Beyond Words Literary Magazine, Issue 16, July 2021

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Bey on d W or d s ? I n ter n ati on al L i ter ar y M agazi n e I ssu e 16, Ju ly 20 21 Ed i tor : Gal Sl on i m Read er s: D esi r e A m ei gh , Ri l ey M ay es, Ly n d a Scott A r ay a an d San L i n T u n

D esi r e A m ei gh i s an En gl i sh i n str u ctor at W al l ace Com m u n i ty Col l ege i n Eu f au l a, A l abam a, an d an i n com i n g Ph D can d i d ate i n th e En gl i sh D ep ar tm en t at Au bu r n U n i ver si t y. H er w or k i s r ecor d ed , p u bl i sh ed , or f or th com i n g i n Prometheus D reaming, Beyond Words, Big W hoopie D eal, FreshPickedProse (wFSU ), an d D runk M onkeys. Ri l ey M ay es i s a f u l l - ti m e stu d en t an d essen ti al w or ker cu r r en tly l i v i n g i n B r u n sw i ck , M ai n e. W h en sh e i s n ot w or k i n g th r ou gh th e h eap s of book s on h er bed si d e tabl e, y ou ?ll f i n d h er ou t i n t h e w ood s or th e m ou n tai n s. Sh e h as en joy ed h u m bl e p u bl i cati on s of h er w or k i n sever al p r i n t an d on l i n e p u bl i cati on s. L y n d a Sco t t A r ay a i s a N ew Z eal an d sh or t f i cti on w r i ter w h o, i n cr easi n gly, i s veer i n g i n to som e n on f i ct i on w r i ti n g. Sh e of ten w r i tes abou t h er f am i ly, h er gr i ef an d d om esti c m atter s. San L i n T u n i s a f r eel an ce w r i ter of essay s, p oetr y, sh or t stor y an d n ovel i n M y an m ar . H e h as p u bl i sh ed over ten En gl i sh book s i n cl u d i n g h i s r ecen t n ovel "A n En gl i sh w r i ter ." H e i s cu r r en t ly a gu est f i cti on ed i tor of A m br osi al L i t er ar y Gar l an d O n l i n e M agazi n e.

Cop y r i gh t © B ey on d W or d s Pu bl i sh i n g H ou se, B er l i n , Ger m an y Fi r st p r i n t i n g, Ju ly 20 21 I SBN 978- 3- 948977- 14- 6


W h i l e t h e H o u se B u r n s D ow n Su si e N ak ash M y f ath er p l ay s t h e p i ccol o. I n si d e th e l i v i n g r oom h e br eath es ash i n to th e m et al sn ake, k i sses th e cr eat u r e f er ven tly w i th an af t er t ast e of d i si n gen u ou s i n t i m aci es? i t l ets ou t a sof t m u r m u r . Secr et i n f i d el i t y si n ged bel ow t h e stai r s. M y f ath er f i n ger s t h e i n str u m en t . Fi r e car esses t h e cu r ves of h i s back , l u r i n g ou t d r op l et s of sw eat

H i s br eath tr avel s th r ou gh th e w ood w i n d , i t cr oon s? a d r u n ken ly - su p p r essed tu n e d i es ou t, cr estf al l en , w h i l e a n aked bod y of sm oke an d f l am e gr eets m e ben eath m y sh eets.

sl ow ly, th e em ber s t ease? We will take you last, w ar r an ti n g on ly a r esp on se of l u stf u l f r i ct i on agai n st si lver .

A r tw or k : Ger ar d o Gam a

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Seal egs Au gu st Ri tch ar t You r w ar m w aves l ap U p acr oss an d th r ou gh M y f or m er ly sh i ver i n g f l an k . T r aci n g a Febr u ar y su m m er ?s br eeze Past th e gor ge an d over th e m ou n tai n W h i ch y ou m u st h ave kep t i n y ou r f i n ger ti p s Saved f r om som e d i stan t p or t. Su n k i ssed sap p ed an d ch ap p ed I steal a gl an ce over th e h u l l To i n sp ect ou r k n ot . Sk y ?s n ever seem ed so cl ear .

A r tw or k : Jam i e Par k s

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M u sée D ?O r say C l o ck Tex t an d A r tw or k : K i m Sosi n D r i n k t h em i n , agai n , agai n , agai n , on p eer l ess su bl i m e w al l s, i n cal cu l abl e v al u e. Reach t h e l ast r oom r ef l ect i on s i n ti m e t h r ou gh ar m s h an d s, n u m ber s w at ch es over th e Sei n e, over t h e L ou v r e. Each t i m e I w on d er A r e y ou a d ef en d er ? A t i m e sen ti n el ? A p r ot ect or f r om sl eet , w i n d , age? O r a t i ck i n g r em i n d er of t h e r av age of ti m e, t h at ou r gen i u s ou r ep h em er al cr eati on s l ast on ly a m om en t?

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C en t er o f t h e U n i v er se Joh n Gossl ee T h e w el l bu cket d i d n ?t f i l l th e cu p of m y h an d s, an d I l i cked m y f i n ger s. T h i r st y as h el l , I t r i ed to sel l th e m oon w h at th e su n saw t h r ou gh t h e cl ou d s, an d I bet th e su n , th at t h e m oon w ou l d n ?t bu y, an d th ey both p ai d m e. * I ap ol ogi zed f or m y tr i ck an d ch an ged , bu t m et am or p h osi s i s n ever good en ou gh w h en t h e p ar t y l i n e i s a gh ost th at w an t s y ou t o joi n i t f or ever . A th i ck cl ou d bl ow i n g over th e ear th ?s f ace k n ow s m or e t h an I d o abou t bei n g si m p l e. A com et sees t h e sol ar sy stem an d m oves on , bu t I can ?t l et go. I r each ou t a h an d to catch i t, an d t h e gh ost s f i l l i t w i th bl ood to m ake u p f or t h e w ater , an d I am st i l l t h i r sty.

A r tw or k : Ci or D i Fi or e

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Fr ozen N ow s D an y Gagn on I w an t t o m em or i ze th i s m om en t bef or e an y m n em on i c p r u n i n g bef or e m y m i n d con d em n s i ts qu al e bef or e i t d eci d es i ts p oten ti al f or p r ed i ct i n g t h e f u tu r e an d y et

I n eed t h i s p r eci ou s i n stan t p i gm en ted w i th t h e h eat f r om th e m or n i n g cof f ee f i gh t i n g aw ay t h e col d ai r m ov i n g i n f or ci n g a r et r eat u n d er th e qu i l t w i n t er m or n i n g w i th n o h ave- to- d o

I w an t t o i m p r i n t th ese sen sati on s p eace bef or e an y qu al m s of con sci en ce ti m e f or t h ou gh ts to tr avel to th e h ear t str i n gs of n ot h i n g - r osar i es of l i ves th at w i l l n ever su r v i ve m y d em i se

A r tw or k : Pau l a D eStef an i s

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A u b ad e f o r t h e m o o n w h o i s d r i f t i n g aw ay N i ch ol as Pagan o You h over i n m y r ef l ecti on A bove m y r i gh t ey e. I t sn ow ed al l n i gh t, A n d n ow t h r ou gh m or n i n g cl ou d br eak s, y ou r f ace Gen tl e an d si lver , w atch i n g sad ly th e w h ol e col d ear t h an d i ts p eop l e. You ?r e m ov i n g aw ay, p ack i n g y ou r th i n gs A n d cr eep i n g ou t ju st l i ke th e ti d e, y ou r ch i l d D r ags i t s sh ar e of sh el l s i n to i ts bod y an d d ep ar ts. You ?r e m ov i n g at t h e sp eed ou r f i n ger n ai l s gr ow, Sl ow en ou gh t h at w e?ll beat y ou to th e p u n ch . So h u m an n at u r e en su r es th er e w i l l be n oth i n g l ef t For y ou t o aban d on , m oon . W h en y ou l eave, i t ?ll be f r om a qu i et k i n gd om O f em p t y w i n d ow s, each w i th th ei r f l at coi n s of br eath , T h e ti t h e l ef t beh i n d by p oets bi g an d sm al l For h av i n g k n ow n y ou .

A r tw or k : T y r on e J. W ebb I I

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T im e Out Br u ce M agn otti T h e p ast i s a d eep bl ack h ol e beh i n d You ar e t h e su r v i vor of y ou r ow n m i n d D ar k d r am a, tr au m a, d r ead T h er e i s n oth i n g l ef t bu t w h at y ou sai d

T h e f u t u r e i s a steep sl op e ah ead A d eep d ar k f or est w h er e y ou can ?t tr ead H op es, d esi r es, goal s, an d sch em es W h at ex i sts th er e, ar e on ly i n y ou r d r eam s

T h e p r esen t i s a br i gh t k n i f e- ed ge A w h i r l i n g d er v i sh d an ci n g on a l ed ge A sen se of ti m e i m p ossi bl e to ch eat L i ke a f i gh ter jet ejecti on seat

A r tw or k : L ou Stor ey

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W o r k i n g O n M y sel f t h e Pr o b l em H eath er Gl u ck Apologizing Exposing

I f ed y ou m y p ast r i es, th e p oi son th at som e p eop l e cr ave.

I cou l d n ?t stay a gap i n g w ou n d th e w ay I h ad t o. To h ear I w as th e w er ew ol f . To tu r n i n to th e m an .

I d i d n ?t m ean t o, bu t w h y d ebate th e tem p er of a d ay t i m e k i l l er .

M oving On

Stopping the Problem

Ever y w or d y ou l ay agai n st m e d r aw s a w r i n k l e on y ou r sn ar l i n g f ace.

I h ave t o cr ack op en y ou r jaw, to p l u g t h e h ol e w h er e th e bi l e sp ew s.

I d on ?t h ave sp ace f or y ou r m i r r or s i n th e ch am p agn e r oom of m y f u tu r e.

T h i s i s a h azar d , i t ?s a saf ety r equ i r em en t. i t?s col d w or k w h en i t?s m y tox i c r u n of f gu r gl i n g an d st ew i n g i n th er e.

