Page 1

Fortnight Literary Press VII.I


CONTENTS 2 3 4 6 7 8 10 11 12 13 Cover Image Editors Layout Editor Editorial Staff

Angelica Esquivel Stephanie Choi Eli Sparkman Lang DeLancey Joe Iovino Lang DeLancey Stephanie Choi Lang DeLancey Sarah Kimmel Lauren Weiss Joe Iovino

Basil Veins the cafĂŠ A Second Coat The Ghost of Buddy Holly Stories Couches and Chairs the forest of lost children Disgusting Fear The First Body I Drank Craftwork

Jenny Wang, Christopher Ransburg Giuliana Eggleston Sarah Dougherty, Danielle Elizabeth Colburn, Sarrah Hakim, Mia Licciardi, Michelle Hoban, Natalie Steers, Myra Visser.

Funded by the Student Organization Funding Committee of Central Student Government

fortnightlitpress.wordpress.com


Basil Veins

the café

Angelica Esquivel

Stephanie Choi

I bury myself against the earth, mire melting down my trachea, mud-luscious inhalations. Epidermis, dermis, penetrated by tangerine-toned fungi, my body fleshing apart: compost. I long to be the veins along a basil leaf, the ones growing in your garden, newly planted, and hardly fragrant, I’d begin for the first time.

This coffee is bitter and I’m withering, sallow when I take my cup pretending to sip the liquid back. Here it is on my tongue, mulled but black. Mom — high waisted jeans, jacket at breast — tossing her hair to one side. We’ve curled it with question marks licking the edge with a slip of cream. I’m staining, drowning under it, and here’s Mom: mug in hand, youth, youth, youth. I’m flowers after a week. Three sunrises later, I’m wilted. Mom, mom, mom. When I remember how we drank our poison, I forget her face. Perhaps she drank hers this way: tilted her head back just enough so the creamless black made a snake river down her tongue swiveling in her throat down to the liquid march of her tumultuous stomach.

2

3


Basil Veins

the café

Angelica Esquivel

Stephanie Choi

I bury myself against the earth, mire melting down my trachea, mud-luscious inhalations. Epidermis, dermis, penetrated by tangerine-toned fungi, my body fleshing apart: compost. I long to be the veins along a basil leaf, the ones growing in your garden, newly planted, and hardly fragrant, I’d begin for the first time.

This coffee is bitter and I’m withering, sallow when I take my cup pretending to sip the liquid back. Here it is on my tongue, mulled but black. Mom — high waisted jeans, jacket at breast — tossing her hair to one side. We’ve curled it with question marks licking the edge with a slip of cream. I’m staining, drowning under it, and here’s Mom: mug in hand, youth, youth, youth. I’m flowers after a week. Three sunrises later, I’m wilted. Mom, mom, mom. When I remember how we drank our poison, I forget her face. Perhaps she drank hers this way: tilted her head back just enough so the creamless black made a snake river down her tongue swiveling in her throat down to the liquid march of her tumultuous stomach.

2

3


A Second Coat Eli Sparkman For Olivia It was Late, Her voice was delicious, chewy, like I could pop it into my mouth, savour the taste, and blow a bubble with it. She asked me again, “If you could repaint the Water Tower anything you wanted, what would you paint it?” I thought a moment: and then spoke, “Well what is it now?” She said, “It’s clouds over a light blue sky, just like earlier today, kind of. You might not have even seen it though, it’s hard to see, it blends in so much.” I said, “I guess I’d erase that. I’d write your name in BIG LETTERS! Or better yet, I’d turn it into an actual Olive, you know, with a red dot at the top and all. Or maybe, you know, I’d turn the pole into a neck of a martini glass or something exotic.” And I raised my glass as a token of cheers to her. She laughed and said, “Stop joking.” I smiled and told her I wasn’t.

‘Make it Free.’ Water should be free. Look what’s happening in Detroit or look at your Fucked up water bill on Division.” I said, “I don’t know. I think I’d attempt to make something more mysterious, artistic.” I asked her if what she’d suggested might be like, a little, “propagandaic,” if that were a word. She asked me if all art was, in a way, at least a little, “propagandaic,” if that were a word? I told her I didn’t know. I asked her again what it already was. She said it was, “clouds, over a baby blue sky, Dumbass.” I laughed and said, “We could just give the clouds legs and a head and they’d be sheep we could count before we fell asleep.” But then I looked out the window and saw there were no clouds to be found in the night. I decided no, I’d paint it black with some stars we could wish upon. She said, “That would look Fucking horrible during the day.” She said, “I’d paint it so bright, it would be like a second moon. Whose reflected light I could wrap around you, like a second coat, to keep you here.” I said, “We’ll get the paint tomorrow.”

