forgotten girls

i’m 55 years old, and a writer, and my teenage years have been over for a long time. it’s hard to remember. i sit in front of my computer and stare through my inadequate words, and watch Val sink into the mud of a shotgun wedding, and Brenda step into a locked stairwell in a … Read more

the narrator squawks

i dreamt i was narrator of a play. it was impromptu and you were allowed to bring your script on stage. the lights were low and i could barely see my pages. when the lights came up, i was stuck in a ditch beside the road. and the extras were streaming past like prisoners along a … Read more

betty

if you could read my mind, I’d tell you a thing or two about pink turtlenecks and regrets. listen up, you little shits wearing black-and-blue. life’s too short for a bruised beat. besides, that’s what you get from loving. listen up, will you? I’m so tired from writing it all down. listen up, don’t make … Read more

the trouble with writing

you never where to start. or end. the interruptions of daily life are difficult to manage, even when you need them. telling a story is one thing; finding the meaning in it is another. reading good books is extremely important because you need good sentences that linger inside your head. jealousy is problematic, both yours … Read more

weeping woman

  Weeping Woman (Dora Maar) by Grace Nichols   14. Picasso, I want my face back the unbroken photography of it   once, I lived to be stroked by the fingers of your brushes   Now I see I was more an accomplice to my own uprooting   Watching the pundits gaze open-mouthed at your … Read more

to baudelaire

by Jeet Thayil I am over you at last, in Mexico City, in a white space high above the street, my hands steady, the walls unmoving. It’s warm here, and safe, and even in winter the rain is benign. Some mornings I let the sounds of the plaza – a fruit seller, a boy acrobat, … Read more