Fall 2011 Issue

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T he M eadowland Review


Cover Image Meditation By Colleen Purcell

Megan Duffy

Poetry Editor

Lauren Cerruto

Poetry Editor

Jennifer Walkup

Fiction Editor

For submission guidelines please visit www.themeadowlandreview.com Questions or comments: contact@themeadowlandreview.com Copyright Š 2011 by The Meadowland Review. All rights are one-time rights for this journal.


Poetry Laura Davenport Marco Yan John Middlebrook Anthony Frame Michael T. Young Caitlin Thomson Helen Calcutt Lisa Bruckman Timothy Pilgrim Jacqueline Haskins Richard Schiffman

Azelea We Termites Dragonfly Flannel Love Poem With a Touch of Sky Counting Apples Nike The Dancer The Bridge Anemic Epiphany Birth, Re-Birth, Purdah Bird of Little Faith After the Fall

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Thistle Down

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Fiction Jenny Enochsson

Photography and Art Eleanor Bennett Peter. L. Scacco

Contributors

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Feather on Bone- A Delicate Death Fire From Steam Windows Rocks Lattice

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Poetry

Feather on Bone - A Delicate Death by Eleanor Bennett

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Laura Davenport Azalea On the leaf-draped flat of roof I thumb the gardening book, to name the shades below. Too bright to think of poetry, the lines of lovers in their boyhood beds, to read eyes closed you turn to me. I touch your sleeping face. By the leaves I know it’s not magnolia, catch none of the maple’s pinwheel clusters, but can find no picture of these miniature buds here bursting, weeks after dogwood came and went with white stars and the neighbor’s flowering myrtle. I had given the tree up for dead, the strained limbs which last summer hung with caterpillar gauze, and felt guilty for not having spent Saturdays on my knees, weeding around the roots, or pruning these dead limbs that still hang through the bursting, rakish, frozen in descent. I thought those still bare branches wouldn’t bloom, the new formed nests exposed while the azaleas, already peaked and color-packed, rioted pastel at every roadside without tending. To touch a sleeper’s face is selfish. And these lines below the not-oak rising up call back the many boys who in the dark caressed a lip or cheek, with all the slowness of a root edging in earth, those still frame films where shot by shot uncurls the bud. And I, of patience infinite, kept eyes shut tight, or sighed, allowed whatever pleasure they siphoned, undisturbed, whatever it was they wanted.

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Marco Yan We Termites We met, umbrella-less, on the night the typhoon passed the city walls and let fall a curtain of rain. Beads on our hair; some diagonally dampened our sleeves; some invisible disguised as sweats trailing the lines on our palms. We’re not going anywhere. We’re not going anywhere, but still. Bodily attraction to streetlamps, droplets of yellow light, there the mating termites danced their feverish ritual, and we made peace with the simple course of love. We all fly to find someplace to fall, in the end the most important question is how. Discarded wings in a puddle flowed scattered, following ripples stirred by the next that drowned. Like chrysanthemum petals in a teacup, they gathered for a second of carnal quietness, when a nameless male found his queen wingless in cold water

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John Middlebrook Dragonfly How fortunate to be menacing in name only, to carry myths on the winds as you dart just above swamp grass and lilies in the soup of the sun; to dodge, at will, tongues of frogs and birds, dancing on your fulcrum of plenty and peril. Your translucent wings emboss the light passing through you and all living things. You've found a place, secure for now, in the wilderness which eludes our civil engineers. Nearly there, we plow around your shrinking bog, clearing out stumps like unresolved questions. Will your home stay marshy and wet, as you flash through the skyward gaze of fish? I hold my breath.

