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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 12: March 2022
Poem: 120 words
By Jonathan Yungkans

Duplex Beginning With a Line by Betsy Mars

A door slams as the house seeks equilibrium. 
Windows in the door shiver and take a deep breath—

	a deep breath over which the mind struggles. 
	A struggle of burning lungs, pounding heart 

as if the heart is caught between wall studs, 
lungs sealed beneath plaster, rattling lath—

	not covered but sealed under skin, between bones. 
	News of Mom’s death snaps down a paneled hallway, 

snaps like a crack along a wooden panel, 
splitting with the grain down the whole length of it. 

	Touch the split and feel rough edges bite. 
	Feel heat from overloaded electric nerves—

nerves like wires buzzing, raucous as a door slam, 
in a house wrenched from equilibrium. 



Poet’s Note:

The first line is from the poem “Red Flag Winds” by Betsy Mars, first published in Live Encounters Poetry & Writing (Volume 1, December 2020), page 101.

Jonathan Yungkans
Issue 12, March 2022

is a Los Angeles-based writer and photographer with an MFA from California State University, Long Beach. His work has appeared in San Pedro Poetry Review, Synkroniciti, West Texas Literary Review, Gleam: Journal of the Cadralor, MacQueen’s Quinterly, and other publications. His second poetry chapbook, Beneath a Glazed Shimmer, won the 2019 Clockwise Chapbook Prize and was published in February 2021 by Tebor Bach.

More on the Web: By, About, and Beyond

Le Grand Matin by Jonathan Yungkans, a Finalist in MacQ’s Triple-Q Writing Challenge (Issue 11, January 2022)

La Porte by Yungkans in MacQ’s special Christmas Eve issue (10X, December 2021)

Two Duplex Poems, plus author’s notes on the poems and on the form, by Yungkans in Issue 10 of MacQ (October 2021)

Lawful and Proper, poem in Rise Up Review (Fall 2020)

Cadralor in the Key of F-Sharp as It Cuts into My Spine, in the inaugural issue of Gleam (Fall 2020)

I’d Love to Cook Like Hannibal Lecter [video], read by the poet at an event sponsored by Moon Tide Press (10 October 2019) celebrating the anthology Dark Ink: A Poetry Anthology Inspired by Horror

Saving the Patient, poem in The Voices Project (18 January 2018)

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