Page 1


KIOSK 45 Art & Literature Magazine

KIOSK 45 The Creative Process

Designed, edited, and published by students, Kiosk is a semi-annual, award-winning magazine featuring the finest art and literature the University of Kansas has to offer.

From the Sketchbook of Darren Kennedy


Design Staff

Editorial Staff

Ty l e r A d a m s Anna Defazio Jessica Marak Lauren Schimming Morgan Stephens

Ryan Fazio Ellen Goodrich Amanda Hemmingsen Katherine Longofono Sydney Rayl Robin Smith Savannah Windham


featuring the artwork of

Carolyn Applebaum 87

M a x M i k u l e c k y 5 6 , 57

A m i Aya r s 4 2

Adam Miller 32

A l ex a n d r i a B r o w n e 7 1

Robert Nelson 61, 85

Sally Carmichael 18

Karina Perez-Fajardo 51

Jenna Coon 70

Grace Peterson 22

Mars Denton 13

Te s s a R e u b e r 6 8

Seth Dugger 19

Elini Roussopoulos 44

Graham Greene 18, 19

Al exa n dra Sova 1 4 , 73, 80, 92 , 93

Erin Hoffmann 42

Rya n Sowe r s 4 3

Ye w o n J i 8 4

John Stringer 41, 76

D a r r e n Ke n n e d y 4 , 1 9

Ke l l y T h o m p s o n 6 7

W h i t n e y K i n n a m o n 74 , 7 5

H e i d i We t z e l 2 6 , 4 6 , 6 4 , 9 6 , 9 7

Cameron Lamontagne 18, 34, 35, 55

J e s s i c a Wo o l d r i d g e 6 2 , 6 3

M a d d i e Ly t l e 3 0

Erin ZingrĂŠ 82, 98, 101, 103

J e s s i c a M c G l o t h l i n 2 7, 6 9

featuring the writing of




“Dark Light”









J O R DA N SERENE KRUSE “What It ’s Like to be Afraid of the Dark”


ALEX SALEM “Berdkhat”

“ T h i r d Ave n u e Bridge”



JOSH BARKER “Boomtown Museum Blues”











M E AG H A N M O O DY “My Mother”

B R E N DA N ALLEN “A R o s e Named Bill”

“Remember ”




KO L L I N B L AC K “ Ti l l F o i l H a t ”




I will admit that I’ve never been happy with this bonobo on my shoulder. It was summertime when we met, or rather when he accosted me in the middle of a house tucked away in some ridiculous valley where it always rained and the wood was warped. “I’ll piss off eventually,” the bonobo told me, after scratching my cheek with his tiny claws. “It’s fine,” I mumbled, because at the time I thought it was. I was very sad about something that had to do with my brother and he had distracted me from a particularly bad bout of crying. The blood pooling on my cheek made the internal sadness seem much less real.

Untitled Monoprint Mars Denton


Panther Party Cast yellow bronze Alexandra Sova


I began feeding it bananas almost immediately. “Do you have a banana?” he asked, only an hour or so after he had made himself comfortable on my shoulder. We had been staring blankly into my back yard and the day was actually becoming more and more beautiful, or bearable at least. And I did have a banana and it was ripe. I secretly had a bunch of them, but I made the decision not to let on. I had a feeling if I told him, he would grab the lot and run. As I hoped, we soon found ourselves spending the evening together on that porch, sharing tiny bites of the browning banana until it was gone and all that was left was the peel, a pale, deflated octopus that the bonobo kept squeezed tight in its fist for nearly the entire night. I later found the peel in the yard, a black and shriveled corpse that looked too much like a dead octopus. “If you give me a quarter I’ll do a back flip for you,” he said several days later. I said sure and gave him the only quarter in my pocket. I later received a parking ticket because I didn’t have change for the meter.

The back flip was good, though, and I felt myself thoroughly entertained. “Would you like to sit on my shoulder?” I asked him. “I’ve seen that type of thing in movies. I think you’d like it up there.” “Why not,” he said. And that was that. A year has passed and the bonobo has only showered twice. His fur is mangled and infested with fleas that I find crawling across my bed sheets in the night. I tell him to leave, but once he lifts even a hind leg from my shoulder I begin to miss him. “Wait, don’t go,” I always end up saying, regretting the satisfied, toothy grin he returns. There was one time when I went an entire five days without looking at or speaking to the bonobo. He didn’t seem to care, just went right along eating peanuts and winking at my roommates. I finally gave in and asked if he wanted to see a movie. He said no, that he would rather just take a nap on my shoulder. So he did, and I felt relieved that he had even responded to my voice. I was grateful for his weight on my shoulder.

