Stories No. 82 – Amber Baird

The Mattress By Amber Baird Samantha told him about the Russians. Her parents told her not to, of course, but she had to tell someone, and Charlie was her best friend. He sat beside her, under the tree in her backyard, and squinted at her through the sun filtering through the leaves. The remains from their picnic lunch were scattered around them — empty store-brand … Continue reading Stories No. 82 – Amber Baird

Stories No. 81 – Gary Singh

Voodoo By Gary Singh Slim occupies a vinyl bar stool, accompanied by a personalized chalice with hoppy German lager direct from the tanks downstairs. His name is carved onto the side of the mug. Camille’s alto voice, a younger, more dusty version of Edith Piaf, floats in like counterpoint to the chaos of sports on nine televisions. She emerges from the kitchen right when Slim … Continue reading Stories No. 81 – Gary Singh

Stories No. 80 – Victoria Giang

Ghost Voice By Victoria Giang They called it the ghost voice because of the way it crackled and warbled into a piercingly high register. It was a voice to captivate and bind the listener. Ros had it. “Once I fed a flower only music,” she confessed to Eung, her manager, confidante, and lover. Likewise, he slaked her thirst with a stream of abuse so endless … Continue reading Stories No. 80 – Victoria Giang

Stories No. 79 – Lee Matthew Goldberg

Join Us By Lee Matthew Goldberg Rockabilly music about the Holy Ghost pumps through the windows of the Salvation Gateway Fellowship Church, a small, red shack with a giant neon cross on the roof, its buzzy light flickering in the dawn. Nestled between two deflated hills in the Missouri Ozarks, this wonky, stitched-together building is the only beacon for miles. The surrounding landscape provides enough … Continue reading Stories No. 79 – Lee Matthew Goldberg

Stories No. 78 – William Lemon

Inconvenienced by Death By William Lemon The guests poured into the hotel pool dressed in robes, bathing suits underneath their fake, downy fur. The children did not bother with such pretense. They wore as little as possible, unafraid of cancer or the judging eyes of their peers. I joined the procession, tie still about my neck. Near the entrance to the pool, a cry from … Continue reading Stories No. 78 – William Lemon

Stories No. 77 – Paul Beckman

Smell You Later By Paul Beckman The Sunday of my sixth birthday I was waiting on the stoop for my father to pick me up. Usually he’d take both my older brother and me together on his monthly pickups but not on birthday months. He wanted those to be special and memorable. That Sunday turned out to be memorable but not special. I sat on … Continue reading Stories No. 77 – Paul Beckman

Stories No. 76 – Lucy Zhang

Orion By Lucy Zhang The first room to the left on the second floor was my brother’s room. Four pieces of tape held a poster of NGC 2024, the star-forming region—ribbons of cloud and smoke, specks of light that penetrated greys and blacks which, instead of obscured, conjured an inexplicable hope to where stars glimmered, mysticism to where they did not. Constellation Orion hung on … Continue reading Stories No. 76 – Lucy Zhang

Stories No. 75 – Kathryn Ordiway

Saturday Siren By Kathryn Ordiway ‘I mean, the hotter the weather, the more people murder,’ your husband says as he wades waist-deep in the murky water. ‘Serial killers and Kansas, you know?’ You have only your feet in the lake, legs stretched long from your place on a blanket because the color—the twinges of red and brown and earthy green—disgusts and concerns you. This is … Continue reading Stories No. 75 – Kathryn Ordiway

Stories No. 74 – M. DeVoe Talley

Reeled In By M. Devoe Talley I saw you then in the summer from the promenade of that county fair as you lay on your back in the near grass and I wandered with girlfriends I barely knew. The late low sun dazzled your tangle of blond hair, and a mustache made you look older, closer to twenty-eight—which was good. Demigods of a lesser mythology, … Continue reading Stories No. 74 – M. DeVoe Talley

Stories No. 73 – Christina Rosso

What Happens When the Ride Stops By Christina Rosso The wave curled, a claw digging into flesh. My tiny body thrashed in the ocean, the pressure of the wave on my neck and shoulders like a thousand bricks. Saltwater bled from my nose and throat. It was like being on the tilt-a-whirl at the Malvern Fair. I would ride it until I was hunched over, … Continue reading Stories No. 73 – Christina Rosso

Not Dead Yet by Hadley Moore – Book Review No. 9

The Rage and Compassion Book Review by Gessy Alvarez Not Dead Yet By Hadley Moore Winner of the 2018 Autumn House Fiction Prize Autumn House Press, September 2019 216 pages, $17.95 In Not Dead Yet, Hadley Moore’s intense debut story collection, the desolation of bereavement is depicted in ways that are both complex and deeply compassionate, drawing rich characters that are utterly flawed and human. … Continue reading Not Dead Yet by Hadley Moore – Book Review No. 9

