35.2 Winter/Spring 2023

Relationship Postmortem #1

Marne Litfin

Poetry, Fiction, & Nonfiction

Emily Dickinson Takes Off My Clothes

Meg Yardley

She’s always opening up / spaces in me.

This is Tradition

Eva Recinos

Music was serious to me — and so was anger.

Self-Portrait as Mother as Nature Documentary

Chelsea Krieg

The shoebill pesters its mother for a drink, says David Attenborough.

Embodied, Explosive Worlds: Giada Scodellaro’s Some of Them Will Carry Me

Julia Brown

The central event of the first story in Giada Scodellaro’s debut collection, “The Cord,” is so shocking that I’ve been thinking about it for days.

Myth-making and Myth-breaking: An Interview with Jai Chakrabarti

Tayyba Maya Kanwal

Jai Chakrabarti’s fiction has a striking orality to it, a tone that emanates from his characters’ psyche and subtly permeates an entire story. On a 2022…

Carrie Buck

Caroline Plasket

I birthed her. And when I think back it is like / a nearly drowned head cutting the water’s surface.


Kelly Weber

I can’t write about breasts without thinking of damselflies stinging the surface of water.

The Date

Jessie Ren Marshall

We’re Facetiming from our apartments. I’m up in Inwood, happy that my housemates aren’t home but anxious they might return and overhear our conversation. Angie is in Carroll Gardens where she lives with her boyfriend Kyle, but she’s moving soon because her parents are closing on an apartment for her in Fort Greene. Whenever I express jealousy about this, Angie says it won’t really be her apartment because it’s an investment. Yes, I think. An investment you will inhabit and then inherit.


Katie McMorris

The book of Ezekiel opens / with a windstorm.

Baby Think it Over

Alyse Burnside

Being queer comes with responsibilities: the pressure to be more steadfast in my convictions than my straight friends, to reinvent relationship models, family structures, kinship networks even if it means disappointing my parents by depriving them of a marriage ceremony and grandchildren, even if it means my life might never feel all that stable, even if I find it all somewhat exhausting.


Ali Black

I swear / he yelled at me like I had plans / to set the field on fire in my sports bra

Mother of Tomorrow

Caroline Plasket

The dogs are bored. The children are bored. I was never / a child

Like Mother

Crystal Odelle

Time can mean grace for survivors of sharp ends. Like, how one afternoon, god meant finding your eyes. I’m trying to say thank you for teaching me how to quit arching away from the glass, how to lean in.

Every single one

Stephanie Staab

People are afraid of my memory and they should be.

semi-autobiography as SNL castmember

Anthony Borruso

as i hover above myself thinking about our fathers / how they were ushered from the least to best known borough / how they were fed so soberly into the moloch’s mouth

If You Aren’t Busy I Think I’m On Fire

Sreshtha Sen

Every Sunday, I practice saying no in three languages.

Yukari Kneeling in My Mother’s Garden, 1994

Gen Del Raye

We had been sent out of the house to collect turnips. I was thirteen and Yukari was ageless, I thought then, as anyone above twenty-five seemed ageless to me...


Doug Ramspeck

My father / carried me often like a dead deer // on his shoulders up the stairs to bed, / my arms and legs gripped before his body, // my fallen neck bobbing


Matthew Lawrence Garcia

The summer my grandmother’s fugues started, my mom was working two jobs, one as a nurse at St. Joseph’s Hospital and another as a freelance secretary in a small translation house that sent her home with complimentary poetry collections that she read late at night by the weak light in the kitchen.


Geetha Iyer

The Rules for Watching

Melissa Darcey Hall

Ever since Ramona debuted her prosthetic leg at school, she’s walked the school halls with her head a little higher.


Ali Black

I don’t ask anyone to pray for me

I Dreamed I Was Venus de Milo

Julia Thacker

A scatter of crows came to me / and I could not refuse them


Daniel Pope

With their hands clasped and knuckles squeezed white, the newlyweds descended the church steps. Flashing cameras froze the tossed rice in midair. Later that day at the crime scene, when the detective was handed the photos he could hear the grains clatter to the pavement.

On Trying to Have a Child

Brynn Saito

Days I can’t feel you, I dive my body / into the deep end, pluck golden leaves / from the silty bottom, nearly drown

Pas Encore

Robert Herbst

The violinist made a little speech. “All music,” he said, “concerns life and living.”

Down in Yellow

Kyle Lung

Either way, whatever the city’s doing, it’s enough to change the color of the sky to this bone-white dome, the color of talc, and if they can take the blue out of the sky, they can take something from me. But it’s weird, not knowing what.

You Can’t Go Wrong with Chicken Parm

Short Fiction by Kennedy Coyne

When I ask him what his favorite kinds of pretzels are, he says rods. I tell him those are better than sourdough, but nothing beats traditional. He asks me how I define “traditional” and before I answer he tells me it’s subjective, that it doesn’t matter anyways.

Self-Portrait as the astral emergency you’re fielding on facetime

Sam Herschel Wein

I’m on the moon / your favorite place, how encouraged you were I left / my safety stars

Beginning after the End: Allegra Hyde On Craft, Catastrophe and Collectivism.

Madeleine Gaudin

In her newest collection The Last Catastrophe, Allegra Hyde tracks ideas of  apocalypse and collective action from an intergalactic finishing school to…

Fruit 4 Fruit

Sam Herschel Wein

I’d always wanted this, I just didn’t know / to give it a / name.

Still Life of Goat with Junipers, Palace Walls

Avery Williamson

I drank the creek water until my eyes, until my eyes were prayers too.

Prince Shakur’s When They Tell You to Be Good

Ishena Robinson

In his award-winning debut memoir When They Tell You to Be Good, author and activist Prince Shakur vividly captures and decodes lived experiences that…

From the Archives

Ellipses and the Unspeakable in Fady Joudah’s […]

Gemini Wahhaj

Fady Joudah’s newest poetry collection […] (Milkweed Editions, March 2024), written during the bombardment of Gaza from October to December 2023, marks the loss of language during an ongoing genocide.


Sara Deniz Akant

But come on, even Eve ate a dead baby dino. / Adam was still munching on his apples like a dweeb.


Janelle Tan

only the two rocks holding each other know / where they find balance.


Joshua Jennifer Espinoza

You love to see it—discrete individual units realizing they are not / at all that. Like a grass field caught in wind, finally understanding / its purpose, I breathe with the sound of God breathing.