I r eal ly al m ost sai d , I can?t believe this is happening again.

T idying Up M y gu i l t h as h ar d en ed to an ger an d th e f l ow i n g m i l k , m y l ove f or y ou cu r d l es w h en y ou cal l i t sou r .

A r tw or k : A n d r ea L ew i ck i

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T i d es o f Red d est D i sq u i et D i ck A l tm an H ow d o I tel l y ou

y ou w h o su r v i ve

th at th e steel

p r obi n g th e h i gh est ven ou s p r om on tor y i n m y l ef t ar m ?s cr ook

an d f r om w h i ch p ou r s y ou r l i f e an d m i n e

th at th i s n u m i n ou s ex t r acti on occu r s bu t r ar est l ove

H ow d o I tel l y ou

w i l l n ot be f or gotten

th at ever y si x m on th s

i t?s ti m e to cu l l th e ver m i l i on h er d u n n oti ced m on u m en ts

th at y ou r sacr i f i ces

th at th e d ead w i l l alw ay s be p ar t

of ou r col l ecti ve m em or y th e m i cr oscop e

n ot of an ger

w h en

an d p u t y ou / m e u n d er

y ou r u n f l i n ch i n g gen er osi ty w i l l n ot go

H ow d o I tel l y ou or f an f ar es

w h en ti m es d em an d

th er e w i l l be n o eu l ogi es

on ly si l en t r ecogn i ti on th at

y ou gi ve w i th ou t p au se or r ecom p en se

gi ve so th e r est of y ou r br eth r en

th ei r teem i n g f l ow

con ti n u es to tr aver se h i gh w ay s an d by w ay s of th i s bod y th i s m i n d an d r etu r n

gi v i n g br eath to sy l l abl es r i d i n g ti d es of y ou r ebb A n d beh i n d m y gr ati tu d e

ever y h al f y ear

ter r i f i ed th e r ou ge l i qu eu r m i gh t i n f est w i th sh ar k s bl ad e- tooth ed eel s

an d oth er p r ed aci ou s m etap h or s

A r tw or k : Tan i a L . Betan cou r t

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A T r ee A sp en Stod d ar d

A r tw or k : M att Gol d

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For t oo l on g, I l ooked ou tsi d e, f or th at?s w h er e ever y t h i n g w as h ap p en i n g. O u t of th e k i tch en w i n d ow n ear t h e al m on d tr ee, p ecked n ear ly to d eath by th e r ed w ood p ecker th at w ou l d w ake u s. W e l oved th at bi r d , bu t w e h at ed th at i t w as k i l l i n g ou r tr ee. I r em em ber t h e Yu ban cof f ee bu t can ?t r em em ber w h at w e at e f or br eak f ast. W as i t alw ay s H on ey Bu n ch es of O ats? W as i t bef or e L i n ?s sol d or gan i c m i l k ? W as i t br ow n su gar an d ci n n am on Pop -Tar ts? W as i t l aced w i th n i coti n e an d th e Pi n ot Gr i gi o w e d ow n ed t h e n i gh t bef or e? W as i t ou tsi d e besi d e th e tr ee? O r ju st m or e cof f ee an d l et?s go l i e back d ow n ? I d on ?t r em em ber , bu t i t d oesn ?t m atter ; I w ou l d go back i n an i n st an t i f I cou l d . H i s m ot h er l ooked at th e si ck tr ee, tol d u s to cal l a tr ee d oct or , an d I w on d er ed i f th at w as th e an sw er , i f th e tr ee w as st i l l at th e p oi n t of sav i n g. I al so w or r i ed abou t t h e w ood p ecker , i f i t w ou l d m ove on an d f i n d a d i f f er en t t r ee, i f i t w ou l d l eave u s. T h e r oot s of t h e tr ee u p l i f ted th e si d ew al k to ou r d oor . A n d i f y ou d i d n ?t k n ow an y better , y ou m i gh t tr i p an d f al l i n t o t h e t r ee, an d k n ock l oose i ts bi tter f r u i t, th e al m on d s I ?ve t asted on m or e th an on e occasi on , cu r i ou s i f a d y i n g tr ee cou l d sti l l p r od u ce som eth i n g

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sw eet. Bu t th e al m on d s m ad e m y ton gu e cu r l , sp r ead a ch em i cal i n m y m ou th I assu m ed w as t ox i c, an d i t w ou l d take a w h i l e bef or e I cou l d d u l l th e t ast e. I l ooked ou tsi d e f or th e an sw er to w h at w as h ap p en i n g betw een u s. I t m ad e m or e sen se th an to l ook t o h i s ey es f or an sw er s. For th e on ly th i n g I f ou n d i n h i s f ace w as a k n otted con f u si on , a f ar ew el l st u ck i n i t s i n f an cy. I cou l d see w h at w as gon e bef or e I l ost i t . A n d I ?m star ti n g to bel i eve th at i t n ever w as m i n e t o begi n w i th ? th at?s w h at th ey say abou t l ove: t h at i t ?s on ly y ou r s i f af ter i t?s gon e, i t com es back . A n d I ?m st i l l w ai ti n g. O u t of th e k i tch en w i n d ow n ear th e al m on d t r ee, w e sp en t th at su m m er h an gi n g cl oth es on a r op e an d sp r ay i n g th em w i th bl each . T h e n ei gh bor w ou l d com e to tal k to u s, th r ou gh a h ol e i n th e su m m er f ol i age, t h e l eaves of th e tr ee an d th e gr ap ev i n es I cu t aw ay t o t r y to r ev i ve. Sh e tol d u s abou t h er d au gh t er w h o w as ad d i cted to d r u gs, w h o sh e m i ssed an d w i sh ed sh e cou l d save. I tu r n ed m y ey es aw ay, becau se m y ey es w er e f u l l of u gly tr u th , an d I d i d n ?t w an t h er t o w or r y abou t m e, too. Sh e l i ved al on e i n th at h ou se, an d I w on d er ed i f sh e ever got as l on ely as Bu kow sk i t h at i t ju st m ad e sen se.


H i s m ot h er i s gon e n ow. A n d so i s th at h ou se w i th t h e t r ee. I l ef t t h e h ou se f i r st an d th en h e qu i t p ay i n g th e bi l l s. A f t er t h e ci ty sh u t of f th e p ow er , h e l et th e f ood r ot i n t h e r ef r i ger ator . I w en t by a f ew ti m es, an d ever y ti m e th at tr ee w as si l en t. I w on d er ed i f t h e w ood p ecker w as sti l l ar ou n d . I ch ecked t h e t r u n k f or f r esh - p ecked h ol es, bu t I cou l d n ?t t el l w h at w as n ew an d w h at w as ol d . T h e h ol es al l l ooked th e sam e, sh i n i n g w i th sap . I w on d er ed i f I p r essed m y h an d to th e tr ee an d p u sh ed t h e w h ol e th i n g d ow n , w h at w ou l d h ap p en ? I f I p u sh ed i t tow ar d th e h ou se, tow ar d t h e k i t ch en , w h er e i ts d y i n g br an ch es cou l d sh at t er t h e w i n d ow ? Bu t I d i d n ?t t ou ch th e tr ee. I w al ked th r ou gh th e d oor an d f ou n d h i m on th e cou ch w i th th e d eal er . I gr abbed t h e h i k i n g boots I l ef t an d tol d h i m good by e, agai n . I tol d h i m to cal l i f h e n eed ed . I t ol d h i m I ?d be ar ou n d an d th at I ?d be back soon . Bu t af ter a w h i l e I qu i t com i n g ar ou n d becau se h e n ever cal l ed , an d h e w as even tu al ly ev i ct ed .

T h e oth er d ay, I d r ove p ast th e h ou se an d al m ost d i d n ?t r ecogn i ze i t. T h e tr ee w as gon e, an d th e w i l d f ol i age h ad been tr i m m ed back . I t l ooked l i ke an ol d cou p l e l i ved th er e, l i ke al l th e m em or i es w e h ad h ad been eaten u p or n ever even ex i sted . I sear ch ed th e sk y f or a r ed str eak . I op en ed m y w i n d ow an d l i sted f or th e k n ock i n g of a w ood p ecker , bu t I on ly f ou n d an i n cu r abl e si l en ce, th e em p ty sp ace of w h er e w e u sed to be. T h e tr ee n ever w as th e p oi n t. T h e tr ee w as al r ead y d ead w h en w e m oved i n . W e cou l d n ?t see i t - y ou can ?t see th ese th i n gs w h en y ou ?r e i n l ove. B ecau se l ove i s su p p osed to f i x ever y th i n g. I i m agi n e ou r l ove n ow, i ts ow n d y i n g tr ee i n si d e m e, i ts r oots h av i n g gr ow n too d eep to u n ear th . I ts br an ch es l od ged som ew h er e i n m y sp i n e. M y m ou th sear ch i n g f or a w ood p ecker to sw al l ow to f i n i sh i t of f .

