So to Speak Spring 2018 Issue

art + writing by: Alison Frank, Emily Ottinger, Rebecca Woolston, Janice Tuck Lively + Mary Barbara Walsh, Sarah Cook, Rea Lynn de Guzman, Dayna Patterson, Kate Polak,
Melissa Atkinson Mercer, Robin Silbergleid, Eve F.W. Linn, Jessica (Tyner) Mehta, Ambalila Hemsell

Letter from the Editor

Art

Retaso (Fabric Remnants) Series

Retaso (Fabric Remnants) Series

Rea Lynn de Guzman

Artist Statement

My work explores psychological and socio-political themes surrounding liminal identity, cultural assimilation, and the Filipino/a diaspora, tempered by my experience as a Filipina immigrant living in the United States. In my current work, I navigate through the colonial history of the pineapple in the Philippines, the native’s appropriation of piña fiber, and its relationship with the idea of “Maria Clara” (a mestiza character from …

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Fiction

How We Were Born

Rebecca Woolston

There’s a myth in my family about the woman who was so fed up with her pregnancy, she forced her body into labor. She was eight and a half months along, and woke up in the middle of the night to vomit again. She was miserable; with each pregnancy the sickness lasted longer. She knew what was coming. She had to get that thing inside …

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Nonfiction

Janice Tuck Lively & Mary Barbara Walsh

Mothering in Black and White

Janice Tuck Lively & Mary Barbara Walsh

 

I have always been my mother’s child, but not always her daughter. It was my choice. She was not there for several years during my childhood. I lived with my grandparents from the time I was three until I was eight. My mother left my little sister and me and traveled North in search of a job. Once she was settled, she would send for …

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Poetry

Two Poems

Melissa Atkinson Mercer

 girl with diagnosis or gun #10

this is where I always think it is | no | this is where it actually is

I don’t know if I’ve tied my dress with bluebirds or with hunger
if I’m hungry for a thing I can have

if when we wed | our sea-filled tongues | we see men walking towards us with the
heads of wolves
or wolves with the heads of …

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blog

Speaking with Poetry Judge Eileen Myles

Speaking with Poetry Judge Eileen Myles

E. Rhodes

As our submission period wrap up & we review submissions for our contest period, our genre editors 
Below, Poetry Editor E. Rhōdes speaks with our judge.

ER: How do you incorporate your conception of feminism into your work?

Eileen Myles: Luckily it’s not very conceptual. I was born female and noticed almost immediately that females didn’t get a very good deal. My feminism has been evolving all my life. I definitely wanted …

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Carolina VonKampen

I Do Not Have to Tell You This

I Do Not Have to Tell You This

Carolina VonKampen

I do not think I belong with #MeToo.

I do not have stories as deep and dark as these.

I sheltered myself. I heard stories. I heard how my family talked about my cousin, pregnant in high school: “So embarrassing.” I didn’t like people anyway; I liked books; I stayed in my room and read. I did not go to parties. I did not have friends. I …

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Athena Melliar

Poetry by Athena Melliar

Poetry by Athena Melliar

Athena Melliar

“Pallid Mirrors”

Pale yellow star-shaped flowers were scenting
the air, the lime fragrance of zest combined
with thyme balm; Zephyr, just orienting
a swarm of bees towards the east, confined
them in its breeze. The tree’s loose canopy
left a dappled shade on the ground below;
the trunk hedged itself with a panoply
of branches growing out of it. The slow,
doddering beams of sunlight were dotting
her legs, wide open, stained with blood spotting.

The …

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Sarah Batcheller

A Letter from the Blog Editor

A Letter from the Blog Editor

Sarah Batcheller

To our readers,

Recent months have seen an onslaught of discussion about sexual assault and harassment in the media. As survivors come forward and powerful people admit, apologize, step down, deny, and/or lash out, many of us witnessing it all from our devices are reminded of our own experiences and encounters, or those of someone we care about.

Tarana Burke began the “Me Too” campaign years ago, …

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news