Poetry No. 46 – Auden Eagerton

Telling the Bees I keep the hive you left as a makeshift ribcage, feed it the roots of my blanks. I open my palms— ———————scraps. The rest is stomped ash in my hands every grain smudged teeming into the next. A smattering gesture on an abacus. I am chronic reenactment, anthropologist, spooling into honeycomb the inkblots of legends. Plasma and smarting cedar. A child gashed, … Continue reading Poetry No. 46 – Auden Eagerton

Poetry No. 45 – Stephanie R. Nahhas

Gutters of February When my aunt got sick, I didn’t understand how a brain could eat itself away, how can a brain eat itself, like coils of a serpent eating its own tail, that relentless self-destruction. It’s not easy turning ash into ember, not easy to undo what has been done. If it’s beautiful and glows red and orange, it still burns itself into dust. … Continue reading Poetry No. 45 – Stephanie R. Nahhas

Poetry No. 43 – Bina Ruchi Perino

Every Sunday Morning Divinity must live within herself.  –Wallace Stevens   She didn’t plan ———on being married and quartered, battered and bursting – are Her palms ———close enough to the aarti light? does She pray on crossed legs ———for saffron nectar enough? If She had four arms, She’d hold each child ———from the cremating house, she’d hold him down until he’d wash ———Her feet with … Continue reading Poetry No. 43 – Bina Ruchi Perino

Essay No. 11 – Simona Zaretsky

Letters to Flowers We stand in that field. The sun traces you in gold and you shine from behind, with one hand resting on the rough stone. The stone rises up to your fingers, needing your touch like you need its grey assurance. There is a lot of necessity sitting heavy in the July humidity. The grass a sweet shade of green, patiently waiting for … Continue reading Essay No. 11 – Simona Zaretsky

Poetry No. 42 – Lorraine Henrie Lins

The Last Time I Heard From Her She’d written me on the backside label from a can of Libby’s corn kernels to tell me that she was doing well and thought I’d love the idea of getting corn-label greetings instead of the forty-seven cent postcard she bought her mom. Some nights, when I miss her most, I’ll unfold the label, watch the way her hand … Continue reading Poetry No. 42 – Lorraine Henrie Lins

Poetry No. 41 – Gabrielle Peterson

what was meant by woem written in pencil on the subway window. the faint urgency, or else he/she (she) (he) would have waited for a pen; graphite’s small struggle against the synthetic sill. still, what is “woem?” woman? womb…poem? the space between apples. the sound a belly makes when it has nothing. the drunken or sleep laden conviction to say something, but say it wrong. … Continue reading Poetry No. 41 – Gabrielle Peterson

Poetry No. 40 – KG Newman

A Brief History of Brokenness The year I was born a historic hailstorm came. Everyone lost cars, windows. The shards never fully swept. In time, the suburb recovered. Insurance copped for solar panels, HOAs bought replacement birds. I grew up assured of the sun even though my closet overflowed with raincoats. I had two Nintendos. We weren’t rich in other ways despite a chandelier on … Continue reading Poetry No. 40 – KG Newman

Poetry No. 39 – Morgan Peacock

it’s keeping me up at night   Morgan Peacock is a poet, visual artist, and translator whose poetry has appeared in the Columbia Poetry Review, Second Draft Press, and the Plum Creek Review, among others, as well as in a self-published chapbook. She received her MFA in Poetry from Columbia College Chicago. © Morgan Peacock Photo Credit: © munandme / Adobe Stock Continue reading Poetry No. 39 – Morgan Peacock

Poetry No. 38 – Alex Wells Shapiro

Grappling for EJ the shared gaze had always been falling on avatars, – but we are young and naked because guys get changed together. – so, unleashed, following eyes, limbs forming fluid knots sliding through our own creases, – long and smooth like Medusa’s dancing hairs – giggling into submissive, one had to finish atop, and as if remote controlled, with a chin sitting where … Continue reading Poetry No. 38 – Alex Wells Shapiro

Poetry No. 37 – Thea Matthews

MARIGOLD | Tagetes erecta       – Born and raised in San Francisco, CA, Thea Matthews earned her BA in Sociology at UC Berkeley where she studied and taught June Jordan’s Poetry for the People. She has delivered her poetry at various literary settings, some of which include Litquake, San Francisco’s Lit Crawl, the National Queer Arts Festival, and the Berkeley Poetry Festival. She … Continue reading Poetry No. 37 – Thea Matthews

Poetry No. 36 – David Midkiff

Footnotes                   David Midkiff is a Pacific Northwest U.S. born poet and educator currently living in London. He writes to create a space for himself in the world. His work has previously been featured in “Window Cat” by bighugpublishing, “Resistentialism” by Poetastard Press, and the Barely South Review. In 2016, he released a self-published chapbook entitled “EdotGdot”. … Continue reading Poetry No. 36 – David Midkiff

Poetry No. 34 – Nolan Meditz

Montauk by Sunrise I venture the thoughts of these men who outpaced the sun to the shoreline, who weather the salt spray and uneasy perches upon the rocks that abut their island and cast their nets into receding dark. They trace a hymn in horizon fire to the pulse of the world they love and keep trying to haul up closer themselves knowing so much … Continue reading Poetry No. 34 – Nolan Meditz

Poetry No. 32 – henry 7. reneau, jr.