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B l u e L i gh t Ken n eth Joh n son I w at ch ed y ou r bod y f ol d i n t o a cr an e a t h ou san d t i m es on ly t o be con ver ted t o ash es I set ad r i f t t o f l oat d ow n str eam w at ch i n g as y ou sw i r l ed an d sl i p p ed ar ou n d an d t h r ou gh l eaves an d t w i gs n y m p h s an d l ar v ae t o w h er e y ou f i n al ly op en ed y ou r m ou th sw al l ow ed t h e sea becam e bl u e l i gh t

A r tw or k : Joy K l om an

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T el l M e, W h at D o Yo u , W an t , T o See M on tan a Svobod a T h e f i sh ar e f ed so f or a l i t t l e w h i l e l on ger ar e con ten t to sw i m am on gst th e i v y, n ear even i n g l at e su m m er oaken bl u sh , ar e con ten t to w i sh , to cu r i ou sly gaze at th ei r ow n su n setti n g r ef l ect i on as i f an oth er f r om th e ou tsi d e i s cu r i ou sly l ook i n g back . I w an d er back f r om th e ced ar tea st r eam , p i n e bou gh ed d r eam , tw i sti n g w h eat gr ass, beach p ea betw een m y f i n ger ti p s, ty i n g, t r y i n g bu t f ai l i n g to r econ ci l e w i t h t h e ear ly ar r i v al of tom or r ow, th er e m u st be an oth er h ou r to be f ou n d som ew h er e d ew cl i n gi n g to a si n gl e si lver ed sh ad ow, a cu p of cof f ee n ot qu i te em p ty, a k i ss sti l l l i p s p r essed t o p or cel ai n d r i p l ef t d an ci n g u p on a k i tch en w i n d ow si l l , p er h ap s a f i r e f r om w h i ch m y f ath er

A r tw or k : N i jol e Rasm u ssen

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sp i l l s ou t an oth er ci gar ette i n cen sed m i ssed r i ver r ock p l u cked an d p u l l ed , sk i p p ed acr oss al l f og an d sap p h i r ed , gl i sten i n g sh atter i n g ch an d el i er of su r f ace ten si on , occasi on al ly as I stan d h an d p al m s p r essed to y ou r s, m ap l e br an ch es p oked an d sh ar p en ed r oasti n g m ar sh m al l ow s over an op en f i r e, i t m akes sen se- th e w or l d m om en tar i ly, i n ter m i tten tly, r ever sed as an ech o com es f or th br eak i n g f r ozen ear th , w ater h el d an d v i si on bl u r r ed an d w e ever f ad i n g i n to t od ay, i n to th e cl u n g p r eci p i ce, w h i ch i n n i n e m on t h s w i l l be sl i gh tly l ess, i n a f ew h ou r s i t w i l l r ai n an d al l th e w h i l e th r ou gh th e cr i sp f l axen n i gh t , th e d r op s w i l l be h el d u p by ced ar , by bi r ch bar k , l i gh tn i n g bu gs, con stel l ati on s th at m i gh t l ead u s, ou r ti r ed , r aven ou s ey es, h om e.


H ei m w eh * Cl ai r e M cGof f Bef or e I k n ew h er n am e w as H i l d a. Bef or e I k n ew h er f am i ly h ad m oved f r om Ger m an y to Ru ssi a to K an sas to Tex as to f ar m . B ef or e I l ear n ed i t w as soap sh e w as m ak i n g? m i x i n g th e ly e, saved f r om r ai n w ater an d ash , w i th f at, an d sti r r i n g con stan tly u n ti l th e l i qu i d sl i d of f th e w ood p ad d l e ju st so, I 'd ed ge m y w ay i n to h er back y ar d p r eten d i n g to l ook f or m y d og. I w an ted to get a cl oser l ook at th e ol d w om an ben t i n si d e th e r i n g of ju n i p er s an d th ei r w i n d r u i n ed sp i r es. W an ted to h ear h er si n gi n g i n an accen t th at sou n d ed som eth i n g l i ke m y ow n gr an d m oth er ?s. I w an ted to get a better l ook at h er sti r r i n g an d star i n g i n to th e l ar ge kettl e w i th ou t gl an ci n g u p , a br ow n scar f ti ed at h er n eck ,

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an d a d ar k d r ess d ow n to h er h eav y bl ack sh oes. I w an t ed t o see t h e m i x tu r e th at sh e p ou r ed f r om t h e cau l d r on w i th h eav y m i ts i n to a sh al l ow p an to h ar d en . T h e al l ey bet w een H i l d a?s back y ar d an d m i n e w as cr acked d i r t an d sti cker s? m y f eet r em em ber i t w el l . Even n ow t h ey seem to sn eak m e back to th at p ot i on , t o th e bottom l ess cau l d r on . * l i ke h om esi ck n ess

A r tw or k : Br ea'n T h om p son

19


I n M emoriam, For my brother, Julio E. Pajaro, M D February 22, 1959 November 22, 20 20

H el l o , L i t t l e B i r d i e O ctav i o Pajar o

A r tw or k : Jess Ri ch ar d s

20


H el l o , l i t t l e b i r d i e. I k n ow y o u see m e t o o . B u t h ow d o y o u see m e? A m I a p ar t o f n at u r e, so m et h i n g l i k e w e h u m an s t h i n k o f y o u ? I ?m t o o b i g t o b e a b ee w i t h i t s h o n ey an d i t s h i v e o r a b eav er , h er b i v o r o u s at h ear t - n o m at t er w h er e i t l i es. I ?m t o o sm al l t o b e a b ear w i t h i t s b i g an d scar y cl aw s. I f I ?m a p ar t o f n at u r e t o o , t h en w h y d o I ask t h i s f r o m y o u ? W h y d o I n o t see t h e su n r i se, w h en m y l ov ed o n es d i e? W h y d o es t h e su n set w h en i t ?s t i m e f o r m e t o f l y ? W h y d o I n o t h ear t h e sp ar r ow s, t h e h er o n s an d t h e m o ck i n gb i r d s ask w h y ? A r e t h ei r sp i r i t s ev er t et h er ed f r o m gr i ef t h ey k eep ? W h en i t i s t i m e t o b l o o m , d o t h e sw eet acaci as, t h e o r ch i d t r ees an d t h e b i r d s o f p ar ad i se w eep ? A r e t h ei r b r an ch es r i gi d w i t h p ai n f r o m f al l en l eav es? W h en i t i s t i m e t o f eed , d o t h e r ab b i t s, t h e p r ai r i e d o gs an d t h e l i zar d s f ast ? D o t h e b o b cat s an d r at t l esn ak es l i e t o get h er f r o m t h e f ear t h ei r sh ad ow s cast ? I w al k a l i t t l e cl o ser , so y o u h o p an d f l ap y o u r w i n gs. A gai n , ev en cl o ser , t h en y o u ch o o se t o f l y aw ay. A m I a p ar t o f n at u r e t o o , so m et h i n g l i k e w e h u m an s t h i n k o f y o u ?

21


I w an t ed t o b e a Po et n o t a M o t h er K ai - L i l ly K ar p m an i n m y d r eam s i l i e si d ew ay s on th e f l at san d of a col d d eser t an d th e em p ti ed sp aces i n m e t u r n i n t o velvet d eser t star s. n i gh t sl i th er s on i ts bel ly f r om m y si l ken ed h an d s, an d ever y th i n g l ook s d ar k , d ar k , d ar k , l i ke th e sp ace betw een m y k n ees. m y br east s becom e r av i n es th at f i l l w i th w ater af ter r ai n , an d th e jack al s an d r abbi ts al l com e to d r i n k an d keep cl ean , bu t th e jack al s gr ow h u n gr y an d th e r abbi ts ar e m ai m ed . th i cken ed w i th bl ood , th e w ater f l ow s w i th i n m e al l th e sam e. i al m ost w ake u p w h en i see a gap i n g baby m ou th op en , w et, an d m ov i n g l i ke th e w h ol e sea or u n d er . w i th br eath l i ke a jack al ?s sh e cal l s ou t M other?

A r tw or k : L i l ac Ker en

22


23


M o t h er s i n t h e M o r n i n g A n n eM ar i e M i l es I t i s a p assage of t i m e th at I k n ow n ot th e m easu r em en t w h er e I m ake sp ace f or n ot es f r om m y cof f ee cu p , ?You n eed t o st op k i l l i n g y ou r sel f i n y ou r sl eep ,? i t say s.

I cast sp el l s on m y sel f on sp en t car p et bef or e th e su n com es u p an d a h eater br eath es w ar m t h i n t o d ep r i ved l u n gs, m y cal f cr u sh ed ben eath th e w ei gh t of m y f oot.

M agi c can n ot be sp ool ed f r om l i m bs i n w h i ch i t d oes n ot d w el l , y et I cou n t i n h al es, h ol d on t o ex h al es, an d bl eed m y h ear t f r om cr u st y ey el i d s i n to em p ty jou r n al s,

bu t I h ear t h e r u st l i n g, th e sou n d of m or n i n g bef or e t h e p i t t er p att er i n g of ti n y toes br eak s m y sp el l , al l br eat h l ost an d en ch an tm en t d i ssi p at i n g, d u sti n g t h i s sp ace of ti m e w i t h som eth i n g n ew.

24

A r tw or k : N i col e Cu l l i n an


C h ess w i t h A p h r o d i t e

W e m eet agai n , oh com p l ex d ei ty. W e h ave p l ay ed th i s gam e f or y ear s,

Ch r i stop h er M oor e

alw ay s w i th th e sam e ou tcom e: h u r t f eel i n gs, secr ets f ou n d , i s th i s h ow y ou i m m or tal s get y ou r k i ck s? D on ?t y ou h ave an y th i n g better to d o th an t o p l ay w i th th e l i ves of i n n ocen t m or tal s h er e on ear t h ?

I ti p m y h at of f t o th e l ast ch eck m ate y ou got m e i n , w as n ot ex p ect i n g th at to h ap p en , h ow cl ever of y ou . Bu t tod ay y ou ar e ou tm atch ed ; a qu een y ou n ever ex p ected h as gi ven m e th e p ow er to w i n .

A r tw or k : A r n ab Bar u a

25


H er e's Ev er y t h i n g I K n ow A b o u t W ed d i n gs N oah L ash ly

A r tw or k : Pau l a D eStef an i s

26


H er e's ever y t h i n g I k n ow abou t w ed d i n gs: One I h ave been t o t h r ee, bu t Two I ?ve been w at ch i n g al l of season th i r teen of T he Bachelorette. I l ove Rach el , th e bach el or ette, an d th at w h ol e sh ow i s on e gi an t l ead u p t o a w ed d i n g. You sh ou l d w atch i t. T h r ee You t h r ow r i ce at a w ed d i n g. Fo u r Can I be h on est w i t h y ou ? N o. N ever m i n d . Fi v e M y p ar en t s got m ar r i ed i n Br em en . I t w as bef or e m y Ger m an m oth er h ad br aces an d w h i l e sh e w as n i n e m on t h s p r egn an t w i t h m y br oth er . I n al l of th e p h otos, m y A m er i can f ath er w ear s th i s con f u sed gr i n l i ke h e h ear d an i n si d e joke am on g cl ose f r i en d s th at h e th i n k s i s f u n n y bu t d oesn 't r eal ly get. Si x You go ? W ai t, actu al ly can w e go back to T h r ee qu i ck ly, becau se I t h i n k r i ce actu al ly k i l l s bi r d s w h en th ey eat i t. I d on 't th i n k th at's y ou r sty l e. You 'r e bet t er t h an th at. I f i t m u st r ai n gr ai n , y ou sh ou l d con si d er qu i n oa. I t?s a p r otei n gr ai n af ter al l . For l on gev i ty.