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Anthony Frame Flannel Love PoemWith a Touch of Sky -for Holly I’m thirty, driving home after an overtime week of working nights - Mellon Collie on the stereo, Billy whining through the speakers. How much longer can I be your grunge-poet, love, with my ripped jeans trying to hold the glow of streetlights? I’ve quit my cigarettes and guitar but not my flannels and never you. This is all any of us ever wanted, right? A couch to call our own, a long weekend together in the garden, to make love, to lie in each other’s arms watching the moon rise a second story bedroom, the blinded window almost offering a touch of the sky. Another red light turns green, the song fading into a distorted silence, and I’m almost home. I could keep driving, changing streets as randomly as I’m changing songs, no one awake enough to wonder where I am. I could share this rare cloudless night with the stars and power chords, just me and the music and my deserted city, burning gas and time. This close to dawn, love, time I’ve got - I never dreamed I’d manage to get here, my hairs starting to lose their shadows, my fingers callused by work instead of guitar strings. Here with all my teenage rage stomped down by the years here with you, love. I could keep driving until you wake but I don’t want to, not without you here with me in the car. I pull into our driveway, the sun soon to rise. In front of me, the living room lamp you left on all night to guide me home. Above me, the stars and the spring breeze dancing with the bedroom window. And you, love wearing my old Nirvana shirt as a nightgown.

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Counting Apples

Michael T. Young

Entering Zuccotti Park, I pass through nearly leafless shade of honey locust, over an incline of pink granite scuffed and dulled by deepening cold, by the dry clarities and harsh abandonments of autumn often mistaken for oblivion, the way it pours into the smallest cracks, widening the divides, the way our friend’s birthday party escapes me even as you recite its details — the salsa music, the dancing, the pre fixe menu — or someone else asks if I’ve seen My Dinner with Andre since watching it back in the early 90’s, and I can’t recall, and suddenly I feel poor, a victim of theft and swing my hand hard, slapping a honey locust limb overhead, a pathetic rebellion that shakes a few leaves loose dancing down around me like a yellow insight, a brilliance passed on as a realization that I hadn’t seen a butterfly all summer and wouldn’t now that it was over and I was filled with regret and the need to walk up to the Farmer’s stand and count the different types of apples for sale — gala, golden delicious, red delicious, granny smith, mutsu — eleven in all, eleven different shapes earth gave to its memories, eleven different shapes of gratitude.

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Windows By Peter L. Scacco Page 8

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Caitlin Thomson Nike Hart Island, New York City

But don’t you understand how a Cold War works? So many countries between you and your enemies. What are your options? Build a Missile silo next to a metropolis. Not too close, a farmer’s nearest neighbor is acres away. Of course there is water here, between the city with its citizens and this patch of land, for soldiers once, and now again, they mingle with engineers. And what should you name your silo after? American shoes? A foreign, forgotten god.

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Helen Calcutt The Dancer Following the skill of her body, in manipulation of lock and joint and wound through isolation – she found words like sliced andante upon the tongue, trickling between dips and squeezed deep from the rope of her lungs; that strained and clenched like jaw, over the wallow of air-pipe and apple arc. And in so much as fingertips are delicate. So much as feet lick the floors and shadows, so the words insisted a similar implement of soul – bearing through soul to the outer corner of touch (again) bearing through soul to the inner corner of touch (again) bearing through soul; and screeching from the black glass of it when at last she removed her feet forever, and found hand, resting on the forehead of her desk. The words rolled, from the lock and energy of her tongue, like blood over soft rock.

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Rocks By Peter L. Scacco

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The Bridge

Lisa Bruckman

I wear my father’s name, Bruckman. While I was married, I wore the same. Bruckman, harsh in sound, often a shield against my ancestry, seemingly of Jewish faith. But, I know it is German, a janus-faced coin, Jewish sounding, Deutsche in derivation. Maybe once the deeming of he who gathered tolls or built bridges daily. Bruckmann, man of the bridge. Perhaps it will carry me over the dark swirling waters of my past, like a bridge over the pain of a twenty year marriage to a man who could not love me. Once my husband slammed me against the wall. Growling in my face, my stunned limbs betrayed me. Cuomo, son of Italian parents, he insisted my mixed American heritage made me ‘mulatto,’ a mere mutt. When I pushed him off my pressed frame, I could no longer be his victim. Instead, a sapling grew within me, one thick and resilient, later hewn to strengthen this bridge. Like a carriage through hell, these fibers held me aloft, above the nagging torment and emptiness of life with this man. Not Cuomo, I know why I always remained Bruckman, a shell which hid my trembling soul. Hidden within a history as German-American, my family did not embrace our German beginnings. Great-grandfather George, was as sour as the century was young. A true sour “kraut,” he was deemed ‘Little Kaiser’ as he walked neighborhood streets of Hasbrouck Heights Page 12

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though no follower of Kaiser Wilhelm. Grandpa Emil was fired from his machinist job in Woodridge during World War II, his thick German accent surely indicative of a political spy selling aeoronautical plans. Threatening calls to his home were familiar to my suicidal grandmother. As a family, we found “die brucke,� spanning pain, transcending torment, Bruckmann. The gurgle of rushing water remains a constant, timbers arching over a past surmounted.

