All posts tagged: January

Steven Tagle on “Notes on Looking Back”

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Transcript: Steven Tagle Podcast.

Steven Tagle speaks to managing editor Emily Everett about his essay “Notes on Looking Back,” which appears in The Common’s fall issue. Steven talks about writing this essay, originally in Greek, as a way to explore his love of the language and the experience of learning, speaking, and writing in it. Steven first came to Greece several years ago as a Fulbright Fellow. He discusses his current writing project about borders and migration, and the time he spent visiting and getting to know a family in a refugee camp in Greece. Steven also talks about life in Greece—how friendly and welcoming Greek people can be to outsiders, and how the country weathered the pandemic. When he interned at The Common, Steven spearheaded the magazine’s first podcast series.

Also discussed in this podcast:

Image of Steven Tagle's headshot and the Issue 22 cover (pink-peach seashell on light blue background).

Steven Tagle on “Notes on Looking Back”
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Podcast: Noor Naga on “Who Writes the Arabian Gulf?”

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Transcript: Noor Naga Podcast.

Noor Naga speaks to managing editor Emily Everett about co-editing The Common’s first-of-its-kind portfolio of writing from the Arabian Gulf, which appeared in Issue 22. Noor penned an introduction to the portfolio, titled “Who Writes the Arabian Gulf?”, which explores her experience growing up in the Gulf with no real contemporary literature written for, by, or about that diverse population. Noor discusses her idea to create the portfolio, what she enjoyed about assembling it from submissions, and what themes unite the pieces that became part of it. She also talks about her forthcoming novel from Graywolf Press, and why an earlier novel didn’t find a home in publishing.

Image of Noor Naga's headshot and the Issue 22 cover (pink-peach seashell on light blue background).

Podcast: Noor Naga on “Who Writes the Arabian Gulf?”
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Taking the Waters

By MARTHA COOLEY

Sulfur: odor of rotten eggs, matchhead, volcanoes, gunpowder, and Lucifer down there in Hell’s fire and brimstone.

Also the smell that pervades thermal spas. Along with minerals such as sodium chloride, iodine, and calcium, sulfur is a key component of many therapeutic waters. Linked as it is with fire and corrosion, sulfur also has a storied association with the healing of numerous ailments, particularly respiratory and skin-related ones.

Taking the Waters
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Roya Zarrin: Three Persian Poems in Translation

Poetry by ROYA ZARRIN

Translated from the Persian by KAVEH BASSIRI

Poems appear in both Persian and English.

 

Translator’s Note:

My interest in translating Persian poems began more than a decade ago, while spending six months in Tehran researching contemporary Iranian poetry. I met many poets and returned with hundreds of poetry books. The range of voices was amazing—their work ran the gamut from postmodern experimentations to traditional ghazals—yet very few of these poets were available or properly translated in English.

Roya Zarrin: Three Persian Poems in Translation
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A Geology of Memory: Whiteside Mountain, North Carolina

By GREGORY ARIAIL

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Romanes, Whiteside Mountain from Road to Grimshawes


Whiteside Mountain, North Carolina

Some call it the world’s oldest mountain. Once, millions of years ago, it was Mount Everest.

Quartz and feldspar stripe the cliffs of this vast pluton, which looks burnt, as if it had survived some great conflagration or were, in fact, a meteorite scarred by its descent through the atmosphere.

A Geology of Memory: Whiteside Mountain, North Carolina
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Little Women: A Review

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Movie directed by GRETA GERWIG

Review by HANNAH GERSEN

I have friends who cried their way through Greta Gerwig’s Little Women, and I expected that I would, too, but I spent much of my first viewing in a state of mild agitation. I had re-read the novel a few days before seeing the film, and was distracted as I tried to figure out the mechanics of Gerwig’s complex temporal structure. Little Women was originally published as two books: Little Women and Good Wives, and Gerwig braids together these two volumes, going back and forth between past and present. As with Gerwig’s debut feature Lady Bird, the pace is galloping. Not only are there two separate timelines, Gerwig cuts rapidly between characters and locations within each timeline.

Little Women: A Review
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A Delta Hereafter


By ASHLEY STIMPSON 

Image of a wall with writing

Brinkley, Arkansas

The catfish arrives curled and snarling with grease, alongside fat disks of white onion, green tomato relish and wrinkled packets of tartar sauce. I proceed through it clumsily, betraying my Northern-ness, but I guess that much was plain when I opened my mouth.

As if she’s read the questions in my notebook, the waitress wipes tables and worries aloud to her only other customer.

A Delta Hereafter

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