Last spring, the bonobo tried to leave me. We were walking downtown when he saw a very skinny girl in a paisley dress sitting in a coffee shop. He hopped off my shoulder and went to meet her. For the next two days he was gone, having made himself a new home around this girl’s slender neck. I often thought he left her because there was simply not enough area for him to rest on, what with her shoulders being so small. But I later found out it was because the girl had a strong banana allergy. I often wonder what life would be like if I had never let the bonobo climb onto my shoulder. I think of all the shawls I could be wearing, of the somersaults I’ve never done. The weight on my shoulder is starting to hurt. The skin underneath it feels hot, and I suspect there is a rather serious rash spreading. I feel unbalanced, always like I am about to tip over.












From the Sketchbooks of Graham Greene 1,7 Sally Carmichael 2,3 Cameron Lamontagne 4 Seth Dugger 5 Darren Kennedy 6



In the cold months, the Ice on the pavement Forms bas relief footprints, Charts the paths of the Braver dog walkers and The bag ladies.

But the city keeps breathing With its hundred bridges between Buildings, in a state with Ten thousand lakes It is this one, a Bridge over the river

The Warehouse District Shivers this time of day Smoke softens sharp architecture Turns the intersections into Pillowy contours “Gold Medal Flour” Advertises itself in hazy red.

That offers itself to so many Spiders, the perpetual tree Caught in the dam below, Generations of mallards swimming To Hennepin Avenue Glowing green upstream

So many cracks in the sidewalk Serve as a testament to the Sharpest of air Over the sharpest of water Lung-cutting, Skin-shriveling Cold.

And me, Returning to this concrete haunt, A name for empty space, Its beauty not prevailing for What it is, but what it’s Witnessed.


Dark Matter 11 Monoprint 9" by 14" Grace Peterson




Syllables in dawn’s light foreplay-Ache. Blur.

Swallowed fist music of foreign names cornered in newsprint.

I pause, break for American squeamishness

Front page accolades in honeycombed churches honor (Context by proxy adult to party money and shot-That pause.) The word that screams down newsprint, explodes the mouth repeating

I don’t know how to make a bomb but I know foreboding,

Clusterbomb Clusterbomb Clusterbomb


Into the Fog Lithography Print 11" by 14" Heidi Wetzel


Coral Reef Screenprint on Cotton 45" by 50" Jessica McGlothin




Blame it on chemicals; neurons zapping around like jellyfish while my body is highly starched tissue paper. “This is quite silly. It’s in your head.” “It stems from an inability to distinguish reality from fiction” “She has an overactive imagination is all.” But wait! I’m not waving but drowning. There should be a pill for this.


Morning Digital Photograph Maddie Lytle


Untitled Digital Photograph Adam Miller


from the sketchbook of Cameron Lamontagne





If there really is gray, Why can’t it reach out and touch your face? How come it cannot kiss you like the darkness, How come it cannot embrace you like the light. How come it cannot consume you like tragedy, How come it cannot become you like tranquility. How come it cannot immerse you with misery, How come it cannot incite you with pleasure. How come it cannot make you a cynic with a mind pained by the concerns of a terrorist, How come it cannot make your brain optimistic, always looking for a new day. How come it cannot freeze your heart into a frigid object that will never thaw, How come it can’t warm your chest, providing shelter from the world. How come it can’t be found by hate, Greed has looked for it all this time, is it too late? How come purity cannot locate it, How could it be so elusive for fondness to sit. How could it be in front of your face this whole time, But you could never see it, How could you feel gray, But only see light or darkness. How could you ingest only one Life, When you know that both are human.



Memory 2 Oil on Canvas John Stringer

Remnant Cast Iron & Concrete Ami Ayars


Unititled Erin Hoffmann

Sir William Wallace, Guardian of Scotland Ink drawing with digital color Ryan Sowers


The Escape Artist Digital Photograph Eleni Roussopoulos



Yellow Map Ink, Silk & Paper 24" by 32" Heidi Wetzel




You’re a bird. Flying at night through cat eyed lens You see the city Waff the pollution Feel the wind Hear the train as you imagine The taste of boxed peanuts. The smell of night moves you As hunger pushes you farther Into the sky. Consuming the stars, one by one You reckon they’ll be there Night after night. Bitter winds Draw the feeling of autumn in the spring You cast a cloud over each direction To push the journey Closer to home. When you find this place You will see That this nourishing city Is no more None other than buildings and lights They shine, shine Shine until the bulbs go out Until the concrete tumbles They shine on dimmed silhouettes, Life seen through cat eyed lens.




