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August 2014 Issue | Word Riot
Issues | August 15, 2014

August 2014 Issue

Good writing. No Remorse.

Poetry | August 15, 2014

What It’s Like to Only Know Your Father Through Stories Other People Have Told You by Tayler Geiger

Tayler Geiger is a writer and performer currently living in St. Louis, MO. He is an active participant in the national slam poetry scene, having earned a selection for the finals showcase at the 2012 National Poetry Slam, and a 6th place team finish at the 2014 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational. He also served as Writer-In-Residence at the MITCH Collective in Martin’s Ferry, OH, and is the recipient of the 2014 James Merrill Prize for Poetry. His work has appeared in or is forthcoming from In Parenthesis, Unshod Quills, and Spires.

Poetry | August 15, 2014

Two Poems by Heather Knox

Heather Knox is a poet, teaching artist and editor currently living in the Pacific Northwest. She earned her MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Her work has appeared in Columbia Poetry Review, [PANK], decomP magazinE, and others. She loves the rain even when she doesn’t and wears sweaters year-round.

Poetry | August 15, 2014


Franklin K.R. Cline’s work has been featured in B O D Y, Matter, Beecher’s, and The Chariton Review. He lives in Kalamazoo, MI, with three cats and his fiancée, author Rachel Kincaid.

Experimental | August 15, 2014

Five Prose Poems by Parker Tettleton

Parker Tettleton is the author of the prose poetry collection GREENS (Thunderclap Press 2012) & three chapbooks: SAME OPPOSITE (Thunderclap Press 2010), OURS MINE YOURS (Pity Milk Press 2014) & MAN SUGAR (co-authored by Riley Michael Parker, Housefire Books 2014). More or less is here.

Reviews | August 15, 2014

Dystopia Boy: The Unauthorized Files by Trevor D. Richardson

Dystopia Boy: The Unauthorized Files by Trevor D. Richardson Montag Press Collective, c2014. 558 pages. $19.95.

Review by David Renton

I first read Dystopia Boy as a serialized story at The Subtopian Magazine, founded by the author, Trevor D. Richardson. I was a fan. It was presented as a grungy looking PDF that had the look of a transcript printed off of one of those old IBM computers with the lines and the perforated holes on the side. I’m sure you remember those, unless I’m way older than I think. It caught my attention, made me smile, and, more importantly,

Flash Fiction | August 15, 2014

Mistralismus by Dan Reiter

Dan Reiter is always working on something. His most recent offerings won The Florida Review Editor’s Award in fiction and Bartleby Snopes story of the month. A more bizarre piece is currently on display at Burrow Press Review. More of his sudden fiction is upcoming in Spork and other journals. He lives and dreams here:

Creative Nonfiction | August 15, 2014

Terminal by Stephanie Golisch

Stephanie Golisch writes screenplays, short stories and travel essays. She has been published in two anthologies of PDX Writers, Bengal Lights and will have a piece in the upcoming edition of Mission at Tenth. A recipient of a 2014 Oregon Literary Arts fellowship, she calls Portland home.

Flash Fiction | August 15, 2014

What the Father Would Have Said by Nancy Hightower

Nancy Hightower’s work has appeared in storySouth, Word Riot, Gargoyle, Red Fez, Prick of the Spindle, Prime Number Magazine and Big Muddy, and is forthcoming in A cappella Zoo. Her short story collection “Kinds of Leaving,” was shortlisted for the Flann O’Brien Award for Innovative Fiction, and Port Yonder press will publish her collection of poetry, The Acolyte. She currently reviews science fiction and fantasy for The Washington Post<.

Poetry | August 15, 2014

BIRTHDAY by Jean C. Howard

Born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, performance poet Jean Howard resided in Chicago from 1979 to 1999. She has since returned to Salt Lake City. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Off The Coast, Clackamas Literary Review, Harper’s Magazine, Eclectica Magazine, Eclipse, Atlanta Review, Folio, Forge, Fugue, Fulcrum, Crucible, Gargoyle, Gemini Magazine, Green Hills Literary Lantern, Painted Bride Quarterly, decomP, The Tower Journal, Minetta Review, The Burning World, The Distillery, The Oklahoma Review, Pinch, Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, Pisgah Review, ken*again, Chronogram, The Cape Rock, Quiddity Literary Journal, Grasslimb, Rattlesnake Review, Concho River Review, Spillway, Spoon River Review, Verdad, Wild Violet, Willard & Maple, Wisconsin Review, and The Chicago Tribune, among seventy other literary publications. Featured on network and public television and radio, she has combined her poetry with theater, art, dance, video, and photography.

Creative Nonfiction | August 15, 2014

ORD by Soon Wiley

ORD – Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Chicago, Illinois USA


you beautiful bitch,

you miracle of a clusterfuck,

you anomaly of aeronautical common sense.

O’Hare is a conundrum; O’Hare is an oxymoron. The airport has been voted Best Airport in North America for ten years. It’s been labeled as “America’s Favorite Airport” by Business Traveler Magazine and Global Traveler Magazine. It’s also been ranked second worst in delays, behind JFK and LaGuardia – which seems utterly predictable. O’Hare alone accounts for over a sixth of flight cancellations in the United States of America.

You’re probably

Poetry | August 15, 2014

Three Dreams for the Price of One by Chen Chen

Chen Chen is a University Fellow in poetry at Syracuse University, where he also serves as Poetry Editor for Salt Hill. His work has appeared/is forthcoming in Connotation Press, PANK, Ghost Proposal, Fjords, Foothill, CURA: A Literary Magazine of Art & Action, Nepantla: A Journal for Queer Poets of Color (in partnership with Lambda Literary), among other publications. He has received fellowships from Kundiman, Tent: Creative Writing, and the Saltonstall Foundation.

Flash Fiction | August 15, 2014

On Witnessing by Tracie Renée Dawson

Tracie Dawson is a first year MFA student at The University of South Carolina and her poetry can be found in Rabbit Catastrophe Review.

Interviews | August 15, 2014

An Interview With Adam Berlin by Sara Whitestone

Adam Berlin is the author of the novels The Number of Missing (Spuyten Duyvil), the boxing novel Both Members of the Club (Texas Review Press/winner of the Clay Reynolds Novella Prize), Belmondo Style (St. Martin’s Press/winner of The Publishing Triangle’s Ferro-Grumley Award) andHeadlock (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill). His stories and poetry have appeared in numerous journals. He teaches writing at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City and co-edits J Journal: New Writing on Justice. For more, please visit

Poetry | August 15, 2014

Two Poems by Jackson Burgess

Jackson Burgess studies at the University of Southern California, where he is a Greenberg Fellow for Poetry and Editor in Chief of Fractal Literary Magazine. Jackson has placed work in Rattle, The Adroit Journal, The Monarch Review, Tin House Flash Fridays, and elsewhere. He leads a poetry workshop on Skid Row and lives at