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Timothy Pilgrim Anemic Epiphany Swirls above tinged gold, whirl red, purple, green, color it obvious to Dali, high again, Perpignan's train station must be center to the universe -as if all epiphanies were equal. In truth some are epiphysis, spur of dense tissue separated from mother bone by cartilage, destined to spend time close, not attached, alone. Or, epiphyte, undiscovered orchid living entire life in crook of tree, given one small hollow to grow, denied other source of food, left in solitude to bloom or brood. So tromp gloomy mountain paths, step fast past puddles, dodge silver rain, examine clouds for soggy insight, sudden revelation, rainbowed flash of light, unbearable, art lost, unseen, you, epiphytic, on the trail of anemic epiphany.

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Jacqueline Haskins Birth, Re-birth, Purdah We are born after our first steps, washed backwards into the mouth of language, turned by words to time, departure, slowly as soup breathes out the window off a blond wood table. As statues cool in Tiananmen Square, April, under rustling wings. As the window, closed now, juggles images of flame between double panes; illustrates infinity backwards. As one softened, greenish stone with a bold black sash – erotic discontinuity – lies abandoned by Entiat River, caressed and battered into knowing every bone. It arrests you, on the dry bank among a thousand smooth gray cobbles, like young green eyes in purdah. Although her thousand less-photogenic sisters know as vividly the smell of river mud, hot casings, the brutal silence after. If every river pebble were a star I would skate with you through winter’s purdah, gliding smoothly above stumbling unique topographies of their small, forgotten bones.

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Richard Schiffman Bird of Little Faith What the gull shrieks to the sea is unspeakable. Maybe it thinks the sea is hard of hearing. Maybe it thinks that no one is listening. The sea calls back-- you don’t have to yell, honey, I’ve got the ears to hear. But the gull accuses the ocean of being a fish story. It says-- no one can prove that you are you. The sea replies-- that’s true, that’s true. But if I am a fable, then whose pretty little tail within a tale are you? The gull glares at the watery moon. The moon thinks-- that gull’s a scream. The gull flaps in the maw of the gail. The gail says-- that gull has gall. The gull slashes the sky with scissor-wings. It rolls the roller-coaster gusts and moons the moon and flips the golden skillet of the sun. It snipes at plovers and lunges at loons. It gives the tides a piece of its mind. It sets every crab to scampering. The waves applaud. The shore cries-- encore, encore! The sea croons-- that’s my little gangster. But the pokerfaced gull replies-- I beg your pardon, I am a sinner and an orphan. And the sea, which-- go figure-- has got a sense of humor has been roaring up its sleeves ever since.

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Richard Schiffman After the Fall Some say that the petal starts with the flower, but the flower is merely the showy prologue. The real story begins when a sudden gust snaps the petal’s death grip on perfection, and it spins in an Armageddon of petals free from the parent tree, sluicing to ground, bruised and bleeding, a labial extravagance of petals, flesh pink tongues cupping April rains, pooling moonlight and smooching breezes. Petal saying to earth, “I am new. Do you know me?” And earth replies, “You are fallen, I know you.” Petal saying, “I am young. Do you love me?” And earth responds, “You are wounded, I love you.” Petal saying, “I am sweet. Do you smell me?” And earth replies, “Now that your fragrance is laced with my decay.” Then petal cries out to some passing girls, “I am your fallen sister, save me.” And the girls gather up armfuls of petals, then toss them in the breeze. And the sky says, “Welcome home.” And the tree says, “I would take you back if I could.” And the girls say, “Fly petal, fly!” But the petals fall a second time. And the girls scatter like petals crying, “We are not your perfect blossoms. We are not your fragrant playthings.” And the earth says to the girls, “I know you.” And the girls say to the earth, “I love you.”

