AmLit Fall 2015

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fall 2015

Mission Statement


American Literary Magazine, affectionately known as AmLit, is American University’s literary and creative arts magazine. Run entirely by students, AmLit is published twice a year at the end of the Fall and Spring semesters. Striving to showcase the best student writing and visual art within the campus community, AmLit contains poetry, prose, photography, film, and art submitted by the student population, both undergraduates and graduates. AmLit selects content based on an anonymous review process, giving each staff member an equal vote for each piece submitted. The Editors-in-Chief and genre editors decide any discrepancies in the democratic voting process. All copyrights revert to the artists upon publication, unless otherwise noted.

AmLit is the tangible result of the loving and hardworking community that surrounds our staff. We must thank our wonderful advisor, Adell Crowe, for her unmatchable guidance, helpful chats, and amazing fashion sense. Adell, your role in the realization of this magazine cannot be understated. Working with you is an absolute pleasure, and we cannot wait to do it again next semester. We would also like to thank our content advisor Linda Voris, as well as our faculty contributors Melissa Scholes Young and David Keplinger. It’s always an honor to feature the incredible work of American University’s faculty within our pages. We also need to thank Janella Polack and the rest of her design team Maddie Rizzo, Shelby Moring, and Claire Osborn for the layout of this issue, and Batol Bashri for the cover. Next, a huge thank you to Jim Briggs of Printing Images. From the first week of this semester when we developed our publishing timeline, we knew you would be an invaluable resource in helping us navigate this process, and we could not have made this without you. Last (but certainly not least), we need to recognize our Bestin-Show judges: Linda Voris, Tom Ratekin, Melissa Scholes Young, Leena Jayaswal, and Molly Springfield. Some of you have kindly promoted AmLit in your departments, classrooms, and to the university’s administration. You are our strongest advocates, and we hope to continue working with all of you. The support we’ve seen from our faculty is truly amazing, and we are eternally grateful for your enthusiasm and support. To those of you who are new to our team, we simply say: welcome to AmLit. Thank you, everyone. We wouldn’t be here without you.

Library (my friends blame ghosts) Luke Palermo fall 2015


Viennese Boy Kristie Chua


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Dear Readers, It is difficult to sit down and write this Letter from the Editors when what you hold in your hands is the culmination of a collective experience. More than 250 pieces of art were given to us by the American University community. We were completely overwhelmed by the beauty, sheer talent, and willingness to share from the students around us. We cannot say thank you enough for giving that little piece of yourself to us - we hope we’ve created a space where your art can be appreciated genuinely for all that it is. From that space, we can at last present you with Volume 87 of AmLit. The journey to this magazine has been incredible, filled with various degrees of organization (and disorganization), hilarious emails, and review sessions complete with Nacho Cheese Doritos. I hope you are as excited as we are - this is it! We feel that it is especially important to take note of how unusual - and brilliant - this AmLit staff is. This semester’s staff holds more first year students than ever before. When we held our first general interest meeting, dozens of students timidly introduced themselves as freshmen or transfer students. The most rewarding part of being EICs thus far has been watching that timidness transform into an excitement about favorite pieces, a willingness to try your hands at new skills like blogging, copy editing, and design. All of your passion has not gone unnoticed we are truly impressed and honored to call you our peers. We hope that AmLit will always be a home where you grow and experiment through art. As we give you our labor of love, we wanted to leave you with some words that poet and professor David Keplinger shared with our staff: “What is in you already is poetry, you just have to find it.” We hope you enjoy this latest issue of AmLit. Thank you to our advisors who believe in us, our staff who make our job so easy and rewarding, and our peers who make our work worthy. This magazine is for all of you. -Jake Nieb & Mikala Rempe

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Art Library (My Friends Blame Ghosts) | Luke Palermo | 1 drEam | Jonathan Murray | 6 Wallflower | Claire Osborn | 9 Polymorphic | Evan White | 11 Landscape | Emma Asher | 12 Ice Cold | Charles Clayton | 17 Sublimation | Claire Osborn | 18 Heat | Natalie Tarasar | 29 Girl in Space | Franscis Balken | 33 Index of Maladies | Natalie Tarasar | 36 1558 | Charles Clayton | 44 Odessa | Amanda Hodes | 47 Wrench Diptych | Franscis Balken | 48 Liberal Spirit | Elizabeth Thorne | 57 Old Brush | Franscis Balken | 68 Chawla | Jonathan Murray | 74

Film Brácha | Emma Asher | 50 Through a Glass, Darkly | JJ Blake | 56

Prose Childhood | Grace Cassidy | 8 Monochrome | Hannah Tiner | 13 Splitting | Jake Nieb | 16 The Wolves are in the Pasture | Thomas Pool | 24 One Day in August | Jake Nieb | 38 Postpartum Exile | Melissa Scholes Young | 64


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Photography Viennese Boy | Kristie Chua | 2 East | Scott Mullins | 15 Regentag | Maddie Rizzo | 21 Direct | Emma Asher | 22 Arc du Cinquantenaire | Alejandro Alvarez | 25 Lost | Philipp Ebner von Eschenbach | 26 Bend | Kristie Chua | 30 Minaret Against the Mountain | Alejandro Alvarez | 35 Good Luck | Kristie Chua | 39 Visiting Mumtaz | Pooja Patel | 41 Tranquility | Ian MacMillan | 43 Rue de Bleury | Maddie Rizzo | 51 Munich | Philipp Ebner von Eschenbach | 53 Green Veins | Philipp Ebner von Eschenbach | 55 Chinatown | Kristie Chua | 59 Gigi | Maddie Rizzo | 60 Tyler | Maddie Rizzo | 61 I Don’t If You Don’t | Steven Baboun | 62 Horizon Wireless | Anand Adhikari | 66 Son of Asshole Goat | Kristie Chua | 73 Father Daughter | Kristie Chua | 76

Poetry Years After the Funeral | Mikala Rempe | 7 Regeneration | Molly McGinnis | 10 January | Mikala Rempe | 14 It’s Okay | Jonathan Klopp | 23 Beckett Stands on a Street in Paris | Jake Nieb | 27 Thank You | Sam Dumas | 28 Axis Tilt | Alexander Olesker | 31 Apostrophe | Alexander Olesker | 32 Oklahoma, 2006 | Jake Nieb | 34 In an Amber Dome | Pamela Huber | 37 Washington Noir | Alexander Olesker | 42 Salt Water for Sore Throats | Amanda Hodes | 45 Act Two | Hannah Tiner | 46 Half-Asleep, Looking at van Gogh’s Irises | Grace Cassidy | 49 Meeting like a Poem | Alexander Olesker | 52 fish bowl | Anna Rutenbeck | 54 Sometime Later/You Will | Grace Cassidy | 58 June, Somewhere | Grace Cassidy | 63 Blessing for the Liver | David Keplinger | 69

