by Olivia Sutton

How soft and silent slush n’ sleet blanket,
How life breathes warmth to thaw all frozen hearts;
How fierce she scorches — redens her ambit,
How yielding are rustlings, how the wind smarts.
She pleaseth our dreams with wondrous white,
Her viridescent ladies heaven bound;
She blesses crashing waves and bright daylight,
Her fragile feuilles as fire scattered around.
Lately, m’lady has been betrayed by man.
Her salty tears flooding her cheeky shores,
As her hair’s a-flare, her dry skin crackan’,
And her children distract themselves with wars.
Act not, stand not, see nought, ignore, and soon,
Thou shall not dare deny destined doom.

Graduating class of 2023, Olivia Sutton is the Editor-in-Chief of the Alcalá Review. This piece was submitted for the Alcalá Review’s Fall 2020 Semester Staff-Produced Original Content.


by Olivia Hunt

A masked nurse prods a six-
inch swab up,
up my nasal cavity. I try to focus
on her elbow, it’s still—
then moves in measured,
tiny circles, tickling
loosening, I’m sure,
some brain matter. 
Then my mind goes
to the summer rental—
I lie back, watching
the endless scroll of clouds and seabirds,
my six-year-old brother
packs sand into my ankles. 
Are you turning me into a mermaid? 
He lets out a long sigh, No.
It’s a sarcophagus. 
As the sun sets, my throat cracks
like clay. My chest sinks
and lower
into the shore. My nurse wears
the mask of Anubis
now, she draws out her hook—
the last thing I tasted
was salt.

Graduating class of 2021, Olivia Hunt was the 2020-2021 Poetry Editor of the Alcalá Review. This piece was submitted for the Alcalá Review’s Fall 2020 Semester Staff-Produced Original Content.

Montezuma Road: Friday Evening

by J. Sean Rafferty

For Patrick Kavanagh

The cop cars go by in twos and threes –
There’s a rave in Danny Dyer’s flat tonight 
And there’s the half-emoji texts of delinquency,
the coarse, yank language, the drunken fights.
Half-past ten and there is not a parking spot
Upon a mile of suburb, no party thrown
That would turn out a sorority girl, not
A frat boy toking, blazing or stoned.

I have what every Irishman loves in spite
Of all the bitter talk of objectification.
Oh, god knows I have the right
To be the stereotype of a nation.
A road, a mile of suburb. I am King
Of shots and cheer and every blessed thing.

J. Sean Rafferty is a redhead, a godfather and an eejit. He is an MA English Lit student at Ulster University and was a finalist in the 2018 Ulster Poetry Slam. His work has previously been published in Gravitas and The Paperclip. When not losing games of pool he, sometimes, writes stuff.

Every day it rains before I wake.

by Mitchell Evenson

The sky slips from itself
and cradles clean a memory
of swell and flood—bathes 
the pavement, now 
grey enough 
to empathize with 

—the gutters echoing
the hush and hurry:
song of my past
that surges beyond
the current.

Now sunshined, blue-skied
days are babied into
old age, baptized
by nocturnal rains
(always before
I wake);

and every morning I trample
the dampened ground
to remind myself
what cannot be

Mitchell Evenson is a Theatre Major and English Minor at the University of San Diego. His writing focuses on memory, relationships, and identity. He will be graduating this Spring and hopes to pursue a career in the arts.

Cabaret Voltaire – Alana Hollenbaugh

by Alana Hollenbaugh

Literature is a new language with liquor on my lips his lectures are litanies to Plath, Lewis, and Longfellow.
Sitting beside the bar at the Cabaret Voltaire ignoring the dancers’ swirl

we debate the poetry of the dark downpour outside.​ He sees celebration: swirling puddles of snowdrop petals
illuminated by soft streetlights.​

I disagree, telling him
that it is morning-after rain—
trying to wash the dirt from the night still being lived.

It is muddied and lost: streaming frantically through the gutters.

Silence sits heavy in the separation between our thoughts
The band raps rhymes between us: thuds and beats to our meter.

We wander home through the streets, then
with entangled fingers. His alleys are paved with petrichor—
mine are drizzled in cheap beer.

This poem originally appeared in the Fall 2016 Issue.