hope

Palimpsest

Palimpsest 750 983 Judith Kingston

In which joy and wonder are born out of darkness The bruises are gone but the ridges of your fingerprints can never be rubbed off by other, more gentle hands,…

Better Days are Coming

Better Days are Coming 1920 1339 Adele Winston

Mamma says when tears salt my face and every slap of ocean rises up to close my eyes. She squeezes me tight. So tight I taste the sweat of breast…

I Imagine Cancer Feels Cold

I Imagine Cancer Feels Cold 1440 1920 Rachel Haywood

Mom had cancer when I was in preschool. Breast cancer. Four-year-olds shouldn’t have to think about much beyond counting by ones and coloring inside the lines. But cancer doesn’t care…

A Girl Buys Lilies for Herself

A Girl Buys Lilies for Herself 2500 1406 Priyanka Sacheti

She knows that there is something wrong with her when there have been no flowers in her house for weeks. The air smells of uninhabited hearts and crushed moths and…

at the edge of a cliff

at the edge of a cliff 2500 1875 Adedayo Agarau

i. a boy stands at the edge opens his hands, to bless his body, i find myself crumbling inside his prayer —i, a petal dying in a festival of stampede…

Threatening Rain

Threatening Rain 3264 2448 Anita Goveas

The people at the bus-stop have wrapped themselves up against the weather. It’s not raining now, but they all know it might at any time. Wool caps, shiny macs, welly…

Heat

Heat 5312 2988 Marisa Silva-Dunbar

At thirty-three I transformed into the sorceress of eternal summer. It’s cliché to say a man broke the spell—that I couldn’t find the way out of winter myself, but he…

The Small River in the Gutter

The Small River in the Gutter 4025 2293 Alexandre Ferrere

There is this small river shaped like a gutter near my childhood home. It runs along a centenarian railroad, made of dry wood (with funny knots in it). Walking the…

Alms

Alms 3437 2063 Mary Harwell Sayler

Impoverished peoples give generously of their patience, graciously accepting assorted hand-me-downs: the sequined vest, silk tie, high-priced pair of heels. Soon this stiletto heel will bore holes into the earth…