On Creating Chhotu: an Interview with Varud Gupta and Ayushi Rastogi

Colin Stragar-Rice

Chhotu: A Tale of Love and Partition, released by Penguin publishing in December 2019, is a graphic novel that, ‘simply put,’ is a coming of age story. However, the context, references, writing, illustrations, and narrative form all make it difficult to ‘simply’ describe the book. Blending personal family histories with the historical memory of the partition of India, the authors entangle personal journeys of growth with the larger political and economic circumstances in which we live. In doing so, the authors interrogate individual struggles and the search for effective means of […]

On Creating Chhotu: an Interview with Varud Gupta and Ayushi Rastogi2021-01-07T22:29:35+00:00

Death Pass Hope Pass

Death Pass Hope Pass

by Bruno Manfredi

Di fronte a me, a ovest, la luce, la libertà.
Dietro di me, a est, il buio, la schiavitù .
Giù, a sud, la frontiera normale, gratuita, con migliaia di lavoratori, turisti, auto, treni.
Su, a nord, il Passo della Morte.
Io sono in mezzo, nella terra di nessuno.

Il contrabbandiere mi ha salutato.
L’ho pagato come ogni giorno.
Aspetto il buio.
Amo il pericolo.

A qualche chilometro da qui, un villaggio mi accoglie.
Il […]

Death Pass Hope Pass2021-01-07T22:29:15+00:00

The War With the Joneses

Scott Bradfield

It began as a minor border dispute and quickly escalated to a state of total war.

“I don’t like the way he looks at me or my hedgerow,” Bob Phillips told his wife on the day the Joneses moved in next door. “That type of disdainful expression from somebody who doesn’t even belong in our neighborhood is way out of line. I planted that hedgerow (or at least hired the guys who planted it) and made my home in this town long before he even […]

The War With the Joneses2021-01-07T22:29:00+00:00

Sauna Head

Solbi Choi

Note: Due to its unusual formatting, this piece is best read on a computer screen, and not suited for reading via phone. 

“What do you think?” Will asked her one morning, when she’d slept over.

“I think the oatmeal is burning,” she replied, getting to her feet.

They were a mid-twenties couple. They had been dating —long enough. She was bad with dates. Her head fit snugly under his chin. It was love, like she hadn’t known was quite possible. He loved her and she loved him, which felt big enough to be a fact. […]

Sauna Head2021-01-07T22:28:54+00:00

What Was

Eli Coyle

I tip a beer back in East Harlem
blurring into winter windows.

Outside these panes of glass
there are souls leaving. 

There are souls down the street.
Souls in the alleyway
and around the corner 

looking for their brother,
father, sister, friend.

I take a mouthful of beer
a gunshot in the distance.

Another sip
a siren down the street.

I skull the pint
and there’s a funeral in black.  

Today it is not […]

What Was2021-01-07T22:28:45+00:00

Two Women

Dennis Etzel Jr.

you might sit     in judgment     in fear

of two women     together     next door

as they smile     while they hang out     laundry

work on a deck     complete another     household

chore before inviting you     over     for tea

why walk through     a chasm     when they built

a bridge here     you want them     in easy chairs

but they offer     love seats     my mothers

made my home     built a room for me     as I prepared

for my own     wedding     when no one

wanted my poems     two women     called me

poet     that no one could take my lines     away

two women     can save the country   President

Vice-President     someday     I […]

Two Women2021-01-07T22:28:39+00:00


Sarah Jane Justice

They’re digging up the train tracks by my house.

Living crushed under a constant level of noise that never lifts, I had long since stopped measuring where the months lurched into years. I had spent too long growing accustomed to the weighty drone of metal wheels that rattled my windows deep into the early hours. I never thought to fear the quiet that could take its place. The horn blaring of artificial dinosaurs kept me up at night, leaving me squirming and red-eyed as I counted the few […]

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