She said, “But no really, the food thing isn’t such a bad idea. Like an apple, over the top of Tree City; or an acorn to honor all the squirrels; or an egg like 4AM Fleetwood. Actually not an egg, that’s kind of dumb.” And she winked even though she is so, so bad at winking. I said, “We could make it pink like someone was blowing a bubble with their gum.” She said, “Nobody would get that joke.” And we considered the possibilities with much effort and much deliberation and we didn’t talk for awhile. And I got up to make another drink. She said, “What if we could make it something that actually meant something, like with a real message that could help people and stand up for people. Like ‘Do the Right Thing’ or

4

5


A Second Coat Eli Sparkman For Olivia It was Late, Her voice was delicious, chewy, like I could pop it into my mouth, savour the taste, and blow a bubble with it. She asked me again, “If you could repaint the Water Tower anything you wanted, what would you paint it?” I thought a moment: and then spoke, “Well what is it now?” She said, “It’s clouds over a light blue sky, just like earlier today, kind of. You might not have even seen it though, it’s hard to see, it blends in so much.” I said, “I guess I’d erase that. I’d write your name in BIG LETTERS! Or better yet, I’d turn it into an actual Olive, you know, with a red dot at the top and all. Or maybe, you know, I’d turn the pole into a neck of a martini glass or something exotic.” And I raised my glass as a token of cheers to her. She laughed and said, “Stop joking.” I smiled and told her I wasn’t.

‘Make it Free.’ Water should be free. Look what’s happening in Detroit or look at your Fucked up water bill on Division.” I said, “I don’t know. I think I’d attempt to make something more mysterious, artistic.” I asked her if what she’d suggested might be like, a little, “propagandaic,” if that were a word. She asked me if all art was, in a way, at least a little, “propagandaic,” if that were a word? I told her I didn’t know. I asked her again what it already was. She said it was, “clouds, over a baby blue sky, Dumbass.” I laughed and said, “We could just give the clouds legs and a head and they’d be sheep we could count before we fell asleep.” But then I looked out the window and saw there were no clouds to be found in the night. I decided no, I’d paint it black with some stars we could wish upon. She said, “That would look Fucking horrible during the day.” She said, “I’d paint it so bright, it would be like a second moon. Whose reflected light I could wrap around you, like a second coat, to keep you here.” I said, “We’ll get the paint tomorrow.”

She said, “But no really, the food thing isn’t such a bad idea. Like an apple, over the top of Tree City; or an acorn to honor all the squirrels; or an egg like 4AM Fleetwood. Actually not an egg, that’s kind of dumb.” And she winked even though she is so, so bad at winking. I said, “We could make it pink like someone was blowing a bubble with their gum.” She said, “Nobody would get that joke.” And we considered the possibilities with much effort and much deliberation and we didn’t talk for awhile. And I got up to make another drink. She said, “What if we could make it something that actually meant something, like with a real message that could help people and stand up for people. Like ‘Do the Right Thing’ or

4

5


The Ghost of Buddy Holly

Lang DeLancey

Stories

Joe Iovino

this is the third day i’ve made coffee backwards letting liquid set back to bean while carl sagan marinates on my lawn shirtless and in shorts proving he’s gay so i’ll let him fuck my wife until then, me and my old lady we’ll break into houses and dance to the devil’s music in the living room. ‘til the neighbors give up the ghost and turn their brains into mashed beets we’ll dance hollerin’ and breaking shit real close pretending we’re burning all alone except, of course for carl

6

7


The Ghost of Buddy Holly

Lang DeLancey

Stories

Joe Iovino

this is the third day i’ve made coffee backwards letting liquid set back to bean while carl sagan marinates on my lawn shirtless and in shorts proving he’s gay so i’ll let him fuck my wife until then, me and my old lady we’ll break into houses and dance to the devil’s music in the living room. ‘til the neighbors give up the ghost and turn their brains into mashed beets we’ll dance hollerin’ and breaking shit real close pretending we’re burning all alone except, of course for carl

6

7


Couches and Chairs Lang DeLancey

why don’t we let the chairs whisper. and the couches scream all of the secrets stashed in their cushions between loose change and drinking straws

that drive all the way into a cobalt moon to catch glimpses of the earth and sun the couch is crying and we won’t do shit

they’ll yell of all the asses squished into them of all the best sex and worst hand jobs the bad movies bad fights and all they’ll shout through stained teeth of spilled beer piss and bloody legs let’s give them all writing deals the car backseats and diner stools rocking chairs and school desks we’d read books of fiction erotic and hillbilly history with ‘about the upholstery’ at the end vinyl coated hatred cigarette coffee stained and all

