Issues | December 15, 2009

December 2009 Issue

INTERVIEWS An Interview With D. Harlan Wilson by David F. Hoenigman An Interview With Chelsea Martin by David Moscovich An Interview With Hillel Wright by David F. Hoenigman

CREATIVE NON-FICTION My Father’s Ghosts by Addie Hopes Propofol by Jake Wolff

FLASH FICTION Love in the Time of Valkyries by Melanie Browne Closer by Joly Herman Tucson by Neila Mezynski Blue Pinto by Mark Reep The Closed Door Has a Glass Handle That’s as Blue as the Hope Diamond by Rhoads Stevens

SHORT STORIES Black Eagle by Colin Clancy Immortality and Tow Trucks by Tom Fillion

POETRY Three Poems by Drew

Creative Nonfiction | December 15, 2009

Propofol by Jake Wolff

I wake up before I’m supposed to. The endotrachael tube presses against the base of my tongue and disappears into the empty space past my tonsils. The texture feels rough against my throat, ridged like the bark of a tulip tree. I don’t know what it means that I’m awake—this could be bad, I think, and yet I can’t seem to talk myself into panicking. It must be the sedatives.

There are two doctors standing over me. They look the way people look in distant memories—hazy at the center, sharp and bright at the edges. They have auras. I know

Poetry | December 15, 2009

The Collector by Amylia Grace

He’s collecting new ways to make me come,Upside down and backwardsIn the park on his face,The window ledge,With his thumb on the subway.It’s all just aerosol whipped creamOn the pout of his fleshy lipsWhen he muscles down the night sky,My damp flesh too much cathedralFor such a confirmed agnostic.He’s collecting new ways to make me comeWhich add up to chocolate ants and cherriesOn the tone of voice he uses when he is inside me,(confessions before the guillotine).

Reviews | December 15, 2009

Dear Everybody by Michael Kimball

Review by John Madera

Dear Michael Kimball,

Strangely, instead of writing “Reviewed by John Madera” above, I wrote: “Reviewed by Michael Kimball.” I have, as you can see, already fixed the mistake. I’m not sure why I initially wrote “Reviewed by Michael Kimball.” It wasn’t a conscious thing, something I deliberated over. I wasn’t thinking of using some kind of Borgesian conceit or metafictional trick. It just happened that way. I also didn’t know that I was going to write a letter to you, hadn’t planned it, until after I had typed out some of my favorite passages from your

Poetry | December 15, 2009

Island by Christian Ward

The elderly I visitedat the care home near my schoolslowly turned into an island.Months became sand, white bedsheetsfrothy surf. Nurses abandoned their jobs and wandered amongst the new landscapes like gulls and oystercatchers looking for prey.I walked along the shore, collectingshells that I hadn’t seen before.Holding one to my ear, I heard a songthat had always been tucked away.

About the author: I am currently working as a writer in London, UK. My work has appeared in The Emerson Review, The Kenyon Review and elsewhere.

Creative Nonfiction | December 15, 2009

My Father’s Ghosts by Addie Hopes

Lightless, the van tramped the path. Whenever I hear this story—in all of its incarnations, in the versions that feature Mona and the versions (like my mother’s) that don’t mention her at all—it always begins without light. This is my father’s creation tale, his making. And so it begins in the dark. That silver van was older than either of them, and it rumbled and spat, yet my uncle drove slowly and without headlights in hopes that he and my father would go unnoticed. They called it this—the path—because it led between town and the place they’d made camp for

Flash Fiction | December 15, 2009

Closer by Joly Herman

Listen to a podcast of Joly Herman’s “Closer.”

He pulls and she rolls away. He smells like leather. He pulls her back. She’s not convinced that she wants him. He pulls at her again. Sandpaper sobs next door. She stiffens herself against him. He strokes her arms; he puts his knees between her legs. She lets him have her and then she falls asleep.

She is climbing out of the shower when Sylvia walks into the bathroom, naked, a toothbrush crammed into her mouth.

“Ciao, Josie.”


“You sleep good?”

“Si.” Josie covers herself with a hand towel.

“You go today

Flash Fiction | December 15, 2009

Blue Pinto by Mark Reep

Listen to a podcast of Mark Reep’s “Blue Pinto.”

The girl at the Quikfill’s polite enough, no more.  Sean thanks her and she says Welcome, but doesn’t spare a smile. Hard to blame her, working here; they’ve probably been held up more than once by guys fitting his general description: White kid in a hoodie, broken nose, looked cold. Well, he can’t do much about the broken nose, and he’s too cold to lose the hoodie.  Still, he’d like to see her smile.

Today gas is up again, and a rusty blue Pinto Sean’s not seen before is nosed up

Poetry | December 15, 2009

Death to the mystical muse by Idris Goodwin

Listen to a podcast of Idris Goodwin’s “Death to the mystical muse.”

when her head tilts a snowflake gentlylands upon her eye lash & the windstirs & the lunar flirts with day sky shewill generously flick the star beams offher shoulders & they will plummetfrom the clouds where she sauntersnaked & awesome amongst the writer’sfresh brewed black tea

i hope she drowns

Poetry | December 15, 2009

yes by Ryan Manning

you keep talking about literature

i can’t stop thinking about sex

i just want to have sex with you

can we please stop talking about literature and start having sex

all i can think about is fucking

i want to date rape you a little

please let me date rape you a little

just let me put the tip in

trust me i’m a doctor

language, sexual content and nudity

let’s have premarital sex

let’s get married and have sex on our honeymoon and never speak to one another again

that sounds dreamy

About the author: Ryan Manning was born