Writer David Moloney speaks to managing editor Emily Everett about his story “Counsel,” which appears in Issue 19 of The Common. “Counsel” is an excerpt from Moloney’s novel-in-stories, Barker House, set in a correctional facility in New Hampshire. The book follows nine correctional officers over the course of one year on the job. Moloney discusses his own experiences as a correctional officer in a New Hampshire facility, and the work of turning those complex experiences into stories for the novel. Barker House was published by Bloomsbury in April 2020, so this conversation also includes discussion of what it’s like to publish during a pandemic.
they say that the most impressive of all crossings is not thirst or the fear afterwards. The humiliation no longer wounds what does not exist they say bodies in a boat of bodies veins eyes skin penis nails vagina
As part of this fall’s Lusosphere portfolio, we’re publishing accompanying work online. This translation feature highlights the work of two Brazilian poets, Eliane Marques and Leonardo Tonus. Work appears in both the original Portuguese and in English.
Say Chicken Little was right, that the sky is falling. What I want to know is, will the moon fall too? Will it bounce softly like swiss cheese, or will it crumble like a stale cookie? Do skies bruise? Do they ache? And is the sky a metaphor for all the ills and evils of the world? A testament to how the earth can only hold so much pain and grief? But why would God send a chicken? Would you listen to a chicken? Is the chicken a metaphor for Jesus? Did the Bible mention this and somehow I missed it? Is this because in 6th grade my teacher made me promise Jesus my virginity in a gift basket? Actually, if the sky falls,
Backlit by the glow from a small passageway, he kneels into the fog of yellow light, head kissing the carpet. I step around him, respecting his privacy, when the mat becomes not prayer rug but builder’s tool, a black piece of tarmac, laid down before the bank so he could peer close, fix the dead motion sensor so that people with money could be seen, all doors opening for them.