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Fiction

Fire From Steam By Eleanor Bennett

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Jenny Enochsson Thistle Down Eugene was cycling along mature wheat fields in the direction of an old restaurant that was situated upon a hill. He was wearing his camera backpack and heading for his first photography commission ever. Someone had actually discovered his homepage. Eugene normally worked as a clerk for a company specializing in market research. He was already dreaming of entering his manager’s office to tell him that he was a professional photographer now and would quit his old job today; moreover, he would add that it was all the same to him whether that specific target group preferred that particular toilet paper colour or not. Eugene knew that he could not give in his notice for the time being, but he hoped that this commission would lead to many more in the future. This evening he was going to photograph an artist and they would meet at the restaurant. The dogsdays were almost over, but his milk, only a day past its best-before date, had still been as viscous as yoghurt when he poured it over his cereals this morning. That had surprised Eugene, who usually drank milk that was four or five days old. On the way to the supermarket, he had felt an odour rising from a manhole and that made him think of rancid dairy products and old socks. The memory made his stomach turn, but he felt much better when he noticed how fresh the air was in this nature area. To the inveterate town dweller Eugene, the discovery was almost like a revelation. A metallic dragonfly bumped into his forehead and he thought that it looked like of a humming, wireless antenna. The breeze blew through the man’s sandy hair and made his greenish-blue shirt stream like a flag. It was harvest time and Eugene admired the machines that were spitting gleaming flour into verdigris green wagons. Suddenly, he felt inclined to become a field worker and he wanted to wear tight jeans and a bandana, show his suntanned, muscular upper body, learn how to ride a motorcycle and drive across vast, golden land. Eugene was neither suntanned nor particularity muscular, yet he reckoned that he would be after a few weeks as a harvester. As he was well-built and had wavy hair, he thought that the field worker get-up would suit him perfectly. When he had got as far as the beautifully situated brick building, he parked his grey vehicle in the bicycle stand. The skinny, grey-haired artist by the name of Bo was already sitting at the open-air restaurant and sipping gin with a strawberry blonde. While the photographer approached their table, he noticed that he recognized the woman; they had attended the same French course last year. She was called Sofia. Each lesson they had sat next to each other; their

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chats had started to resemble mild flirtation. Nothing had happened between them and Eugene had forgotten about her after the last lesson. He felt somewhat embarrassed when he introduced himself to the couple and sat down next to Sofia. Thankfully, she did recognize him and explained to her partner that she had met this tall, fair man before. We giggled like pupils in the first class when we, without much success, tried to pronounce intricate French words, she chirped. Bo smiled absentmindedly and told them that his French was more than decent. Once, I even lived in Paris with a woman and she always wore pink nightgowns and read absurdist plays aloud to me, he said. The man had already started to get on Eugene’s nerves. “As you know, Eugene, I need a group of photo files for my latest art brochure,” Bo said. He looked very freckled in his flesh-coloured tank top. “I am writing poetic texts to the photos. Well, hopefully they will turn out poetic.” Nervous laughter. “I am here to get some ideas.” She held up a white notebook. “They will be perfect, Sofia.” The artist looked at the photographer. “What I have in mind is a collection of twilight pictures. You know, against the light.” “We will have to wait at least one hour for dusk,” Eugene said and watched the rapeseedyellow sun. They decided to order some wine while waiting for the sunset. Bo tried to entertain the others with stories from his wilder days. For a short moment, his voice almost drowned in the grasshopper song from the tall grass below; indeed, the grasshoppers were loud, but not in comparison with all the tipsy restaurant guests. Eugene glanced furtively at Sofia and thought that she was beautiful. She was dressed in an embroidered, red blouse that did not go with her partner’s flesh-coloured top. Their relationship violates the natural selection principle, Eugene thought to himself. When it came to choosing a partner, he did not believe in opposites attract. According to him, opposites attract would only grow into mutual aversion. Some people had been upset when they heard Eugene speak well of the natural selection principle. Under the table, he clenched his fists while he listened to Bo, who told him that he had brought some properties for the photographic session. The man had a habit of placing his tiny hands behind the back of his neck while leaning back in his chair. The hair in his armpits was exposed and the inside of his arms made Eugene think of pale chicken meat. A waiter with a gruff expression wiped a cloth over a table. After a while, he took off his glasses and cleaned them with the same cloth. Eugene looked archly at Sofia, who bit her lip so that she would not laugh out loud. This was exactly how they had acted during the French lessons; they had always been ready to burst with laughter. “I actually appeared on a mid-seventies sleeve. A bunch of us progressive rockers were photographed against the setting sun. We just knew that we could not prolong the summer of Page 20

