My Exploded Ovary, Myself: Why I Wouldn’t Get a Hysterectomy at 20

by D.L. Podlesni

I choose to live in pain. Let me tell you why.

Flannery O’Connor once said sickness was a place, as real and enlightening as a long trip to Europe. If sickness is a country, I am a wellness ex-pat. Sickness has rules, codes, mores. I know most of them. For instance, I know to really ham it up in the recovery room after surgery, …

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Link Roundup: Five Pieces Resisting a Transgender Military Ban

Sarah Batcheller

A note from the StS Blog team:

Last week, Donald Trump tweeted that he intended to ban transgender persons from serving in the U.S. military. While a tweet certainly isn’t law, his rhetoric and the rhetoric from many of his supporters that followed is violent and oppressive. So to Speak strives to combat such rhetoric, which is why we asked our brilliant readers, friends, …

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Artwork by Helen Hofling

Helen Hofling

This piece is extracted from a collection of collage-poems called TENDER THE NIGHT. The collection takes its title from a famous novel, with a notable redaction. When “is” is cut out, “tender” is transformed from adjective—meaning caring, gentle, sweet—to verb: to tender is to offer, proffer, present. Night becomes currency. The collage-poems that TENDER assembles depend on just this style of phase change: excision reaping lateral transformation. …

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Milk Teeth

Molly Beale

We were as tall as the Hollyhocks were the year you had to leave me. When fairies could still be seen sleeping in the perfume of lilacs, and bumble bees loved the sweet flesh of snap dragons. We were frail like flowers too, giggling the seeds of our laughter up and away in the kite-flying wind. The whole world was spectacular and small.

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