Yellow Mama Archives

Doug Draime
Adhikari, Sudeep
Ahern, Edward
Aldrich, Janet M.
Allan, T. N.
Allen, M. G.
Ammonds, Phillip J.
Anderson, Peter
Andreopoulos, Elliott
Arab, Bint
Augustyn, P. K.
Aymar, E. A.
Babbs, James
Baber, Bill
Bagwell, Dennis
Bailey, Ashley
Baird, Meg
Bakala, Brendan
Baker, Nathan
Balaz, Joe
Barber, Shannon
Barker, Tom
Barlow, Tom
Bates, Jack
Bayly, Karen
Baugh, Darlene
Bauman, Michael
Baumgartner, Jessica Marie
Beale, Jonathan
Beck, George
Beckman, Paul
Benet, Esme
Bennett, Brett
Bennett, Charlie
Berg, Carly
Berman, Daniel
Bernardara, Will Jr.
Berriozabal, Luis
Beveridge, Robert
Bickerstaff, Russ
Bigney, Tyler
Blake, Steven
Bohem, Charlie Keys and Les
Booth, Brenton
Bougger, Jason
Boyd, A. V.
Boyd, Morgan
Bracey, DG
Brewka-Clark, Nancy
Britt, Alan
Brooke, j
Brown, R. Thomas
Brown, Sam
Burton, Michael
Bushtalov, Denis
Butkowski, Jason
Butler, Simon Hardy
Cameron, W. B.
Campbell, J. J.
Campbell, Jack Jr.
Cano, Valentina
Cardinale, Samuel
Carlton, Bob
Cartwright, Steve
Carver, Marc
Castle, Chris
Catlin, Alan
Chesler, Adam
Clausen, Daniel
Clevenger, Victor
Clifton, Gary
Coffey, James
Colasuonno, Alfonso
Conley, Jen
Connor, Tod
Cooper, Malcolm Graham
Coral, Jay
Cosby, S. A.
Costello, Bruce
Crandall, Rob
Criscuolo, Carla
Crist, Kenneth
Crouch & Woods
D., Jack
Dallett, Cassandra
Danoski, Joseph V.
Daly, Sean
Davis, Christopher
Davis, Michael D.
Day, Holly
de Bruler, Connor
Degani, Gay
De France, Steve
De La Garza, Lela Marie
Deming, Ruth Z.
Demmer, Calvin
De Neve, M. A.
Dennehy, John W.
DeVeau, Spencer
Di Chellis, Peter
Dick, Earl
Dick, Paul "Deadeye"
DiLorenzo, Ciro
Dionne, Ron
Domenichini, John
Dominelli, Rob
Doran, Phil
Doreski, William
Dorman, Roy
Doherty, Rachel
Dosser, Jeff
Doyle, John
Draime, Doug
Drake, Lena Judith
Dromey, John H.
Dubal, Paul Michael
Duke, Jason
Duncan, Gary
Dunham, T. Fox
Duschesneau, Pauline
Dunn, Robin Wyatt
Duxbury, Karen
Duy, Michelle
Elliott, Garnett
Ellman, Neil
England, Kristina
Erianne, John
Espinosa, Maria
Esterholm, Jeff
Fallow, Jeff
Farren, Jim
Fenster, Timothy
Ferraro, Diana
Filas, Cameron
Fisher, Miles Ryan
Flanagan, Daniel N.
Flanagan, Ryan Quinn
Francisco, Edward
Funk, Matthew C.
Gann, Alan
Gardner, Cheryl Ann
Garvey, Kevin Z.
Gentile, Angelo
Genz, Brian
Giersbach, Walter
Gladeview, Lawrence
Glass, Donald
Goddard, L. B.
Godwin, Richard
Goff, Christopher
Goss, Christopher
Gradowski, Janel
Graham, Sam
Grant, Christopher
Grant, Stewart
Greenberg, K.J. Hannah
Greenberg, Paul
Grey, John
Gunn, Johnny
Gurney, Kenneth P.
Haglund, Tobias
Halleck, Robert
Hamlin, Mason
Hanson, Christopher Kenneth
Hanson, Kip
Harrington, Jim
Harris, Bruce
Hart, GJ
Hartman, Michelle
Haskins, Chad
Hawley, Doug
Haycock, Brian
Hayes, A. J.
Hayes, John
Hayes, Peter W. J.
Heatley, Paul
Heimler, Heidi
Helmsley, Fiona
Hendry, Mark
Heslop, Karen
Heyns, Heather
Hilary, Sarah
Hill, Richard
Hivner, Christopher
Hockey, Matthew J.
Hogan, Andrew J.
Holderfield, Culley
Holton, Dave
Howells, Ann
Hoy, J. L.
Huchu, Tendai
Hudson, Rick
Huffman, A. J.
Huguenin, Timothy G.
Huskey, Jason L.
Irascible, Dr. I. M.
Jaggers, J. David
James, Christopher
Johnson, Beau
Johnson, Moctezuma
Johnson, Zakariah
Jones, D. S.
Jones, Erin J.
Jones, Mark
Kabel, Dana
Kaplan, Barry Jay
Kay, S.
Kempka, Hal
Kerins, Mike
