Willie Smith is back! In stories and letters! Dracula meets Jesus this time, and there is a cannibal and wet nurse in Willie's entourage. We are celebrating the Seattle master's return by declaring May 1st (the Quintessential Drudges' Day) Willie Smith Day.
Lee Ann Mortensen demonstrates how lovers create one another
Joe Camhi examines the life-long effects of a father's advice to his son "to bust holes." The resulting filial mess is half-conscious and that's progress!
Jason Stella's character's been hurt but good by "a good Jesuit education," but still has enough strength to call forth righteous anger. Required reading for waiting in line to see Mel Gibson's snuff flick.
Kevin P. Keating: a Jesuit education, continued. "There are consequences in this life and the next."
Emily Kruse examines woman self at mid-point; terribly sobering, and so true.
Gadi Dechter explicates how "jewish girls" are made. Not in a day.
Kathryn Simmonds' cyclopic poetry eyeball records pop culture as it attempts to construct a safe inner self. Is it possible? We are not sure Ms. Simmonds knows, attracted equally by Mickey Rooney and the "smells of peaches."
William Starr Moake details the destruction of a person by the Tropics. Dengue fever and memory loss are part of it, but love for a native could work to ameliorate, if not arrest the condition.
Clive Matson's radical erasure of self
Joanna Hooste on smoke and forgetting
Brent Nathaniel Bechtel unrolls himself first like an atlas map, then a dymaxyon map.
Geoffrey Cruickshank-Hagenbuckle has a number of assistants, Richard Fiction and Grackle among them, who are charged with probing certain unspeakable (and personal) urban micro-cultures.
Utahna Faith bathes in the violet beauty of a pop icon ("Martini Girl"), then lends her a wrenching cri-de-coeur ("To The Other"), only to re-enter the world contemplative and crepuscular ("After Happening Upon a Saved Postcard;)
Kelly Jean White makes a visceral sculpture of the family world, using oozy stuff like toothpaste, paint, and feces. She is an MD, she knows exactly the hygiene required, but there are unsterilizable portions of the psyche that fly like questions.
Sean Kilpatrick portrays the Domina Complainorum unraveling
Cristina Hanganu Bresch rolls out the scroll of "the men who ever were," in a lyrical list worthy of Villon
Beatriz Hausner's "The Ideal Man Poems" examine the creature at the seams, as it were, even those lost by Bresch
Roberto Tocalino's protagonist's erection has become a problem as he leads tours through Italy. Using his erection as a pointer to the blackboard of his own psychology, he illuminates the source of his priapism. Surprise! Read the story and find out what this stubborn erection discovers!
Stephen Brynes examines the archetype of "the wandering Jew," as it comes to life inside a young man of the post-Nixon era. The Jew as human prototype or posthuman is essential to the story of "the making and unmaking of persons," and such, "it" or "its story" must wander. Anyway, Byrnes' guy has a voice, I kid you not.
Kris Broughton shines a cruel searchlight over the frayable web of political correctness in Atlanta. It's a satire, but trapped in it like stunned fish are our tippy toes.
Stacey Abbott is "thinking about folks and how we're really the same," but in the process discovers some oedipal-sized lumps that make her generous conclusion more of a "hot coal" than she cares to admit
Amber Decker goes to the person before she is even born and addresses some well-seasoned wary advice in the general direction of the innocent. Then she complains about a guy who abandoned her in New York in February. We understand, really we do.
Pete Sniegowski's character, Dirk the Lech, may very well be the guy who abandoned Amber Decker's heroine in New York, in February. He's an unspeakable worm whose lack of finesse leads to an all-too-ordinary meanness, alas.
Aimee LaBrie's guy, on the other hand, has all the qualities that might have made Dirk the Lech into an interesting human being. (He wouldn't have been "Dirk the Lech' then, but Aimee's ultrasensitive person, "Anthony LaFleur," let's say.) Aimee, or her lyric spokeswoman, does wish that Anthony had some Dirk in him, because as things stand nothing else will.
Cedar Pruitt addresses herself to that eminent witness and collaborator in the making and unmaking of persons, The Therapist. This is one of the many things she has to say to her therapist: "Maureen, your thoughts are as pure as snow." Sure. And the Pope is not Polish.
Mark Spitzer is the pseudonym of a writerly fury unleashed on earth by the Great God Perspiration. In this fragment from an abandoned novel, persons of literary origin act in the real world without any excuses. None of them are either Dirks or Anthonys, but they compensate by singing, shrieking, and annoying readers who REALLY like birds.
Chuck Terzella arrives on the scene just in time to infuse the scene with regret at the passing of sadistic nuns who once instilled discipline in children like no one else. Nuns, it seems, have gone soft. So has everything about persons, except the making and unmaking of them.