36.2 Winter/Spring 2024


WE PRAY AT THE CAST IRON SKILLETS OF OUR GRANDMOTHERS

Shaina Phenix

We leave our offerings. We prepare the meat the way / we were taught, snap the wing, relish the song of crack


Poetry, Fiction, & Nonfiction

Before the Body

Katie Condon

Beauty also is unaccounted for. / The mist is merely what it is: water

Derelict Children: A Review of The River, The Town by Farah Ali

Tayyba Maya Kanwal

Farah Ali’s novel, The River, The Town (Dzanc Books, 2023), set in an unnamed municipality in the south of Pakistan, reads like an eerie fictional mirror to an Amnesty International report released the same year.

Drowning Doesn’t Look Like Drowning

Angie Mazakis

A drowning person will not splash and wave, will not shout or call out for help. Contrary to the ways in which it is dramatically performed on television and in film, drowning is nearly always physically unexpressed, measurably silent.

MINOR DESTRUCTIONS

Mark Kyungsoo Bias

Reading my grandfather’s notebooks, I’m trying to / know madness as a way of searching.

WE PRAY AT THE CAST IRON SKILLETS OF OUR GRANDMOTHERS

Shaina Phenix

We leave our offerings. We prepare the meat the way / we were taught, snap the wing, relish the song of crack

Summer Dialogue #1

Sam Schieren

We were on the roof of Nikita’s house, drinking beers. This is in the Central Valley. The roof was black and, so, hot. It wasn’t summer yet, but almost.

Archipelagic Memory: An Interview with Christine Imperial

Maha Ahmed

I met Christine during a balmy summer at the Winter Tangerine workshops in New York.

A Man Remarks on the Gazelle’s Resilience

Julie DeBoer

I grow daffodils now, try to reimagine / night and pretend that doors are / simple.

Selections from JAGADAKEER: IN REMISSION

Lory Bedikian

My father said there were no other / words like the compound words / in the Armenian language.

The History of Furniture

Brian Chander Wiora

I grew up immune to the ordinary, surrounded by a past / I was expected to sit on and memorize

Many Steeples Would Have to Be Stacked One on Top of Another to Reach From the Bottom to the Surface of the Sea

Annie Woodford

I can still feel / my father’s hands / pulling my hair / into a rough ponytail

A Houston Crease in my Brain: A Conversation with Joshua Burton and Anthony Sutton

Anthony Sutton

I have known Joshua Burton since 2014 when we attended the Boldface Workshop at the University of Houston.

Virtue

Rob Macaisa Colgate

When I get to heaven I will be bruised / and I will not answer any of God’s questions.

Far From Our Beginnings: An Interview with Monica Youn

Z.L. Nickels

Monica Youn is one of the most brilliant people you will ever meet. This seems to be a shared consensus among the people I know who have also met her.

My Work

Razi Shadmehry

And yet: my work is labor the way love is labor, is liability, is constant risk assessment.

A Kind of Constant Inner Traveling: Lauren Kinney in Conversation with Lisa Teasley

Lauren Kinney

Lisa Teasley’s first three books, Glow in the Dark, Dive, and Heat Signature came out in 2002, 2004, and 2006 respectively.

One Hundred Demons: An Interview with Jami Nakamura Lin

Christina Berke

Jami Nakamura Lin is a Chicago-based writer whose work has appeared in the New York Times, Electric Literature, and Bat City Review, but you might know…

Little Finger

Mu Tang translated by Kevin Wang

Lobsang kept saying that crossing fates with me would get him killed. When we first got on the road, an old woman at the foot of the mountain had been…

Tibidabo

A.C. Koch

The Devil knew exactly where to go. There were plenty of places in the world where the sun slanted long across plaza stones and shone like diamonds in the spray of fountains.

Inheritance

Nur Kahn

Mazin, our first, arrives in 92. He comes out at three and a half kilograms, which the doctor tells me is normal.

The Poetics of Horror: A Review of Justin Phillip Reed’s With Bloom Upon Them and Also with Blood

Mathew Weitman

Through the logic and lens of horror films, Reed examines the market demands of poetry (yes, these do exist), academic life, and the anxieties produced by the COVID-19 pandemic and rising fascism.

from This Household of Earthly Nature

Cody-Rose Clevidence

“atmospheric river” they say, as if we are children, / as if air was water, as if all was just one phase change away

Junction

Meg Kim

an exercise in mining the worst possibilities from the ridges / of the brain absent of stalagmitic reach

What Comes After

Rachel Sargent

I was twenty-seven when I saw him again, at a birthday party for my sister that uncomfortably straddled the line between our broke college years and some recently adopted bourgeois values.

Fire Blanket

Clara Chow

I’m writing a book about fires. Metaphorical and literal. About the way human relationships spontaneously combust. How a self crashes and burns.

Nail Harmony

Chrissy Martin

When my mother left for the man with a cruel son, I kept / my nails sharp for when he would draw back, swing. I left

Jumping into the Fray with Daniel Gumbiner

Biz Rasich

As a Californian, Daniel Gumbiner has thought a lot about the aftermath of disaster. What happens long after the emergency workers and news cameras have gone home?

AQLLA

Alonso Llerena

before their war, the Aqlla served / overflowing quinoa milk / to unworthy undeserving grins

Site: Snow in July

Tyler Mills

Site is a four-part series of visual poems/essays/works. Each work reproduces the Trinity Test site in New Mexico—the location of the first atomic blast the world has known—at specific moments in time after the detonation.

fever dream sonnet with Francesca Woodman

Anthony Thomas Lombardi

i know you’re thinking of me: it’s just about to rain.

Ellipses and the Unspeakable in Fady Joudah’s […]

Gemini Wahhaj

Fady Joudah’s newest poetry collection […] (Milkweed Editions, March 2024), written during the bombardment of Gaza from October to December 2023, marks the loss of language during an ongoing genocide.


From the Archives

Turn Around

Celeste Amidon

She worked in a supermarket before Showing women the way to the leeks, soaking the mop, affixing stickers to the cheeks of apples

2 Poems

Louise Mathias

Vexed light on dune evening primrose. The mineral lands denuded, / this still hurts.

The Years Before Y2K

Raquel Gutiérrez

The Stonewood mall in the late-1980s had been a site of several aspirational misfires to fit in, be seen.

On My Mid-Career Decision to Accept a Portrait Commission from the President of the United States

Becky Tuch

At the time of my commission, I did not know all the things this man would do, which means I did not know federal troops would be ordered into the cities, that water cannons would be fired, that there would be dogs, horses, rubber bullets, tear gas, that all of this that had for decades been taking place against civilians abroad would now take place, here, against civilians at home