a dactylic verse translation

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artist: Amal Augustine

My life, a lonely isle.
Each day I fall on two
knees, I do. I care for
nothing else but for you.
The sun may lose its warmth,
the moon may cease to shine,
swept up and molten by
this vibrant afterlife.
Ambrosial fragrances,
curious radiance
emanates. It commands
joy and obedience. …


what a show

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[The Mob:]

The Insurrection, stop the steal
The Insurrection, let’s close the deal
We have a mission
— to subvert the Dems (Dems da Dems da Dems da Dems)
We’re gonna show them, who’s the boss
We’re gonna make them, wish they lost
the election … fraud they can’t refute (this the Dems just can’t refute)

ㅤㅤLiberals (confess, confess)
ㅤㅤYou rigged the ballots
ㅤㅤSay yes (say yes)
ㅤㅤGet with the program
ㅤㅤWe invented second acts — 
ㅤㅤYou can’t win emotional arguments with facts …

The Insurrection, think we’re done? The Insurrection, ask QAnon We have a vision — the hicks…


a children’s rhyme translation

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Mezei Flóra (with permission of the artist)

a poem by Kata Tasi, translated from Hungarian by Joe Váradi, artwork reproduced with permission of the Igazgyöngy Foundation

The Magic Mirror

1. There’s a magic mirror in my room. I never realized it, until this afternoon, after my mom explained it to me. I cried, for I was careless with my gift, you see, the little bird I got for my birthday from grandma. (I wanted a kitty, anyway.) But I did grow to love that little bird. For days, my room was our shared little world. A pretty bird she was, melodious, but she hardly sang for me. So curious, but…

a manisticle (manifesto listicle)

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artist: Leon Wyczolkowski (1898)
  1. A signup form for a newsletter at the tail end of your published story or poem. It’s an eyesore, and, moreover, who needs another recurring email in their inbox?
  2. A story featuring our writers with links to their pieces, behind the paywall. We do run digests, about once every two months, to give a shout-out to first-time contributors and such. But never behind the paywall. Because let’s face it, that amounts to manipulative harvesting of claps for a trickle of extra income to the editor.
  3. A Patreon solicitation. (Not knocking other publications who do this. Let’s face it, it is

NCiR’ Dec 2020 — Jan 2021

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a Venn diagram illustration of our mission statement. your Editor-in-Chief was an engineer before he became a poet.

Esteemed Fellow Punsters and Rhymologists!

With our first full calendar year since the inception of NCiR’ behind us — looking back on the twenty months that we’ve been in operation and the over 700 poems we published — we are happy to report that this cozy corner of the literary universe is thriving.

Highlights since our last editorial check-in, two months ago:

a seasonal verse translation

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a verse translation of “Tájkép”, a poem by Sándor Weöres


Mist-buried landscape, long trodden by -
Cloud cover weeping, soot colored sky…

Sleep-stricken country, broken and veiled -
Birds of the sun gone, to southern trails

Grey peaks of mountains, in rueful gaze -
Snow-covered sabers pierce through the haze…

Draped in a mist asleep is the land -
Winter encroaches fall’s listless end…

Homes line the landscape, show not a care -
Spells of the fall adrift in the air...

Burnished the country, amber the trees -
Silently strangled in winter’s squeeze…

Brooks trickle softly, frozen the lakes …

a news-inspired sonnet

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source: Florida Department of Corrections

by Joe Váradi

A boy grew up on Motown’s crack-laced grid,
His nearest kin not able to provide,
Fell in with shady crowds — was just a kid,
Rose in the ranks, setbacks absorbed in stride.
'Came F.B.I. informant early on — 
The youngest snitch the law had ever turned,
But once the Feds had no use for their pawn,
By his handlers, he was ditched and spurned.

His life spent in the shade of barbed-wire fence,
Crossing a crooked chief his worst offense. …

tribute to a misunderstood creature

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source: EurekAlert!

by the Lamprey

I’m the fearsome
coastal water

legend has it
I’m the last meal
King Henry First
ever ate

ㅤㅤthough this myth has
ㅤㅤbeen disputed:

ㅤㅤholds that the king
ㅤㅤfell victim to
ㅤㅤcommon food-borne

let’s get back to
the main topic:
my proud race of
jawless fish

we are more than
just a tasty
pie crust filling
royal dish

take a close look
fellow humans —
we have common

if you go back
half a billion
annums to pre-

ㅤㅤlike mosquitoes
ㅤㅤwe are known as
ㅤㅤbloody micro-

ㅤㅤbut we only ㅤㅤattack…

Joe Váradi

Editor of No Crime in Rhymin' and Language Lab | the Woke Bloke ..."come for the sarcasm, stay for my soft side"

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