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dr E am Jonathan Murray


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Years AFter the Funeral Mikala Rempe

There is a consensus. Marsha was schizophrenic. And everything fell just into place. The nights of one hand fighting the other. Said she knew Lucifer and how he slept in the fingertips of her left hand. That’s why she needed the knife. And the day they finally got color TV in ‘63. And Marsha wailed pushing the knobs all the way back down to black and white again. Said the color was so loud. Knew that if she didn’t, the crimson house fire on the nightly news would envelop the living room. Swallow the paisley love-seat whole in one gulp. We mistook it for aging, like the evening we sat, table for seven, at Julio’s and she told us the blue corn chips tasted purple on her tongue. My mother says Marsha died of stubbornness. Refused to wear her oxygen tubes to bed adamant that this was how he was poisoning her again. And now, today, I am always seven years old playing with the dusty toy carousel at Marsha’s estate sale. Thinking about the horses and how they spend their whole lives moving up and down, but never leave this place.

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With a quote borrowed from anne bradstreet’s “childhood” Grace Cassidy

At six years old I’m scared of the spring’s first rain, when the worms dig their way through all the dirt and up the sidewalk to be trampled on. The cement is wet with rain and the guts of worms, but I sit there anyways, because mom is yelling about spilled stuffed shells and dad is smoking a cigarette through the living room window, even though he’s not supposed to. I stare at the worms, bodies split in two – or four or eight or sixteen – and think of how my dress is still intact, though wet on the seat. I want to bring one upstairs in all its parts and operate on the kitchen counter over a pan of stuffed shells and remains that smell like smoke. But in only ten years’ time, I’ll learn ‘tis but little a child can say, and I leave the worms alone.


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Wallflower Claire Osborn

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Regeneration Molly McGinnis

Red-eyed tree frogs are emblems of wonder and I almost know how that feels. In a world like this! I am learning to fight extinction and it is replying with terms and conditions. I am learning that history left me with one shallow eye and one to see insects dazzling the countertops, and when nighttime shakes its head at me, I wink and love it back. I deal in brief ecstasies and don’t hold on. Everything drifts, then races. I am learning to dream of ocelots and pitcher plants and weighted blossoms with mouths like holy loudspeakers. I contain keychain flashlights and doubt. Footsteps and blue-twilight continents. I’ve told you these events keep hunting me. All hunters are the same. The talk of moving shadows, lights in leaves and impulses. Fear is just instinct with muscle, and I am trying to keep my hands still. Even the checkout boy sees this. Do you see it, now? Wilderness loves the pulse of a blood moon, of the sun in a banana stem, and curates the pain of small animals. Inside your head there is a sleeping bird of prey, but there are ways to clip its wings. The future rises from an evening like mist, covers the driveway, the bedroom carpet, forest floors. Imagine a jungle that could hide you and hide you. On TV, the world is ending and the president pauses, assured. I have a drawer full of red-eyed tree frogs and decades after the fires stop, I dream of rain forests. I am calling back the jaguars and the small pink flowers. Each cell wall is trembling. Each breath is as long as a lifespan.


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Polymorphic Evan White

Artist’s Note: Art was generated using the Processing programming language. The arcs themselves are calculated with simple geometry with each branch recursively generating a new one.

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Landscape Emma Asher


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Monochrome Hannah Tiner

I should’ve known it wouldn’t work out. Because when I asked you

If you were a color what color would you be?

You said

Cobalt blue.

A little too fast. Like someone had asked you that question before. Like you’d dated other artists who preferred abstract questions instead of What was your childhood like Where do you see yourself in five years When did you know you were gay Where did you grow up Why did you move here Cobalt blue. Electric and buzzing and bold. The color of diving fingertips-first into the deep end of the pool, when the water is so cold your body misses a beat, your lungs contracting and expanding to save you. The same shade that hung in the air pre-thunderstorm, that night on the rooftop when I didn’t kiss you.

fall 2015


January Mikala Rempe

“We’ll have to sleep with the windows open because of the smell” you whispered while we watched the snow settle like sandcastles on the ledge outside. The boxes from Indian Palace lingered on your table without lids. Curry permeated through your old brownstone home while you ran your hands through my hair once for every hour between us and New England, and I took inventory of your kitchen: All of the coffee mugs that we used as makeshift ashtrays, the water-glasses we both kissed goodnight, the ice cream scoop that we licked clean on your birthday, and every cupboard and cutting board with all the secrets they whispered about us after we’d gone to bed.


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East Scott Mullins

fall 2015



splitting Jake Nieb

Brandon cracks my left little finger. We’re cocooned in my sheets on the leftmost third of the bed. The mattress sags over the box spring, not enough to fall off but enough to make me feel off-balance. I ask him, “Do you remember what you said that first weekend?”

camera. We laugh at his over-plucked eyebrows and my dark, shaggy hair. He told me strangers think he’s straight back home. I laugh; he knits his brow.

I never asked him why he cracks my knuckles. He starts with the left hand moving from the outside in, and then to the right hand in the same fashion. Maybe it’s relaxing for him; it always winds my nerves to their breaking point as the air trapped between my joints resists freedom. Did I tell him my mother has rheumatoid arthritis? She was diagnosed after the birth of her third son at the age of thirty-six, much too young to suffer from a disease reserved for the elderly. I wonder if she felt old then. If there were creases in her forehead. How she felt when I, a toddler, traced the spider web veins crisscrossing her thighs. Not even halfway through life, and already struggling to pour milk from a gallon jug, support her newborn’s neck. Sometimes my wrists ache too.

“I don’t know, just that no one would ever think you’re straight here.”

“Why are you laughing?”

“What’s that supposed to mean?” His voice rises. “It’s nothing bad. I don’t pass for straight either.” “I know it’s not bad. But I’m straight-acting.” I smirk. “I know a lot of straight guys who pluck their eyebrows and wear makeup ‘to even out their complexion’ too.” His face contorts. “You’re an ass.”


