“Frankenstein’s Postpartum Depression” by Micaela Walley

“Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change. The sun might shine or the clouds might lower, but nothing could appear to me as it had done the day before. A fiend had snatched from me every hope of future happiness; no creature had ever been so miserable as I was; so frightful an event is single in the history of man.”    It isn’t hard for me to imagine that childbirth, from start to finish, could be the premise of a great horror story. When I was ten years old, my mother gave … Continue reading “Frankenstein’s Postpartum Depression” by Micaela Walley

“Black White and Blue” by Ana Gardner

        1. The first time a wooden hanger hit my thigh, I crawled into a storybook of Arabian nights, And burrowed through the pages, deep into silence and inky walls   Every story a new home       Save for two.   The tale of an ungrateful boy who out of greed killed his wife and mother Left me cold and angry The man who cut off his sister’s hand made me crumple the pages.   I grieved for those women, wise and good and wronged But wondered how they were so resigned to their tragedy Sad about their … Continue reading “Black White and Blue” by Ana Gardner

“SIBYL OF THE INNER CITY” by Lorraine Schein

She is her own inner circle, circling.  She lives alone in a fifth-floor, walk-up cave. The other side of her door is inscribed with a pentacle, scratched into the metal frame with a knife. She slams the door and enters the loft, goes to the unmade bed, and throws her coat on it. Her bed has a wooden headboard with carved columns on each side. One post holds a silk sleep mask that she wears so the sunlight does not wake her in the morning. She goes to sleep past midnight, and always sleeps till noon. The curtains are closed … Continue reading “SIBYL OF THE INNER CITY” by Lorraine Schein

“In the Endless Perfection of Your Absence” by Sahar Khraibani

It is here, in this specific spot, across from this sky, here, where it all began.   Monday, January 30, 2017 at 2:23 PM. Beirut, Lebanon. I have not written about the sea in a while. It has become increasingly harder to think about it, to imagine it, to smell it. I went around telling people that I am taking a hiatus from it being my subject. It being the Mediterranean, the only sea I have ever been in close contact with. I was terrified of repetition, of sounding like a broken record, of writing something I don’t understand. What … Continue reading “In the Endless Perfection of Your Absence” by Sahar Khraibani

“Ghost Writing: Carceral Legacies, Haunted Bodies and Spaces” by Mauve Perle Tahat

One of the most terrifying ghost stories the U.S. has is incarceration. The prison is a haunted grotto. Prisons and prisoners are haunted by traumas caused by white supremacy. People admitted to these spectral spaces are part of its phenomenological architecture. When prisoners leave they are forever escorted by phantasmal histories. Most tangibly they will be cursed by restrictions like probation, employment and housing discrimination, voter suppression; the philosophical underpinnings of the prison itself are part of this ghost story. Prisoners, then, become ghosts themselves, observing society without a place in it, destined to float around disembodied until something sets … Continue reading “Ghost Writing: Carceral Legacies, Haunted Bodies and Spaces” by Mauve Perle Tahat

Meaning-making in Literature and Life: an Introduction to Existentialism by Elizabeth Ruth Deyro

In literature, it is the reader who gives meaning to a text. The process of creating this meaning is in the dialogue between the reader and the text itself. Giving it meaning is their way of understanding it. We should recognize that the text, once birthed, becomes a separate entity apart from its writer, much like a newborn from their mother. The writer’s significance should remain unquestioned, as it is they who has created the text, but they do not hold the power to set a standard meaning for their work. The text speaks for itself; it is no longer … Continue reading Meaning-making in Literature and Life: an Introduction to Existentialism by Elizabeth Ruth Deyro

Advertisement by Paul Michael Whitfield

Front Album Cover of Corrupted’s 1995 Nadie 1. Beginning one of his many books, 19th-century Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard writes a preface. In the book I have in mind this is followed by another and that by yet another. This book of Kierkegaard’s is a book of them. A book of beginnings of books. i live in san francisco. I read. I write. I listen to Corrupted and the Melvins. My aesthetic is the literary and the λόγος, and the zeitgeist of the longue durée–the auld lang syne. This aesthetic is the love of Des Esseintes and jewel-encrusted, murdered tortoises. … Continue reading Advertisement by Paul Michael Whitfield

The Ring Shout and the African Presence in America by Anwar Uhuru

In African American and/or Black American culture, the African and or ancestral presence is both visible and invisible. The ways to name what is Black American is in music and the infamous cuisine that has come to be called “soul food.” The production of highly consumed products of Black labor and the descendants is more American than apple pie. For example, no one realizes the blue that appears in the denim that Americans wear so regularly, the corn they consume, the peanuts, soy, rice, the domestic tools, or the music that is deemed “American” owes to Black labor. Those things … Continue reading The Ring Shout and the African Presence in America by Anwar Uhuru