Summer/Fall 2019


The Evangelist

Kathleen Blackburn

I was twelve, with little idea of the drying sediment, the vanishing well, under my feet, though as far as I could tell West Texas was desert. A shrug in the middle of forgotten. At the time, I feared one thing only: Dad would die because of me.


Poetry, Fiction, & Nonfiction

2 Poems

Wendy Xu

And if they’re missing / in inaction, forgive them / Their useless pearls, nouns

from Fudekara

Liliana Ponce transl. by Michael Martin Shea

The return trip has a map already. Surviving in sugar waters, in rhythms of algae. / The earth in the hollow is breaking—I knew it instinctively, and in my mind, insects were swarming, traversing the city of your map.

But were it not for the caps lock key [...]

Rachel Z. Arndt

While waiting for the ring I was waiting for his call. And while waiting for his call I was waiting for my finger to heal; the doctor had taken the tip and it had not healed, and then I was putting medicine on it twice a day, covering it with a bandage I had to wait hours to take off, each time.

Hollow Pockets for Resting

Alicia Mountain

That empty matchbook winter was a new trudge / through short-light afternoons with time to kill.

2 Poems

Roger Reeves

And did we come to some conclusion about who set fire to the Master’s House / The autumn-petal of it, swinging flame on the black bough of the sky?

Perfect Kill

Caroline Sutton

Dragonflies are like Waze. They predict. They don’t chase after mosquitoes, they intercept them, which means they have to calculate the mosquito’s distance, speed, and trajectory. Dragonflies perform these calculations in milliseconds, far faster than Waze, which always takes agonizing seconds to load as it computes the route, average speed of drivers, and quagmires that might await.

Betrayed

Joy Castro

When I first saw the bright gold rip of gas flares against the Corpus night sky from the passenger seat of some guy’s green Datsun—all that oil just rushing incinerated into the air—I said, Damn, don’t they know about global warming?

Astros Sign Osuna Despite Local Outrage

Iliana Rocha

It means to want so badly. / How close win is to want is the distance / between his fast ball & her face.

Disability Seen Through Photographs, Darkly

Pepper Stetler

The people whom Arbus photographed were probably separated from their families when they were born. Their mothers and fathers were most likely told that they would be too much of a burden to raise. However, none of this is really what we are supposed to be thinking about when viewing the Untitled series. We are told to think about the compositional choices, the lighting, the true talent of Arbus who discovered these subjects.

Cheerio Petals

Amanda Auerbach

The color yellow and the red heart on the box remind me parts / of childhood are nice not / embarrassing. Does that include eating / cheerios with fingers?

The Parable of the Dead Dog

David James Poissant

The story the fiction writer reads is fiction. His wife has never cheated. He has never run over a dog.

The Evangelist

Kathleen Blackburn

I was twelve, with little idea of the drying sediment, the vanishing well, under my feet, though as far as I could tell West Texas was desert. A shrug in the middle of forgotten. At the time, I feared one thing only: Dad would die because of me.

Salvation

Jonathan Louis Duckworth

Rationalizing didn’t help. No matter how much he told himself that this was a different woman, that it couldn’t be the same widow, he couldn’t escape the gut certainty that she was.

History

Joshua Burton

One night, my father will come home late with a rifle in his hands / yelling “I’m here.” Everyone will laugh. / Every corner of the ocean is the same.

Crackhead Clint Will See You Now

Thomas Kearnes

Here it was laid out: we’d tricked with Clint a few times over the years. Sure, he was a geek, but he possessed this obscure magnetism. He was so indelibly himself, we allowed ourselves, when with him, to believe that the established rules of conduct, constraining all men of our tribe, could be ignored.

2 Poems

Jane Huffman

I have a worm / beneath my hair — / a future worm, / a nerve / from the eternal / present.

Hurt Locker

Ernie Wang

How much muscle one carries is the largest determinant of bodybuilding credibility, regardless of the degree of fairness with which it’s constructed, and by this metric, he was the one, not me, with the authority to dispense advice.


From the Archives

Driftless

Joe Fletcher

The ghosts of men who named the river / suckle moon-limned mist slipping down / from thick firefly-flickering treelines...

Where She Was Forgotten

Karla Clark

before brunch bottomless hipsters march on / MLK would say these chicken tenders taste like / freedom rings

Aubade: Kitchen, 7:08 A.M.—

Kevin Phan

School bus, may you never rust, always catching scraps of children’s laughter. Add a few phrases to the sunrise, and the pinks pop...

Unkempt Graveyard Near the Shore

Jari Chevalier

Trespassing on ground of former love. Tussocks / whisper here of nests and the vanquished. Swans hiss and fish / nearby, undoing the slipknots of their throats...