I don’t think cracking knuckles causes arthritis so I don’t say anything to Brandon. He cracks my left ring finger. That first weekend, he and I had been lying supine on my mattress pad, flipping through pictures of us growing up. Capturing the development of a smile over the previous seven years. Lips sealed in a thin line – there were no teeth until a few years ago. Now my eyes crinkle shut for the flash of a


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“I’m just calling your shit,” I say, still smiling. I should have taken my sheets out of the dryer hours before. He’s hurt, but he looks at the ceiling and says he wonders if all relationships that move quickly end quickly too. “Are they doomed to fizzle to nothing?” I nod. We had just spent the entire weekend together after I had met him at a bar downtown and exchanged numbers. Because that’s what people do.

Ice Cold Charles Clayton fall 2015


“I said a lot that weekend.” He cracks my left middle finger. The resultant pop is quieter than the first two knuckles. “About relationships that move fast,” I remind him. “I guess.” He concentrates on the hand he’s cracking before looking up at me. “How come?” I pause. “I don’t know, something reminded me of it.” He shifts in the bed and cracks my left index finger a little too forcefully. I wince. I remember three weeks earlier: we walk around my neighborhood at night. A new sushi place celebrates its grand opening, and several tables of twentysomethings clothed in cocktail attire drink wine on a patio that juts into the middle of the sidewalk. Brandon and I are silent and walk out of step. He’s drunk. A thin waiter emerges from


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inside the restaurant, expertly balancing martini glasses on a tray. We pass a blonde woman in a tight white dress laughing as she puts her hand in that of the bearded man across from her, and I tug at the loose string on the elastic of my sweatpants. Her gaze doesn’t waver from his lips as he orders something from the waiter. The tipsy couples fade to the background. Brandon stops in front of the entrance to a beauty shop that advertises Nails & Waxing in red and blue neon letters. The sign bathes us in purple light and I watch the way it arcs around Brandon’s body. _____________________ I wonder if that’s how Sebastian looked at me months earlier when I stood in front of his windows that separated his floor and ceiling. In all my nakedness, I searched for the cathedral

Sublimation Claire Osborn that would mark my home. I guess I wanted him to think I was confident, that I didn’t care who saw me through his open blinds. He was fumbling in the kitchen that bled into the living room where I stood, my gaze finally resting on the towers held up by spindly scaffolding. My eyes tiptoed down what I thought was Massachusetts Ave. up the hill to the entrance of my apartment, but I couldn’t go farther. I wasn’t good at splitting myself. Sebastian walked back into the room holding glasses of water, but I trained my eyes on where I thought my apartment must be. I thought about the way the yellow light of the streetlamps below must be illuminating the outline of my body, my back lit up in blue by the blinking LED light on his computer. Sebastian handed me water and closed the curtains. But Brandon isn’t naked in front of the sign, and when he turns to look at me, I can hardly make out his face swimming

in all that purple. We walk home without talking. We’re still not talking, and I hope that means it’s over. The pressure on my left thumb brings me back to the room, but it refuses to crack. The way our fingers interlace makes it almost like we’re holding hands. _____________________ Brandon moves onto my right little finger. I haven’t told him that before we met, I slept with a man who told me he was leaving for Boston. I walked past the same salon, stomach bloated with undercooked chicken. I had told him I wasn’t going to go over – my stomach was in too much pain. I asked if he wanted to see me later in the week, but he was leaving for Boston for a job and didn’t think there would be enough time. So I went that night anyway.

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I think I realized when I was waiting in the lobby of his apartment, sitting on a stained yellow couch next to two gossiping elderly women, that the only reason I was there was because there was a guaranteed expiration date. I imagined I would go up to his apartment where the television would be on, and he would offer me water that I’d gladly accept. We would sit on either ends of the couch and talk, releasing nervous energy and building the courage to move closer. One of us would lean into the kiss that would mark a transition to the bedroom. I knew I would feel his hairy body pressing into mine, and I’d be nothing but my skin for half an hour. We’d probably fuck. If my stomach wasn’t hurting at least. Or if he were willing to bottom. And then I’d walk past these same women an hour later, and we would all know what had happened but my head would already be immersed in thoughts of a shower and sleep. And all of this happened. He was nice, and I assured him I was leaving at the end of the night despite bringing a backpack full of blank notebooks and a book of poetry by Elizabeth Bishop, because the next day was a Monday and I didn’t want to be late for my nine o’clock class. He was watching American Ninja Warrior, and we talked about how each contestant’s life was marred by some personal tragedy. An adopted boy with tuberculosis turned ninja warrior, three rock climbers from Colorado who each had life-threatening surgeries before they were my age. They were all damaged. He rested a hand on my leg, and I leaned in to kiss him. He carried me across the room to his bed, and since I had walked all the way to this studio apartment and wanted to make the trip worthwhile, I let him ease himself into me. I wonder if Brandon knows I still think about the way his face shuddered as he split me open. When it was over, I left past the same women, combing my hair with trained fingers, hoping it was lying flat. Brandon cracks my right ring finger. The silence weaves a thick curtain between us. Maybe I’m damaged. _____________________ The previous night, a week before Brandon and I will stop spending time together, we talked about relationships. “I think you have to choose between your career and your partner. You can’t have both,” I say as I dry a bowl. “I don’t think so. We’re good at balancing the two.” There’s a pause as I put the bowl away. “Yeah, I guess.”


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Brandon scrubs congealed egg from the bottom of a frying pan. I dry the cups he’s already washed and put them away. “Do you really think that?” “What?” I don’t want to have this conversation. “Do you really think you can’t have both?” “I don’t know. I mean, both my parents had married and divorced by the time they were twenty-three because they were too absorbed by their careers. No one cheated, and there weren’t hard feelings. They just fell out of love,” I reach for the soapy forks, “I don’t know, I just can’t see myself totally committing to both at the same time.” “Oh.” He places the pan on the drying rack, and I pick it up and inspect the spot of burnt egg he missed. I dry it and put it away anyway. “I’m going to be late for work, I’ll see you tonight.” I leave Brandon washing our two plates. _____________________ My right middle finger bends at an awkward angle and I pull my hand away. Brandon’s fingers find mine and he tries to crack it again. “That hurts.” “I’m sorry, babe. Let me finish.” He manages to crack it and starts pressing on the sides of my index finger. I concentrate on the white votive candle next to my bed. The flat face of the Virgen de Guadalupe angles toward the ground, palms out. I’ve only lit her once, and I didn’t pray to her or any god. I try to make out his features in the darkness. A black smudge floats on the periphery of my vision. My optometrist told me they are collagen fibers floating in between the light entering my eyes and the photoreceptors anchored to my retinas. They’re nothing to worry about. When I’m bored, I try to look directly at one, to make something out of the dark spider webs slowly building up in the back of my eyes. I didn’t tell my optometrist this, just that they get worse when I’m tired, and she dilated my pupils until the dimly lit room washed out of focus. When I walked back into the entryway, a fat bald man was singing “Happy Birthday” to the next patient, a woman he had never met before. I smiled and bought a one hundred

