• Fiction

    Learning From Injury

    by Kyle Mayer It is true that disaster awaited him. Almost to be expected, if you knew him. Which I did not. It is said that he was a well-liked kid and a good person with plenty of friends and seventy years of success waiting for him. He was regarded as intelligent by most and had already been accepted to a prestigious research program at a faraway university. I can’t claim to have known much more about him, but his past exploits are largely irrelevant, as his old life pales in comparison with the severity of his misfortune. Do not mistake me, however, for his life was not entirely without…

  • Nonfiction

    First Climb

    by Sean Johnson The true beginning of my outdoor rock climbing career began on December 12, 2014, a completely unassuming night. I was grabbing dinner at the campus dining hall, my actions thoughtless as I selected my eating utensils, my feet shuffling along until Dasan, my best friend, walked in and asked me what my plans for the night were. We conversed in hasty, hushed tones as if we were exchanging our deepest secrets. He invited me on an adventure and instructed me to go back to my room and gather my harness, mountaineering boots, helmet, headlamp, and gloves. At the command, a hunger awoke in me that could not…

  • Nonfiction

    Two Stages, Two Outcomes: Dealing With Who I Am in Two Opposite Situations

    by A. Montgomery I don’t pretend to know why I needed to come out last Christmas break. High school had been easy; I had waltzed my way to the top of my class, created a small, impenetrable world around myself, a false front that could fool anyone. The art of inauthenticity is easy. People who try to be “morally sound” say it’s hard to be fake, but for me, that’s not true. I was well-practiced in pretending When I was younger, my family successfully convinced whole communities that we were perfect, only to shatter the screen with a violent divorce. So I learned early on how to make outsiders see…

  • Poetry

    Feminine Attributes

    by Shelly Wozniak Flexing like a man, I attempt to remove a ring from a hand swollen with excess fluid, marking a cycle giving life, serving as a reminder that I am a woman. She wants me, but not my structure. Closing praying eyes she creates me from a rib – removing my breasts, the shape of my hips, giving me biceps I have no use for. We are daughters of Eve from different trees. Hers, tall and in the sun, mine, absent an Adam, flourishing in indirect light. We take in heat, and grow from water. Two similar compounds differing in an element, combustible, burning, attempting through reconstruction to…

  • Poetry

    An Artist and his Muses/A Picasso Exhibit/Vancouver 2016

    by Shelly Wozniak Piece by piece he took her apart, leaving only one letter of her name hidden above his signature. Nose of a pig, eyes that cannot possibly see, the convolution of her contour flattened by his hand to a pointless stroke. Her mangled chest and hips, reversed, reassembled to something easily understood. Resemblance more than real, he would say, compelled him to fracture the female. She has become a conversation piece, stripped down to the period. If her mouth were in the proper place I am sure she would scream.

  • Nonfiction

    Taking Flight

    by Carly Boyd My instructor told me everything would be fine. Just do what you’ve been doing; you can fly by yourself now. I thought about engine failure, about the possibility of collision, and, in case they were needed, I ran through all the emergency procedures we had practiced thoroughly. My heart sped up; I could feel the heat moving through my body as I started to sweat. Immediately, I became aware of how hot the day was. The sweat began fighting through my shirt and onto the warm corduroy cushion against my back. Soon, the dampness overtook my entire lower back. Surprisingly, the airport at Birchwood was peaceful, unlike…

  • Poetry

    Darkness of Soul

    by Patricia Pierce Graying clouds grow spindly wisps, highlighting the city’s twilight. Whispering wind, that only I can hear, severs memories of your voice. I pace, alone, where cobwebs dangle from unlit light poles. My spine shivers, cold. Summer heat rises from the pavement. My lungs pant for breath. The ever-present fear of sleep claws at my eyes, forbids me from glancing backward. Future forever the same: Days and nights without you. Darkness resides in my soul, promises of peace, no more.

  • Poetry


    by Patricia Pierce Today is one of those days I trek to your final spot, Near the bend in the highway, Where the curb and the light pole Bear chipped scars. I lay my head against your hand-hewn cross. Fingers dig into the moist soil, Unable to forget the night of your death, My sobs soak into nearby sprigs of green. I flip through Harley magazines That show black leather and tell stories, Watch the pictures and captions blue into you. Today is one of those days I feel the familiar flush of love and loss. Today is one of those days I miss you all over again.

  • Nonfiction

    An Essay Regarding Touch

    by Isabella Valdez Since meeting you, I’ve been considering what it would be like to skin myself. The idea of hooking a fingernail underneath some loose cuticle and just ripping mercilessly until my arms are no longer arms, rather a collection of twitching tendons and weathered veins, is an amorous one. Sometimes, I see myself as a whole person, sometimes as a body and the chance to tear it apart. But most of the time the only taste in my mouth is the sweet of something rotten. Other people, however, never lose their animation before my eyes, and it’s fascinating to me that the street corners do not whisper to…

  • Nonfiction

    Giggle Box

    by Chris Davis I am in the kitchen making my grandson, Jay, a turkey sandwich when I hear his crystal laughter twinkle from the living room. Setting the mayonnaise down, I peek around the corner to see if he is pestering the cat again. Jay is squatting in front of a cardboard box that Rachael, my wife, brought home. This box has been his favorite toy for the past week and its shape belies the attention Jay has given it: torn flaps, creases on its sides from where Jay has tried standing on it. It’s large enough for his three-year-old body to crawl into and he loves covering himself up…