Unbroken Journal pattern

Unbroken is a quarterly online journal that seeks to showcase prose poems, poetic prose and haibun, both from established and emerging voices. We desire to give the block, the paragraph, the unlineated prose, a new place to play.

The paragraph is an extremely difficult form. Just as the wind brushes the underbelly of the idea, a new indent appears. All this hubbub about access and the idea, the idea and cohesion, the idea and liquid space. Polymorphs, snowglobes, a barrage of supporting examples, whirligigs that flutter about before falling into the netting of the idea. Seven ideas total, or one? Suddenly before a recheck for sentence completion it’s rounding up, prosaic summations, concluding with modular force. Sonnet-shaped yet unmusical, the paragraph is fast enough.”

~ Tom Snarsky, Unbroken Contributor

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From our current issue . . .

  • fireworks, image for "It’s the Fourth of July" by Ken Craft

    It’s the Fourth of July by Ken Craft

    and he’s listening to Oh Say Can You See in a sea of runners and an awakening 8 a.m. heat. The blue smell of Ben-Gay on the mentholated old guys & Axe on the sun-venerating young guys & armpit on the just-rolled-out-of-bed lazy guys & no one’s run a New Balance step yet. The ellipsis […]

  • American flag, image for 45 by Cindy Hochman

    45 (Episode 1) by Cindy Hochman

    In the room the women come and go / talking of Michelangelo —T.S. Eliot, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” The jokers are wild! The king has misplaced democracy somewhere, maybe next to his eyeglasses, also lost. The bum in the leather jacket seethes and huffs, and threatens to blow the House down, along […]

  • cobblestones, image for "The Middle of Classes" by Keith Nunes

    the middle of classes by Keith Nunes

    he’s running wildly among the weeding grasses of the frontal lobe, one minute perched on the Jericho wall then tumbling in a roll to the pins of bowling ball alleys lining the middle of classes, this heavily forested man with his singular language is dragging lone-wolf sorrows in a birthing sack, he howls over his […]

  • Image for "Didn’t Read It" by Tom Moore

    Didn’t Read It by Tom Moore

    I read somewhere that you should piss on jellyfish stings. Maybe I didn’t read it, maybe someone told me about it with a pint in hand and a certain look in their eye. Either way, I knew what was happening when in the movie Nicole Kidman pisses on a teenage Zak Efron to save him […]

  • image for "Munch IV" by Kyle Hemmings

    Munch IV by Kyle Hemmings

    The enemy has devised a new way to rout us: They’re setting our clocks back by means of invisible hands and remote frequencies. This means we can never be 100% sure who we were before or then. Like the enemy we try committing inflicting domestic atrocities—hacking each other’s sex lives but only coming away dry […]

  • Cars driving, image for "Brake Lights" by Mike Ferguson

    Brake Lights by Mike Ferguson

      Driving into town today I saw three cars that were each missing a working brake light—a bulb burnt out that needed replacement—and though I didn’t have the opportunity or inclination to tell any of them about the loss which I could see but they could not, I did become concerned how there might be […]

  • lighting a smoke, image for Smoking on the Back Steps of Bobst Library, NYU by Melissa Goode

    Smoking on the Back Steps of Bobst Library, NYU by Melissa Goode

    It is eight PM, half way through our shift. The air is warm. Your knee is two inches from mine. I smell the cleanness of your T-shirt, your skin heating the white cotton. You flick ash from a cigarette with a neat flip of your wrist and offer me your Coke. I sip from the […]

  • image for "phone, keys, cigarettes, wallet" by Reed Karsh

    [phone, keys, cigarettes, wallet] by Reed Karsh

    healthier, happier, more secure, no longer frightened of the mornings, finding passion in supply chain management, daily bread, a thumbs up, avoid stepping on shattered Old English, gym membership for one dollar down, on sale, heart not beating too fast, waking up early to walk the dog, silent and motionless through the wake, a breakfast […]

  • Train by platform, image for "Commuter, 1993" by Kyle Potvin

    Commuter, 1993 by Kyle Potvin

    I sip coffee with the desire of morning. The morning news is fresh and black on my fingers. The pressed edge of the suit coat belongs to the stranger beside me. Pressed against me like a shield, he bobs his head on my shoulder. Shouldering this weight, I shift my legs beneath my skirt, moving […]

  • image for "The Smell of Yesterday" by Craig Dowd

    The Smell of Yesterday by Craig Dowd

    It was close to midnight when he climbed from his grave at Fifty-Ninth Street, another policy sold. The mourners were gone, only a stray cat crying outside the corner bakery that couldn’t sleep; resurrections here are old hat. Fourth Avenue was pointing to the Narrows, cold and deep. In his absence spring had graduated to […]

  • starry sky, image for "Starlight In You" by Daniel Lind

    Starlight in You by Daniel Lind

    We relax on my balcony as the night sky sings. Scars are inscribed on your parchment arms, caned by your father. I don’t want you to go home, so I offer shelter. You shake your head. That will only make your burden heavier. Darkness consumes him each night, and you have to be there to […]