Keshigian, Michael
Kevlock, Mark Joseph
King, Michelle Ann
Kirk, D.
Knott, Anthony
Koenig, Michael
Korpon, Nik
Kovacs, Norbert
Kovacs, Sandor
Kowalcyzk, Alec
Krafft, E. K.
Lacks, Lee Todd
Lang, Preston
Larkham, Jack
La Rosa, F. Michael
Leasure, Colt
Leatherwood, Roger
Lees, Arlette
Lees, Lonni
Leins, Tom
Lemming, Jennifer
Lerner, Steven M
Lewis, Cynthia Ruth
Lewis, LuAnn
Lifshin, Lyn
Liskey, Tom Darin
Lodge, Oliver
Lopez, Aurelio Rico III
Lorca, Aurelia
Lovisi, Gary
Lucas, Gregory E.
Lukas, Anthony
Lynch, Nulty
Lyon, Hillary
Lyons, Matthew
Mac, David
MacArthur, Jodi
Malone, Joe
Mann, Aiki
Manzolillo, Nicholas
Marcius, Cal
Marrotti, Michael
Mason, Wayne
Mattila, Matt
McAdams, Liz
McCartney, Chris
McDaris, Catfish
McFarlane, Adam Beau
McGinley, Chris
McGinley, Jerry
McElhiney, Sean
McKim, Marci
McMannus, Jack
McQuiston, Rick
Mellon, Mark
Memi, Samantha
Miles, Marietta
Miller, Max
Minihan, Jeremiah
Monson, Mike
Mooney, Christopher P.
Morgan, Bill W.
Moss, David Harry
Mullins, Ian
Mulvihill, Michael
Muslim, Kristine Ong
Nardolilli, Ben
Nelson, Trevor
Nessly, Ray
Nester, Steven
Neuda, M. C.
Newell, Ben
Newman, Paul
Nielsen, Ayaz
Ogurek, Douglas J.
O'Keefe, Sean
Ortiz, Sergio
Pagel, Briane
Park, Jon
Parr, Rodger
Parrish, Rhonda
Partin-Nielsen, Judith
Peralez, R.
Perez, Juan M.
Perez, Robert Aguon
Peterson, Ross
Petroziello, Brian
Pettie, Jack
Petyo, Robert
Phillips, Matt
Picher, Gabrielle
Pierce, Rob
Pietrzykowski, Marc
Plath, Rob
Pointer, David
Powell, David
Power, Jed
Powers, M. P.
Praseth, Ram
Prusky, Steve
Pruitt, Eryk
Purfield, M. E.
Purkis, Gordon
Quinlan, Joseph R.
Quinn, Frank
Rabas, Kevin
Ram, Sri
Rapth, Sam
Ravindra, Rudy
Renney, Mark
reutter, g emil
Rhatigan, Chris
Richardson, Travis
Richey, John Lunar
Ridgeway, Kevin
Ritchie, Salvadore
Robinson, John D.
Robinson, Kent
Rodgers, K. M.
Roger, Frank
Rose, Mandi
Rose, Mick
Rosenberger, Brian
Rosenblum, Mark
Rosmus, Cindy
Ruhlman, Walter
Rutherford, Scotch
Sanders, Isabelle
Sanders, Sebnem
Savage, Jack
Sayles, Betty J.
Schauber, Karen
Schneeweiss, Jonathan
Schraeder, E. F.
Schumejda, Rebecca
See, Tom
Sethi, Sanjeev
Sexton, Rex
Seymour, J. E.
Shaikh, Aftab Yusuf
Sheagren, Gerald E.
Shepherd, Robert
Shirey, D. L.
Sim, Anton
Simmler, T. Maxim
Simpson, Henry
Sinisi, J. J.
Sixsmith, JD
Slagle, Cutter
Slaviero, Susan
Sloan, Frank
Small, Alan Edward
Smith, Brian J.
Smith, Ben
Smith, C.R.J.
Smith, Copper
Smith, Greg
Smith, Paul
Smith, Stephanie
Smith, Willie
Smuts, Carolyn
Snethen, Daniel G.
Snoody, Elmore
Sojka, Carol
Solender, Michael J.
Sortwell, Pete
Sparling, George
Spicer, David
Squirrell, William
Stanton, Henry G.
Stewart, Michael S.
Stickel, Anne
Stolec, Trina
Stryker, Joseph H.
Stucchio, Chris
Succre, Ray
Sullivan, Thomas
Swanson, Peter
Swartz, Justin A.
Sweet, John
Tarbard, Grant
Taylor, J. M.
Thompson, John L.
Thompson, Phillip
Tillman, Stephen
Titus, Lori
Tivey, Lauren
Tobin, Tim
Tu, Andy
Ullerich, Eric
Valent, Raymond A.
Valvis, James
Vilhotti, Jerry
Waldman, Dr. Mel
Walsh, Patricia
Walters, Luke
Ward, Emma
Washburn, Joseph
Watt, Max
Weber, R.O.
Weil, Lester L.
White, Judy Friedman
White, Robb
White, Terry
Wilsky, Jim
Wilson, Robley
Wilson, Tabitha
Woodland, Francis
Young, Mark
Yuan, Changming
Zackel, Fred
Zafiro, Frank
Zapata, Angel
Zee, Carly
Zimmerman, Thomas

