Winter/Spring 2020


Cold-Hardy

Kelsey Englert

The yellow powder blankets my car as thick as the snow that never falls here. For the first time in thirty years, I am allergic. Everyone smokes for comfort and so grows the communal cough.


Poetry, Fiction, & Nonfiction

These Thin Green Hints

Allison Grace Myers

How easy it was, once, to imagine our future children. The blueprints were right in front of us, waiting to be brought to life. We envisioned them, tiny replicas of ourselves, as all couples surely do when they are “trying.”

3 Poems

Eleni Sikelianos

in a place where one grass blade makes / the next grass blade’s shade / that grass blade made / the next grass blade’s root

Dairy Free Dance: Digestion and Resistance at zurich moves! 2019

Philip Wesley Gates

This review of zürich moves! 2019, an annual festival for contemporary arts practice in performing arts, was a runner-up in the 2019 Toni Beauchamp Prize for Critical Art Writing, judged by Jessica Lynne.

Danger

Sarah Braunstein

When she got a paper cut, that speck seemed newly foreboding—she’d lick it off, heart accelerating, as if to let it pool for even a moment would invite some deviously patient menace.

Baba

K-Ming Chang

But in another language, in my father’s mouth, there is a tenderness to the tone he takes, so that the word beat overlaps with other words, some of them meaning I miss you. He says beat as if the word shares a border with laughter. As if it is just a lost synonym for love.

The Air Between Us

Kathleen Boland

And the cloud that took over the family’s house that Tuesday wasn’t made of your run-of-the-mill water vapor. It was so humid and heavy you could reach out and shake hands with it, and it would grab your hand and shake back.

Four Seasons

Jake Bauer

The arcade I lived in was the cryptograph, more or less. / The dog named Mila demanded evidence of the crowd. / You rented a room in the hotel by the sea.

2 Stories

Brenda Peynado

Still, she liked what she had become. She slept in a den of sticks of her own making. Language and its judgment escaped her. Was being animal closer to God than innocence? Her voice was her breath. She was still alive.

Cold-Hardy

Kelsey Englert

The yellow powder blankets my car as thick as the snow that never falls here. For the first time in thirty years, I am allergic. Everyone smokes for comfort and so grows the communal cough.

Fragments and Farewell Songs

Song Lin, transl. by Dong Li

The retreating autumn deepens in the city. Water turns from silver to maroon. A fisherman smokes on the bank, looking at the rising tide. The dark tones in the landscape are often overlooked. The bank, grey in the fog.

Shrapnel

Hugh Martin

In Iraq I said that word so much, heard it so often. I came home and found myself still saying it. Shrapnel's shell was first used against the Dutch at Surinam (now Guyana). The Dutch were so taken aback by the weapon that they surrendered after only the second time it was fired.

The Ideal Form

Armando Jaramillo Garcia

On the ice floe they pretended they were on a white sand beach / The trail guide had really screwed up / Earlier he had pinched a thistle and paid the consequences

Of Fennel & Kintsugi

Miriam Bird Greenberg

Frayed hymn, but faded. Unsown / threads turned toothy-tough — a gift / of wild roadside seedheads gone / gunmetal with dirt-freckled rain.

I Remember the Rabbits of Sasso Field

Carlie Hoffman

From the bleachers I watched them / watch you (multiplying, it seemed) / running sprints in heat / across the grass, / standing in for X's and O's.

The Poster

Weike Wang

The more I looked at her the more she seemed angry. This was probably because I was breaking into John’s computer again.

2 Poems

Louise Mathias

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

Withdrawal

Alysia Sawchyn

She says, Maybe I am not, in fact, ill. The ends of all her sentences curve upward into questions. We reduce her medication with a warning: Bipolar I is a lifetime diagnosis, though we concede that perhaps Patient could do with a smaller dosage.


From the Archives

Playing in the Institute: on Tag at ICA Philadelphia

C. Klockner

It’s still a question of how queer exhibitions can function within certain institutions without assimilating, without petrifying living works in order to propose additions to “the” hegemonic canon, but Tag proposes ways forward that walk indeterminacy with confidence.

Big Al

Kristin Bonilla

Big Al is in the house and he's drunk. His work boots thud across the worn carpet. "Tanya! Tanya!" He thrashes from room to room, opening doors on no…

COMPARTMENTALIZATION, OR, SOME THOUGHTS ON BOXES

Katie Bellamy Mitchell

Two sides of what used to be one wooden box hang on the walls of the Smart Gallery in Chicago. At first glance they are unremarkable: vaguely Italian-looking landscapes populated by two vaguely Italian-looking lovers, all flowing hair and slit silk. In the panel on the left, a woman lies improbably across some rocky ground—perhaps sleeping or dead—while a man leans on his staff and peers over her with a neutral expression. In the panel on the right, in front of a section of silvery sea, the same woman stands apart from the man who reaches toward her. His mouth is open. Her hands cross upwards into two woody stems and blossom into the unmistakable broccoli-floret silhouette of a tree: Daphne, turning into a laurel to escape the god Apollo.

Girl as Tautology

Jessica Hincapie

When I need my mother most I climb inside my mouth turn left at my incisor teeth turn right at the ghosts of both my grandfathers and find her dancing under the chandelier of my uvula.