Coronado balked, called across thigh high grains La tierra inferma. Bereft but of cottonwood river ribbing. A ground grown humble each spring, watched iron dome Spaniards skulk south. God called whiter ones west riding coal trains steeped with stripped hide, humps baking beneath sun all dust in cupboards and clouds of dry dirt thunder. Find me here by porchlight houses. Where ranges are open in name alone. Flinthills of five-wire land quilted in cattle chute sections winnowing away to pump-gun death. Found where orange-bill birds whir and dip tethered forever to oil strings, held crude in crosstate hands. I stand in museums, run fingers cross their hollow bones reciting names of oil hands spun to stumps, fingers pulped opal in pump-rods before screams could ring. Here where two-lane flyers, grated gravel drive-a-ways heave bottles at low bridge placards. Where Vitnam vet mayors saunter bib-overalled and armed to from and behind bars. A land of scant-eye anhydrous hounds— Black teeth by twenty at thirty moldered to grave root food. Fence caught bags or blustered spirits refined yet still flapping at the pumps.

For God so loved these plains he spun the sky a mobile. Coronado’s compass. Black and chaff unscarred by borealis. Unbroken soother of coyote and bored 450 wail-aways. My brighter black distinguisher of land from saltrocked oil. Oil bird belts winding wind that blows ashen ancestor over hedgerow and turd pond alike. Where we’re all roots to be, waiting rise from chaffed flame to suck salt off bison bone long after rust clogs the final pumpbird songs.




The blizzard’s ghostly moan soothed me to sleep and dug into me in the morning.

There were birds outside my window. Even though the chilled air was chirpless. They were fly-hopping from tree to tree and back again. And it looked more difficult than anything I’ve ever had to do. The burning note of every complaint-song spun into and out of me with every inhale and exhale the night before. When I saw those birds I tried to purge every note I’d heard and re-swallow every one I’d sung. It was impossible. Windwarped with wearywings, they looked miserable, and confused, and anxious, and irritatedasfuck, and, most of all, terrified. But I couldn’t even see their faces. I thought, “I bet if I could see their eyes, I would feel their terror.” Then I thought, “No, I wouldn’t.”

From the Sketchbook of Cameron Lamontagne


Cunningham Park, Joplin Digital Photography Max Mikulecky

Guest Room Digital Photography Max Mikulecky

J ulie T rechak


All that talk of jeans & haircuts, the trim off the back of the head, he said I’d feel self-conscious for two months one for now and one for later. I had never felt the razor - bristles of where neck meets skull before & now I can run my hand over shaved hair & wonder about him.



Egg Heads Pencil Robert Nelson


Untitled Digital Photograph Jessica Wooldridge

Untitled Digital Photograph Jessica Wooldridge

Three Red Peppers Oil on Panel Heidi Wetzel

MEGAN MINEAR I modeled my dress in the mirror, it was the proper thing to do if I wanted to drop jaws. My heels would make me the same height as him. I liked the leverage. I wanted to look him in the eye. I wanted him to recognize me. The music played, and I would have to yell to be heard. I walked up to the bar and stood next to him. I acted like I didn’t know him. He started to walk away. He didn’t recognize me. I turned, not following. He’d recognize me when he came back to the bar. I waited at the bar, killing every cranberry and vodka that the horny ones sent my way. It’s what I did best; parade around in my skimpy red cocktail dresses, waiting, and flashing a little leg for others to reward me with a shot. It passed the time faster, and I could control myself. I knew

how to make the world stop spinning too fast. People’s faces never blurred. I always remember a face; it makes it easier to get them alone if I do, except for with him. He is more difficult. He caught my attention every time. How could I forget him? He’s a regular. He was the only one I wanted this weekend. I pulled my dress down to show a small strip of cleavage and leaned against the bar. He walked by. He just didn’t see me. The bastard must not recognize me. I’ll make sure that’s fixed. He’s such a pain in the ass. They all are. “Two beers.” I dropped a twenty on the counter. I’d try to win it back later. The foam built in the top; the way he liked it. That’s what he told me the last time, before the blond from the black jack table stole his

attention. He liked blonds. I put the beer in front of him and stood a step behind him. “Remember me?” I tried to sound seductive. He wasn’t drunk enough. “Should I?” He sniffed the beer. Does he think I drugged the beer? Why didn’t I think of that? “You will this time.” I brushed my chest against his back and tapped my beer to his. “Cheers.” I was going to need more to drink. — “Come on, Sam. You don’t remember me? It was that night inside the Eiffel Tower by the fake gondola ride and Dip’N’Dots stands.” “Your name is…” No recognition in his eyes. Déjà vu. Robyn. “Nicole.” He didn’t need the truth, he’d forget again anyways.