Art by Gordon Purkis 2009

Too Many Sleepless Nights



Doug Draime




          Ray sat on his couch, leaning over his TV dinner, bleary-eyed and exhausted, watching the Gulf War over CNN.


He flipped on the TV as a reflex. A remote control was a wonder of technology. It had become like an extension of his arm. He ate the white turkey meat, potatoes, and peas as he looked on at the night bombing of Kuwait. Flashes of colorful lights in the night

sky. He wondered how many people died with each flash, how many were injured? Ray had lost both his father and uncle in the same fire fight on the perimeter of Saigon in 1965, when he was twelve. In the 1960s and 70s, the Viet Nam war was on the nightly news; now in the 90s, war was a grand event, mass entertainment 24 hours a day. The constant justification from the media, with verbiage inspired directly by White House double-talk. Stock in CNN and all the corporations that bought time on air raising, as the war continued. The rich get richer and the poor are annihilated.


          After watching for a few more minutes, as usual, Ray begun to feel anger and depression. He saw himself, at twelve, standing by his father’s closed casket, the American flag draped over it, his mother holding his hand.


This moment always came back to him, standing there with his mother, her body shaking uncontrollably with sobs of grief. But Ray didn’t cry on that day. It was months before he was able to shed any tears. He clutched his mother’s hand tightly, trying to steady her, as they watched the casket being lowered into the grave.


          He switched channels to clear his head. It was a Bob Hope and Bing Crosby movie, On The Road To Morocco. He must have seen the movie twenty times, at least. Surfing from channel to channel, he tried to focus on something, anything. But he was too tired and on edge from the three-day binge of Benzedrine and booze to focus.


He turned the TV off, got up from the couch, and walked into the tiny kitchen and took a beer from the six-pack he’d brought home with him, to help him come down. He took a long drink from the bottle and pressed the cool glass against his forehead.


He was walking back to the couch when the phone rang. It was 3:15 AM. The phone hadn’t rung for a week, or more.


Someone must be dead, he thought, as he picked up the receiver.




 “Hi, Ray,” said a female voice he didn’t recognize.


          “Who is this?”


          “It’s been a long time,” she replied


           “Who is this?” Ray said again, taking another drink from his beer.


           “You really don’t know?” she said, answering the question with a question. He could hear the surprise in her voice, with a short intake of breath.


          Ray took the portable phone with him back into the kitchen, where he drank the rest of his beer and opened another one.


                  “Look, it’s after three in the morning and I’m very tired. Sounds like I should know you, but sorry, I’m at a loss,” he said.


          “Joan. Ray, this is Joan,” she said, a sight trace of indignity in her tone now.


          How many months had it been? Seven, eight?  He never expected to hear from her again, after he had thrown her 13-inch TV out the window on the fifth floor of the Wilton Hotel. They were both too drunk for rational reasoning. Joan threatening him, at one point, with an ancient Derringer pistol her grandfather had left her. He had heard she was living with a cop on the Glendale Police Force. There was talk of marriage and real estate.