dollar pair of sunglasses from the man because he was so charming, and I didn’t want to wear the flimsy dark glasses I was given in public. It’s too dark to focus on the floater now. I ask the room, “Do you ever think we move too quickly?” He looks up at me again. “No. Do you?” “Sometimes.” My right thumb won’t crack, and he gives up. I roll over and try to make a little room for myself on the edge of the bed. For once, I don’t feel his arms wrapped around my shoulders. I fall asleep quickly, wishing there had been a little more space.

Regentag Maddie Rizzo

fall 2015


Direct Emma Asher


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It’s Okay Johnathan Klopp It was a few years ago now your eyes washing over some aspect of the yard buried deep in the dusk and I could tell you knew you’d never have anything. never see much. just like you couldn’t see now. the words that could begin to free you never to find a seat on your tongue. and I knew you needed to be forgiven, at 12, 8, even at 6 when it happened because taking things that weren’t yours was the only way you’d ever have something to call your own.

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The Wolves are in the Pasture Thomas Pool

You crash through thick brush, sweating, scared, eyes wide from fear. Your legs have lost all feeling and the adrenaline has washed away the pain. The woods are burning and the heat sears the back of your neck. It begins to bubble up your throat, but you don’t stop, not even to wretch. You’ve put some distance between yourself and the fire but you can’t even see your own hands on this moonless night, you slow down. A howl cuts through the silent forest sky and you break into a frenzied sprint. (Run faster!) Twigs snap, leaves crackle, but its coming from behind you. Yelping as you trip, you use your hands to half-crawl and scramble to your feet, then keep running. You run fast, as fast as the shepherds did a millennia ago, when the wolves were in the pasture. The forest glows orange-red around you and the smoke begins to choke you. It’s still gaining on you. (Don’t stop!) You throw yourself through the burning brush on the bank and into the stream. Clothes wet and charred you stumble into the cool meadow, illuminated by wildfires. You think you’re safe. Its fur coarse from mange, the wolf meets your gaze, it watches as your face pales, as fear hollows your briefly hopeful eyes. The wolf squats down on its haunches, claws knead into the soil, lips part and snarl, the light dances on its fangs, all this in less than half a second. You notice none of it. Your eyes are locked on the wolf’s, they are blood red and hungry. The wolf launches with its arsenal of claws and fangs aimed at your body, which is frozen. You look only at the eyes, blood red. You look only at the eyes, blood red. The mirror is shattered. Wrists bandaged, but the hand still bleeds, clutching the glass dagger, a fang. The porcelain sink, glistening orange-red from the cheap bulbs and the blood, is washed clean once more. There is some on the bathmat, you’ll say it was wine not wolves, never wolves. You don’t feel afraid; the fear is all gone, now you’re just angry. Angry at the wolves, angry they took so much from you. You are the shepherd of the pasture. Eyes still locked with the wolf in the mirror, you snarl back.


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Arc du Cinquantenaire Alejandro Alvarez

fall 2015


Lost Philipp Ebner von Eschenbach


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Beckett Stands on a StreeT in Paris

[With lines 18 to 19 borrowed from waiting for godot] Jake Nieb

Gray branches cleave white sky, these trees in rows grow blurry. A couple holds hands: dark blends into light. You are the only thing in focus – you and one car, wipers stalled midway. Your shoulder cuts away at its door, wrinkled coat swallowing your frame, scarf tied loosely, hands tucked neat in pockets. That couple fades away but every crease in your face casts shadows; wrinkled forehead sags over dark eyes. Your parted lips ask Shall we go? They do not move. It’s just a parked car, and you, and vague tree limbs, that still couple. Silent waiting to move again. This street is not a stage but the way light reflects off the snow, you look like an actor. The ripples of your hair gesture toward a single leaf: floating blur over left shoulder. It clings and does not fall.

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Thank You Sam Dumas

You imagine we’d live in one of those brick houses, hot to the touch, odd orange in the dusk. You figure with your tongue: stubborn and industrious, wearing down your teeth to uniformity, graciously considering. Imagine you’re a diplomat -- all lengthy words and reasoning, charting wars in foreign lands, smiling suited at the embassy. A two bedroom overlooks the bridge with no jagged edges, complete with me swimming soft below and the sky stretched above like cellophane pulled taut over last week’s rotting steak dinner. Tucked into bed with an inbound train, coming slow and moldy in the tunnels from a previous brush with a dangerous collision. The fridge is bursting when you presume we’ll visit the galleries at least once a week (children and animals should be routinely fed and cared for), but there are things up on the walls squirming, thrusting outwards - once inside a chest or stomach and violently expelled. Specimens pinned down, chloroformed and dated, fascinating trifles. That’s me in the museum, chapped-lipped and choosing cabinetry. That’s me reading the placards, chock-full but dashed hard against the rocks. That’s me on the hardwood floor, cracked but superlative, your inaudible Venus de Milo.


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Heat Natalie Tarasar

fall 2015


Bend Kristie Chua


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axis tilt Alexander Olesker

My summer self is framed with fireflies Tucked in my tie, they’ll keep ‘til autumn Pop out when I jump in dry leaves semi-formal Then, when winter moon sequins snow, I feel sudden An old child, fostered by some father’s frost Tucked in tight between generations thin So spring comes always as a surprise Save for the part of me that knows What the sapling asks the oak Upon seeing its first leaf.

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Apostrophe Alexander Olesker

I wanted to write you a poem but I could only serve one sentence, see You were the direct object of my affection when like a verb I needed action Then, against my intuition. I gave you a proposition, tucked away like the preposition – Before – You put me in the past tense, we had a future, but it was conditional and even that was subjective Then a slight pause like a comma that continued like a coma Eclipsed by the ellipses that dripped from your lips, ease – – ing into invective for every adjective that punctuated that period Until the fault that finally split our infinitive, to no longer be together When you found me to be like the third exclamation point: unnecessary, overeager, a mistake But I was really just a question mark, the inflection in your affection that marks the end.