“Not familiar.” “Let’s dance.” “Nah.” He doesn’t dance. He was playing games. So was I. He was betting against me. Not his smartest move. I always win. — He was playing the slots, sitting next to the old lady with blue hair that never left the machine. His cologne entranced me, fancy colognes always did. I pulled my dress higher up on my thigh, my legs looked longer. My chest pressed into his back. “Buy me a drink.” I bit my a beer. Two beers. Three shots. I rubbed against him, called it dancing. He was drunk. His pupils were dilated. “I’m in room 376. I’m going there now, so are you.” I slid my teeth on his earlobe, getting caught on the diamond earring. He liked that. He followed me. In the elevator I loosened his tie. “Don’t look so scared. I don’t bite.” Hard. I kissed his cheek. He kissed my lips. The elevator stopped, but nobody got on. We got off. I walked in front of him. He watched my ass. The green light flashed on my door, and I pushed it open. I turned a lamp on, and Sam followed me in. His salt and pepper hair framed his tan face. His eyes were watching me. I took a step back, and he pinned me to the wall. Let him think he’s in control, just for a minute. I gasped, then forced a giggle when he nudged my throat. I pressed my lips to his and tried not to gag. His hands shook down my body like a virgin. I pulled him to the bed. His shirt tore easily when


I pulled. I had practiced. My nails raked even red rows in his raw chest. He was turned on. So was I. He liked when I pushed him back on the bed. I liked when he told me to hold his hands above his head. It made him vulnerable. It was more exhilarating when he was vulnerable. His eyes were closed. I made his sock a blindfold. He settled in, anxious for the ride he thought he was expecting. A thousand dollar tie draped the headboard, the pricey suit from his million dollar body looked better on the floor with his wallet slipping out. It made the passion overwhelming me more powerful, desire dripping down my leg and my mouth watering. I licked his neck, feeling it flutter under my tongue, imagining it constrict beneath my fingers. He liked when a girl choked him; I wouldn’t let go. I’d use his tie, it would be classier. He’d call it kinky. Small spits of blood stained my nails, the skin of his chest red, he groaned and twitched against my leg. I scraped his shoulders and tightened the tie. He gasped. I tasted iron, running my tongue over his chest before nipping his bottom lip. The blood on my nails matched my dress, and his tie, but the white of his face made a pleasant contrast. It was my climax; I couldn’t stop. Sam was a millionaire. One! Two! Three! Four! Five! million dollars slipped into my grasp with passing moments. He lay still. It made it easier for me to finish. I kept my dress on, but moved to look in his pockets. I liked finding new toys; he wouldn’t fight back. The folded metal cooled my palm, warming the

adrenalin pulsing in my core. A click locked, we both twitched. His muscles locked, mine raged for more. “You didn’t remember me.” I kissed his cheek. He couldn’t breathe, and he didn’t choke on the blood excuding through his bared esophagus. “I tried every night. I should’ve been blond from the beginning.” I dropped the blond wig on his chest. I looked at my hands; they hurt. His wallet on the floor tempted me. “Lust is a deadly sin, but so is greed.” He wasn’t listening to me. I didn’t expect him to. His eyes were open under the sock, stealing for a final view he didn’t see. He wanted to remember me. His wallet landed back on the ground, lighter than before. My left breast was slightly larger than my right, the cup becoming a temporary wallet. I liked the cash close to my heart. I needed to clean up, admiring the darkened splatters on my dress. Next time I’d wear black. I thought my hands looked better red, but the water turned them white again. The soap stung the scratches in my fingers. I hated feeling pain. The bubbles turned pink, but I always assume it’ll turn red. I kissed his cheek, putting on my stilettos. I played the slot machine on the way out, but I didn’t win anything. I walked away with a million dollars on my chest. I learned when gambling in Vegas, many win, and everyone loses. Some stories get shared, some ignored, and some forgotten. I’d remember.

