course, we thank all our contributors who have made this year so rewarding and enriching, and our readers for sharing the fine art and talent we’re fortunate to post. 

Astronautics (or, an email I sent to neil degrasse tyson while sitting in whole foods ), by Lily Tice (Issue 7)

Lily Tice

Lily Tice

On the Funeral of a Rice Farmer – Ryan Thorpe (Issue 6)

Ryan Thorpe

Ryan Thorpe

Second Daughter Song – Jody Burke-Kaiser (Issue 5)


Jody Burke-Kaiser

Self-Portrait – Kirsten Hemmy (Issue 6)

Kirsten Hemmy 2

Kirsten Hemmy

White Sheets – Shelby Curran (Issue 7)

Shelby Curran

Shelby Curran

Waking – Leigh Allen (Issue 5)


Leigh Allen


Call for Submissions for Issue 8

Panoply is open for business again, with our Call for Submissions effective through 11:59 pm US Central time on November 19.

We refer you to our Submittable page, Panoply/Submittable. We have updated our guidelines.

  • We accept prose submissions of 1 piece of no more than 500 words, poetry of up to 3 pieces.
  • Submit multiple pieces as one single MS WORD document, beginning each piece at the top of each page. Unpublished work only.
  • We read blind! Do not include your name or any other identifiers on any piece or submission. Instead, we encourage you to write a third-person biography of no more than 60 words in the “Notes” section provided by Submittable.
  • We are trying to read submissions in batches and respond more quickly. However, we reserve the right to respond within 2 weeks after the close of the Submission window.
  • We accept no more than one piece per submitter per issue.
  • If you have unusual horizontal spacing and your piece is accepted, we will do our best to recreate the original layout, but advise that our software can be a constraint.
  • Issue 8 is un-themed. We plan to publish Issue 8 right around the turn of the year.
  • We do not accept hard copy, nor do we pay contributors.

Thanks for visiting Panoply!

This Weeks’ Editors’ Choice, “Astronautics, (or, an email I sent to neil degrasse tyson while sitting in whole foods)” – by Lily Tice

A little philosophy, a little wisdom, a little play, just enough to stretch the mind, quite suited to the subject. Enjoy!


we learn the solar system like it’s on a plane:
flat, horizontal, beyond but not below,
Andromeda due west, alpha centauri east,
Helios running bowling ball sunshine down the alley to Pluto and Quaoar, Sedna and Haumea,
all knocked out of the game out of technicality, but

if the game gets too loud, who is there
to bang a broom on the ceiling,
screaming to keep it down?
what celestial body calls the cops of the heavens,
screams about noise pollution, about
Voyager, an unwanted Witness canvassing at his door?

star sailor, careen your submersible
and descend to the underneath—
the cosmos below us.
tilt your compasses to the unseen below.

we are almost all the way to heaven.

Lily Tice is an Augusta, GA native living in Chattanooga, TN, where she is a Creative Writing major at Covenant College. She serves as staff poet for The Narrator literary magazine and is publishing her first poetry collection, Things We Lost With Our Milk Teeth, in August. Se has been writing formally for four years.

For previous Editors’ Choice winners, please visit:
Karuizawa Tales – Robert Hoffman
Overhead – Soramimi Hanarejima
The Bedouin Woman’s Smile – Nektaria Petrou
Looking Down on Newgale Beach – Robert Nisbet
White Sheets – Shelby Curran
Zen Garden at the Museum of Fine Arts – Mary Buchinger

Issue 7 – Summer, 2017 (Double Issue!)


Issue 7 sets a precedent for Panoply. Actually, a few. The bounty of works here in this double issue is due of course, to a bounty of deserving work by our contributors. We cast a wider net during our calls for submissions, receiving about 3 times our historical norm! You’ll notice a whole section for prose, and as you scroll, some great works by young writers. In fact, we’re proud once again to debut some wonderful new voices (regardless of their age).

Since there’s so much, here are some browsing tips (in order of appearance):

  • Humor – Downgrade, This Isn’t the Story I Intended to Write, The Waffle House Index, Zeng Shangyou
  • Love/Romance – My Lover and I
  • Pastoral/Nature – Looking Down on Newgale Beach, Path, Perfect Rain, Zen Garden at the Museum of Fine Arts
  • Social/Political – Karuizawa Tales, Like a King
  • Edgy – Cage Match, Finals, Stalker in Orange, Tawny Kitten
  • Characters – Dear Harold, Everyday Blessings, Firebrand, A Girl Called Rose, Mrs. Neustead, Prize Fighter, White Sheets, You, Frank & Mia & Me, Heroes, Loving Spoonful, Padlock, Patriots, A Slice of Lemon on the Side
  • Loss/Death – Intuition, Lament, Moth-Hour, Nowhere, South Dakota, Poem for Honduras, Proper Etiquette for the First Year of Mourning, You

As always, we thank our contributors for uplifting us! And we thank our readers for giving us purpose. Feel free to tell your friends and give us feedback! Look for Issue 8 around year-end.

