Issue 16 Nonfiction
Attention Shameless Owners
by Alex V. Cook
there’s a sign somebody’s posted in front of a derelict corner grocery in my neighborhood:
OF THIS PROPERTY
Memoirs of a Psychonaut
by Corey Ginsberg
when i arrive at Andy’s house, I’m ready to go. I know from past experience my body often goes into shock from hallucinogens; even though its a muggy July night in Pittsburgh, I’m wearing a T-shirt, long-sleeved shirt, and a hooded jacket. I’m carrying a bag full of pot brownies, Kleenex for when my sinuses drain, two boxes of sparklers, a quarter ounce of dried mushrooms, gummi worms, glow sticks, and a notebook to record any drug epiphanies the night may afford. Once, while tripping, Andy wrote a note to the pockets on his cargo shorts, begging them to please never run away.
Where the Sexual Meets the Sacred
by Wendy Besel Hahn
i reclined on the obstetrician’s examination table and stared at my exposed stomach. My white skin was taut, but soft. Weeks earlier I had announced my pregnancy to my colleagues and my students, seventeen-year-olds in my junior-level English classes. Since that time my department chair had taken to cheerfully greeting me each morning, making eye contact, and quickly lowering her gaze to assess my “progress.” A male student in my eighth period class had blurted out, “Mrs. Hahn, you didn’t look pregnant before break—what happened?”
Mothers of Winter
by Hannah Heath Johnson
asali, the pregnant elephant, slowly sifts through a pile of straw with her trunk. I stare at her, looking for any evidence of her pregnancy, but I find none. She looks the same as she always has; I can tell her apart from the others because she is more slate gray, her folds taut rather than sagging. The elastic of my maternity sweat pants presses hard into my tight stomach, leaving a band of indentations. I pull the hood of my sweatshirt over my ears, trying to block out the February cold as I watch her. She is so close that I could touch her if I leaned over the fence.