Change Digital Photograph Kelley Thompson


Be Bee Cotton, Pigment, Aquarelle Pencil Tessa Reuber


Barbie Screen Silkscreen Jessica McGlothlin


Passing Through a Flint Hills Afternoon Oil Painting Jenna Coon



Trees Watercolor Alexandria Browne

Mom, Chestnut Orchard, Lawrence, Kansas 4"x5" Camera Negative, Scanned Whitney Kinnamon


Old Barn, Lawrence, Kansas 4"x5" Camera Negative, Scanned Whitney Kinnamon


Portrait of Diana Vreeland Oil & Gesso on Paper John Stringer


MY MOTHER M eaghan M oody


Sometimes I call my mother to unravel and sink into her banter. She lives alone with my father, and my sister’s there too. I ask, “How are you?” and turn the volume down real low. Thin strands of my own thoughts reach out, suspended in her chilled waters. My own voice sounds stagnant, when I reply. Last breath lost, allowing her currents to engulf me.


Reliq Brass, Copper & Enamel Alexandra Sova

Dia De Los Muertos Choker Ancient Bronze, Anodized Aluminum Alexandra Sova


Collage I Erin ZingrĂŠ




“Mommy, can I wear my hair down?” Tiffany had been working up to that question all morning, starting and stopping. Standing on a chair, Tiffany peeled the scarf off of her head in the bathroom mirror while her mother ironed Tiffany’s uniform shirt in the connected room. Every time her mother had to iron Tiffany’s clothes in the daytime, Tiffany knew she would be late to school. She hated being late to school. None of the other students were. It also meant she didn’t get to sit in the cafeteria with her friends before marching to class in silent, single file. Mommy wasn’t dressed yet either, which meant they would be even more late. “Did you already make your lunch, Tiff?” Mommy didn’t look up from the plaid jumper. Tiffany nodded. She loved how she could watch her mother from the mirror without having to turn around. It was like having eyes in the back of her head, like Grandma.


“I asked you if you made your lunch, Tiffany?” Tiffany slid off the chair and grabbed her oxford blouse, still warm from the iron, and put it on. “Yes, ma’am.” She fumbled the buttons closed, then tugged at the little balls wrapped around the end of her hair twists. Today’s hair balls were glittery blue and silver. They were her favourite. “Stop that.” Her mother shook the jumper once and helped Tiffany slide it over her head. “Mommy, can I take these out? I want to wear my hair down like Kelly.” Tiffany tugged a ball off and the twisted ponytail sprang apart into two thick, separate clumps. “Tiff, please, stop that.” Mommy tapped Tiffany’s hand away and twisted the hair back together again, making sure the balls were wrapped around extra tight. When Mommy frowned, she looked like a tree because the lines around her mouth were like bark, and her skin was brown, too. “Who is Kelly?”

“You know Kelly. You took me to her sleepover. She has the blonde hair. Her mom always lets her wear it down, or in one ponytail.” Mommy disappeared into her closet, but Tiffany could still hear her heavy voice. She only sounded like that because she was tired. She had overheard Grandma saying Mommy was tired because Daddy left, but Tiffany didn’t think so. Mommy was tired because she worked too much. She always got home late. “Not today, honey.” “Why not?” It wouldn’t be that hard. All she had to do was take out the balls and the rubber bands, maybe. And then splash some water on it so that it would lay flat like Kelly’s. No sound came out of the closet for so long that Tiffany almost asked again. Then her mother came back out. “Wait until you’re older.” At recess, passing a basketball back and forth, Kelly asked Tiffany, again, why she never wore her hair down.

It was the third time this week and for the third time, Tiffany answered, “I don’t know. My mom doesn’t let me.” She shook her head, the hair balls clacking against themselves like the kickballs on pavement. “Well, why not? All you have to do is take out those things.” Kelly pointed at Tiffany’s sparkly hair balls. Tiffany shrugged. It made sense. She didn’t know why her mother thought she had to be older. It wasn’t that hard to do; she could manage it herself now, at seven years old. “Okay, let’s do it,” she said. And together, they undid the six balls and unraveled the six twisted ponytails and tugged off the six rubber bands that held the tails in place. Some of the rubber bands broke, snapping their fingers, but Tiffany told Kelly it was okay; her mom had a whole tub with hundreds of tiny black rubber bands. Tiffany didn’t have any pockets, so the hair balls spilled from their fists.