WALLER COUNTY JAIL  2 BLKS for Sandra Annette Bland (Malum prohibitum) Wrong only because the law prohibits it, ———————————not because it is morally wrong. (Malum in se) The calm nurture of a Black mother’s wrath, a hollow that sorrows an endless mouth, a daughter’s dead star still burning in her eyes. Because the Law said:  failed to signal a lane change. The difference this time … Continue reading Poetry No. 32 – henry 7. reneau, jr.

Essay No. 10 – Andrew Rihn

_ Tyson vs. Francis Jan 29, 2000 MEN Arena, Manchester, England No prophet is accepted in his own country: a familiar ring in a foreign land, Mike Tyson takes refuge inside a Brixton police station and asks by bullhorn to be broken out. A British newspaper bought advertising space on the soles of Francis’s shoes, anticipating the front page photos of him laid low, their … Continue reading Essay No. 10 – Andrew Rihn

Community No. 39

In this week’s community, we feature works by Bryanna Licciardi and Bill Yarrow. — BRYANNA LICCIARDI Bryanna Licciardi has received her MFA in Poetry and is currently pursuing her PhD in Literacy Studies. Her debut chapbook SKIN SPLITTING is out from Finishing Line Press (2017). She is a Pushcart Prize nominee, and has had work appear in journals such as Poetry Quarterly, BlazeVOX, 491 Magazine, Adirondack Review, and Cleaver Magazine. … Continue reading Community No. 39

Community No. 38

In this week’s community, we feature works by Amanda L. Pugh and Will Clattenburg. — AMANDA L. PUGH Amanda Pugh is an adjunct professor of communications at Jackson State Community College in Jackson TN. She has been writing for as long as she can remember, both short stories and poetry, and it’s one her favorite things to do besides drink coffee and teach. Her work … Continue reading Community No. 38

Community No. 37

In this week’s community, we feature works by Andrew Lafleche and P.E. Portal. — ANDREW LAFLECHE Andrew Lafleche is an award-winning poet and author of six books. His work uses a spoken style of language to blend social criticism, philosophical reflection, explicit prose, and black comedy. Andrew enlisted in the Army in 2007 and received an honourable discharge in 2014. He lives in a small … Continue reading Community No. 37

Community No. 36

In this week’s community, we feature works by David K. Slay and Evan Williams. — DAVID K. SLAY After retiring from full-time work as a psychologist, David K. Slay completed two years of short story writing workshops, primarily in the UCLA Writers’ Program. His first published short story appeared in the 6th annual edition of Gold Man Review, and several others are in both on-line and … Continue reading Community No. 36

Community No. 35

In this week’s community, we feature works by David Estringel and McKayla Conahan. — DAVID ESTRINGEL David Estringel is an avid reader, poet, and writer of fiction, creative nonfiction, and essays. Future plans include teaching college English and continuing to work on his first book of poetry, Shields of Thunder and Storm. His work has been accepted and/or published by Specter Magazine, Literary Juice, Foliate Oak Magazine, Indiana … Continue reading Community No. 35

Community No. 34

In this week’s community, we feature works by N.L.H. Hattam and Mary Bone. — N.L.H. HATTAM N. L. H. Hattam has kept creative writing as a constant companion, both in writing and reading. N. L. H. Hattam took a circuitous route to embracing creative writing as more than a hobby, graduating from SNHU with a degree in English and Creative Writing in 2017 after stops … Continue reading Community No. 34

Community No. 33

In this week’s community, we feature works by Dudgrick Bevins and Evelína Kolářová. — DUDGRICK BEVINS Dudgrick Bevins is an artist and educator from North Georgia. He now lives in New York City with his partner and their very grumpy hedgehog, Ezri. He teachers creative writing and literature. Title: Baby Blankets First Line(s): Her body was found in the basement, A knotted rope around her neck, … Continue reading Community No. 33

Community No. 32

In this week’s community, we feature works by Lucia Orellana Damacela and Gary Singh. — LUCIA ORELLANA DAMACELA Lucia is the author of Life Lines, (winner of The Bitchin’ Kitsch Chapbook Competition, 2018), and Sea of Rocks, forthcoming. Her poetry and prose have been published in both English and Spanish in more than twelve countries. Lucía has lived in the Americas, Europa and Asia, tweets at … Continue reading Community No. 32

Community No. 31

In this week’s community, we feature works by Abigail Carl-Klassen and Henry Goldkamp. — ABIGAIL CARL-KLASSEN Abigail Carl-Klassen’s work has appeared in ZYZZYVA, Cimarron Review, Willow Springs, Guernica, Aster(ix) and Kweli, among others. She was shortlisted for the Society for Humanistic Anthropology’s 2016 Ethnographic Poetry Prize and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize and Best New Poets 2015. She is a staff writer for Poets … Continue reading Community No. 31