TABLE OF CONTENTS
“Detours” by Kate Dusto
The road trip, that great American pastime, ought to be accompanied by anthems of open roads and freedom. Instead of Springsteen, they have been listening to Sadie’s tireless rendition of ‘The Wheels on the Bus.’ The only thing Nadia wants freedom from right now is the inside of this blue Ford Focus.
“What Have We Here” by Amy Silverberg
Best American Short Stories contributor
I did feel drunk, come to think of it. I guess I’d lied before though I hadn’t meant to. At that point, I remember looking up at the ceiling and watching the patterns of stucco whirl. Parts of the story shift as I retell it, slide in and out of focus. Memory is tricky.
“Joy” by Erin McGraw
Pushcart Prize winner
Now, I thought, Now, the word’s meaning teasingly out of reach.
“Tents” by M.C.K. Carter
It is a more conscious and mindful parent driving this year. Correction: a woman trying to be a more mindful parent.
“Unwritten” by Emily Sinclair
For me, it’s a time during which I intend to come into the person I want to be: a hard-bitten reporter, albeit one with hot-rollered hair, because I’m a Texas gal.
“Unearthing the Frail Children” by Kathryn Winograd
Mother says: “Absolutely nothing here.”
Two Poems by Xiao Yue Shan
“If Beauty Is Nothing But the Beginning of Terror”
“Search by No Light”
I was a blue summer evening too. my body an honor of moonlight
pressing her open mouth to your window.
“Groove” by Troy Jollimore
National Book Critics Circle Award winner
don’t complain about my incoherence,
my lack of planning and organization.
“Tale of the Tortoise” by Bruce Weigl
Pulitzer Prize finalist
I found her near a nest of her eggs where the garden had already begun to turn to autumn.
“Ars Poetica” by Kristina Bicher
Because when she rolled away the stone, nothing.
“Adjacency” by Chera Hammons
PEN Award winner
Someone is building a house
on the land behind ours.
“Suit of Swords” by Karen Holman
as far as the dead hummingbird
… I could take it or leave it
“Stages” by Susan Eyre Coppock
I know the practice
“Patient” by Betsy Johnson-Miller
your hair will grow back in wispy gray
Two Poems by Brian Michael Murphy
“Dead, for the Second Time”
The afterlife is not paradise,
nor hellfire, not oblivion,
but eternal downtime
Two Poems by D.R. Shipp
“Alzheimer’s As Though We’ve Never”
“Alzheimer’s As Ancestry.com Says I Have the Markers”
Rot slips under the door, silent
as a postcard.
“To the Man Who Tried to Grab My Face Through the Car’s Open Window” by Carolyn Oliver
Uninvited rabbit clips clover in quick bites
skitters over the rhododendron
“Tomato, Tomato” by Doug Ramspeck
My wife and I are arguing about the pregnancy
of pauses. How knocked up that space is.
“A Light” by Jennifer Whalen
the grasses’ stretch doesn’t reach anywhere,
just winds back in & touches itself.
“Confessions” by Leah Nieboer
I never got up expressly to see the sun rise
what sort of person is that—
“The Sea” by Garret Keizer
from “Three Days in Savannah”
Best American Essays and Best American Poetry contributor
Our friend bags seashells
____ like coins, but hold out your hand:
________She is no miser.
Two Poems by Jennifer Atkinson
“Bells No Longer Ring the Hours”
“Ribbon Tied to a Hawthorn Branch”
Pushcart Prize winner
An aphasia this saying and saying
Tree spring hair-tie moss