Best wishes,
Andrea, Jeff, and Ryn, Co-Editors


The actor who only gets to play a hitmanJonathan Jones
AfterPatricia Anderson
AfterbloomLawdenmarc Decamora
and the crows fallAM Roselli
Astronautics (or, an email I sent to neil degrasse tyson while sitting in whole foods)Lily Tice
The Berryman TrickTim Kahl
camera obscuraClaudia Radmore
CezannePatricia Nelson
Cheri’s Montana Lounge, Chester, MontanaMichelle Hartman
CornflowerMadison White
(the crisp settle of the door)Dennis Reavis
Elkhorn AvenueCameron Morse
Escape from EllenvilleMike Jurkovic
Everyday BlessingsSally Zakariya
FirebrandThomas McDade
Folclore Tale Leonardo Boix
FragileMary McKeel
A Girl Called RoseBella Smith
The GuitaristSteven Reese
A Haiku YearKendra Leonard
Harvest MoonJared Pearce
Home RemediesJohn Repp
How Long is this Sentence?Gary Twynam
Interlude at a Closed Chevron, 11:42 pmAlicja Zapalska
IntuitionLaura Foley
An InvitationPaul Lubenkov
Karuizawa TalesRobert Hoffman
Kathleen Remembers the Flood John Grey
LamentAnne Whitehouse
Late Night Talk Show FantasyJennifer Dotson
Like a KingIon Corcos
Looking Down on Newgale BeachRobert Nisbet
The Man Cooks Greens While Thinking of WordsTobi Alfier
Moth-HourClaire Scott
Mrs. NeusteadJim Zola
Nowhere, South DakotaAndrew Kruse-Ross
NumbersIsabella Colalillo Katz
The Oboe Will Shine TomorrowDevon Balwit
The Old In-Out In-OutYu-Han Chao
Once Upon a TimeBaisali Chatterjee Dutt
PassengerCharles Kell
PathSteve Gerson
Perfect RainTerry Brix
Poem for HondurasHeather Truett
A Priest and an Indian Walk Into a BarJessica Mehta
Prize FighterMartin Hopson
Proper Etiquette for the First Year of MourningJacqueline Jules
Rich Farm Land Drew Settlers to HessRyan Clark
Running at 6:45 on a mid-November morningBrett Cortelletti
Sunflower GhostsRobin Gow
Swift ActionG. Louis Heath
TestamentDeborah L. Davitt
Touch This ElephantRobert Beveridge
TransfusionVirginia Boudreau
Van Gogh Paints a Self-PortraitAnn Howells
The Waffle House Index, or: (if the Waffle House is closed the populace is shrinking) – John McCracken
Walking Stick, A PrayerKeith Moul
WaveAlan Gann
What I’ve LostCarl Boon
Where My Muse Comes FromDaryl Sznyter
While You Were Trying To Be Cool I Was Snorting Flintstone ChewablesKristian Kuhn
White SheetsShelby Curran
Winter PlungeEileen Malone
YouAnthony Carl
Zeit HeistNick Romeo
Zen Garden at the Museum of Fine ArtsMary Buchinger


The Bedouin Woman’s SmileNektaria Petrou
Cage Match Jodi Sh. Doff
The DapRosanne Ehrlich
Dear HaroldChristine Seifert
DowngradeLois Morrison
FinalsMarie Anderson
For SummerAnusha Srinivasan
Frank & Mia & MeCharles Leipart
HeroesBlake Benson
Letters from My GrandsonsSherri Wright
Loving SpoonfulAlexander Jones
The Moonshine RubyTravis Kennedy
My Lover and IMaggie Boals
One Smoothie is a TragedyMatt Dube
OverheadSoramimi Hanarejima
PadlockBeth Gordon
PatriotsStephen O’Donnell
A Slice of Lemon on the SideKristen Olsen
SpillageG. Emil Reutter
Stalker in OrangeMaddie Woda
Tawny KittenTina Bubonovich
This Isn’t the Story I Intended to WriteGuy Biederman
TollboothKelsey Maki
Wild Cat Menagerie and Great Intercourse CircusCatherine Moore
Winter Plunge Eileen Malone
Zeng ShangyouJack Feerick

Care to donate? Please do!