When they were done, Tiffany’s scalp felt free. The constant tug of the rubber bands on each strand of hair was gone, and her head tingled at the lack of pressure. But even though the balls and rubber bands were gone, her hair still stuck in its sections, held together by pale hair grease and the good dark gel that didn’t flake and make other girls call her “Dan Druff.” She didn’t know who Dan Druff was, but she was glad when Mommy stopped putting the white gel on her head. “We have to go put water on it,” Tiffany said. “It’s the only way to make

it lay down like yours.” At the next bathroom break, they hurried to the sink and scooped handfuls of water onto Tiffany’s head, ignoring the way the water spilled on their matching jumpers and blouses. It dripped down Tiffany’s face and into her eyes, but it didn’t burn like shampoo. She hated when Grandma washed her hair and foamy soap got into her eyes; even holding a towel over her face couldn’t stop all of it. Also, the water in the bathroom at school was cool, like swimming. Tiffany loved swimming, but she had never thought to take out the hair balls before she went swimming. She could try that this summer, though, because it worked so well now.


Her hair dripped onto her shoulders, but the weight of the water made her hair hang down just above her shoulders, like Kelly’s but darker, and loosely wavy. Tiffany tossed her head like a singer, or the girls in the hair commercials, flinging water across the bathroom. Kelly did too and they giggled and shook their heads until the teacher came to get them out of the bathroom. When the teacher saw them, she frowned. Tiffany grabbed paper towels. She should have known the teacher would be angry about getting their clothes wet. By the end of the day, Tiffany’s hair no longer hung down onto her damp shoulders. As it dried, it had risen, poofing out like a strangely-shaped dark cloud around her head. At the last bathroom break before they went home, she tried to wet it again, but her teacher wouldn’t let her. Tiffany was one of the last kids in the parking lot when Grandma finally came. She always had to rush over from her own school to pick Tiffany up. She hated being the last one to leave school almost as much as being the last one to get there. “What in God’s name, little girl?” Grandma grabbed Tiffany too tightly by the hand, walking so fast Tiffany had to skip to keep up. Grandma muttered out of the corner of her mouth, looking around at the last few parents there, with their daughters who could wear their hair down. “I’m going to switch you when we get home, just you wait. Embarrassing.” Tiffany wanted to apologise for getting her clothes wet. She still felt the clamminess across her shoulder blades. Grandma slammed the door, too soon, though, and when she got into the driver’s seat, she didn’t seem like she wanted to talk. The last time Tiffany talked when Grandma didn’t want her to talk, she got popped in the mouth. She knew better than to talk now. When they got home, Grandma sent Tiffany to the room they shared room to think about what she had done, embarrassing them like that. Tiffany cried into her pillow in anticipation of a thin tree switch smacking across her bottom. She hated it most when Grandma did it. She yelled at the door, promising she would never make a mess on her clothes again.

Her face tear-streaked and her head pounding from all of her crying, Tiffany sat while Grandma combed through all the now-dried curls. Sometimes, she tugged too hard and when Tiffany whimpered, Grandma said, “Hush!” but also said, “I’m sorry, baby.” This time, Grandma sealed the ends

of the twists with rubber bands from the giant bowl. The hair balls were still at the bottom of Tiffany’s book bag. Dinner came quietly at their small kitchen table, and there was still no spanking. Maybe Mommy would do it, then, Tiffany hoped. But when Mommy came, there was still no spanking, just her quiet tree trunk frown. Mommy and Grandma talked alone in Mommy’s room with the door closed. Tiffany tried to listen through the crack at the carpet, but it didn’t work. When Grandma came out, Tiffany hid under the blankets in their bed, curled into one of her grandmother’s giant t-shirts, hoping that her grandmother wouldn’t wake her up just to spank her. It had worked before, but it had also failed once. But she had been really bad then, and she hoped this time wasn’t as much trouble. This time, she had even put her scarf on, to give Grandma no excuse to wake her up. Tiffany stopped squeezing her eyes tight when Grandma simply said her prayers and climbed into bed. When Grandma’s snores started, Tiffany finally felt assured enough to fall asleep herself, cuddled against her Grandma’s back. Nothing happened the next day, either, but that weekend, Tiffany would sit for five hours getting her hair braided, every bit of her own hair woven with a little bit of silky hair that didn’t feel like hers. She liked it because it felt

more like Kelly’s. Getting braids hurt even more than when Grandma had to comb through it, even more than the hot straightening comb. It was also boring, but the lady did Tiffany’s hair in her living room so they could watch TV. The lady burned the fake hair at the tips so that Tiffany couldn’t unravel them. When Mommy paid, her smile was stretched too tight, the smile she used when Tiffany got in trouble in public. Tiffany would bite and pick at the ends until they frayed, but she still liked them. They hung down her shoulders and she could tie them up in a long, swinging ponytail or wear her hair down whenever she wanted.


