Volume 6, Number 1

Excerpts

Spirit in the Dark

by Ed Skoog

At night I see the dish
she washes, and want to live
where she lives, so I sell my car,
the one I got lost in coming back
from graveyard county road.
My hand looks old.
Now I take to streets, slow
city down, with nothing to spend,
self-walking dog
gathering up lost bones.
I go to see her in the mechanic’s cabin,
front porch heavy with sunset,
bobcat under the back porch.
She pours wine in a vase,
developing ruby on table glass.
Mail arrives from distances
attached to wolf fur.
Singing in shallow garden,
I transcribe views of her showering.
Pines clutch night’s raccoons.
Beetles ready their launch,
pincers on soft unquestionable towels.
Her weight on the bed corner,
but when I reach across the quilt
only a pile of recent memoir.

Again, Again

by Alison Stine

Again the skin of the road is open,
and they are shoveling tar back in.

Tar is to take the place of the ground

until spring. The body can horrify
after the body. Someone has propped

also by the road: remains of a deer,

ribboned with flesh, two legs upright,
two set on the rail, posed as if dancing,

and it isn’t a bow at the headless,

red neck. You would know about such
things. Tagged, you would call the deer,

or call it by some other name.

And in the dark, the deer looks almost winged.
It is brown as wings, big and leaping.

Then dying, then dead. In the headlights,

the eyes are candied pits. Someone
pulls out a knife. Someone pulls back

the head. I lied when I said I could

lose you again. And again is the winter
thinning, bark chewed through teeth,

ribs showing, but there are trees

on the other side. On the other side: the last
of the golden raspberries. Each burst

is a fingertip. Each bite is a firefly,

and again in the middle, all of the middle,
is the wet road, the star stream, the dash

amid the dashed cars, the chance,

the timing, the long long run. Run it again.
Again. I love you. I love you.

I love you. Live.



$6-

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Contributors

Alison Stine
Blake Butler
Brooklyn Copeland
Campbell McGrath
Carl Phillips
Clay Matthews
Dina Hardy
Don Boes
Ed Skoog
Elizabeth Scanlon
Franz Wright
Jen Currin
Jennifer Parks
Joseph Harms
Joseph Massey
Kathleen Rooney
Lisa Marie Martin
Marlys West
Matt Anserello
Noah Gershman
Sarah Bartlett
Sarah Blackman
Zach Savich