27


Si x You go on Sat u r d ay even i n g r u n s. Satu r d ay i s th e m ost com m on d ay f or p eop l e to get m ar r i ed . I t's a f u n n y coi n ci d en ce. W h at ever . Sev en I w or e m y bl u e bl azer to A n n a- Cl ai r e?s w ed d i n g to f eel f u n an d f r esh a cou p l e m on th s ago. You d i d n 't go. I d r an k a l ot of f r ee w i n e. I d r i n k a l ot of f r ee w i n e at w ed d i n gs. I su l ked i n th e bath r oom . W ed d i n gs m ake m e f eel w ei r d som et i m es, i s th at w ei r d ? N o! You k n ow w h at i s w ei r d ? I s ? back to Fi v e M y p ar en t s h ave been m ar r i ed f or 30 y ear s at th e en d of th i s m on th . T h ey h ave n ever taken of f th ei r w ed d i n g r i n gs i n al l of t h ose 30 y ear s, w h i ch I k n ow i sn ?t ex actly u n u su al . Bu t th ei r f i n ger s, th ei r r i n g f i n ger s, ar e f u cked u p . Real ly f u cked u p . T h ey 'r e d en ted an d h or r i bl e. I t r em i n d s m e of h ow I ?ve been tol d th at m i l l en n i al s' p i n k y f i n ger s ar e f u cked u p becau se of th e w ay w e tex t or h ow m y Ch em i str y teach er i n h i gh sch ool w or e h er toe r i n g f or so l on g t h at t h e sk i n gr ew ar ou n d an d over th e r i n g an d sh e h ad to get i t su r gi cal ly r em oved . Ei gh t I ?ve n ever ow n ed jew el r y. I r em em ber getti n g a m ood r i n g w h en I w as y ou n g. I t w as a sh i tty m ood r i n g I bou gh t f r om a t oy st or e. I t tol d m e I w as bl u e. A l l of th e ti m e. W h i ch I th i n k i s a l i e. You seem l i ke y ou 'd be bl u e. M ay be y ou r au r a. N ine W ed d i n gs ar e f u l l of l i f e. A s i n f l ow er s an d f r u i t baskets or som eth i n g. I t's a ?sei ze th e m om en t? k i n d of d ay ! Yeah . So. T en

28


El ev en

T en T w el v e M ar r i age equ al i t y w as p assed i n 20 15. I t's sor t of cr azy to th i n k th at w as on ly si x y ear s ago. Sev en You k n ow, I t h i n k w ed d i n gs m ake m e u n com f or tabl e becau se I k n ow th ey w er en 't m ad e f or m e, or I w asn 't m ad e f or th em . L i ke d ai r y. T h i r t een I d i d n 't r eal ly com e ou t u n ti l 20 15.

29

A r tw or k : Ch r i stop h er Gh attas

T h er e ar e t w o k i n d s of w ed d i n gs i n m y book . I n si d e w ed d i n gs an d ou tsi d e w ed d i n gs. I n si d e w ed d i n gs ar e n i ce becau se y ou d on 't h ave to d eal w i th u n p r ed i ct abl e w eat h er . You can al so m atch th e aesth eti c of th e bu i l d i n g. I f y ou h ad t h e w ed d i n g i n a castl e, y ou cou l d r i d e i n on a h or se, ch an d el i er s cou l d be agl ow w i t h can d l es an d ever y on e cou l d d i e at th e en d . I f y ou h ad i t i n a ch u r ch , y ou w ou l d h ave p ew s an d vow s an d stai n ed gl ass an d p eop l e p r eten d i n g t h e br i d e i s sti l l a v i r gi n . I t?s al l f u n , bu t i t's n ot as p r etty. I t can be cl au st r op h obi c an d over w h el m i n g. I f y ou h ave y ou r w ed d i n g ou tsi d e, y ou h ave beau t i f u l v i ew s. You h ave n atu r e. You h ave m ou n tai n s an d sk i es an d w i n d an d gr ass. You cou l d be l i ke M ar i a w h en t h e h i l l s ar e al i ve. Bu t y ou 'r e at th e ever y w h i m of th e f or ecast. I f i t's h ot, h u m i d , w i n d y, r ai n y, th u n d er y, sn ow y, sl eet y, f l am y, gu sty, tor n ad o- y, y ou r d ay i s r u i n ed . T h ou gh i f th e sk y i s bl u e, som et h i n g gr eat h ap p en s.


Fo u r Can I be h on est w i t h y ou ? I ?ve n ever been abl e to i m agi n e m y w ed d i n g. I can k i n d of get a p i ctu r e of w h at i t w ou l d be l i ke t o be en gaged or m ar r i ed . I t's th e w ed d i n g, th e cer em on y, th e sp ectacl e, th e act of getti n g m ar r i ed t h at I can 't i m agi n e. O r I can . W h en ever I d o, I ?m at th e en d of a l on g ai sl e i n a r oom f i l l ed w i th p eop l e I d on 't k n ow. Acqu ai n t an ces m ay be. T h er e ar e n o p l an ts. N o r i ce. O r gan m u si c p l ay s. D ow n th e ai sl e com es m y beau ti f u l br i d e: n on d escr i p t , f acel ess, an d alw ay s a w om an . I n ou r w ed d i n g p h otos, I ?m ju st as f acel ess. I can 't sh ake th e i m age of i t ou t of m y h ead . I k n ow th at w ed d i n gs ar en 't r eal ly th at i m p or tan t i n th e l on g r u n . Bu t i t scar es m e. W h en ever I attem p t t o i m agi n e m y sel f m ar r y i n g a m an , i t's me th at w al k s d ow n th e ai sl e, excep t th at I 'm l i ke a gi an t H u m p t y D u m p ty, l i ke ?BA N G BO O M BA N G PO W ,? br eak i n g th e w al l s an d th e f l oor s. T h en I f al l ap ar t w i th m y al l egg i n si d es r aw an d oozi n g ou t of m e th e w ay th at eggs ooze. I s th at f u cked u p ? A m I f u cked u p ? D o I h ate m y sel f t h at m u ch ? T en I 've tr i ed t o i m agi n e y ou . W h at i t w ou l d be l i ke to m ar r y y ou becau se I d on 't k n ow i f I ?ve ever tol d y ou h ow i m p or tan t y ou ar e t o m e bu t y ou ar e. I 'm n ot say i n g th at I w an t y ou to m ar r y m e. I 'm n ot p r op osi n g. I 'm n ot a l u n ati c. Bu t ? I d on 't k n ow Fo u r t een or m ay be Ei gh t I f I gi ve y ou a m ood r i n g, w ou l d y ou br eak m y f i n ger ? Si x W ou l d y ou com e t o w ed d i n gs w i th m e?

30


Fo u r t een M ay be l ove i s d ead an y w ay becau se Rach el el i m i n ated D ean i n a y u r t.

L eave t h e n u m ber s. Cou l d I sp en d Sat u r d ay even i n gs w i th y ou ? A l l I w an t i s m ood r i n gs an d cater ed p ar ti es w i th f r ee w i n e w h er e I can su l k . I w an t to be f i l l ed u p w i th qu i n oa. I w an t t o be al i ve. I w an t to be m ou n tai n s an d bl u e becau se th at's al l I k n ow abou t w ed d i n gs.

A r tw or k : O ctav i o Pajar o

31


Ph o t o f i n i sh L ael Cassi d y H e's got a p en ci l - t h i n m u stach e, h e's h ol d i n g m e on th e h or se's back , h e's t ak i n g p h otos of th e H u d son , th e d ead - en d str eet si gn , m e at seven u n d er t h e bi r ch . H e's getti n g u s f r om sch ool , h e's d r i v i n g th e Cad i l l ac, h i s t on gu e sti ck i n g th e cor n er of h i s m ou th as h e back s u p th e car . H e's h u ggi n g m e f or tel l i n g th e tr u th abou t th e r i p p ed - op en f er ti l i zer . H e's cr y i n g, h ead i n th e f r i d ge, becau se w e d on 't h ave tom atoes. H e's l ook i n g at th e r aci n g f or m , ar gu i n g abou t th e l on g sh ot, th e saf e bet , abou t th e p h oto f i n i sh w i th an y str an ger n ear by. H e's ch ai n - sm ok i n g cam el s, bu r n i n g a h ol e i n th e cou ch so d eep th at t h i n gs get l ost i n th er e. H e's y el l i n g at m e f or bu r n i n g h i s bagel . H e's got a by l i n e, h e's got an ad v an ce, h e's got p h on e cal l s w e n eed t o an sw er so w e can say h e i sn 't th er e. H e's w h eel i n g m y bi g bod y i n th e sh op p i n g car t ar ou n d th e A & P. H e's d an ci n g t o Z or ba, say i n g sex i s good exer ci se, I 'm si x teen an d h e's taken m e ou t f or steak , boozy cof f ee, an d a v i ew of th e bay. H e's cr y i n g t o Kojak , Ser p i co, Col u m bo, to Joh n n y Cash si n gi n g I walk the line. H e's ly i n g on th e f l oor of th e bath r oom w i th th e D Ts. H e's say i n g h e's f ou n d God , f ou r - m i n u te eggs, Fr en ch p astr y, m ar m al ad e, an d p i cn i cs. H e's r ef u si n g to tal k abou t h i s l ast d ay s, bu t gi v i n g m e a bu tter scot ch an d p u tti n g on Cl i n t Eastw ood . H e's sm ok i n g th r ou gh th e h ol e i n h i s n eck . H e's say i n g go bu t sen d i n y ou r br oth er . H e's l eav i n g h i s ap ar tm en t i n th e Pen d l eton I gave h i m , bu r gu n d y l i ke th e Cad i l l ac. - -W e'r e w ai st- d eep i n th e Sk agi t; i t's so f oggy w e'r e st ar t l ed t o see th e m en h ol d i n g f i sh i n g r od s on ei th er si d e of th e r i ver . T h ey ar e r ever en t an d sti l l , l i ke sol d i er s at atten ti on . H e's p assi n g t h r ou gh ou r h an d s an d i n to th e r i ver , f l oati n g A r tw or k : Yar d en Tsf on i d ow n st r eam bet w een th e p ol es th at r i se u p to m eet th e l i gh t.