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Girl in space Franscis Balken fall 2015


Oklahoma, 2006 Jake Nieb

White blossoms erupt against this pale sky swollen with rain. A car swerves, and my nose burns with its exhaust, smoke dissolving in the air. Then I’m eleven again, and gas fumes rise from cracked asphalt. I’m dizzy, but I strap the duct tape seatbelt around my frame. Parents wave behind a blue fence. In five years I’ll buckle my own seatbelt and learn that Anaxagoras said the seed of everything is in everything else. Put yourself in the middle of the road, Dad repeats as he slants away from the passenger door. But now I’m just sitting in the rust, this go-cart, pushing the gas pedal like stepping on a peach. This sky is gray but nothing blooms yet, everything flattens into the gentle curve of the earth. One highway cuts through browning grass, and I roll my spine into the sagging seat. The fake streetlight remains red.

Minaret Against The Mountain Alejandro Alvarez


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fall 2015


Index of Maladies Natalie Tarasar


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In an amber dome Pamela Huber

I’m reading Schlachthof Funf beside Eleanor and I skim over the words, “How did I get so old?” imagine them in her caramel voice between thick, choking coughs, wondering how the fits grew unchecked for so long. I hoped to make sugar biscuits with her, collect the memory in creamy blond dreams. Take pale goldenrod dough from her hand shrunk against her veins. But papa reigns over her kitchen now, baking sheets left out for two months cool and empty on the stovetop. I leave a note about love in the margins, a small ore of truth for her to find as her mind slips between the typeset, tangles chapters up like old necklaces she once costumed me in. You’ve come unstuck in time, Eleanor. Such a brilliant mind waning in a decade of disrepair, and she hardly reads anymore. But maybe she’ll find my note, cradle the page like a precious thing, and think of me, of my solid hand in hers.

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One Day in August Jake Nieb

Black concrete shimmers in the distance, reflecting the pink and blue signs of buildings Matt and I can’t quite make out. I’ve stopped wearing my glasses, but I see a woman crossing the street purposefully. Her daughter hops from white bar to white bar while a red hand winks at them; my hand falls to my side, swinging slightly behind Matt’s while I try to remember the way I used to cross streets with my mother. I can’t remember the way the soft flesh of my hands, so small, melted completely into hers; but I know I never played hopscotch across intersections. The girl makes it to the other side, safely, without touching the concrete. Matt and I cross the threshold of Safeway, and I shiver at the force of cool air resisting my body. I watch myself in the video cameras, wondering if my right shoulder is always higher than my left. You can’t tell on such a small screen, but my right ear rests higher than the left – maybe shoulders and ears are connected. I make brief eye contact with Matt through the camera. He grabs a cart, we tear the list in half, and split up.


It’s a Boy! blooms before my eyes, the silver balloon pulling its string taught. I finger a bouquet of purple irises, waiting for the sweat on the small of my back to dry. I think about where to put them back home. Certainly not our room – the windows are too small for that, only good for peering out between closed blinds. The kitchen? Matt and I make chicken enchiladas and guacamole on Thursdays, which means the window would be open at least once a week. I’m mentally sorting the loose change and paperclips on the kitchen counter, finding the perfect position. A little to the left. Another balloon inflates. The salesman nods expectantly, gesturing to his flowers. I take a last long look at all that purple, but that spot in the kitchen won’t get enough light. Something between a no and a grunt catches in my throat, but I thank him, smoothing my crinkled list.


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Good Luck Kristie Chua

fall 2015


Honeycrisps look good this time of year. Their waxy red skin shines under humming fluorescent lights. I drop four into a bag, balancing green bananas in the crook of my elbow while trying to smell and then stack cartons of raspberries and strawberries on my forearm. Something hits the small of my back and a shower of fruit cascades from my arms. Matt’s laughing, his cart inches from where I’m standing. His canine teeth flash when he smiles. Maybe it’s the lighting, or the annoyance knotting my intestines, but I never noticed it before. I don’t think I’ve ever really looked him in the mouth when he laughs. It must be the lighting. I crouch on the ground, scooping up the fruit no one will eat. One raspberry rolled so far under the stand I can’t reach it; my fingers grasp at nothing. _____________________ When we’re home, we peel off sweat-stained shirts and unpack the groceries in our underwear. He makes a show of taking the raspberries out of the plastic bag with the care of someone defusing a bomb, and this time I laugh. With the groceries away, he runs a cool shower. I pull back the curtain and join him, smiling, and it’s almost like when we had just moved in. There wasn’t a bed then: we laid a stack of blankets on the floor in the center of the bedroom, sleeping with my hip nested into the angle made by his legs and stomach. We shared two morning-breath kisses before I stretched my sore muscles and went to the bathroom. No curtain or liner cleaved the space over the bathtub when I showered that first morning. He joined me, and I smiled as the drops that clung to the ends of his hair and eyelashes dropped one by one. Returning my watery smile, he closed his eyes and leaned in until his face swam and the drops fell onto my lips. The water pooled outside the tub and into the hallway. Neither of us noticed.

Visiting Mumtaz Pooja Patel


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fall 2015


Washington Noir Alexander Olesker

When I got my DC license, I wrote you a love poem Because you’re beautiful tonight Police light Rouges your cheeks and shadows your eyes But though you move to sirens, you dance to Go-go Often at the same club.


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Tranquility Ian MacMillan

fall 2015


1558 Charles Clayton


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Salt Water for sore throats Amanda Hodes

What were you thinking when you took her hand? A pale blue as though no skin lied between you and the ocean, Plunkbut no splash as you submerged yourself in her turbulent waters that you housed yourself in and claimed in the same way you clawed your books into your caving chest. Gaspingfor the dusty air, just so you could feel it get caught inside your scratching throat, among other things, like to then wash it down with water, the kind you tried to love, but never drank without a reason, Sputteringup bubbles beneath her waves, and flailing to the surface, because try as you might, you couldn’t grow gills, and as much as you drowned yourself, as much as you inhaled the library grime, you couldn’t buy a book big enough to house your expectations and self-righteous morals or your fears that overflow her ocean, the kind of ocean you only ever swam in when the sun was too sweltering for your translucent body, Sizzlingunder the heat of any and everything you couldn’t control, so you drenched yourself in her, caught yourself up in the tangles of her grabbing hair, shoved deep into the dark trencwhes of the ocean, spitting out saltwater to take in moreAll to wash out the dust from your itching throat and reemerge wheezing and searching for more hands to pull you up above the surface, but hide you from the light.

