Review | Martin Ott’s Lessons in Camouflage

by Aaron Bristow-Rodriguez Martin Ott’s third book of poetry, Lessons in Camouflage, explores violence in public and private spaces through a haunting variety of open and closed poetic forms. Tragic and personal, the collection ultimately delivers a message of hope and recovery. The collection opens with “King of Camouflage,” a tightly packed poem that conflates theater and war.… Read More Review | Martin Ott’s Lessons in Camouflage

In Which Hundreds Of People Chronicle What Happened On June 21, 2018 And I Read All Of It

If, as a student, you read a famous essayist’s work, and it is immediately accessible and seems like something you might be able to write yourself, it’s galvanizing. Constraints are great for art. So are deadlines. But even better is to legitimately say to yourself, “Really? That’s a great essay? Well, shit, I can do that.”… Read More In Which Hundreds Of People Chronicle What Happened On June 21, 2018 And I Read All Of It

The Queer and Complex Business of Naming and Being Named

Clarice Lispector once wrote, “I’m not a synonym—I’m a proper noun.” Like many of her oblique declaratives, the meaning resonates if you are inclined to hear it. Yet even to those who do, what they hear differs widely. Perhaps even more maddening, it is subject to change when it is heard again. Lispector as haughy and indignant. Lispector, tall, set apart from the crowd. Lispector, a singular thing. … Read More The Queer and Complex Business of Naming and Being Named

Micro Prose: Rent by Ananda Lima

Rent   Miki had told Tê the piano was haunted. Miki could hear it in the reverberation behind the low keys and the strident leftover in the highs. But Tê knew nothing about pianos. She opened its cover and exposed the keys. It grinned like a dog. She pressed down, her ten fingers stretched apart. It sounded sinister, she gave Miki that. Jason left with the rent money. They had agreed on a deposit, but the day he moved in (that strawberry blonde hair, that pointy nose, that collar neatly tucked into his cardigan), asking had seemed rude, and unnecessary. And there was the piano. Tê had never thought she would live with a piano. Now it sat underneath a pile of unpaid utility bills. Tê stuck her fingers under its jaw, leaned back and put the weight of her body into the pull. It didn’t move. Later she found out Jason had told Miki the piano belonged to his dead aunt. He claimed she had gone mad after a failed love affair with a married man. Supposedly, he had loved her, but he was related to royalty and could not face the scandal of leaving his wife. Jason’s aunt had played their song until her fingers bled and became deformed with calluses. She drank poison and kept playing until her dead torso fell… Read More Micro Prose: Rent by Ananda Lima

Micro Prose: Birth Mother, Portraiture by Erinrose Mager

Birth Mother, Portraiture Another moon face, unsmiling. She has placed the green tea kettle atop the kitchen stove’s lit burner. She looks not at her portraitist, but instead through the window and upon the wicker basket from which she has drawn the morning laundry to air-dry outside in the garden. Her hair, pulled back and… Read More Micro Prose: Birth Mother, Portraiture by Erinrose Mager