32


T h e B u r i al Kev i n W an g ?Yes, ever y on e h as to en d u p l i ke th i s.? I f m y si ster h as sai d t h i s to m e on ce, sh e h as sai d i t a th ou san d t i m es.

gl i m p se i n to h er tooth l ess gu m . ?H ow d i d i t h ap p en ?? Jen n y tu r n ed to m e, sl i gh t ly cl en ch i n g h er f i sts.

?Bu t can ?t sh e l ast an y l on ger ?? U n con v i n ced , I

?I d u n n o. Fou n d h er l i ke th i s ju st a f ew h ou r s ago.?

gl an ced u p ar d en tly at Jen n y ?s p r of i l e, p r ay i n g t h at a d i f f er en t an sw er w i l l m agi cal ly em er ge by

?Pr obably ju st n atu r al cau ses. W h en y ou get ol d

r ep eat i n g t h e sam e qu esti on .

y ou d i e, si m p l e as th at.? Jen n y sp oke cal m ly.

?N o.? W i t h h er ter se an sw er , Jen n y br ou gh t ou r

?D o y ou h ave to d i e w h en y ou get ol d ??

l on g d i scu ssi on to a cl ose: sh e alw ay s k n ew h ow to

?N ot n ecessar i ly. Bu t even tu al ly, y ou ?ll h ave t o.?

sh u t m e u p i n th e si m p l est w ay p ossi bl e. ?W h en ?? T h u s w e stood sp eech l essly over th e cor p se of M s.K i d d . T h e i n sects ou tsi d e stop p ed ch i r p i n g al l of a su d d en , l eav i n g an om i n ou s si l en ce h over i n g i n t h e sw el ter i n g r oom . T h r ee w h i te d oves f l ew p ast t h e w i n d ow. U n d er th e scor ch i n g su n l i gh t of a

m i d - Au gu st

af ter n oon ,

M s.K i d d

l ai d

?W h en y ou ar e ol d en ou gh .? ?A r e y ou ol d en ou gh ?? ?Yeah , I gu ess I am p r etty ol d n ow,? Jen n y t h en cy n i cal ly r ep eated , ?p r etty ol d .?

m ot i on l essly, u n d i stu r bed by th e h eat, as i f sh e?s

?Bu t M i tch l ast y ear , h e d i ed w h en h e w as on ly a

i m m er sed d eep ly i n th e sti l l w ater of an eter n al

f ew m on th s ol d .?

d r eam . H er m ou th i s sl i gh tly ajar , r eveal i n g a

33


?W el l , ever y on e d i es at som e p oi n t; w e can d o

alw ay s k n ew th e m ean i n g of w or d s I d i d n ?t

n oth i n g abou t i t - - I th ou gh t w e w en t th r ou gh

k n ow. M ay be i t?s becau se of al l th e book s sh e

th i s bef or e.? Sh e st ar ed at m e w i th an ai r of

h ad r ead .

i m p ati en ce.

So w e p r oceed ed to get th e d ead bod y of

A gai n , w e l ooked d ow n si l en tly at th e bottom of

M s.K i d d ou t of th e gl ass f i sh bow l . Som e w h i te,

th e f i sh bow l w h er e M s.K i d d h ad sp en t al l of h er

d u st- l i ke p ar ti cl es ar e f l oati n g abou t w i l d ly i n

l i f e bu i l d i n g bu bbl es, on ly

th e w ater , m ak i n g th e f i sh bow l l ook l i ke an

to w atch

th em

gr ad u al ly d r i f t aw ay w i th h er ever - op en ey es. ?Sh e u sed t o be m y f avor i te on e am on g al l th e gol d f i sh I h ad . I l i ked h er w ay better th an th at

em p ty sn ow gl obe. I gen tly gr abbed M s.K i d d by h er tai l an d l ai d h er d ow n i n a p eti te p er f u m e box th at Jen n y h as p r ep ar ed as a cof f i n . T h e v i br an t f l am es th at u sed to bl ossom on h er f i n s

p oor bast ar d M i t ch ,? I r em ar ked m or osely.

h ad been ex ti n gu i sh ed by th e n u m bi n g cu r r en ts ?I k n ow. I k n ow.? Sl i gh tly m oved , m y si ster

of ti m e; h er ey es n o l on ger f i l l ed w i th w h i m sy

r esp on d ed i n a w ar m er voi ce. W i th h er r i gh t

sp ar k s of cu r i osi ty, h er tai l cap abl e n o m or e of

i n d ex f i n ger , Jen n y br u sh ed h er ch i n ever so

sti r r i n g p l ay f u l w aves of l i gh th ear ted m i r th , th e

br i ef ly an d su ggest ed :

l u ster of gol d en sl u m ber on h er sk i n h ave

?You k n ow w h at w e sh ou l d d o, w e sh ou l d bu r y

evap or ated an d bl en d ed w i th i n th e f r agm en ted

h er so y ou can f i n d som e cl osu r e.?

l i gh t of th e f ai n ti n g su n , w h i ch , l i ke m em or y, w as soon to d i sap p ear u n d er th e f i ck l e h or i zon

?W h at ?s a cl osu r e?? I asked , p er p l exed by th e w or d .

of obl i v i on . B ef or e Jen n y w as to p u t th e l i d on th e box , I w r ap p ed a n ap k i n ar ou n d th e ey es of

?I t?s ju st a t h i n g w e bu r y to m ake ou r selves f eel

M s.K i d d so th at sh e cou l d f i n al ly sl eep w i th h er

better ,? Jen n y

ey es seal ed .

ex p l ai n ed

qu i ck ly. M y

si ster

34


W e took M s.K i d d

to th e r i ver si d e w h er e d u ck s

h an d ed m e a l i ttl e cr oss th at sh e m ad e f r om som e

l oi ter ed al l d ay l on g. Jen n y h el d a h an d tr ow el i n h er

tw i gs an d asked m e to p l ace i t over th e l i ttl e m ou n d i n

l ef t h an d an d I t r ai l ed beh i n d h er , car r y i n g th e box

w h i ch M s.K i d d w as bu r i ed - - ju st i n case M s.K i d d w as

w i th tw o h an d s an d tr ead i n g w i th cau ti ou sly sm al l

abl e to r ecal l God i n th e br i ef secon d s of h er

step s.I t w as ar ou n d d i n n er ti m e an d n ot a l ot of

sh or t- l i ved m em or i es.

p eop l e w er e on t h e ban k . H eav y f og l i n ger ed over th e r i ver si d e an d I cou l d n ?t see w h at aw ai ted i n th e p ath

?D o y ou th i n k M s.K i d d en joy ed h er l i f e i n a f i sh bow l ?? I stood u p an d gl an ced over to th e r i ver n ot f ar aw ay.

ah ead . ?M ay be,? Jen n y r ep l i ed , ?bu t th en agai n ...sh e m i gh t Som ew h er e d i st an t , bu t p er h ap s n ot th at f ar aw ay, a

f i n d m or e f r eed om ou t h er e i n th e r i ver .?

m an w as si n gi n g a f am i l i ar l i ttl e tu n e: ?W h at abou t th e f i sh i n th e aqu ar i u m ?? Yesterday I saw a fish ?W h at abou t th em ?? drowning in the pond ?D o y ou th i n k th ey ar e h ap p y l i v i n g i n th e aqu ar i u m I t forgot to breathe~ Ju st abou t t h e m an h as stop p ed si n gi n g, w e d eci d ed u p on a sp ot an d d u g a sm al l h ol e w i th ou r h an d s an d th e sm al l t r ow el Jen n y br ou gh t al on g. I k n el t d ow n an d st ead i ly l ow er ed th e box i n to th e h ol e as i f i t

al l d ay l on g?? ?I d on ?t k n ow,? Jen n y scr atch ed h er h ead f or a bi t an d th en an sw er ed , ?p er h ap s th e sm al l f i sh w ou l d be h ap p y cau se n obod y ?s gon n a eat th em , bu t n ot t h e bi g on es I gu ess.?

con tai n ed som et h i n g f r agi l e an d p r eci ou s. Jen n y th en h asti ly w en t on t o sh ovel th e d i r t on to th e l i d of th e

Pen si vely I l ooked back d ow n at th e gr ave. For a f ew

box .

secon d s, I th ou gh t I h ad som e l ast w or d s f or M s.K i d d , bu t th en th ose w or d s sl i p p ed aw ay, l eav i n g m e t o

?L em m e d o i t .? I st op p ed h er an d took th e tr ow el i n

stan d i n an an ti cl i m acti c m i st of d i sen ch an tm en t .

m y ow n h an d s. W e l ef t w i th ou t a f i n al f ar ew el l . Jen n y st ood u p an d w atch ed m e sl ow ly bu r y th e cof f i n of M s.K i d d w i t h h er i n u r ed ey es. A f ter I w as d on e, sh e