As we conclude our Call for Submissions for Issue 7, anticipated for publication on or about August 17, we’d like to ask you to consider donating to Panoply. It’s easy, just us the PayPal link in the right-hand margin. This is an all-volunteer activity, with Andrea, Jeff, and Ryn contributing all the time, effort, and finances to the cause. We pay third-party expenses for bandwidth for the site as well as our submissions service.

We pledge to never charge a reading fees for regular submissions. (If we ever get around to a chapbook or other type of contest, we may opt for fees for that specific activity.) If you enjoy Panoply, please consider supporting the editorial/publication team, as well as our wonderful contributors.

Thanks for thinking of Panoply. Look for Issue 7 on our about August 17.

Review of Jami Macarty’s Chapbook, “Landscape of The Wait”

Please enjoy the following review of Jami Macarty’s new chapbook, “Landscape of The Wait.” Co-editor Andrea Walker takes us through Macarty’s poetic impressions of a life-changing series of events. We hope you will take a closer look at Jami’s work!

(We’re thrilled to provide this review service to our audience and plan to review chapbooks three times a year, about midway between issues of Panoply.)

Landscape Cover Shot

Landscape of The Wait by Jami Macarty
Published by Finishing Line Press
ISBN 978-1-63534-235-2
32 pages

Submitted by Andrea Walker
June, 2017

In her succinct collection of poetry, Landscape of The Wait, poet Jami Macarty’s speaker’s nephew William lies critically injured, in a coma after a horrific automobile accident on the interstate. His family gathers near day after day waiting and hoping for his recovery. As months drag by and his condition does not improve, family members try to understand what’s happening to him as well as to themselves. In thirty-two pages of twenty-two poems, Macarty effectively takes the reader through the stages of grief and acceptance of an incomprehensible situation.

As the inhabitants of the poetry find themselves confused and in shock the overriding conflict exists in the helplessness of the speaker in the poems. It is fitting that what seems inaccessible in the poems at first comes strangely alive with the second and third reading. The opening poem “Fracture” describes the unfathomable reality of the occurrence. In this landscape of waiting with “no change,” the subconscious hovers between life and death perhaps heaven and earth, but the words are clear “truth can go different ways,” “three suns/ no change/ no change/ no change,” “is he leaning into healing or receding.”  The structure of “Fracture” literally illustrates the concept of fractured with white space on the page, stanzas in columns, some readable across or down, fragments of thoughts and phrases, repetition that questions or emphasizes. “Fracture” paints the bleak landscape and sets the tone for the fragmented lives represented in the poetry.

In her attempt to make sense of the tragedy, the poet puts herself and the reader into the mind of the young man, imagining with keen perception what could be going on, for example, in the third poem “At the Time of the Accident”:

airborne, he thought. hang-
ing on time’s lost line
suffer suspension,
he thought. near-sighted
horizon. no or-
dinary flying  
falling, he thought. lain
in median grass.
reconsider mind-
lessness, he thought.”

She courageously endeavors to inhabit his mind and understand what humans can never know: the mind of another, especially of one who has suffered trauma.

Another aspect of the subconscious is the dream, which the poet uses effectively throughout the collection. Dreams are innately metaphorical, and the “leaky ship” of “First Dream Since” adeptly explains “the space too small … to contain their what’s happened,” speaking to both the overwhelming situation and deference given to William’s mother. Later, Macarty extends the metaphor of life as ship, in this case despite the muddy circumstances of being stranded “Aground,” with the hope of waking up, and “the sea will be a magic again.”

Coma, limbo, dream – all states of in-between – where the participants linger with unacceptable loss of control. Humans want to fix things. Opposing the inability to correct the situation lies the reality in which life goes on. A ventilator becomes the mother doing for the child what the mother cannot. The imagery of baking bread offers a fleeting moment of comfort, and “the leaves fall … whether we see them or not.” Always the contradiction of daily living and surreal exists. The situation demands balance alluding again to the landscape in-between. The fluctuation between concrete and abstract show the inhabitants of Macarty’s poems caught between worlds. Are variables concrete possibilities or abstract? The outcome of the equation must balance (or else it’s not an equation).

