Scoundrel Time

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Bookstore

Peter runs a used bookstore. Runs is the wrong word. It’s an act of charity. Peter has a real job, but when the store’s previous owner gave up, he bought the stock, took over the lease, and kept it open Thursday and Friday nights as well as weekends...

Allen v Farrow

We don’t know what we want or who we are we don’t even agree we are we In a civilized society, my friend says, preface to: we do not hurt children, we do not fuck children, we define childhood, of course we say we do, and we know we mean...

yrs,

how randall signs his emails means he’s mine & vice versa dear randall i miss you too bud & nights at the writers retreat we talked booze & drank big ideas & i’m grateful to read yr new awesome poem i love how summer dies like an old...

Three Poems by Joy Arbor

The Poet’s Wife Bil’in Village, West Bank Abu Rani recites a poem, an allegory of figs and leaves he composed on the spot when he couldn’t find the poem we came for. He’s the poet of the village, and we Americans sit on his family’s stone patio...

In the House of Blind Swordsmen

Copper foil, screens, and flashing all work as the best way to eradicate slugs. As yet, no progress, and yet, orations from the flowers of state, a paean to the healing powers of purple blossoms, the endless capacity for any of us to fall and rise...

Anna,

Here’s Schubert at 17, short and thick, nickname Schwämmerl, “little mushroom,” deep in his cups at the Hunter’s Horn, a dingy beer hall in Vienna, with the after-opera crowd, poetasters and brainy pundits shilling vitriol—bullshitters, all of them...

Blessing for the Lice Check

Miss Rosier, who was childless, had us bow our heads to our fifth-grade desks on the appointed day, as though for prayer. She slowly ran the side of a pencil from the nape of each neck to the top of each head. We tried not to shiver as the pencil...