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1983

By Michael White Poetry

That first morning, I remember
clinging to a table’s edge—
both legs jackhammering the white

linoleum floor tiles—praying for
my benzodiazepine to finally,
finally kick in.

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It Began with the Beginning: Alopecia Areata

By Tara Bray Poetry

1. A patch of nothing the size of a nickel above the nape, smooth moon, the beginning of myth, the spread of skin and each morning’s sheddings at the feet, each little swirl, a parable, unblessed.  2. Forced to lose the one crow-shined feature I’d been allowed, each week another round found, spots, pale and…

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Exodus

By Dante Di Stefano Poetry

It takes a lifetime’s blindness to see one’s father.                                         —Cid Corman My father mumbled forth his violated commandments for half my life. I inscribed them on incense and holy water and when I drank them they tasted like cigarette ashes in a coca-cola can. There were no tablets save the pills he didn’t take.…

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Waiting

By Sarah Klassen Poetry

On the hospital bed, a body: long, straight, and still breathing, though the eyes don’t open and the ears can’t hear. No sound escapes the body’s vocal cords to slip across its lips. Two women on straight-backed chairs watch and wait. The woman who is the mother naturally insists on hoping. Says she sees eyelashes…

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Tenebrae

By Anya Krugovoy Silver Poetry

Holy Wednesday Lord, I know that the bitterness is for her own good. Through the numbness that has made her quadriplegic, she has drawn nearer to you, has been purged as with bloodroot of whatever sins still grieved you. Her pneumonia has sent her to hospice. Her descent was rapid. She sleeps her morphine dreams.…

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The Newest Thing in the World

By David McGlynn Short Story

FOR THE LAST MONTHS of his life, my father lived upstairs from us. His ceiling pitched all the way to the floor, and three tall windows overlooked the pines and the bayou behind the house. For furniture there was a double bed, an oak dresser, and a nightstand—any more wouldn’t fit. The room had never…

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Pilgrims: Snapshots from an Idaho Family Album

By Robert A. Fink Essay

  New Plymouth   WHAT DROVE SUCH PILGRIMS across the sea of southern Idaho, dry plain, sage and antelope? Doesn’t any place hold God, smooth stones to pillow dreams of angels, one rock fitted upon another, raising the pilgrim’s testament: I have come as far as here? How did the displaced, one by one, know…

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Garden of the Gods

By Janet Peery Short Story

  The following excerpt appears in Peery’s new novel, What the Thunder Said. Copyright 2007 by the author and reprinted by permission of St. Martin’s Press, LLC. Available this spring wherever books are sold.   YES, SHE KNEW THEM. They were her grown sons Sam and William and she loved them dearly but she wished…

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