Marian Brunn Smith

EDITORIAL REMARKS by M.R. Branwen

 

TRUE STORY: BILLY COLLINS contributed a poem to this issue in exchange for information about my tattoos.

In case you don’t know, Billy Collins is a two-time Poet Laureate who is thinking of having a tattoo done himself. I sent him to Chris Barnett at Good Faith Tattooing in Allston, and he sent me “Serves Me Right.” An exchange that puts me much further in Mr. Collins’ debt than he in mine, but by which I am nonetheless thrilled.

Joining Billy Collins in the Poetry section this month are some lesser known poets who bring some truly breathtaking work, my favorite of which is Kythe Heller’s “Hilary White.” (Am I allowed to say that?)

We also have some lovely new art up by Marian Brunn Smith, including “The Washing Away of Dead Hair and Bruises” above. Look closely at these paintings, folks, and be sure to read all the captions — there’s a lot going on in them, including some dark, amusing, and very accurate (in my opinion) use of metaphor... (read more)

AUSTRALIA by Rick Rofihe

NINALEE AND HER HUSBAND JOSEPH are arguing again. Joseph’s sister came to town. Ninalee took her out shopping and bought her a fake designer handbag on a SoHo street corner. But the one the guy let her walk away with for only twenty dollars wasn’t quite right—the tiny sewn-on label read Kate Spad... (read more)

Marian Brunn Smith

FLYING FOXES by Casey Lefante

WHEN I WAS TEN, I had an imaginary sister named Lulu who only appeared when I was sitting in the back seat of my parents’ Toyota. I’d peer out the window and watch as she ran alongside the car. She always wore the same thing: a torn white pirate shirt, dirty cropped cargo pants, and no shoes. Her hair flew behind her, sometimes red, sometimes blonde... (read more)

GREEN LAKE by Roland Goity

THE BUZZ AROUND TOWN'S LIVELY. A hornets’ nest of activity that’s anything but stingy. Folks here love it. We’ve never had this kind of attention before, not even close. Rumor has it a crew from MTV will visit soon. They want to see what makes our town tick.  Here in the foothills we freeze our asses each winter. (read more)

TOMB OF THE UNKNOWN ARTIST by Ben Miller

THE BODY OF THE SCULPTOR was relayed via pony cart to the Pauper’s Morgue, under the Dronx River Parkway, where it was registered and filed in a drawer by a man whose macabre enthusiasm for the job had earned him the name Smiley Bones. Two months later the phone rang. He answered the usual way... (read more)


Marian Brunn Smith

SERVES ME RIGHT by Billy Collins

I THOUGHT I WAS DANCING in the kitchen
but I was just hopping in my sleep
a nervous bug in a dream about a swatter.

I thought I was singing as I drove
but I was just talking on the phone
or listening to the silence of the little holes... (read more)

ERUDITION by Cynthia Chin

YOU ARE A VOLUME
of earth and heat, 

pages new and tightly
corded. I want to arrange 

fresh creases
along the gilded lines 

of your back, treasure
the endstops... (read more)

ONE NIGHT A GIRL IN THE SUBURBS by Peter Conners

THERE IS A DOOR BEHIND the door that conceals everything she does not want to learn.  Father delivers the woman’s enemy to her doorstep while Mother makes a list of betrayals while Sister’s mind is populated by the ghosts of wallflowers: fall leaves swirl around the noose the girl has tied to the tree shadowing the grave of the family dog... (read more)

Marian Brunn Smith

IF, SHE by Mary Fuchs   

SHE, SO FRAIL,
wanted to grow wings
from her white dress
on her son’s wedding day
but her sleeves
were more clipped fans

than full-length feathers
her husband... (read more)

HILARY WHITE by Kythe Heller

WHEN I LIT THE SCHOOL ON FIRE, it was good, 

and then I stood there for a while watching it,—
but it was funny,—afterwards
it was as if somebody else did it… 

Everything flat, in a vacuum, like how shadows of things look
seen on a wall… (read more)

Marian Brunn Smith

FOUR POEMS by Emily Vogel

IF I TOOK THIS TREMBLING PARADISE

and held it like a swallow’s anxious
wing
to its torso 

or threw it into the air

like fortunes written... (read more)

FEATURED ARTIST Marian Brunn Smith

"I MAKE IMAGES THAT are dedications to strangers, thank you notes to close friends, epitaphs for the living, apologies to the dead, and dirges for discarded lovers. My work consists of transient, ephemeral moments that are simultaneously grievous and beautiful, haunting and mischievous, seductive and strange."