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Summer 2015: Young Voices


Work is wading out knee-deep into the mud, 
to flick the damp whip and hear the horses 
running back. One at a time, I take them 
under the chin at the cuff of the throat, and 
place my other hand over the muzzle, to feel 
the hot, sweet breath, see the white eyes 
and their unpredictability. The wire cutters 
are sharp in the cold, the twang of the cord 
snapping back like an incensed reptile as I 
cut the bindings on the bales of alfalfa. They get
hay in the rack, three-quarters of a cup of 
grain in the bin, except for the breeding male 
who gets a cup and a quarter. Snorts echo 
through the old barn standing crooked, 
in the shape of the bent-backed dog who whines, 
nipping at the heels of my boots. She smells of
mud and manure and the cold earth wheeling 
underneath that plate of insensitive stars.
The feeding done,  I hold the broomstick in chapped 
hands smelling of horse urine and cat piss, 
reminding me of the warmth that I find 
in the scent of manure. Holding the 
broomstick tight, and looking low to the 
floor, I will glide slowly down the length 
of the barn, twirling in my skirts of 
crusty denim, guiding the stray bits of alfalfa 
back into the boxes made to house the feed. 
But the alfalfa does not follow my subtle cues, 
and I know when I come back tomorrow the 
barn will not betray my presence. Hooves and 
withers bang a hollow cry against the rotting walls 
of the cells. Eyes flash white. They do not 
recognize me. When the sun disappears, the 
moisture on their heaving flanks begins to freeze 
like dew drops, like my mind, lashed to the 
hope that when I come back tomorrow 
the old house by the old barn will still be 
standing. Work is walking into the kitchen, 
to step over the puddle of dog urine, to 
open the door and peek my head into the 
study and call out, quietly, to the old woman 
inside. Work is walking to the barn, to 
crack the whip and tell the horses that 
the time of their running is over. 

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As hot as the summer sun, 13 poets breathe light into the darkness.


Tending to the worn, imperfect edges of life, five writers grapple with perimeters.


Like a swarm of bees or a flock of birds: four artists layer meaning through detail.

Young Voices

Four teens observe their world and put words to page like only young voices can.


From emerging to established writers – meet the women behind our seventh issue’s voices and visions.

Table of Contents Button


        One Gd At A Time
 by Stephanie Glazier

        Gotcha by Darla Mottram

        It's Ok To Be A Waterfall by Darla Mottram

        Lot's Wife by Cindy St. Onge

        Sailor by Sarah Bokich

        Six More Weeks by Sarah Borsten

        Here. Now. by Emily Ransdell

        My Water Children by Emily Ransdell

        Upon Finding the House Where Cousin Viola Lived During the Holocaust by Marilyn Johnston

        Pornography by Tammy Robacker

        Attention by Juleen Johnson

        Levine Under Erasure by Juleen Johnson

        Chief Joseph's Flute by Stella Jeng Guillory

        Communion by Livia Montana

        The Stars in Your Voice by Cindy Hines

        How I Wasted My Life by Nancy Flynn


        The Honor of Armadillos by B.E. Scully

        Basket of Shells by Joanna Rose

        How to Cure Cancer by Susan Fleming

        Nobody by Judith Pulman

        Concentric by Susan DeFreitas


        Exoskeleton by Rachel Mulder

        Give Up the Queen and Nobody Gets Hurt by Rachel Mulder

        Give Up the Queen and Nobody Gets Hurt (detail) by Rachel Mulder

        Put Me in Your Blue Skies by S. Tudyk

        Time Grows Over Memories by S. Tudyk

        Untitled Work in Paper by S. Tudyk

        Mamas Day by Diana Bustos

        Untitled by Diana Bustos

        Release by Diana Bustos


        Somewhere by Danrong Wang

        Runner by Sara Reed

        Charcoal by Meghana Mysore

        Infinite Ink by Meghana Mysore

        Home by Kate Pippenger