by Wendy BooydeGraaff
Image: Kaitlin Ruether
We all know the story of Peter Rabbit, that naughty boy who went to the garden after his mother expressly said not to, and he paid for it with a cold and having to drink chamomile tea in bed while his sisters, Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail, got to have bread, milk, and blackberries at the table. But while we were moralizing about disobeying direct orders, Flopsy over there, her furry little eyelids closed with the ecstasy of berries bursting in her mouth, reminisced about her own little adventure. One that no one else knew about, which made it all the more delicious. Continue Reading
by Francis Bede
Image: Francis Bede
A poverty of toys enriches the imagination
Of a young child on Camden Street
Her Promethean eye that grows
Into stories, into character’s heartbeats;
by Evan James Sheldon
I was walking to the movie theater when a great golden bear approached me on the sidewalk. Come with me, he said.
Only if it’s quick, I said, still thinking about the movie.
I followed him off the busy sidewalk to a house that appeared to be caving in on itself in a beautiful, intentional way. The golden bear knocked, didn’t wait for a response, and went in. Continue Reading
by Ronny Rose
Image: Ronny Rose
i ate the holy parts
sacrament tastes better
out of turn
by Delaney S. Saul
Image: Hanna Webster
Ma was the first to ascend, and by then she was no longer herself.
It started with her sobbing in the middle of the night. I would huddle under my blankets and silently beg her to stop. She cried out for Pa. I knew Simon heard her because he came out of his room every morning looking withered.
“People grieve in different ways,” my therapist said, before I stopped seeing him. I assumed Ma’s strange behavior was grief over Pa’s death.
Then Ma revealed to me that she could not see herself in the mirror.
“It’s like I’ve been erased, Savannah” she said. Continue Reading
by Karen Breen
Image: Ambika Thompson
So, over the summer, I read that book by Descartes that you gave me.
He was wrong about a lot of things, I hope you know that.
Just like you trying to tell me that I couldn’t know you
and how it’s fucking easy. Continue Reading
by Kelly Craig
Image: Amanda Gibbs
Before they are friends Kyle asks her to go under the bleachers with him at the homecoming football game. She says no. Their team loses. She drives herself home with the windows down. It’s still hot. Las Vegas, late September. She wants to feel a chill but the windowsill where her arm rests has retained the heat of the day and she feels nothing but the stickiness of her thighs from sweating on the metal bleachers. She doesn’t talk to Kyle again until the next year, senior year, when their AP government teacher assigns them seats next to each other in the front row. She says hi to him, feeling her friends watching her in rows behind. She pretends she doesn’t recognize him as the guy who asked her to go under the bleachers. He tells her his name is Kyle and acts like this is the first time they’ve met even though they’ve been in school together for three years and she already knows his name. She doesn’t tell him her name and he doesn’t ask. She is never sure if he knows it. He never says it out loud. Continue Reading
by Simon Perchik
Image: Maya Bornstein
You read out loud the way this bed
listens for the makeshift seam
loosening each night down the middle Continue Reading
by Ted Shaffrey
Image: Kaitlin Ruether
Claire stood up inside the subway car and exhaled. Where is my dance partner? The train approached Bedford Avenue Station, triggering the brakes. Claire’s legs vibrated with the train.
There he is. She inhaled in time with the slowing train as it rattled and stopped. She sang, “Will you dance with me, my darling dear?” The doors buckled open. She exhaled, rocked back on her right foot and sprung out of the train and onto the subway platform. “I will. I will, so our hearts can be near,” she sang, answering her musical question. Continue Reading
by Janelle Cordero
Duality @ Janelle Cordero
i woke to birds my eyes / were open and i could still hear them but / this is january and the birds / left our city months ago so / i ask you what’s more real / birds or my thought of birds and you / would of course say birds because / my thoughts are not your thoughts but / to me i cannot choose because / the boundary between my mind and the world makes / less and less sense the more / i pay attention / Continue Reading