Reflections Digital Photograph Alexandra Sova


Subterra Digital Photograph Alexandra Sova


A rose named Bill is like a boy named Sue, or a ladybug with baritone resonance. Now I imagine Johnny Cash’s sandpaper blankets gritty smoke billows from the mouths of Disnified fluffballs.

Bambi pickin’ banjo – “Momma died so soon with it, daddy’s love the forest ain’t no place for a boy on his own.”

I want to sow my beard into bashful soil. Grow me rugged and mean, silent and strong.

A cartoon cottontail ordering whiskey, straight, buckteeth and booze slurring an ill-advised whats-up-doc. The soot of a midnight train-hop matting feathers of stone-beaked parakeets. Cigarette-stained chirps echo boxcars.



Five Dollar Bag Study 11" by 14" Oil on Paper Heidi Wetzel

Five Dollar Bag 18" by 24" Oil on Panel Heidi Wetzel


L’Ambitieuse Ink & Watercolors Erin Zingré



For a whole week the stench clung to our clothes and hair. Early in the morning there was just enough breeze to sweep some smell from the brick road, only to be overcome by buttery food smells in the sun of the afternoon. People hustled down alleyways and large trucks flickered yellow as men in grey jump suits unloaded cardboard boxes of liquor and kegs of beer. Closer to the Mississippi river the sun ripened as the cascading balconies and gardens gave way to a wooden dock where steamboat Natchez stood idle, the water warbling along the red and white paint of her hull. I unfolded a newspaper on the brown grass along the river carefully read each word. I read that the Middle East is on fire and I imagined how bullets flew into protestors and women and children and I imagined the dusty bloody ground penetrated by green fleshy sprouts as their bodies curled in uncertainty.


My eyes wallowed in a boat on the musty crusty-smelling grass, they paddled desperately for steady land. In the morning hobo Scott Dunbar played accordion to little children skipping and fanny packs unzipping at CafĂŠ Du Monde and a mass blundered in line for little fried doughnuts sprinkled with powder sugar served on a cream colored plate and conversation faded to the dinging of metal forks and the slurping of cafĂŠ au alit. The steamboat Natchez blew on the Mississippi, the toxic and murky water crashed on the hull churning up a foamy wake. That evening they stumbled through the street with hand grenades and hurricanes and paid for tarot card readings and listened to brassy jazz bands and preachers on soap boxes for hours in Jackson Square and walked the neon haze of Rue Bourbon and puffed cigarettes and went into strip clubs while children tapped on cardboard boxes and a couple of coked out drifters sat swaying and swinging on a porch I traversed the open dizzy street and I picked up their guitar after I set down my beer I let them have it after they took a drink and I plucked the worn strings and illogical noises permeated from the cracked wooden body and I realized there is no time to tune up when you tune out everyone has a story everyone has a song.


I noticed a dense crowd of men encircling a topless woman. Waves rushed along the steamboat and the wooden columns of the dock plunged deep into the dark waters. Midnight music echoed from the bright deck in harmony with the gargling waters undertone. In the heart of the French Quarter I was insane on hurricanes as the ghost tour crowded the on the sagging sidewalk the ghost connoisseur Stacy herded our mass up and down the dark alleys and damp streets and chanted Voodoo Pirates Slavery gnawing on tightly wound knots of history swallowing the swampy water table devouring big names like Truman Capote Stacey grew black in the hot air of New Orleans’ streets in the stares of the sheep (the stumbling drunkards with strollers) the cigarette air barreling in each direction her silver regurgitating tongue darting around each phrase.

Panda Family Portrait Ink & Watercolors Erin ZingrĂŠ


I woke up and took a bus through the bayou to see the Oak Alley plantation. Outside the city I saw the Mississippi from a huge steel bridge that overlooked miles of Louisiana country. Chemical plants dotted the horizon and there was a fuzzy smell and the bus driver said that you would get used to it if you lived here. I looked at smoke stack after smoke stack bellowing putrid white vapor into the innocent sky. It reminded me of watching the oil spew in the gulf for months on end. I wanted to scream and yell and kick and scream some more. I plugged my little white headphones into my brain and I was there. Over the oaks from the top deck windows of the white house I saw the earthen levy holding back the noxious Mississippi river. In between the fat lady’s very long scary stories (of the ever-right never-wrong noble creole) I gleaned one gleaming fact: the oaks were here before the house. A mystic tribe scraped the earth and planted rows leading to the


