Andrenae Jones

Podcast: Mark Kyungsoo Bias on “Adoption Day”

Apple Podcasts logo

Listen on Apple Podcasts.

Listen on Google Podcasts.Google Podcast logo

Spotify Logo Green

Listen on Spotify.

If you require a transcript or other accessible format, please contact us at [email protected].

Mark Kyungsoo Bias speaks to managing editor Emily Everett about his poem “Adoption Day,” which appears in The Common’s new spring issue. Mark talks about the inspiration and process behind the poem, which looks at issues like memory, immigration, and racism in post-9/11 America, all through the lens of a family experience. Mark also discusses his approach to language, sound, line breaks, and more, and the methods and techniques he’s found helpful in revising poetry. He reads two additional poems published in The Common: “Meeting My Mother” and “Visitor.”

issue 23 against mark kyungsoo bias

Podcast: Mark Kyungsoo Bias on “Adoption Day”
Read more...

Words We Use to Talk About Home: An Interview with Abeer Khshiboon, author of “The Stranger”

ABEER KHSHIBOON interviewed by NASHWA GOWANLOCK

 

headshot of Abeer Kshiboon

Abeer Khshiboon’s short story, “The Stranger” is featured in Issue 23’s portfolio of stories from Palestine. Here, Abeer and translator Nashwa Gowanlock discuss the story’s inspiration and the context in which its events unfold.

Words We Use to Talk About Home: An Interview with Abeer Khshiboon, author of “The Stranger”
Read more...

A Road, the Sun

By CAROLYN KUEBLER

 

white mailbox on the side of a road

 

Ashfield, Massachusetts

 

She remembers a road that she walked along. Something about joy, maybe, something about light. It was her own lightness, or maybe it was the road’s. She walked it more than once, that week in September, a year past. There were rock walls fringed with pale asters. Tiny white butterflies hovered in sunlight, and the hills were green. That’s all that remained. A year ago, and it has faded.

A Road, the Sun
Read more...

The Woman in the Well

By ANU KUMAR

 

For nearly two years of my life, I lived with a ghost. It was when my father, a civil servant, was posted in Sambalpur, a now forgotten town in northern Odisha, a state in India’s east. Newspapers then, and even now, always added the descriptor “India’s poorest state” whenever Odisha made the headlines. This happened in the late 1980s, when several hunger-related deaths were reported in a tribal-dominated district in the state’s west, and a decade later, after an Australian missionary was burnt to death, along with his two sons, by a group led by a Hindu fanatic.

The Woman in the Well
Read more...

Mosaic School

By JOHN POCH

 

The youngest deconstructionists among us
are proud at first to spend their days breaking up
great slabs of fired tile every shade of wine
while the masters climb the scaffolds
with their gold pride, their gilt, reaching for
a sandal buckle or the heights of a halo.

Mosaic School
Read more...

Three Omens of Federico da Montefeltro

By BEN STROUD

 

Urbino, 1472

Ottaviano held the staff high and steady as Scipio tugged at the bunches of leaves fixed to its top.

“He remains content?” Ottaviano asked the giraffe’s keeper.

“He does,” the keeper said. “Twice since sunrise he’s moved his bowels.”

Ottaviano watched Scipio chew. With his knobbly horns, his puzzled hide, and his great neck, he had clearly been made for a far different existence in his home beyond the Nile, a home for which even the library’s grandest atlas possessed only the most rudimentary of maps. And yet, snatched from that home, confined to his pen, the animal betrayed neither alarm nor sorrow.

Three Omens of Federico da Montefeltro
Read more...

Who Drew the Curtains?

By SHEIKHA HUSSEIN HELAWY

Translated by NARIMAN YOUSSEF

 

The pores of life are clogged in this room. Making it difficult to breathe. There’s a hanging smell of death that’s impossible to miss. Visitors are unnerved by it. Except those visitors whose nerves have been hardened by the tedium of their dutiful weekly visits to the woman at the far end of the room: boredom and emptiness compressed into no more than half an hour.

Who Drew the Curtains?
Read more...