Bold New Mindscape

There are some books that you will read that will shake you to your core and remind you what real writing and art is all about in Ari Whipple’s hybrid collection of poetry and art.
These are some of the most courageous page ever to go into print from Dumpster Fire Press and it’s an honor to present the work of such a noble talent who was willing to forsake the thought of rapid-fire judgement and scoffing brutalization to chronicle their trials and explorations.
There’s cruelty in these pages
There’s hope and magic along with a healthy love for David Lynch but who doesn’t have that and if you don’t you are a fool but what the hell…

cover by Dillinger

I first came across Ari Whipple’s work via submission for VOICES FROM THE FIRE, like the biggest nerd, I jumped all over it and even offered to place some of it in the upcoming anthology WORLD ON FIRE.

I was astounded by how someone who practically lived in the same area as I did in West Michigan had a perfect pulse on world in which we live.

Whipple (and I hope they forgive me for referring to them by their last name, it just seems a tad intimate to otherwise in a book intro) takes you on a personal journey of their own chamber of horrors and dare I say, Zen revelations into a hopeful enlightenment giving a voice where usually these voices are anything but voiceless but tend to be shut out, locked out and beaten down.

Exposed Thinking

How am I ever to escape?

Asked plainly, I have faulty thinking

what a fool I am

to be made flesh

and not a ball of light

set loose on the world

I wish I were free

frankly, I wish I were

the sunrise or the wind


It’s so hard to stay together

my very atoms

wish to disperse

I am left in a pile of

experience made human

but I am not you

sometimes I have a hard time

conceiving of you

the whole of you

still trying though

as I get locked away from my
chimes of conspiracy

exposed thinking

I’ve been here long enough

they remember my name.

The Find

You said

“You can’t lie, baby,

I see the butterflies

in your eyes,”

and despite myself

I smiled


damn it

it was true

I can’t get over you

this feeling

causing me to rise up

after dark

to find myself again.

art by Ari Whipple

The Truth of My Reality

Loping like a dog, rabid

or like a lion just raised from sleep

I wish I had control

of my faculties

or my present

But it is controlled for me

I can’t sleep anymore

It has controlled me

I slept six and half hours

isn’t that enough?

They only count four and a half

since they start at midnight

robbing me of my time

robbing me of my freedom

I wish I were a bird

set loose in this place

flying to the highest corner

reality is so surreal

but not so much

that I can’t find it

he asked, “why do you even

play the game?”

and, at the time, I said I don’t know

but I really do

because it’s like an unscratched itch

I am a slave to finding a truth

art by Ari Whipple

The Lonely Gods

I am leaving

I think

I hope it’s true

there’s not much

to do except wait

and talk and sleep

and eat

I’ve waited for my number

to come up

I’ve waited for my time

to start again

living in a temporal distortion

it never quite matches up

to what is

gossip from above

it sets my teeth on edge

chattering like I’m sitting on the pier again

here it is

I’m the singing bluebird

flying high on the breeze

where all the gods

find themselves

in lonely places


Ari Whipple

Ari Whipple is a writer and a poet from Muskegon, Michigan. They have lived in several places over the years including Iowa, Grand Canyon Village, Death Valley, and Seattle. They are 36 years old and have a love of the Great Lakes surrounding Michigan. They struggle with bipolar, which has affected them for the past four years as of this publication. They have two books out: Full of Now, a poetry book about bipolar and David Lynch is After Me, a memoir about their first manic episode.

art by Dillinger

Published by Mike Zone

Mike Zone is the former Editor in Chief of Dumpster Fire Press and managing editor of Concrete Mist Press. The author of Screaming in the End: Poems and Stories, Fuck You: A Fucking Poetry Chap, Shedding Dark Places (almost), One Hell of a Muse , as well as coauthor of The Grind and Razorville. A frequent contributor to Alien Buddha Press and Mad Swirl. His work has been featured in: A Thin Slice of Anxiety, Black Shamrock Magazine, Horror Sleaze Trash, Better Than Starbucks, Piker Press, Punk Noir Magazine, Synchronized Chaos, and Cult Culture magazine.

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