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love any longer. The album was not released in the end, but it was a great cover. Everybody thought so. I was never a musician myself, but hanged out with those guys. ” Bo was interrupted by a hysterically chattering blackbird that flew past the veranda and dived into a raspberry bush. “What a bad-tempered fellow.” ”Everyone expects them to be bittersweet and sing beautifully all the time,” Sofia said. Eugene watched the juicy, ripe sun. “I think it would be a good idea to start now.” Finally, they received the bill. Bo calculated how much they ought to pay individually. I believe in absolute fairness, he said. Eugene and Sofia mentioned the tip. The artist said that the service was included in the bill and rambled on about excessive value-added taxes, but eventually agreed to give a ridiculously low tip. Irritation ran through Eugene’s veins; he felt like paying the whole sum himself just to annoy the man, yet he contented himself with watching Sofia sigh over her partner. Well, I must put up with the moron until he gives me money for my commission, the photographer decided. The photographic session was to take place in a nearby meadow; they had to w alk down a steep, stony slope to get there. Eugene’s hiking boots were so well-made that he did not feel the bumps in the ground; thanks to the design of the ribbed rubber soles, he did not stumble that easily either. He came to think of a commercial for trendy, wildlife gear. That darn thing has engraved itself on my memory, he thought to himself. Sofia was wearing sandals without heel straps. The sandals would slip off her feet and slide down the slope. Therefore, she took them off and walked barefoot. Eugene asked her if she wanted to borrow his shoes, even though they were too big for her; she smiled sweetly and told him that she preferred to be barefoot in summer. Bo wore ankle boots and black shorts. His freckled legs were thin like crutches. The smoke from his French cigarette was as thick as black powder. The couple were talking about repapering their hall. Enthusiastically, Bo told Sofia that he wanted to do a mural painting on their white walls. She strongly objected to this. Apparently, she wanted to take on this task herself and she even had plans to open a wallpaper shop on the Internet. You ought to take me more seriously, Bo, Sofia said. Her partner sang a song about not being so uptight and caressed her shoulder. Once again, the photographer felt annoyed with Bo. The meadow looked quite bare, but Eugene noticed that the hay-makers had actually saved several downy thistles. The white down also floated in the air and got caught in clothes and hair. He could see a bird of prey in the sky. The wings were wide with dark contours. Sofia guessed that it was a buzzard searching for reptiles in the fields. As Eugene was unpacking his system camera, he asked himself if he should have brought his tripod. Suddenly, a group of joggers appeared and