35

A r tw or k : Bar bar a T l u sh


A r tw or k : A r n ab Bar u a

36


H el p a H u n d r ed B i l l i o n H o n ey b ees Pow d er T h ei r T h i gh s Valy n ti n a Gr en i er Fact i s w e?ve becom e aw ar e of i n d i f f er en ce to th e f l ow er tak i n g p ar t i n ever y bei n g A s acor n s w i tn ess som ew h at sel f - cen ter ed an gi osp er m s m ove f r eely t r i al an d er r or f i n d th e best w ay to i n d u ce m atter by playing U sef u l bei n gs ex tol i n ven ti on as th e i n ten ti on to w or k O t h er w i se f l ow er s m an age to ch oose t h e ex act m om en t sed u ced of f i ts k n obby ch ar m s Cl ever p u r p osef u l f u n gu s con cei ves of r otti n g m eat W e car e abou t m ak i n g cop i es Cost an d taste m ake m or tal s r i sk CO V I D f or a bu r ger an d f r i es T i m e an d l ocati on sel ect cou n tl ess gen er ati on s D esi gn an d caten ati on ar e cu l l ed by m i r acl e T r i v i al sem i con sci ou s evol u ti on i n si sts A s t h i s n ovel str ai n m ou n ts d eath s a t oken i n ven ti n g/ i n si d er / ou tl aw con ti n gen t d esi r es ap p ar el an d cl em en cy

37


T h e D ive Ri l ey W i n ch ester H e w as on t h e sh or e, l ook i n g ou t at th e v astn ess of th e ocean , an d h e t h ou gh t: N o, th i s w on ?t d o. N ot th eatr i c en ou gh . H e h i ked h i s w ay th r ou gh th e sl u d gy san d t ow ar d th e p i er . H e w al ked to th e en d of th e p i er an d l ooked back to see i f an y bod y w as w atch i n g. H e w as al on e, bu t th at d i d n ?t d eter h i m . O h , th ey ?r e w at ch i n g, h e assu r ed h i m sel f . H e?d been p l an n i n g i t f or a cou p l e w eek s n ow, an d i t w as t oo l at e t o go back . Even i f h e w an ted to, h e cou l d n ?t af f or d t h e d r i ve f r om th e M assach u setts coast to h i s ap ar t m en t i n Tol ed o. A n d w h at w ou l d h i s f r i en d s t h i n k i f h e cam e back ? Esp eci al ly af ter th at l on gw i n d ed l etter h e l ef t, w h i ch h e h ad r ecen tly st ar t ed t o r egr et f or i ts sear i n g h on esty. So h e d eci d ed t o d i ve. H e d eci d ed t o d i ve i n to th e ocean an d keep d escen d i n g u n t i l h e r each ed th e bottom . H e?d alw ay s w on d er ed w h at w as d ow n th er e. W h en ever h e asked som eon e i f th ey k n ew, th ey ?d ju st l au gh , say n obod y k n ow s, n obod y ?s been d ow n th er e. H e d i d n ?t l i ke t h at an sw er , an d h e?d h ear d i t too m an y ti m es.

At f i r st h e d i d n ?t see m u ch ? th e w ater w as d u st y, an d i t w as th i ck l i ke sy r u p . H e w en t d eep er i n to t h e d u st an d i t star ted to cl ear . H e r each ed t h e ep i p el agi c zon e? i t took h i m th r ee d ay s t o r em em ber th at w or d af ter h e f i r st r ead i t i n t h e ocean s book h e f ou n d at a th r i f t stor e. A l l th e l i t t l e f i sh , h e th ou gh t, th ey l ook so p r etty. T h ei r col or s bu r st f or th an d sh on e on h i m ; h e sw am h ar d er . O r an ge, y el l ow, r ed , n eon gr een , d eep bl u e, an d a gen tl e p u r p l e. T h e d eep er h e got, th e d ar ker th e w ater becam e. I t w asn ?t l i ke th e d u st bef or e; n ow i t w as bl ack an d con su m i n g. H e cou l d sti l l see, bu t h e h ad to squ i n t h i s ey es an d f ocu s. H e cou l d n ?t r em em ber t h e n am e of th i s zon e, or th e n ex t, bu t h e k n ew even tu al ly h e?d r each th e aby ssop el agi c zon e an d h e?d be cl ose to th e bottom . T h e f i sh w er e n o l on ger p r etty. A n octop u s gr ow l ed at h i m , an eel ti ck l ed h i s l eg an d l au gh ed , a w h al e w atch ed h i m i n th e d i stan ce, a h am m er h ead gr i tted i ts teeth an d sh ook i ts h ead as h e sw am p ast.

38


A r tw or k : Gabr i el M cL eod

39


T he

sea

life

d i sap p ear ed ,

an d

he

kep t

sw i m m i n g. H e saw h i s f ath er , back str ok i n g p eacef u l ly. H e t r i ed to y el l to h i s f ath er bu t h i s

d eep er , to escap e h er . T h e p r essu r e bu i l t u p i n h i s ear s. H e cou l d n ?t see an y th i n g n ow. BON K .

voi ce w as m u f f l ed by th e w ater . H i s si ster sw am by, f ol l ow ed by A br ah am L i n col n tr y i n g to tel l

H e r attl ed h i s h ead an d sw am f or w ar d agai n .

h er som et h i n g, bu t sh e r ef u sed to l i sten to th e

BON K .

p r esi d en t . M akes sen se, h e th ou gh t, sh e n ever r eal ly got i n t o p ol i ti cs.

H i s h ead h u r t. H e r each ed ou t an d f el t a sm ooth w al l . I t w as col d to th e tou ch . H e d r i f ted p ar al l el

T h en h i s st om ach san k an d h i s ch eek s star ted to

to th e w al l an d d r agged h i s h an d al on g i t,

i tch . O h n o, h e t h ou gh t. M r s. Pal m etti ? h i s

l ook i n g f or an op en i n g or som e sor t of egr ess,

f i r st- gr ad e t each er w h o h e cal l ed ?m om ? n ot

bu t th e w al l r em ai n ed sm ooth an d p r esen t. H e

on ce bu t t w i ce i n th e sam e sem ester ? sw am by

h ad r each ed th e bottom , h e r eal i zed , an d i t w as

an d w agged h er f i n ger . H er l ook w as castr ati n g

al l so d ar k .

an d gave h i m a r u sh of h ead y r egr et. H e w en t

40


Dance!

A r tw or k : K r i sten San ch ez

The following four works are the winners of our DANCE! 250-word creative writing challenge! 41


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T h e D ar l i n g o f D A H N C E M ati l d a Egger t Su ck i n y ou r r i bs, tu ck i n y ou r d er r i èr e an d DAH N CE, d ar l i n g. Bu t i t ?s h ar d to w h en y ou ?r e r i coch eti n g ar ou n d th e r oom an d y ou r p or es ar e p acked w i t h m akeu p . T h e bod y sh ou l d be l i ke a w i l l ow tr ee, ben d i n g i n to f or m an d n ever br eak i n g. O n e d ay, y ou f or get to str etch an d SN AP; th e ar ch of y ou r f oot goes sl ack . A l l t h ose p i r ou ettes seem p oi n tl ess w h en y ou k i ck ou t y ou r h i p , bu t y ou r m u scl es con str i ct . N ow y ou ?r e n ow h er e n ear i n ti m e w i th M as Que Nada. T h e teach er p l aces h er h an d s on y ou r si d es an d f or ces th em l ef t to r i gh t w h i l e th e boy s an d gi r l s l au gh beh i n d y ou r f ossi l i sed sp i n e. O n st age, th e ch oi r i s tu r n i n g on e w ay as y ou ? too l ate, too l ate? tu r n th e oth er . You r h an d s ar e su p p osed to cl i ck , bu t th ey r i se to y ou r h ead i n stead . You can ?t catch th e cr ow d ?s ey e, so y ou d eci d e y ou ?ll n ever tr y to m ove l i ke th at agai n . U n t i l a cer tai n f l oor f i n d s y ou , l i ke th e on e at th e ol d Gr eek Taver n a w h er e p eop l e sm ash p l at es an d gr ab each oth er ?s sh ou l d er s i n a r eck l ess sp i n . You m ake on e tw i sti n g oval w i t h st r an ger s, an d y ou p r om i se m e y ou ?ll d o i t agai n . You r h ead f al l s back as y ou l au gh at th e cei l i n g l i ke y ou d i d as a k i d on a sw i n g u n d er th e sk y. So, go on , m ake am en d s w i th y ou r sti f f h i p s, scar r ed f oot ti ssu e an d d i zzy sen se of r h y th m . Take t o th e ci ty an d f i n d y ou r f l oor . B egi n t o DAH N CE, d ar l i n g.

A r tw or k : El i zabeth Ri cketson

43


m o sq u i t o es m ak e y o u d an ce Cam i l l e L en d or i t?s too qu i et i t?s been a l on g d ay i t?s been a l on g w eek a l on g m on th sm ok i n g i s n ot an op ti on . p r ay er w on ?t su f f i ce. cr y stal i zed cr u m bs can on ly cl oak so m u ch w h en w eeken d si l en ce m ock s y ou .

A r tw or k : Van L an i gh

y ou d eci d e. y ou d an ce? th e m on i t or s bl ow bass i n y ou r f ace seep s i n t o y ou r ear s, t i n gl es th e cr ow n of y ou r sk u l l

44


y ou r bod y p u l sates / th e tw an g of th e / i n d u str i al / sou n d s, th e k i ckd r u m / h i t t i n g ever y / beat i n to y ou r / ch est? k n ock i n g y ou r / l u n gs an d y ou r br eath ? on e t w o t h r ee f ou r / t w o t w o t h r ee f ou r / 3 2 3 4/ 4 2 3 4/ 5 2 3 4/ 6 2 3 4/ 7 2 3 4/ 8 2 3 4 beat h oar d s of p eop l e i n a p oor ly ven ti l ated w ar eh ou se bu m p i n g, br u sh i n g y ou w i th th ei r sal ty, sl i p p er y sk i n i t ?ll h ave to d o becau se p r ay er i s f or th e p ati en t th e h op ef u l d an ci n g i s f or th e r esti ve th e d esp er ate n eed i n g t o sooth th e m osqu i to betw een th ei r ear d r u m n o on e l eaves th ei r p i l l ow an d stay s ou t u n ti l th e su n sp otl i gh ts th ei r w al k of sh am e f or f u n ?f u n ?i s a eu p h em i sm f or ?d i str acti on ?

