Tilt by Pat Foran

Can you put me on tilt? my leaning son asks. He can’t help this leaning, even though he’s seat-belted and secure in this wheelchair he’s been sitting in living in declining in the past dozen years. He can’t grip the chair’s controls he can’t control his grip he doesn’t have a grip not anymore. HisContinue reading “Tilt by Pat Foran”

Miss Patel’s Story Time Assessment Center by Sage Tyrtle

I walk through the snow, wearing my mask towards the Covid-19 Assessment Centre. Taped to the window are yellow construction paper ducks, fluffy clouds. The door is open. Miss Patel says hello and welcome. Are you here for Story Time Saturdays? We’re reading Granny’s Sari. My son waves his hands in the air. YES YES.Continue reading “Miss Patel’s Story Time Assessment Center by Sage Tyrtle”

A BLACK MAMA’S BREATHWORK, OR, THE FIRST TIME I HAD “THE TALK” WITH MY DAUGHTER BY DW MCKINNEY

I (inhaled, then) exhaled pain into my daughter’s hair. It wasn’t my plan. My husband was supposed to be sitting in my place, his legs open, a red plastic chair squeezed between them with our four year-old sitting atop the seat. And while he moisturized and detangled her curly puff ponytail, I was going toContinue reading “A BLACK MAMA’S BREATHWORK, OR, THE FIRST TIME I HAD “THE TALK” WITH MY DAUGHTER BY DW MCKINNEY”

My Mother’s Only Reader by Jillian Luft

The remnants of my mother’s life fit neatly into the corner of a walk-in closet. They’re a modest inventory: five-mini cassettes, thirty-plus photo albums, a jewelry box containing a frustrated tangle of 14 karat gold chains and tennis bracelets, a couple of high school yearbooks, some salvaged Christmas ornaments and snow globes, a slim blackContinue reading “My Mother’s Only Reader by Jillian Luft”

The Knife by Jay Parr

I know by the knife in my pocket that this is when I was in high school. I’m maybe seventeen here. Pocket full of scrounged change—stolen change—I’m out on the dark sidewalks of our crime-ridden neighborhood, seriously jonesing for a cigarette, walking down to Handi Mart before they close because the Save-X is already lockedContinue reading “The Knife by Jay Parr”

Seven Broken Ways by Joe Kapitan

  The fifth broken way a father loves his son is Drawn Line. In this way, a father grabs his son by the shirt collar and shoves him out the door, tells him not to come back. There is shouting. There is this: you can live in your car, your tent, your anger. This isContinue reading “Seven Broken Ways by Joe Kapitan”

Two Micros by Kathryn Silver-Hajo

All’s Well Considering she was approaching 100, she was doing fine. She still planned dinner with her daughters most days, even put on a few pounds. She enjoyed having a cup of coffee with the neighbors at 4:00 every afternoon, nodding when they spoke of a son getting engaged or how expensive cherries were atContinue reading “Two Micros by Kathryn Silver-Hajo”

For Carrie By Sheree Shatsky

I look directly into the camera. I’m focused. Generations of family gather on the front steps of Rich Valley Presbyterian after visiting the gravesite of our Carrie, who passed of Spanish flu back in 1918, pregnant with twins. Her eyes were Viking blue like mine, like her son, my grandfather. We can only imagine whatContinue reading “For Carrie By Sheree Shatsky”

School Girl’s Puzzle by Rachel Laverdiere

Rachel talks about the how and why of her fascinating piece: I love experimental forms of writing because the slight remove allows me to express truths I’m afraid to admit. I am fascinated with patchwork narratives—how stitching together fragmented experiences creates a tapestry. “School Girl Puzzle” is the second of a series of “quilted” essaysContinue reading “School Girl’s Puzzle by Rachel Laverdiere”

Lost and Found by Jamie Etheridge

1. In New York City, inside Central Park on the path through the woods, you dropped my hand and didn’t pick it up again. Later you never called and I forgot your name, lost your number when I changed phones, apartments, states. 2. On the subway, the seat next to me was empty and thenContinue reading “Lost and Found by Jamie Etheridge”