In “New Vocabulary” characters are entering an alien land and learning a foreign language – the Latin of medicine and diagnoses. However, William is not learning that language, nor is he part of what’s happening to him despite the writer’s repeated efforts to get inside his consciousness.

Dreams continue to mark phases of mourning versus acceptance. “Second Dream Since” represents denial or hope, picturing things the way they were before. Three months into the narrative, the mother withdraws from others perhaps because she’s experiencing his withdrawal from her. Imagery of map and lost key become metaphor for finding one’s way back, unlocking closed doors. A juxtaposition of abstract enchantment and fresh peaches hammers home the conflict between hope and despair.

“Winter Field” presents another bleak landscape with funereal subtleties, a hint at closure. The poetry attempts to restore order to chaos, to graphically and concretely explicate the accident in detail, the loose lug nuts and, it could have gone badly even with the seat belt, its causes and effects, along with the survivor’s effort to fix things. From the last poem in the collection, the “If Only What If” questions will always be with us:

“if only you hit snooze
what if mid-leaving you slow to feed your fish
if only one thousandth of a second
what if one billionth of a second
if only the car keys slipped between seats
what if the car’s battery needed a jump start”

Their relevancy is felt every day.

In her heartfelt work, Macarty offers a satisfactory resolution where there is no resolution. Her instinctual writing illustrates the coping mechanism of human spirit. By sharing her suffering with the reader, she has written a tribute to her nephew and offered empathy for the human condition.

Jami B:W HeadshotJami Macarty is the author of two chapbooks: LANDSCAPE OF THE WAIT (Finishing Line Press, 2017) and MIND OF SPRING, winner of the 2017 Vallum Chapbook Award (forthcoming fall 2017). She teaches contemporary poetry and creative writing at Simon Fraser University, edits the online poetry journal The Maynard, and writes Peerings & Hearings–Occasional Musings on Arts in the City of Glass, a blog series for Anomaly (FKA Drunken Boat). She is a recipient of financial support from Banff Centre and BC Arts Council, a Pushcart Prize nominee, a finalist for the 2017 Robert Kroetsch Award, and the winner of the 2016 Real Good Poem Prize. Her poems appear in 2016-17 issues of Blood Orange Review, CV2, EVENT, The Fiddlehead, Grain, Minola Review, Prism international, Rabbit Catastrophe Review, and Vallum: Contemporary Poetry. For more info: http://www.jamimacarty.com.

Editors’ Choices, Issue 6 (“Daylight” Theme)

Please enjoy our contributors reading their pieces, which were named Editors’ Choices for Issue 6.

“Blackbird: Watcher in the Desert,” by Delores Merrill


Delores MerrillDelores Busbee Merrill, Niceville Florida. With an MFA in Theatre and MA in Creative Writing she taught at a college in south Alabama then retired from working in theatre at a college in northwest Florida. She has had plays produced locally and regionally, poetry, short fiction and nonfiction published in literary magazines and various chapbooks, and has won photography ribbons in regional competitions.



“On the Funeral of a Rice Farmer,” by Ryan Thorpe

Ryan ThorpeDr. Ryan Thorpe teaches creative writing and literature at the University of Michigan-Shanghai Jiao Tong University Joint Institute. He is the fiction and poetry editor of The Shanghai Literary Review and manages a public workshop for anyone interested in creative writing. He writes columns for The Global Times, has published in numerous literary journals, and is currently working on a creative writing textbook. More information on his work can be found at www.rythorpe.com


“Photo of Mom on the Beach, 1950,” by Kathleen Strafford

Kathleen StraffordKathleen Strafford is a student at Trinity University in Leeds studying for her MA in creative writing.  She hopes her first collection of poetry will be published this coming year after graduation, called Her Own Language.  She has been published in magazines & online:  Interpreter’s House; Butcher’s Dog; Algebra of Owls; Fat Damsel; Cinnamon Press Reaching Out’anthology; Trinity’s Journeys; Trinity’s 50th Anniversary Anthology in 2017.


“Silly Drunk Mentioning,” by Kristin Fullerton

Kristin FullertonKristin Fullerton currently resides in upstate New York with bucolic views of the Helderberg Escarpment from her very own backyard. She is a proud alumna of both Elmira College and University at Albany. Her poems have recently appeared in The Maine Review and Up the River Volume 4 and online at Zetetic.org.


“Once Planed Straight,” by Steve Gerson

01/19/16 ©JCCCSteve Gerson is an emeritus professor who has spent his entire life focusing on academic publications. Now in retirement, he has the opportunity to think . . . and to write creatively rather than academically, to release his inner poet.