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interrupted his thoughts. They were dressed in orange t-shirts and shorts and purple gym shoes; all of them were remarkably fit and tall. “Cretins,” Bo mumbled and made obscene gestures behind their sweaty backs. “They do not have to be cretins at all,” Sofia grunted. “It is possible to be fit and intelligent at the same time, Bo.” “The physical plays a prominent part in today’s society. That is not only a good thing. Do not get me wrong, sweet Sofia. I do believe in liberating all bodily needs. It is just that the physical has turned into something artificial lately. It is clinical and lacking in sensuousness. In my days, we were proud of our bodies, whether we were skinny or flabby. Pendulous breasts were accepted both in men and women. We felt sensual and beautiful when we danced in freedom.” “Oh, please,” she said sarcastically. “Have mercy on me,” Bo laughed. His pale green eyes sparkled. For a moment, Eugene could almost understand why this scraggy wiseacre had a way with women. Not that he liked him any better because of that. Swifts circled above the dry land; they were moving fast and Eugene could hardly follow them with his eyes. After a while, the birds disappeared behind dense foliage. Sofia was watching a brown hare that was resting in the grass. The heavy sun was sinking and the light was perfect for photography. Bo’s properties consisted of a blue cloak, a hurricane lamp, two large bottles of red wine and an antique bronze goblet. He had also brought two plastic cups. Help yourself to the wine, dear people, he said. Eugene started to photograph Bo. The shorts and the cloak made his silhouette look a bit comical. Eugene feared that the man would not come out too well in the photographs. “Do you fancy my art, mate?” Obviously, he was taking for granted that the photographer was familiar with it. “Absolutely,” Eugene answered. In fact, he was not particularly impressed by the pieces that he had seen on the artist’s homepage. Paintings of spilled guacamole on asphalt. The same subject over and over again, but depicted from different angles. “The colour combination was interesting.” “Thank you,” Bo said casually. “I am housetrained these days. Sofia did it to me. I used to be a hedonistic bloke.” A dry chuckle. “Bo’s speciality used to be body painting.” She sighed heavily. “He only painted young dishes. Not very original. It would have been refreshing with some male nudes for a change.” ”The brushes would just get tangled up in all that male body hair.” He drank some more wine from his goblet. “My body paintings were more innovative than the girls.” “Aha, so they were just objects to you.” Page 22

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“No, they were my goddesses. Just like you are now, my dear.” “Balls.” Her irritation was not entirely sincere. “It will not be long before it gets very dark,” Eugene said. He thought that the man was too distracted. Finally, Bo started paying attention to the session; he was not the least tense and it seemed as if he had practiced posing in front of a mirror. Eugene just pressed the shutter and did not even have to think because Bo had already figured out the details. This meant that he could also observe Sofia, who was leaning against an elm-tree and drinking wine. She did not look at him, but he just knew that she was aware of his glances. The woman put the cup on the ground and pulled a scarf out of her trouser pocket. It flapped in the breeze and she watched its movements. I would love to take photos of her instead, Eugene thought. Sofia’s head with its bobbed hair made him think of a round flower and her lean body looked like the stem. After having swayed to and fro with the scarf for a while, she began to spread it over the ground. The gossamer-like material billowed against her face. Eventually, Sofia managed to control her scarf and settled down on it. She took out the notebook and a pencil from her paisley patterned handbag. “How am I doing, Eugene?” Bo asked. He strutted around like a pheasant. “You are a good model, Bo.” “Thanks.” The ruby wine flowed abundantly in all three glasses and the dry, sweet scent from the harvested fields in the distance penetrated the cool air. Eugene started to feel slightly dizzy, but he still managed to photograph Bo and keep an eye on Sofia. Occasionally, she made faces at her notebook and bit the tip of her tongue in a concentrated manner. He found Sofia elflike and mesmerizing, even though he normally preferred less ethereal women. She was supposed to write poetically about her partner in the parched grass, yet she took no notice of him. The hurricane lamp was lit and threw shadows at her narrow face. Most clouds looked like scratches across the sky, but there was one that resembled a shining flake of a nail. Slowly, the sky’s rose and copper shades turned into blueberry and plum. The photographic session was drawing near an end and Eugene pressed the shutter as if in his sleep. He started fantasizing about the possible morning routines of Bo and Sofia. This amused him for some reason. He thought of a hooting alarm clock and Bo rolling over to give his partner an unshaved kiss. After this, he would drag himself out of bed and stumble across the carpet. His scraggy body would disappear into an adjacent bathroom. Next, Eugene thought of Sofia sitting naked on the edge of the large bed. She would get up, draw the curtains and open the window; sunshine would pour into the room like lemon juice and she would breathe in the morning air, turn around and walk across the room, where sparkling dust whirled around in the light.