  • image for "Truth Is" by Karen Neuberg

    Truth is by Karen Neuberg

    I lied about what I wanted. Instead I wrote a thank you note for what I got. When I tricked myself once too often, I tripped myself. And on up the stairs. To see the stars. There he kissed me. That was not a lie. Or not a lie I knew as a lie. This […]

  • A brick wall, image for "Building Walls" by Glen Sorestad

    Building Walls by Glen Sorestad

    with apologies to Frost and Sandburg I live on the northern side of a border that could become a wall—the longest undefended boundary in the world between two countries. Saner heads will prevail, I keep telling myself, because one of America’s notable poets mused, Something there is / that doesn’t love a wall. Indeed, he […]

  • a dark, rundown room, imagery for "Drowning Symphonies" by Ashley Mares

    Drowning Symphonies by Ashley Mares

    This is the home we built: the one we placed on the wings of butterflies so tenderly it collapsed into their veins—the red, bloodied hope and blue from their eyes: my dreams the doorway we’d walk through. In this place, there are ravens in the walls: shadows hang from the chandelier. In this place we […]

  • Image of a woman for "between the hours of one and six", by Heidi Stuber

    Between the hours of one and six by Heidi Stuber

    Do dishes. Push in chairs. Tidy dining room into acceptable messy genius range. Put towels in wash. Sweep up pet hair. Add pet roller to shopping list. Straighten shoes. Tuck away medical bills and IEP documents. Hide other egregious markers of motherhood. Check couch. If peed on by dog, clean with wet vac. If not, […]

  • dark room, image for "The Outlet" by Bob Conklin

    The Outlet by Bob Conklin

    There is only one outlet in the room, down by the baseboards. Millicent sits in a corner, smoking a cigarette, tapping the ash from time to time in a Styrofoam cup half-filled with lukewarm coffee from the night before. She looks through a back issue of Glamour, studying the cosmetic ads. Luke watches television, a […]

  • image for A candle lit in the hollow of a wall by Peter Grandbois

    A candle lit in the hollow of a wall by Peter Grandbois

    The middle ages saw madness as blessed, a condition of increased spiritual insight. To see the unseen was divine. Reason alone could not approach mystery; therefore, the privileging of un-reason. “Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe.” (St. Augustine, Sermones, 4:1:1) Under […]

  • Old VW van, image for In Anticipation of a Lionheart Sigh Under a Dilettante Moon by Pat Foran

    In Anticipation of a Lionheart Sigh Under a Dilettante Moon by Pat Foran

    On our car insurance agent’s advice, I drove a different way home. I also adopted a new laugh, something akin to the embroidered cackle of Phyllis Diller. Instead of turning right on Lifehack Lane, I took the bluer than blue Volkswagen Beach Bomb down Billy Goats Gruff Tollway. I saw a Datsun taking liberties and […]

  • light through sheers over blinds, image for "In the Light, I See…" by Santino Prinzi

    In the Light, I See… by Santino Prinzi

    …You. You’re in the strip of light that bleaches my carpet a lighter shade of magnolia. My feeble curtains can’t block you out. If I lay on the floor, you’re in my reach—that is, if I wanted to touch you. And I don’t, even though I know you’ll feel warm—warmer than I remember—and that’s why […]

  • End of in a tunnel, image for "Sirens" by C.B. Auder

    Sirens by C.B. Auder

    When a silken vision slinks on a mission down the sidewalk of a car-choked street—when her waves swish and bob in the unbearable heat—all you know is one thing: you will follow. Above the hot-dog grime and the blitz of van blats and the millions of pencil-lives grinding in trickle-up sharpeners, you feel this: tomorrow […]

  • Mushroom, image for "Trip" by Vivian Wagner

    Trip by Vivian Wagner

    The mushrooms spoke to me. I’m sure of that. They told me they grew from spores left here by aliens. They told me that through them I could connect to other worlds, to other forms of consciousness. They told me they were aliens themselves, rooted in earth’s soil, that they were sentient and could talk to […]

  • image for "Po-dunk" by Laura Page

    Po-dunk by Laura Page

    I told him I couldn’t live there. It seemed so grey, a too-long strip of highway lined with used car dealerships, pay-day loans offices, the Lombard pawn crests in neon, on backlit starboard sign panels. Po-dunk as my girlfriend used to say of the cheap jars of alfredo I used to buy at the Red […]

  • woman tossing hair back, image for "For Girls Who Don’t Know How to Say Goodbye" by Sierra Page

    for girls who don’t know how to say goodbye by Sierra Page

    smile etched in a story. mouth wide open. head thrown back in laughter as you recall it. the last memory of her. getting so high she fell asleep in the car. body folded like a paper plane. hair wild & tangled. smelling like the sea. that dizzy bliss you had in the morning. you carried […]