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Act two Hannah Tiner

We were drunk on white marble and the grandiose idea that any of this mattered. My lungs heaved, exalting in the summer air but the message was lost in the thick July night. Pillars could not stop us and ivory towers were no match for this full-spectrum lust. We rubbed greasy palms on old masterpieces and called it art, bowing at the curtain close.

Odessa Amanda Hodes


american literary magazine

fall 2015


wrench diptych Franscis Balken


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Half-Asleep, Looking at van Gogh’s Irises Grace Cassidy

We slipped into the same warm bed of April, forgetting each other less than a mile away. Death is shifting in its sleep, giving way to the hands of spring: some are sobbing blue, some receiving sun. You took lemon and salt to salmon, oil and a cube of sugar to dry skin. I wear hats on bad hair days and don’t drink enough water. Did you know all our spoons were wiped clean from our kitchen in a blistering July? I can hear God’s small voice in a rare fantasy as your favorite show competes with static on the television set in the living room thirty feet away. The calendar’s propeller brought us to December. Iris petals tuck quietly into journals. All the cable lines are down. The lemon trees, uprooted.

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Brรกcha Emma Asher


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Rue de Bleury Maddie Rizzo

fall 2015


Meeting like a poem Alexander Olesker You folded with my hands Like an origami crane Transparent rice paper thin You were a blank page ashamed Afraid I would not draw potential On your untouched sheets And so you hid Like words in a crease And wished to be Beautiful Without being read


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MUNICH Philipp Ebner von Eschenbach

fall 2015


fish bowl Anna Rutenbeck

the last time i rode my bike i was 15-years-old i had just broken up with my first boyfriend my bike was purple and plain and didn’t have any bells my boyfriend had tried to kill someone with a screwdriver i rode the bike to the top of a hill and rolled down asfastasicould which wasn’t very fast because the purple bike was shitty and i was a skinny 15-year-old i did this over and over until i crashed into a pond and the pond was filled with frogs and little tiny fish and the fish lodged themselves in my shoes when i stood up i killed dozens


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Green Veins Philipp Ebner von Eschenbach

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Through a Glass, Darkly JJ Blake


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Liberal spirit Elizabeth Thorne


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Sometime Later/You Will Grace Cassidy Always make yourself cold, hardboiled eggs for breakfast. In the fridge sits a carton of a dozen, until over fine china one broken yoke unfolds like “I forgot to grow” (or harden on the stovetop, never freezing itself hot). Maybe I’m not that hungry after all. What was it you said about building bones, or breaking them down? I know you will surprise me with how small you seem. Teach me how to make bread crisp but dry out the dough until it can no longer be kneaded. I can’t fill any plate with a dish so unsatisfying. I tell myself it’s lethargy that’s making you forget me when you get crumbs all over the table and just wipe them to the floor where they fall to the knots of the wood. No broom can clean your mess. They stick, stay stagnant, drier than your favorite Sunday wine, wedged so secure I ignore. Mid-June beetles will knock at the screen window. You’ll let each one inside from wherever you are. They’ll eat whatever is between the floorboards, months’ worth of stale nothings that couldn’t make a meal if they tried. Their wings will shatter my sleep, restless, as they fill their bellies with what you left. They’ll feast until nothing more can build them so they’ll squeeze themselves between my window and its frame in search of tougher shells, your eggs uncracked.


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Chinatown Kristie Chua

fall 2015


Gigi Maddie Rizzo


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Tyler Maddie Rizzo

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June, somewhere Grace Cassidy i. today we drove in circles around East Hampton pretending we were fucking rich with work or whatever and had manicured nails and lawns and no split ends on the hair on our heads we’ve got white teeth not stained by smokes and food that’s bad for us no not us ii. You make fun of the song on the radio bleeding through from another kHz wave. You talk about The Hobbit like it was so important. I bite my tongue from hitting a pothole, laughing until the blood spill is all over the front of my blouse. I keep driving and my mouth has sanitized itself again.

I Don’t If You Don’t Steven Baboun fall 2015


POSTPARTUM EXILE Melissa Scholes Young | Faculty Contribution

Most days I feel about a minute from a mess. The thought surprises Claire. She opens her eyes and registers the baby’s cry. 6:12 a.m. Mentally she does the math. One hour and thirty-seven minutes of uninterrupted sleep. Two hours and twelve minutes before that, with a thirty-two minute nursing session squeezed between. The documenting of her sleep, or lack thereof, is a habit she began six months ago when Sarah was two days old. Claire listens to her husband snoring a moment longer. Her bare feet hit the freezing, hardwood floor and she swats at the nightstand in search of her glasses. Sarah’s cry elevates to a wail, and her limbs flail spastically against the crib slats. “I’m coming, girl,” Claire calls. Her breasts fill with milk as she pads down the hallway to the baby’s room. The cotton on the front of her nightgown moistens, and a half-eaten Cheerio sticks to the bottom of her big toe. Sunlight streams through the window and makes symmetrical patterns on the floor. “Damn it, Thomas,” she mumbles. Why can’t he remember to close the shades? Maybe the baby would sleep longer in a dark room. Maybe Claire could get some decent sleep then, too. And maybe she might start feeling like a human being again. She sighs, scoops up Sarah, and falls into the rocking chair to nurse. Sarah reaches up and palms Claire’s cheek with one hand while she latches on and kneads her breast with the other. Most days I feel about a minute from a mess. When Sarah finally detaches herself from Claire, milk pools in the corners of her mouth and streams down her cheek. Claire slings the baby over her shoulder like a sack. She stumbles to the espresso machine and hits the “double” button just as the baby lets out a gurgling burp. Claire hears the regurgitated