8

9


Couches and Chairs Lang DeLancey

why don’t we let the chairs whisper. and the couches scream all of the secrets stashed in their cushions between loose change and drinking straws

that drive all the way into a cobalt moon to catch glimpses of the earth and sun the couch is crying and we won’t do shit

they’ll yell of all the asses squished into them of all the best sex and worst hand jobs the bad movies bad fights and all they’ll shout through stained teeth of spilled beer piss and bloody legs let’s give them all writing deals the car backseats and diner stools rocking chairs and school desks we’d read books of fiction erotic and hillbilly history with ‘about the upholstery’ at the end vinyl coated hatred cigarette coffee stained and all

8

9


the forest of lost children Stephanie Choi

the plush grass betrayed them first: then, the v-tree. they were warned. the eldest: nightmares of uprooted stick limbs. preluded by the pulling fibers of grass. suddenly, the children were in their mother’s arms. rigid like branches: they cried upon her mossy bosom.

Disgusting Lang DeLancey

i stare down the barrel of a half loaded cigarette and she tells me that i am fucking disgusting my hairy brain, my hairy balls those hands i never wash keep them away from her she says we’ll never fuck again. she gets like this but we will she’s the only one who will still fuck me all of the others left because i am fucking disgusting these long toenails and hairy feet. my sick poems and my stupid scars

10

11


the forest of lost children Stephanie Choi

the plush grass betrayed them first: then, the v-tree. they were warned. the eldest: nightmares of uprooted stick limbs. preluded by the pulling fibers of grass. suddenly, the children were in their mother’s arms. rigid like branches: they cried upon her mossy bosom.

Disgusting Lang DeLancey

i stare down the barrel of a half loaded cigarette and she tells me that i am fucking disgusting my hairy brain, my hairy balls those hands i never wash keep them away from her she says we’ll never fuck again. she gets like this but we will she’s the only one who will still fuck me all of the others left because i am fucking disgusting these long toenails and hairy feet. my sick poems and my stupid scars

10

11


Fear

The First Body I Drank

I am watching a horror movie right now, not one of those gouge your eyes out scary as shit flicks where the guy thrusts his fingers up the girl’s skirt, but one of the truly scary, question your existence films that makes you wonder if your entire world is just a product of the horrors of something much worse, an alternate universe of monsters under your bed, are people in costumes, are products of the minds of mankind. I ask myself why I watch scary movies, why I show them to men in my room in my bed, in my lacy underwear, show it to their snakes and their religion, and all I can think is that these men aren’t men, they’re monsters too, are the products of mercury in tuna and Fukushima and smog in the morning, and if I am supposed to fuck them, to open myself like a glass jar, I might as well show them that I know, that I know what they are— as a monster in you is a monster in me— that I’m only afraid of what they won’t do to me, what they’ll leave me to do to myself. What claws will do to my skin, what these beasts do to bodies, what people do to other people, is what I will do to myself if they do not.

I was born yesterday From the brine tracing Roots on your body.

Sarah Kimmel

Lauren Weiss

You lay there, Adam, A shimmer evaporating From the sand. I am thirsty. I’ll not be Your acre, A stretching plain soaked with sweet rain. Don’t get upListen. My dress touches The floor, spreads Like a spill. And I am thirsty. I will take your fingers in my mouth And consume You.

12

13


Fear

The First Body I Drank

I am watching a horror movie right now, not one of those gouge your eyes out scary as shit flicks where the guy thrusts his fingers up the girl’s skirt, but one of the truly scary, question your existence films that makes you wonder if your entire world is just a product of the horrors of something much worse, an alternate universe of monsters under your bed, are people in costumes, are products of the minds of mankind. I ask myself why I watch scary movies, why I show them to men in my room in my bed, in my lacy underwear, show it to their snakes and their religion, and all I can think is that these men aren’t men, they’re monsters too, are the products of mercury in tuna and Fukushima and smog in the morning, and if I am supposed to fuck them, to open myself like a glass jar, I might as well show them that I know, that I know what they are— as a monster in you is a monster in me— that I’m only afraid of what they won’t do to me, what they’ll leave me to do to myself. What claws will do to my skin, what these beasts do to bodies, what people do to other people, is what I will do to myself if they do not.

I was born yesterday From the brine tracing Roots on your body.

Sarah Kimmel

Lauren Weiss

You lay there, Adam, A shimmer evaporating From the sand. I am thirsty. I’ll not be Your acre, A stretching plain soaked with sweet rain. Don’t get upListen. My dress touches The floor, spreads Like a spill. And I am thirsty. I will take your fingers in my mouth And consume You.

12

13


Fortnight VII.I  

The first issue of volume 7. 2015/16