Archived entries for Tom Mangione

Monstrum Poeticum

By Tom Mangione

Poetry, you are a monster.

I was told to stay away from you.
I was told to head for the safe and warm:
To dip myself into the safe and warm
Toes-first, testing the waters of the safe and warm
Sliding in up to my waist, warming my navel in the safe and warm
Letting the pleasant tingle work through my innards as I slid deeper into the safe and warm
Until I was submerged, cut off from air, sucking a tube to breathe in the safe and warm
Incubating for an entire lifetime in the safe and warm

But I didn’t. Continue reading…


Author Spotlight: Tom Mangione

Tom Mangione

Tom Mangione considers himself to be a poet first and a musician, songwriter, blogger, promoter and journalist after. However, telling people that you’re a poet requires great gall (or an unhealthy amount of alcohol), so Tom usually introduces himself as something else. Tom has published fiction and poetry for Shanghai’s own HAL Publishing and the Urbanity Project. As a local journalist, he has written articles for the Global Times, Urban Eyes, Smartshanghai, SH Magazine and Talk Magazine. He blogs regularly about poetry, China, his life and the amazing lexicons of both Chinese and English at As a musician, he performs American folk rock music every Monday night at Anar as Ho-Tom the Conqueror.

Tom’s Featured Poem – Monsterum Poeticum

Five Questions for Tom Mangione

HAL: What is the one book that can make you weep every time you read it?

TM: The Savage Detectives by Roberto Bolaño

Continue reading…



by Tom Mangione


I am consumed by subways.
I say I only ride them.
They take me where I go.

But late at night it is more
It’s more than that for sure

I stay up late at night
Knowing I take the subways
And the subways take me.

Continue reading…



by Tom Mangione

Here’s a special little pre-Christmas pre-SLAM treat for you from our inspired friend Ho-Tom. Tom will be appearing in the dec 18th 1984 release SLAM as well, so expect some dirty stuff from the stage. Meanwhile, let Sugartits blow your minds…

Tom sugartits


Shanghai First Kiss

by Tom Mangione

Shanghai, Shanghai, you kissed me first.
Quaking, shaking we quenched our thirst.
Burning tongues on a foreign shore,
Gasping, breathless I yearned for more.

Shine not freedom, but shine with hope.
Tie me down with a velvet rope.
Whisper songs in my ear with care;
Sing them loud for the crowds to stare

Hold you close in the alleyways.
Mix our sweat through the humid days.
Lose ourselves in apartment blocks.
Feel our bodies in rapture shocks.

Lying there in the dark and warm,
Crowds outside begin to form.
Drills on concrete will break and burst:
Shanghai, Shanghai you kissed me first.


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