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Sometimes snorting, sometimes singing sounds would come from the bathroom. Eugene thought that Sofia knew exactly in which order her partner performed his bathroom routines. “Let us stop now,” the artist chuckled. Eugene started packing up his camera equipment and thanked his model. “Good men, let us finish the wine,” Sofia burst out. “Oh, I am going home. You two stay here and enjoy yourself.” Bo looked quizzically at Sofia, who answered him with a conspiratorial gaze. Eugene felt muddled-headed and wished that he could sober up quickly and just ride home. As an inveterate city-dweller, he did not trust nature when darkness was falling. The artist told Eugene that he would pay money into his account the following day. I will send a computer file containing the photographs to your email address tomorrow, Eugene said. Bo gave Sofia a kiss and said goodbye to the photographer. There was an aromatic scent of stinging nettle in the air. Sofia sat in a lotus position and Eugene looked at her long, delicate limbs and came to think of tangled up spaghetti. “When I am about to fall asleep, I sometimes fantasize that I am beneath a large tree.” “Do not fall asleep now.” They sat close to a windswept pine with knotty, choreographic branches. ”We could go to your place. I would like that. Bo could tell that I fancy you a bit. He would not mind if we did. On the contrary.” “Why?” “He likes the idea of me being with other men. He is not able to do it himself, you know. Not anymore.” “Oh.” Half an hour ago, Eugene had dreamed about putting his arms around Sofia. At the moment, he did not even know if he was still attracted to her. “You want me as a stand-in?” he said laconically. “It is a good thing, really. You are like this wonderful, blank page.” “Blank page? That is not true.” She touched his rich hair lightly. “Am I wasting my time, Eugene?” “I am too drunk to think, Sofia. Could we not meet tomorrow instead?” “Bo will be gone tomorrow evening,” she said musingly. “You can come over to our place, if you like.” A shrill giggle. “Men are the best attributes.” They rose from the ground, got their things together and started climbing the slope in complete darkness. As they approached the illuminated windows of the restaurant, he wondered how it would feel like to be the tool that would compensate for Bo’s physical limitations. It was Page 24

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certainly not Eugene’s intention to be exploited, or become Sofia’s male attribute. There was a damp nimbus round the streetlamp and it made him think of the woman’s hair. Her face w as ghostlike in the faint light; a cloudy beam was reflected in her right eye. It struck Eugene that both Sofia and Bo resembled the silvery snakes that he once had seen at a vivarium. Both of them had peering eyes and their limbs were almost reptile-like. Sofia told him that she lived five minutes from the restaurant. They said goodbye to each other and Eugene mounted his bicycle and started to ride home. He thought that the electric lighting made the fields and the downy thistles seem unreal.

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Lattice By Peter L. Scacco

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Contributors Eleanor Leonne Bennett is a fifteen-year-old photographer and artist who has won contests with National Geographic, The Woodland Trust, The World Photography Organisation, Winston's Wish, Papworth Trust, Mencap, Big Issue, Wrexham Science , Fennel and Fern and Nature's Best Photography. She has had her photographs published in exhibitions and magazines across the world including The Guardian, RSPB Birds , RSPB Bird Life, Dot Dot Dash, Alabama Seaport and The Big Issue In The North. She was also the only person from the UK to have her work displayed in the National Geographic and Airbus run See The Bigger Picture global exhibition tour with the United Nations International Year Of Biodiversity 2010. Lisa Bruckman attended the University of Delaware as a Fine Arts and Art History major and enjoys meeting many with many different surnames as a Reference Librarian. Long a resident of New Jersey, she has been writing seriously some fourteen years. Helen Calcutt’s poems have in appeared Under the Radar, the anthology, BUGGED, the official Hansard for UK Parliament, The Dawntreader, The Utopia exhibition in London, and other journals. She is professional writer for the Young People's Writing Squads and was one of the few writers selected to attend the ARVON Tutored Retreat, with writers John Stammers and Greta Stoddart. She was awarded an Arvon writing Grant in September 2o11. Helen is currently working on her first collection of poems, with the working title The Human Wire. Laura Davenport received an MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University. Her work has appeared in Boxcar Poetry Review, Breakwater Review, New South, Richmond Magazine and Best New Poets 2009. Jenny Enochsson (b. 1976) lives in Uppsala, Sweden. She writes short stories and poetry in her native language, Swedish, and often translates her work into English. Some of her pieces have been published in Red Poppy Review, Cleaves Journal, Blue & Yellow Dog, Otoliths, Ditch and The Meadowland Review. For further information, visit her homepage at www.jennyenochsson.net. Anthony Frame is an exterminator who lives in Toledo, Ohio with his wife and their cat. His poems have been published in or are forthcoming from Third Coast, Blue Collar Review, Versal, Mobius, Tulane Review and New Plains Review, among others. His first chapbook, Paper Guillotines, was recently released by Imaginary Friend Press. He is also co-editor of the online journal, Glass: A Journal of Poetry. You can find out more at http://www.anthony-frame.com T he M eadowland R eview Fall 2011