noxious Mississippi before we made our own meaning. A crusty brown map framed on the wall looked like a treasure map tinted with black lines and shades of green (cotton) and red (sugar cane). I saw pictures of maps of divided land of white people of landscapes of particular documents saying this person owned it after this person had it and particular sayings that were about this house and it has been in this movie or that movie and the white settlers loved cotton but sugar cane made more money and their beds had room for blocks of ice and big rooms to seat grandiose drunk vibrant parties. From the top deck windows the wooden shanty shacks that housed the slaves were not visible. I did not see the slave quarters and I did not see where water was boiled to season and cook the puny scraps of meat I did not see the blood marks on the brown grass from their beaten naked bodies I did not see their rocking chairs and I did not hear the beating music of their instruments and I saw no map dividing up the muddy land I saw no white and yellow bannisters and grand staircases no beautiful wooden table for twenty guests no bedrooms full of ice no windows facing the towering oaks.

The fat lady said that mint juleps are only four dollars I almost threw up. I care when the echoes sound in my sleep and make meaning out of image. I creep silently into a moat surrounding the bubbling city. I float adrift down the lonesome moat and stare at the bright bubbling city that glows in the distance. I circle over and over and over and I can’t stop. I want to wander into the bubbling bright city and understand every layer. The echoes give me an eerie feeling and I want to feel how disconnected I can become and how obsolete the little rivers and dugouts and broad levees are, and how every pool of warm steamy water and every unhealed wound and all the biting ravenous fish from the richest countries make me scratch the inside of my skull. I want to consume all the horrible diseases and the thick blotches that scar us all. We had several juleps and Po’ boys paid our bill and went back to the Chateau Bourbon and opened the door with a plastic key and took off our clothes and went to bed and it was comfortable in our bed.

Dusty red lit roads stretch into the distance a purple vortex circling, maddening over head shifting gasps of green over the slanted dull levy drifting I was drifting through the echoes through the stories of another through the echoes of terror the trembling bumbling terror consuming my eye with streams of golden green and powder blue my might is shattered and helplessness overcomes shallow thoughts again the simple delusional man

Walking down the street I met this man this dark man who clenched a spray bottle and a dirty towel. Him: Hey, shoe shine for twenty dollars? Me: I’m wearing tennis shoes Him: Ten dollars? Me: (drunken contemplation) sure I could hear his teeth chattering and his veins retreating into his arm as he sprayed water on wiped the oaky mud off my shoes. He ran with my money faster than I have run in my whole life. Walking down the street I met another dark man his teeth shining behind his lips Him: Can you buy me a drink? Me: Sure (drunk) Him: Thanks Me: Where should we go? Him: The karaoke bar Me: (awkward pause) Me: So how high did the water get?

Drummer Panda Ink & Watercolors Erin ZingrĂŠ

e pointed to the balconies dripping H with green vines the night pounded away between the open windows and doors of bars and pizza shops where they sold liquor smoothies and men closed their eyes and pressed their faces into the breasts of women tonguing colored tubes of happiness because you have to drink it that way my eyes were never closed but they were never really open either they just stayed glued to the melody of the night and bounced from scene to scene as I walked on water in New Orleans cement walls keeping me from floating in New Lake Orleans and the barman was brave the people were brave they were strong and independent thinkers who hurried like little brass cannons bright in the sun on the edge of Bourbon and Canal the American dream blew up like a thousand little cannons perched on the Mayflower and everybody

stooped to pick them up as the captain smiled laughing. The slave quarters were used up until the great depression some long afterwards and when Lincoln gave his address this country said no more slavery of this kind and took slavery of another kind slaves became sharecroppers became consumers became wageslaves became desk jockeys became hollow became meaningless became another piece of ourselves that we lost to the chaos of the echo it rained on me the last night and walking down the streets surrounded by enthusiastic strangers who kept asking Where is the haunted tour? Should we go to the museum? I thought the ground was going to turn into a soupy mix and disintegrate into the Mississippi and that these people would drink and sing and blow their instruments all the way to the bottom.


THANK YOU The staff of Kiosk 45 would like to thank the Department of Design and the Department of English at the University of Kansas as well as KU Student Senate. A special thanks to Jane Hazard of Mainline Printing, Rachel Gray, and everyone who submitted to and supported Kiosk.

Kiosk 45  

University of Kansas Art & Lit Magazine

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you