The Poetry Distillery is an online literary journal established in 2018 publishing poems sown at the Poetry Barn, a Hudson Valley library and literary center.

Training Day

They taught us the gun. We
knew nothing of jumping, of
guiding our bodies into the fray.
First were bags, tucked with

sheet, with lines packed so tight
we knew nothing would burst
forth on a single pull. We were
guided to towers and told to

leap, as if our lives were spent
following, which they were. We
practiced the tuck and roll, the
“don't break your damn legs”

two-step. The “don't break your
weapon, stupid”. Then we packed
into planes looking like so many
overstuffed, over-armed teddy-

bears, each face sallow with
animal fear. Each jaw clenched.
The line holds us, a long row
of plucked chickens waiting the

butcher. And the light runs green
where we queue out the door
into a huge unknown.
wind we all could smell death.


—Michael Medler

Michael writes because Nature wills him to it. He recently left a Dystopian suburb of Seattle and retreated to the knee-hills of the Olympic mountains, cut the cable, bought whiskey. Now he finds inspiration from deep woods, less so from Demons. Though they are there.

Forgive Me, All the Words to Describe Glass-Blowing Were Illegal

Verdigris in the Garden