                 “You’re awful quiet. Thought you hung up”


          “I’m still here. I just don’t know what to say. Well, how the hell are you, Joan? ” Ray slugged the beer down in three huge swallows.


          “I thought you’d be surprised. I mean, after all these months and me calling this time of night. But I thought you’d recognize my voice.” Slurring the last word, he knew she had been drinking.


          There was a long silence, as Ray studied her breathing.


          “I’m living in Glendale now, but I’m working in Hollywood, not far from you, at that rubber stamp place on Garfield. I’m doing their books. I have my own little office in the back of the shop. Can you imagine me doing books for anyone? I mean, I can’t even balance my own check book, for Christ’s sake. I passed the math test they gave when I applied, and they hired me right off. You remember how I hated math.”


          “I remember you weren’t too good with numbers,” Ray said, opening the refrigerator for another beer.


He wasn’t ready for the conversation, far from it. He had been up a straight 74 hours without sleep. All he wanted was a little vitamin C, a couple of beers and a 12 to 18 hour sleep-off. He felt like asking her how her TV was, what kind of mess it had left on the sidewalk, and regardless of the answer, just hang up. He thought about that for a moment, just hanging up. But he felt he owed her more than that, for throwing it out the window, in the first place . . . or maybe not.


          “I’m tired, Joan. Rough couple of days. What is it exactly you wanted? It’s been awhile.”


          “Well, I guess I just wanted someone to talk to.” Joan paused, her breathing deep and uneven. “Did you know I got married?” she asked, sounding almost angry.


          “No, I didn’t. Last I heard you were living with a cop. So, you married him?”


                  “Yeah, about five months ago. But I haven’t seen him for two months,” slurring her words.


          Ray lit a cigarette and drank the third beer a little slower.






                  “You’re not saying much. I keep thinking you hung up on me.” She was reading his mind.


          “So, where’s he been the last two months?” Ray said, taking his shirt off and tossing it across the room.




          “Your cop husband.”


          “Oh  . . . He joined the army. Can you believe that?”


          Ray didn’t respond. He sat looking at a spider web on the ceiling he had not noticed before.


          She was laughing. “He’s a real dumb shit. Volunteered for Desert Storm. Over there now . . . that’s where he’s been!”


          Ray put his cigarette out in the beer, walked down the hallway and into the bedroom and sat down on the edge of the bed and took off his shoes.


          “I’m sorry to hear that, Joan,” he said, meaning it. He stood up, unzipped his pants and took them off.


“You don’t have to be sorry for me,” she said, as sharp as a razor, “If he gets his head blown off, it was his call.”


          Ray sat back down on the bed and was staring out the window at the night sky over L.A.


                  “Look , Joan, I’m wiped out. I need to get some sleep.”


          “Oh . . . OK. Ah, can I call you tomorrow, or maybe come over? You know . . .  stop by after work, since I’m so close?”


           “Not a good idea, Joan,”


          “Why not?” she asked, slurring her words indignantly.


                “Because your husband may be a dead man right now in an Arab country, and that’s  because this country thinks our oil is under their land, and that you have no concept of the horror that  implies, and you don’t even care if your husband is killed. That poor bastard, dead or alive! Goodbye, Joan. Never fucking call me again.”


          Ray hung up and lay down on his bed.


Within a few minutes, he was sound asleep.






“Too Many Sleepless Nights” was published first as a "magsheet" by Ragged Edge (Appliance Books) in England in 2005 and then again by ZYX Magazine (Arnold Skemer) in NY in 2007.




Stein Arrives On Time


Doug Draime




          Everything arrives on time,

          even, despite

          her continual critics,

          Gertrude Stein.  She showed

          up in Paris at the perfect moment.

          Though, she had trouble

          speaking, because she lied

          each time she spoke.  So, following

          advice from Alice and her

          brother, she wrote. And write she did!

          Casting on the page juxtapositions of

          words, boggling conventional concepts

          of sentence and meaning, and bashing

          around nouns and verbs . . .

          cramming them together like

          suntanned bodies on a crowded beach.

          And the bewildered, stunned reactions.    

          T.S. Eliot shaved his head and

          contacted Sigmund Freud.  Wallace Stevens lost

          a shitload of money in the life insurance business and

          stopped giving a fuck about much of anything.

          Everything falls into its exact order of

          arrival.  Everyone who seeks, finds, even those

          excitable straights pissing and moaning

          over Gertrude Stein.





