All posts tagged: Adrienne Su

Friday Reads: November 2020


In the November installment of Friday Reads, our Issue 20 contributors reflect on the pedagogies of teaching over Zoom, the engines of colonialism, and the process of breaking down cultural divides. As the weather gets colder, curl up with one of these recommendations, and make sure to pick up your copy of Issue 20 today.


Recommendations: Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys; Poems in the Manner Of… by David Lehman; The Cartographer Tries to Map a Way to Zion by Kei Miller; Reimagining Liberation: How Black Women Transformed Citizenship in the French Empire by Annette K. Joseph-Gabriel


Friday Reads: November 2020

The Jews of Kaifeng



When the exhibit went up at Peachtree Center,
the Chinese of Atlanta flocked downtown.
Jews had been in Henan so close to forever,
they weren’t seen as foreign. And we had found
an exhibit on China that wasn’t old vases.
Jews were Chinese in more ways than food.
Migration was not always out of the places
our families had fled; it had once been to.
Our pantries were “ethnic” not just for the shrimp chips
and wood ears, but as well for the matzah.
Maybe, when asked, Do you celebrate Christmas?,
we were not being checked for Zen or the Buddha.
We didn’t say it in so many words.
The line between Asia and Europe had blurred.

The Jews of Kaifeng

September 2020 Poetry Feature


New poems by our contributors:

Bruce Bond  |  Calvary

Adrienne Su  |  Buford Highway

Rachel Mannheimer  |  The New Me

Alana Folsom  |  Precoitus Floss

Richard Hoffman  |  A Prayer for the Souls in Purgatory


Bruce Bond

What you have heard is half true, half forgotten.
It’s what we have, a rubric written in old
blood whose spirit of inclusion admits
the occasional invention, the apocryphal
goat at midnight, for one, who has broken
down the gate again, and wandered through
the refuse of our neighbors.  Forgive him. 
Him and the others of a now more distant
Jerusalem whose pattern of lesser hardships
and small routines goes largely unreported.
No less imagined than the clouds of certain
portraits of the killing, the same weather
that hung above the clueless who pulled in
their laundry, looking up to see future there.
What they do not know cannot save them.
Or bring them comfort.  Or the vague weight
of clouds when they make a night of day. 
Imagine then, once the body is deposed,
the men who take the burden on their shoulders
go nameless through the margins to the grave.
Forgive them.  They know not what they do.
Take this young man, a soldier of low rank,
his wave of nausea slow to gather and withdraw
into the obscurities holy books are made of.
He is sitting beneath an olive tree, counting
coins, fouled with blood, less a true believer
in the entitlements of kings than an otherwise
impoverished soul with a wife, an oath, a child.
A drudge of circumstance.  That is the story
he tells himself, and the need for the ever
better listener feels fundamental, as work is,
and wine at dusk, and whatever cut of meat
and means the heirs of grief and privilege refuse. 

September 2020 Poetry Feature