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Jacqueline Haskins is a biologist of wild wet places, from cypress swamps to glacial cirque swales. She is also an MFA student at the Whidbey Writer’s Workshop. Jackqueline’s fiction has received finalist in Glimmer Train’s Short Story Award for New Writers, second place in a Lunch Hour Stories contest, and first in a Soundings Review contest. Jacqueline’s poetry, fiction, or creative non-fiction have appeared or will soon appear in Raven Chronicles, Shark Reef Literary Magazine, Six Minute Magazine, Soundings Review, and Bacopa Literary Review. John Middlebrook lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, where he manages a consulting firm focused on non-profit organizations. John has been writing poetry since he was a graduate student at the University of Chicago, where he also served on the poetry staff of Chicago Review. His work has appeared in Writers' Bloc, Foundling Review, and Yes, Poetry. His home on the web is http://middlebrook.wordpress.com/ Timothy Pilgrim (a journalism professor at Western Washington University in Bellingham) is a Pacific Northwest poet who has published over 100 poems, mostly in literary journals and anthologies of poetry, such as Idaho's Poets: A Centennil Anthology (University of Idaho Press) and Weathered Pages: The Poetry Pole (Blue Begonia Press). Reach him at tpilgrim@hope.journ.wwu.edu or at pilgrimtima@gmail.com. Colleen Purcell has returned to Chile after living ten years in the United States. She has been published in Anderbo, Off the Coast, Ken *Again, 5 x5, Diverse Voices Quarterly, and a few other publications. Peter L. Scacco’s woodcut art has appeared in numerous print and electronic publications, including Anti-, Bateau, Blood Lotus Journal and Bird's Eye reView. He is the illustrator of A Few Good Greek Myths by Michael O’Brien (2008) and the author of the illustrated poetry chapbook Chiaroscuro. Mr Scacco has lived and worked in New York, Paris, Tokyo, and Brussels, and since 1995 has resided in Austin, Texas. Further examples of his art can be seen at www.scaccowoodcuts.com. Richard Schiffman is a writer based in New York, and a former journalist for National Public Radio. He is the author of two biographies: Mother of All, and Sri Ramakrishna, A Prophet For the New Age. His poems have appeared or are upcoming in Alaska Quarterly Review, Poetry East, The North American Review, Southern Poetry Review, 32 Poems, Rattle, Valparaiso Poetry Review, The New York Times and many other journals. His “Spiritual Poetry Portal” can be found at: http://multiplex.isdna.org/poetry.htm.

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T he M eadowland R eview

Fall 2011


Caitlin Elizabeth Thomson writes about absence, usually in terms of the apocalypse. Her work has appeared in many places and is forthcoming in A cappella Zoo, Anemone Sidecar, Menacing Hedge, Going Down Swinging and the anthology Killer Verse. Marco Yan is a Hong Kong writer whose works have appeared in Cha, 34th Parallel and, The Foundling Review. He is currently working on “Breathing Practice,� a collection of poems trying to understand the meaning of breathing. Michael T. Young has published two collections of poetry, most recently, Transcriptions of Daylight. His next chapbook, Living in the Counterpoint, will be published by Finishing Line Press and his next full-length collection, The Beautiful Moment of Being Lost, will be published in 2013 by Black Coffee Press. Michael received a Fellowship from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and a William Stafford Award from Rosebud Magazine. He has been twice nominated for a Pushcart Prize. My work has appeared in numerous journals including The Adirondack Review, Barrow Street, Iodine Poetry Review, Jellyroll, The Louisville Review, and The Same. His work is also in the anthologies Phoenix Rising and Chance of a Ghost. Michael currently lives with his wife and children in Jersey City, New Jersey.

T he M eadowland R eview Fall 2011

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T he M eadowland R eview

Fall 2011


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