45


D ay s o f D an ci n g an d D ay s o f T ear s M aggi e Gai a M cKen zi e M y d au gh t er gl i d es i n to th e r oom w h en sh e h ear s th e k i tch en ster eo con n ect to m y p h on e. T h e th u m p i n g r h y t h m s d r aw h er n ear to m e an d m ake h er w an t to en ter m y joy. El l a r each es ou t f or m y ou tstr et ch ed ar m s an d ci r cl es h er h an d s ar ou n d m y el bow s. L i n ked togeth er , w e ju m p an d sh ou t. W e ask t h e w or l d w h en i t i s goi n g to n oti ce th at w e?ve ch an ged . T h at w e?r e str on ger an d bol d er . N ot af r ai d an d n ot ask i n g f or p er m i ssi on . A s th e r ef r ai n h i t s, w e bel l ow ?I ?m n ot a p ar t of y ou r m ach i n e... I A M th e M ACH I N E!? I n th i s m om en t , m y d au gh ter k n ow s w h at i t i s to be a w om an an d be p ow er f u l . Feel s th e w ei gh t of th e Patr i ar ch y bu t can h ear i t cr ack an d cr u m bl e. U n d er stan d s th er e w i l l com e a d ay w h en w e d an ce on i ts gr ave. A s w e h ol d each ot h er an d h op ci r cl es ar ou n d th e w ood f l oor , I m em or i ze El l a?s sm i l e. I m p r i n t th e v i si on of h er cr i n k l ed ey es an d th r ow n back h ead . I p r eser ve th i s m om en t i n m y m em or y so I can br i n g i t back w h en d ay s ar e sol em n . W h en sh e sl i n k s i n t o th e r oom , h ead d ow n , ey es d r i p p i n g, I w i l l r em i n d h er of ou r w i l d aban d on . ?Rem em ber w h en w e d an ced , El l a?? I ?ll ask as I str oke h er h ai r . ?Scr eam ed ? Fel t f r ee? T h er e ar e d ay s of d an ci n g an d d ay s of tear s, bu t y ou ?ll r i se u p agai n .? I ?ll take h er h an d an d p u sh th e bu tton s to m ake th e m el od y f l oat th r ou gh th e ai r . A n d I ?ll h ol d m y gi r l an d d an ce.

A r tw or k : A l ex x M ay es

46


47


y o u o n l y get w h at y o u gi v e Cou r t n ey A r n ol d an d i f w h at y ou gi ve i s sw i r l s of cosm i c en er gy, f l ow i n g ou t of y ou r ch est as i f f r om a sof t- ser ve i ce cr eam m ach i n e i n van i l l a an d bl ack r asp ber r y,

w h at y ou get i s th e d ai ly m i r acl e of ex i st en ce, n estl ed i n th e ti p of a su gar con e, scoop ed by a d an ci n g ton gu e w h ose br eath ser en ad es th e var i at i on s i n th e sh i m m i es of cogn i t i on , th e sash ay s of em oti on , th e ji tter bu g of ou r su gar - coated sou l s

A r tw or k : A n at M i ch ael i

48


WRITERS Susie Nakash is a junior at the Abraham Joshua Heschel School in Manhattan. When Susie isn’t experimenting with new poems, she can be found trying to master bar chords on her guitar. August Ritchart is a teacher of English as a Second Language. He lives in Austin, Texas and was born and raised in St. Paul, Minnesota. Kim Sosin is Emerita Professor of Economics, University of Nebraska Omaha. Since retiring, her interests have become photography and w riting. Her photographs and poems have appeared in publications such as Failed Haiku, Daily Haiga, Voices from the Plains, Landscape Magazine, The Heron’s Nest, Wanderlust Journal, and Raw Art Review. John Gosslee’s work tries to focus on meaning and substance through comparative analysis. His poetry is in SAND, Poetry Ireland, and some other journals. https://www.johngosslee.com/ Born in Quebec, Dany Gagnon is a game publisher, translator, and writer. After spending her formative years in London, England, she now lives in Montréal. She writes poems in both English and French. Her works strive to describe our frame of mind in the 21st century and have appeared in half of a dozen publications, including an art show, since 2020. DanyG@levalet.com Nicholas Pagano has been writing for over 9 years and is currently enrolled in the MA English program at New York University. His poetry has been published in student run literary journals at both New York University and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He lives and works in New York. Bruce Magnotti is an author and poet living in the Pacific Northwest. He has written poetry and short stories for many years and has just begun to publish in the U.S. and Europe. Bruce is a scientist working on collection of poems defining 13 elements of the universe. This poem about the element of time, Time Out, is one of these and discusses the nature of time and the perceptions hum ans struggle with. Heather Gluck is a poet and translator from New York whose work deals with wellness, irresolution, and regret. She was named 2nd place in the 2021 Tennessee Williams Writing Contest, and she is the editor of the literary magazine Some Kind of Opening. Her work can be found in Cathexis Northwest Press, High Shelf Press, and F3ll Magazine, among others. She is currently completing an MFA at Columbia University. Dick Altman writes in the high, thin, magical air of Santa Fe, NM, where, at 7,000 feet, reality and imagination often blur. He is published in the Santa Fe Literary Review, American Journal of Poetry, Haunted Waters Press and many others, here and abroad. He is a poetry winner of the Santa Fe New Mexican’s annual literary competition. His first collection of poems, Voices in the Heart of Stones, is being co nsidered for publication. Aspen Stoddard is a managing editor at St. George News in Southern Utah. Her creative work has been published in High Country News, Little Patuxent, Sweet: A Literary Confection, Dark Ink Press, and others. She is currently working on a memoir about escapism and is represented by Elias Altman at Massie & McQuilken Literary Agency.


Kenneth Johnson is a visual artist, writer, and educator living in southern California, USA. His work includes myriad subjects, from the conceptual to the mundane. His poetry has appeared in Carousel, Beir Bua Journal, Last Stanza Poetry, and Red Skies Anthology. Montana Svoboda is a queer poet based in East Lansing, Michigan. With a focus on vivid, naturalist imagery and existentialist themes that transcend time and place, their poetry is dreamy, dizzying yet grounding, firmly rooted in movement and moment, ultimately seeking to question the experience of reality, to wonder really, what it means to be human. Claire McGoff grew up in Texas and Colorado, and now lives in the state of Maryland where she has recently entered her 6th decade of life. After her children were grown, she had the privilege of returning to school for her Master’s in poetry at Warren Wilson College in Asheville, North Carolina. Since that time, she has continued reading and writing, and is currently working on a full-length collection. Octavio Pajaro is a heart surgeon by day and often by night. He is a father and a husband 24/7. He likes to take photos, compose music and write about stuff he dares to dream up. Our thoughts and our feelings are often like vapor, physically unbounded, ungraspable yet real. To capture the intangible, he is a writer, composer and photographer. Kai-Lilly Karpman is currently pursuing an MFA in poetry at Columbia University. She is a recent graduate of Trinity College, Hartford, where she was a varsity ice hockey player. Most of her life has been dedicated to athletics. She works as an editor at the Columbia Journal. Watch a short film based on the poem on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-KJ8_2XB_I AnneMarie Miles is a certified yoga teacher, an Early Childhood Education student, and is currently apprenticing to become a children's music teacher. Her poetry is published in the online cultural magazines Prometheus Dreaming and Sad Girls Club, and printed in Lucky Jefferson's Introspection and Allegory Ridge's Spring 2021 anthology. AnneMarie lives with her husband, daughter, and goofy pitbull in Santa Cruz, California. Christopher Moore has been writing poetry since 2013 and has been published in several literary magazines over the years. He has also published several poetry books, with his more recent one, "Café of Memories", being published on Amazon in March 2021. Noah Lashly is a writer from Ojai, California. His work has been featured in Cagibi, Allegory Ridge, Array Photo Journal, The Aonian, The Dewdrop, at Speaking of Stories, and on The Townies Podcast. His radio play, produced through Eastside Queer Stories, is available on Spotify. He is also the producer of the Comedy/Party Thing at Kim Maxwell Studio. Lael Cassidy lives in Seattle. Her poems and short stories have appeared in Headline Poetry and Press, Silver Birch, Underwood Press, and Beyond Words. Kevin Wang is a student of literature who writes for fun. A multi-genre artist living in Tucson, Arizona, Valyntina Grenier is the author of the chapbooks Fever Dream/ Take Heart from Cathexis Northwest Press and In Our Now, forthcoming from Finishing Line Press. Her work has recently appeared in The Impossible Beast: Queer Erotic Poems, High Shelf Press, Gaze, Impermanent Earth and Wild Roof. Find her at valyntinagrenier.com or Insta @valyntinagrenier Riley Winchester's writing has appeared in Ligeia Magazine, Miracle Monocle, Sheepshead Review, Ellipsis Zine, Pure Slush's "Lifespan" Anthology, and other publications. He lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan.


Matilda Eggert is an emerging poet and creative writer from Brisbane, Australia. As a copywriter and brand strategist by trade, Matilda loves to capture a feeling or an abstract human experience with words. Her creative work hasn't been published broadly yet, but she's working on it. Camille Lendor is an emerging poet who lives in Toronto, Canada. Her work has appeared in Canadian Literature and The Foundationalist. Camille is currently working on her debut poetry collection. Maggie Gaia McKenzie is an artist and teacher living in Portland, Oregon. Courtney Arnold recently received their bachelor's degree from Smith College in English Language with a concentration in poetry. Their work h as been published in Smith's journals Labrys Art and Literature and Emulate. Courtney loves to dig up the bright, eccentric minutiae hidden in dayto-day mundanity and finds inspiration for their work from dancing, dreaming, and being.