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chunks of milk hit the floor before she smells the stale breath. Tears sting her eyes. She reaches for the paper towels. She tries to name her mood with a color., black. Dr. Seuss says it best. Then come my black days. Mad. And loud. I howl. I growl at every cloud. Claire’s therapist suggested that she process her depression by naming the colors of her moods. It is distracting that every time she identifies a mood and successfully labels its color, Sarah’s Dr. Seuss book My Many Colored Days pops into her mind. Claire gulps the coffee and forgets to feed herself again. Six months ago she stood at this same counter sprinkling French toast with freshly ground cinnamon and nutmeg and topping it with blackberries, denying the labor pains that crept up her abdomen. The thought induces a gag, and she spits the coffee back into her mug. Thomas comes around the kitchen corner humming to himself. The cheerful noise is abrasive. She sees the drops of water in his curly dark hair, and her nostrils flair at the smell of soap. Thomas kisses her forehead and lifts the baby from Claire’s shoulder. “Are you feeling any better today, honey?” he asks. The color purple clouds her vision. On purple days I’m sad. I groan. I drag my tail. I walk alone. She feels dizzy with too much caffeine, too little food, and not enough sleep. “No, Thomas. I don’t FEEL GOOD. Is that okay?” According to Thomas, the symptoms are in Claire’s head. Everyone experiences a little stress and sleep deprivation with a newborn, right? Quit being so hard on yourself. Buck up, Claire. Dark colored moods aren’t welcome here. Claire stands at the kitchen sink and watches Thomas’ car back out of the driveway. She knows he is listening to NPR and his thoughts are already on the office. The phone rings and Claire scans the crowded counter for the cordless receiver. It’s missing

again. Piles of baby books, dirty dishes, and unopened mail have taken over. Cindy, her former legal partner, announces on the answering machine that she is sending over those two new novels. Claire had seen the authors on Oprah but lied over lunch about reading their reviews from the New York Times. She knew it was a safe perjure, and though Cindy subscribes, she never reads the Book Review on Sundays. Claire picks up a dishrag from the sink and begins wiping around the piles. She sweeps the crumbs off the counter into her hand. She is shoving most of the food under the books and Mommy and Me flyers. The sheets of paper bleed when the rag’s dampness brushes them. Claire tosses the fluorescent

plastic mind and assumes if he feels like her, he wants to crawl under the covers, too. The phone interrupts the menagerie and Claire glances at the clock. She knows it is Thomas calling from work. “How about now, Claire-Bear? How’s today?” he’d say in his best sympathetic voice. As if an aspirin and a good multivitamin would fix her all up. Kiss and make mommy better. “Depression,” the therapist said, “doesn’t need friends who demand appropriate masks. She needs to feel this, Thomas, in a safe place.” Claire doesn’t want to feel any of it, though. She craves a yellow day. And whee...I am a busy, buzzy bee. The depression pumping through her veins is pure yellow. But the


sheets into the overflowing trash. They’ve been staring at her for months reminding her of this self-imposed exile. Everyone else seems to be doing this better. Play dates, library story time, music class, and postpartum gym sessions. Her last hot shower was three days ago. By noon Claire decides she is at least settling on a green day. Deep, deep in the sea. Cool and quiet fish. That’s me. Sarah grasps at the plastic Fisher Price animals strewn on the living room floor. An elephant ear is nearly gummed off. The giraffe lies with its legs in the air. A tiger prowls near by. Claire plays the part of zookeeper, but she keeps sneaking the little man back into his tiny bed. She imagines she can read his little

hue is not a sunny, bright yellow. It’s a Dijon mustard shade resembling the seedy, wet projections in the baby’s diaper that reward her after each nursing. Claire’s stomach rumbles again as she lays the baby down for her afternoon nap. She considers napping herself but decides she has been punishing her body too long with hunger. Food might feel good. At least something will. She hates her insides for betraying her like this. Her secrets are seeping out. Be a good girl, Claire. Keep those bad moods inside. You’re a mom. This is the happiest time of your life, right? She grabs the last Diet Coke from the fridge and a crumpled bag of potato chips and sinks into the couch. Another sigh escapes. What color is

fall 2015


this? Then comes a mixed up day and Wham! I don’t know who or what I am! The house seems quiet now except for the dishwasher screaming to be emptied and the dog whining to be fed and the laundry whimpering to be washed. Claire rests her legs on the couch and her eyes fall shut. She wants to read something but she knows can’t. She used to read novels and literary nonfiction. Her monthly Book Club met at local restaurants and debated the merits of each plot and author over five course meals and bottles of wine. It’s hard to believe now that life ever existed. But when my days are happy pink. It’s great to jump and just not think. Claire doubts she’ll ever see pink again. The stinging tears return and she brushes them away with the back of her hand. But it’s too late. The heaves begin deep in her empty belly and exit through her parched mouth. She bites her bottom lip to muffle the sobs and not wake Sarah.


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The baby cries again at 4:14. Twenty-two minutes. She grabs a box of granola Thomas left on the counter from breakfast. Claire decides she’ll munch on it while Sarah nurses. Maybe it will settle her nerves and her stomach. As she rocks in Sarah’s room, she realizes it is a grey day. Everything is grey. I watch. But nothing moves today. The phone rings and again she ignores it. Thomas’ voice drones through the flashing green light. He’ll pick up Chinese food on his way home. Her favorite. Chicken Teriyaki and Crab Rangoon. Thomas seems to be waiting for her to just snap out of this. Wasn’t this everything Claire wanted? They have been planning and waiting for this baby through seven years of marriage. He thinks Claire’s sadness is just a little overindulgence. She just needs to pull herself together. Smile a little. “Claire, this baby stuff is just like all those all nighters from law school. Remember?” They would meet for breakfast

at the Union and smuggle pots of coffee out in stainless steel carafes. Thomas’ dirty coffee cup left a stain on her nightstand. When Thomas walks through the door, he carries two plastic takeout sacks. China One is stamped in red ink. The fried smell reaches Claire and she swings around so Sarah can see him over her shoulder. The baby’s legs kick her stomach at sight of Thomas. A string of drool connects the nightgown and its multicolored stains to Thomas’ black suit as she places Sarah in the crook of his arm. Thomas leans down to listen to Sarah’s coos and inhale her baby bath aroma. Claire turns her back on both of them and closes the bedroom door. Then she crawls beneath the crumpled sheets. But it all turns out all right, you see. And I go back to being me.

Horizon Wireless Anand Adhikari

fall 2015


Old Brush Franscis Balken


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Blessing for the Liver David Keplinger | Faculty Contribution

The heart with its lies Is a lesser thing, neither Dangerous nor kind, The serpent, the lonely. And the brain is where The world once grew From the smallest tree in the orchard, The apple my great-grandfather Carves with a razor for eternity, Twirling it in his hands To eat, delectable Fruit we are too much of. But cut the liver from my body intact, Which faced all my poisons. No wonder it’s the bearer Of the soul, stone at the end of my life.

