Photo by Flickr Creative Commons user Gennady Kim
December 3rd, 2014 | 9:03am

Photo by Flickr Creative Commons user Gennady Kim

In the Paris Métro last summer, heading to the Chatelet station on my way home after a wayward day, I caught the sound of a saxophone and that familiar melody from decades past, Sidney Bechet’s Petite Fleur. I could tell the music was coming from a source close by, perhaps only a few rows behind me. I froze, not knowing what to do as though I were in the grip of something large and timeless.

reviewed by Chantal Corcoran
December 2nd, 2014 | 6:00am

“For a town, it wasn’t such a bad place,” observes Lila, a transient passing through Gilead, who ends up staying to marry an old widowed minister; she’s also the character for whom Marilynne Robinson has titled her most recent novel. Lila is Robinson’s third book to examine the lives and devotions of a small group of characters in this secluded Christian prairie town in Southwest Iowa. While each book is an independent work, shining on its own—Gilead won the Pulitzer Prize in 2005, and Home won the 2009 Orange Prize for Fiction and was a National Book Award finalist—the overlapping narratives weave a complex tapestry of the human experience as it relates to personal faith.

Photo by Flickr Creative Commons user Luke Gattuso
November 28th, 2014 | 6:00am

Photo by Flickr Creative Commons user Luke Gattuso

This month, we’re pleased to offer seven new poems by several returning and new contributors.


Margot Douaihy

--New York

--The Lost Art of Getting Lost

Photo by Flickr Creative Commons user Joe Shlabotnik
November 26th, 2014 | 6:00am

Photo by Flickr Creative Commons user Joe Shlabotnik

Portland was vibrant, despite its mistiness; always threatening to rain, but never truly downpouring. G. and I walked up and down Fore Street, looking for the restaurant by the same name, trying not to look too much like lost tourists. We had escaped to Portland in search of good food, which was always a comfort to us and which we needed now more than ever. Finishing our undergraduate degrees a few weeks earlier had left us feeling more somber and empty than excited. After days of enduring many heartfelt goodbyes from friends we knew we’d never see again and lengthy advice from proud, overbearing relatives, we were aching to get away from it all; to distract ourselves from the constant reminders that a chapter in our lives was closing forever.

Photo by author
November 24th, 2014 | 6:00am

 

Photo by author

To exist humanly, is to name the world, to change it. ~Paulo Freire

When I was 19 my full-time job was bartending a pub called Filthy McNasty’s. McNasty’s sat on Rose Street in Edinburgh, Scotland, one of the roughest streets in the city center at the time. Fights punctuated each hour of the night and later, after I’d moved on up from McNasty’s, a friend was stabbed near there in a skinhead-like attack. Indoors, customers called me 
Garth” because of my wild, unkempt hair, like Garth in Wayne’s World. I didn’t wear makeup and favored baggy jeans and t-shirts; I guess this made me infuriatingly gender ambiguous.