VISUAL ARTISTS Cover art: Carnal Desire by Miniature Malekpour. Miniature is a Ph.D. scholar and artist at the Australian National University. She is currently a contributing writer for Diabolique Magazine, and her work has been published in The Dillydoun Review, Drunk Monkeys+ Literature & Film, Fatal Flaw Literary Magazine, and Beyond Words Literary Magazine. Instagram handle: @thesevenautumns Gerardo Gama, God, 2019, 34.5" x 23" mixed media on re-repurposed canvas. Gerardo is a Mexican artist based in San Francisco. Jamie Parks, Where the Secrets are. Jamie is an abstract artist who explores clarity in chaos by channeling what she refers to as ‘source’. "These paintings are no longer mine, I am only a conduit meant to give this energy a tangible form.” Each unique abstraction has a complex layering of color, line, and texture all interacting in a way that creates an intense vibration that whispers secrets to those who are ready to listen. Ciro Di Fiore, Solar Storms. Ciro Di Fiore lives in Naples, Italy. He has the pseudonym of Daniel. His creative journey began from “First Alternative Winter” of Rimini in Italy in 2007. Daniel is an emerging creator. He is also an emerging stylist: he has exhibited his stylistic paintings with his fashion samples. Since December 2015, he shows his artistic / stylistic works in museums, galleries and fairs in Italy and abroad (Europe, America, United Arab Emirates, Australia and China). Paula DeStefanis, Winter’s Ice; Purple Heart. Paula is known for her multilayered abstract paintings. Working alternately in acrylic and oil, she uses repetition and layering to symbolize time, duration, and change. Her process leads to in-depth exploration of a concept from multiple perspectives. Layering paint, sometimes with unconventional tools, often scratching away to find what lies beneath, the work celebrates both the physical and emotive qualities of each medium. Tyrone J. Webb II, Blue Moon 2020. Tyrone is a full-time artist in Allentown, PA. His goal is to change the perception of spray paint as a medium and at the same time bring more Sci-fi and Fantasy subjects into the minds of the community. Using only cans of spray paint and no brushes he strives to inspire hope and awe. Visit him on Instagram @fine_spray_paint_art Lou Storey, not that it matters. Lou is a visual artist, writer and works as a psychotherapist. Andrea Lewicki, Driving in the Sun II. Andrea is an award-winning abstract artist. Largely self-taught and insulated from traditional art for most of her life, her studio practice involves more tools found in a hardware store than artist brushes. Lewicki uses art to explore her relationship to structure, and releasing attachment is a fundamental part of her process. Tania L. Betancourt, Read Carefully (2017). Tania is an artist that's inspired by life and its many chasms. She loves the highs & has learned to endure the lows, all the while trying to utilize each and every experience as an opportunity for mental & spiritual growth. Matt Gold, #160. Matt is based in Brooklyn, NY, where he divides his time between music and photography. As evidence of the democratizing nature of his approac h to photography, Gold has no formal training in the visual arts. His first image, a picture of his cat on a Sony Ericsson Z310A f lip phone, was taken in 2008, and he has continued to explore the aesthetic possibilities of that instrument. Gold’s work has been featured in numerous publications and journals. Joy Kloman, Marvelous Voyage. Joy earned her M.F.A. from the University of Florida and completed her B.F.A. at the Kansas City Art Institute. Her experience includes teaching art at the University of Mississippi, Oxford, where she was a tenured associate professor of art, supervising the graduate and undergraduate painting program. Additionally, Kloman taught a drawing course in London, England. Marvelous Voyage was first published in High Shelf Press, p. 27, volume XXV, December 2020. Nijole Rasmussen, Barcelona, acrylic on canvas, 24x24. Abstract artist Nijole lives in Denver, Colorado. Her art is her perception of reality with touch of realism. She expresses herself with color and form as it speaks to her. Brea’n Thompson, Desire for Milan, 16”x20”, oil on canvas. Brea’n was born in Houston, Texas. While working on her B.A. in Earth and Environmental Science/Geology from Arizona State University, she became inspired to pursue a career in the arts using her experience in Geology to influence her work. As a synesthete, she utilizes her unique ability to see colors in the sounds she hears. Many of her paintings incorporate vibrant colors and lively textures to depict the movement of music. Jess Richards, Flock of Ghosts VIII; Migration III. Jess is the author of three literary fiction novels: Snake Ropes, Cooking with Bones, and City of Circles are published in the UK by Sceptre. With a background in Visual Arts, Jess has an artistic practice which merges art and creative writing. She lives with her wife in New Zealand.


Lilac Keren, Stronger than Gold. Lilac is passionate about exploring the emotional depths that come with creating different layers in a piece, building these layers both physically and digitally. Her style mostly revolves around abstract and figurative abstract, with colors being a significant focus of variation and play. She was born in Israel and now lives in Scottsdale, AZ. She has been practicing art all of her life and studied art formally and informally. Nicole Cullinan, Textural. Nicole’s work features on the socials for NGV, Heide MOMA and Vasette. Her photographic work has evolved organically through her writing and a desire to record a moment in time. Photography of still life within housing interiors seems to dominate her portfolio. Arnab Barua, Power. Arnab is an independent sketch artist based in Dresden, Germany. He tries to express his feelings about the day-to-day life through pencils. His work varies from illustrative to abstract beauty. Visit him at https://arnabbaruaphysics.wixsite.com/artist Christopher Ghattas, Spirits Ablaze. Christopher is a biochemist with the CDC, though he also has a B.S. in English and enjoys writing whenever he has free time. His upbringing under an immigrant Greek father and large family afforded him with plenty of stories, from a childhood in South Carolina to France and back again. Travels and frequent moves inspired a lifelong love of visiting new places and photography. Octavio Pajaro, Chasing Rainbows. Octavio is a heart surgeon by day and often by night. He is a father and a husband 24/7. He likes to take photos, compose music and write about stuff he dares to dream up. Our thoughts and our feelings are often like vapor, physically unbounded, ungraspable yet real. To capture the intangible, he is a writer, composer and photographer. Yarden Tsfoni. Aidan Stressed. Yarden is an Israeli born archaeologist, botanist, and painter currently living in Boston. Her art explores human emotions and intangible thoughts, memories, and dreams and tries to capture them on the canvas vividly. Her interests - humans, architecture, shared human experiences, and the colors of this beautiful planet - are key values present in her work. Barbara Tlush, Thunder Moon. Barbara’s oils and occasional mixed media paintings are both whimsical and classical. Implementing various unconventional tools to create with, enhances the textures that give life to her paintings. It is her goal for the viewer to have a story unfold before them, invoking joy, a positive feeling, or to bring forward a memory that was tucked away in the back of their mind. Gabriel McLeod, Menagerie. Gabriel is a writer and artist that currently lives in Florida with his two daughters and two cats in a house filled with books and stories. He is working on a collection of short stories, poetry and photography. His work has been featured in Storyteller Magazine, The Elephant Journal, Wingless Dreamer and Beyond Words. Kristen Sanchez, Fragility, Mixed Media on Wood, 36"x48". Born in Nebraska, based in South Texas nearing the Mexican border, Kristen is a Fine Artist who challenges the complexity of identity within the human figure. Kristen has received her Bachelor’s degree in Fine Art with a concentration in Studio Art from The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Elizabeth Ricketson, Dancing at Dartmouth. A graduate of Providence College with a BA in English, Elizabeth has always had a love of literature and the fine arts. In the 1990s, she studied figure drawing at the Rhode Island School of Design spending years dedicated to understanding human form, movement and anatomy. Blog titled “It’s Complicated” https://wordpress.com/view/elizabeth-ricketson.com. Elizabeth’s essays focus on life experiences and life in Vermont. Van Lanigh, All the world’s a stage . Inspired by great masters as Vrubel and Monet, Van creates figurative and landscape pieces. Her unique style is a reaction to abstractionism in an attempt to capture surrealistic yet casual reality. This is especially underlined by new forms and materials used in Van Lanigh’s artworks aimed to achieve the viewer’s resonance between visual effect and message of the painting. Alexx Mayes, Surrealist Dots. Alexx is a fine art portrait photographer, who recently earned a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Nevada, Reno with an emphasis in photography, cinema and art history. Alexx has specific interest in exhibiting the human psyche being altered by technological singularity using cinematic-style photography as a medium. Anat Michaeli, Mad Tea Party is not Over. Israeli-American visual artist focusing on utilizing medium, colors, and symbolism to join viewers in the awe, pain, and beauty of our shared human experience. For Anat, art provides the platform for expression and allows her to connect and communicate with others in a way she was never able to using merely words. As an artist, she strives to not only create an emotional response, but to also touch the linkage in each of us that holds our shared pain, passions, and awe.


Contents 0 1 Su si e N ak ash W h i l e th e H ou se Bu r n s D ow n

Beyond Words I nternational Literary M agazine

0 2 Au gu st Ri t ch ar t Seal egs 0 3 K i m Sosi n M u sée D ?O r say Cl ock 0 4 Joh n Gossl ee Cen t er of th e U n i ver se 0 5 D an y Gagn on Fr ozen N ow s 0 6 N i ch ol as Pagan o Au bad e f or th e m oon w h o i s d r i f ti n g aw ay 0 7 Br u ce M agn ot t i T i m e O u t 0 8 H eath er Gl u ck W or k i n g on M y sel f th e Pr obl em 11 D i ck A l t m an T i d es of Red d est D i squ i et 12 A sp en St od d ar d A T r ee 15 Ken n et h Joh n son B l u e L i gh t 17 M on tan a Svobod a Tel l M e, W h at D o You , W an t, To See 18 Cl ai r e M cGof f H ei m w eh 20 O ctav i o Pajar o H el l o, L i ttl e Bi r d i e 22 K ai - L i l ly K ar p m an I w an ted to be a Poet n ot a M oth er 24 A n n eM ar i e M i l es M oth er s i n th e M or n i n g 25 Ch r i stop h er M oor e Ch ess w i th A p h r od i te 26 N oah L ash ly H er e's Ever y th i n g I K n ow A bou t W ed d i n gs 32 L ael Cassi d y Ph ot of i n i sh 33 Kev i n W an g T h e Bu r i al 37 Valy n ti n a Gr en i er H el p A H u n d r ed B i l l i on H on ey bees Pow d er T h ei r T h i gh s 38 Ri l ey W i n ch est er T h e D i ve 41 D A N CE! Ch al l en ge i n cl u d i n g M ati l d a Egger t, Cam i l l e L en d or , M aggi e Gai a M cKen zi e an d Cou r t n ey A r n ol d

I SBN 978- 3- 948977- 14- 6


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