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Biographies Anand Adhikari is a hoarder, Dunkin’ Donuts enthusiast, Costco pizza addict, professional dam builder in local creeks, Chuck E Cheese’s troll, and the proud owner of a cactus named Lucian. Alejandro Alvarez is a journalist and photographer. He’d like to thank the Academy, his camera (her name is Chloe <3 ), mum and dad, the photo gods (praise be upon their pixels), and all of his friends who’ve patiently waited around while he was determined to get the perfect shot. Emma Asher looks like someone on a television show nobody watches. Film, graphic design, psychology, ’16. Steven Baboun is a Junior majoring in Film and Media Arts and minoring in Education. He’s from Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and loves to collect seashells and make necklaces. When he isn’t making photographs, he Instagrams his food for Spoon AU and produces a music show at American Television. Franscis Balken is a new member of the AmFam. She’s into studio art and fashion and loves being invited in the art scene at AU. Batol Bashri is just killin time till champagne papi comes to sweep her off her feet. JJ Blake was born and raised. She is a junior studying Film and Media Arts and Creative Writing at AU. Through a Glass, Darkly was her passion project this summer and is elated that it is featured in AmLit’s Fall 2015 issue. Grace Cassidy sucks. Kristie Chua is screaming, probably.


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Charles Clayton: Amateur Storyteller. Professional Bipolar. Sam Dumas is comfy but slutty. Philipp Ebner von Eschenbach is from Germany and usually doesn’t know what’s going on. Even Google couldn’t tell him what to write here. Pls don’t h8 him. Amanda Hodes is currently a Freshman Music and Literature double major at AU. She’s from a small town in Pennsylvania and loves to play classical guitar, write music and poetry, and draw. Pamela Huber wants to listen to Brand New and drink SoCo amaretto lime with you. David Keplinger teaches in the department of literature at American University. “Blessing for the Liver” is the first poem of his first collection, The Rose Inside, which won the 1999 TS Eliot Award. He’s translated three collections of poems from northern European writers, produced an album, By & By, and published five books of poetry, most recently the forthcoming The Book of Distances from Milkweed Press. Jonathan Klopp declined to give a bio. Ian MacMillan stole your girl... again. Molly McGinnis is a Junior. That’s not as scary as she thought it would be, but it’s close. She is the recipient of the 2015 Winter Tangerine Award for Prose, and is probably going abroad next semester, God knows where. Scott Mullins is working to stop my procrastination. He’ll have get back to you on that.

Jonathan Murray- Beep Beep Whose Got Keys To The Jeep Jake Nieb is a crusty old leaf. Alexander Olesker writes at a standing desk facing the window. Claire Osborn is currently idolizing Bob Ross. Luke Palermo: Traditional folklore holds that Luke was a Hessian artilleryman who was killed during the Battle of White Plains in 1776, decapitated by an American cannonball. Buried in the graveyard of the Old Dutch Church of Sleepy Hollow, he rises each Halloween night as a malevolent ghost, furiously seeking his lost head. Pooja Patel is two parts caffeine and one part double-stuffed oreos.

the River, and other journals. Melissa’s work has been anthologized in the book A Cup of Comfort for Teachers. Natalie Tarasar is a senior who paints emotion through distortion in order to represent fragments of human perception. Elizabeth Thorne is a sophomore who hailes from Charlottesville, Virginia, currently studying International Relations and Japanese language . She hopes that someday Mr. Talent will rub his tentacles on her art. Hannah Tiner is a sophomore double majoring in International Studies and Communications. In her spare time she plays rugby and maintains an unhealthy coffee addiction. Evan White is a computer science major. He believes that computer science is part art and part engineering, and wanted to show that with his piece.

Thomas Pool wants to name his cat Che Purrvera and teach it Marxist theory. Mikala Rempe’s heart is very full. Maddie Rizzo is that that weird cat lady who’s someday going to live alone in a house with twenty cats. She can’t wait. Anna Rutenbeck is a Senior in the School of Communication. She is from Vermont. Melissa Scholes Young is a mother, writer, teacher, wife, pathological reader, and professional juggler, in the metaphorical sense. Her essays, fiction and poetry have been published in Mothering, Literary Mama, Mom Writer’s Literary Magazine, The New Plains Review, Writings from

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Mikala Rempe Jake Nieb

Molly McGinnis Sam Dumas

Julianna Sacks Anneliese Waters

PROSE EDITORS Grace Cassidy Thomas Pool


PHOTO EDITORS Pooja Patel Carolyn Hamilton

ASSISTANT PHOTO EDITORS Shayna Vasyer Ashleigh Shaw

ART EDITORS Batol Bashri Rachel Cohen

ASSISTANT ART EDITORS Franscis Balken Ian MacMillan


Emma Bartley Carolyn Schneider Sofia Kim Maya Simkin Jessica Dodman Nicole Brunet

ASSISTANT COPY EDITOR Kelly Conner Sydney Hamilton Tessa Ann Stewart Paige Gilmar

DESIGN EDITOR Janella Polack

ASSISTANT DESIGN EDITORS Shelby Moring Maddie Rizzo Claire Osborn


LEAD BLOGGERS Brandon Latham Omar Tisza

BLOGGING TEAM Tova Seltzer Maya Simkin

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Pamela Huber Jonathan Murray Kris Trivedi Conor MacVarish Mercy Griffith Peter Scott Philipp Ebner von Eschenbach Jonathan Klopp Tyler Lin Amanda Hodes Matt Bernabeo

son of asshole goat Kristie Chua

fall 2015


Chawla Jonathan Murray


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Thank You A SPECIAL THANK YOU TO OUR DONORS WHO MADE THIS MAGAZINE POSSIBLE: George and Doree Dickerson Mike Benjamin Diane Dickerson Larry Smith Carlos Martins-Filho and Cynthia Irion Tom Byington Kathy Falewee Diane Chappen Jerry and Shelley Rempe Emma Bartley Dan Merica Corey Newman Emily and Ryan McGee Florence Gubanc Pooja Patel Bruce and KC Graves Julia Irion Martins Elaina Hundley Jake Nieb Mattea Falk Meera Nathan Annie Buller Dayna Hansberger Julianna Twiggs Edman Urias Noah Friedman Julia Hester Tiffany Wong Mikala Rempe Gloria Pappalardo Brendan Williams-Childs Lorriane Holmes Janella Polack AmLit would also like to thank our fellow Student Media Board organizations, The American Word, American Way of Life, Photo Collective, The Eagle, WVAU, Her Campus, and ATV for collaborating with us. We are continually impressed by your dedication and consider ourselves fortunate to be associated with your excellence.

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american literary magazine

Father daughter Kristie Chua fall 2015


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