Jonnie “Mac” Brown


by Doug Draime



          a scar

          as long

          & wide

          as a




          curved down

          her right



          a gashing

          deep ravine

          of pink

          into her


          black flesh


          smiling  &

          spinning in





          her own






The Writers’ Archives


by Doug Draime




          Egomaniacal writers,

          those ghost riders

          in the sky,

          want their words

          (their deeds) to

          live on after

          they die. Reams

          of paper, internet

          bytes, dramatic recordings

          of their musings

          archived at

          some elitist

          institutions of higher


          learning. Oh, spare me,

          please, enough

          of their




          Tell them to

          shut up and

          be brave and

          take it like good

          old soldiers,

          who don’t ever die, but

          just fucking fade





Drinking Down the Street From

The Radio City Rockettes


by Doug Draime



They’re not on the streets,

the poets are at

a poetry slam. The rest of

us drunks are in

other bars

putting on a better

show than the poets.

I’m in a bar

where no one here knows

some people call

me a poet. I’m drinking shots of

Jameson’s and too drunk to care. I’m petrified

like a Douglas Fir ( get it? ).

The college kids, all of them

a bunch of drunks,

and potheads

move around me. They

speak; I smile and nod.

We’re getting along fine,

playing John Lee Hooker

on the jukebox

pounding on the bar

to the beat; having a much

better time I’m sure, than

the poets kicking up

their heels and smiling tortured smiles,

at the bar

down the street like the

Radio City Rockettes.

We’ve got them beat there, too,

as we look up at a

stunning 19-year-old blonde beauty

in a miniskirt, black boots, and


dancing on the bar

her thighs glistening

like a race horse.





by Doug Draime



There is no way

in the world to

settle with it,

no tight rational

explanation to

satisfy all that

ignorant, and dead




The fact

is, dice have a


ratio, only in

relation to where

and how they’re

being thrown.


Even if they’re thrown

hard, and against

iron clad walls

for half a century . . .


It’s then you see

the crushing odds,

and you know

you have

beaten them.

somehow. You know

with the certainty

of your continued







Killing the Poetry Professor


by Doug Draime



Buying six tickets instead of

the usual five weekly. The Mob

knew I could be trusted

for the money: six grand and a $400

leather briefcase.


It was impossible to have a relaxed

conversation with him. He jumped

around, showing me unpublished

manuscripts, dusty and yellow, written

forty years ago.


Louie was willing to back the six grand

with six of his own. Insurance is what

he called it. Besides, I knew the

.38 in his boot was known to go off

when the insurance premium didn’t pay off.


The restaurant was full but I found Flo at one

of the back tables. She was a little high, but

had the right answers. I got her out of there,

with the gun in my pocket,

pushing her into Johnny’s car.


By now the drinks would be lined up

and Benny would be telling

anyone within earshot, that he was really John

Dillinger’s little brother from Martinsville, Indiana.


Meant nothing to me, as long as he picked up the stuff

after his drumming gig on Santa Monica Boulevard.


He looked through his file cabinets for twenty

minutes, like I wasn’t even there, pulling out

books in French from the Dadaists and

Surrealists. He was rubbing his

arm and yawning a lot. I had nothing against

the old guy.


Morning found me with the gun under my pillow,

and Benny asleep on the floor,

faithful with his fix and stuff laying neatly by his

head. I left him there

and took a bus down to the club, walking up

the back, pushing the yellow button at the second floor.


She screamed, she didn’t want to talk about it,

and then casually put the stuff

on the back seat. Everything was closed up

tight, but we found the Hollywood

Ranch Market steaming with drug freaks. I still had the

gun, and I wouldn’t hesitate.


The professor was dead. All his old books of poetry

were burned. I was into it deep now, with nowhere

to voice my innocence. The cops thought I’d

pulled the trigger. It was bad enough I’d set up the

professor, but I didn’t shoot him, Flo pulled the trigger.  





Doug Draime's latest book, More Than the Alley, is a full-length selected collection from Interior Noise Press. There are also four chapbooks available: Dusk With Carol (Kendra Steiner Editions), Rock 'n Roll Jizz (Propaganda Press), Los Angeles Terminal: Poems 1971-1980 (Covert Press), and an online chap, Speed of Light (Right Hand Pointing). Doug Draime was awarded PEN grants in 1987, 1991, and 1992. In the last few years, he was nominated for several Pushcart Prizes.

In Association with Fossil Publications