Issue #41

Dirty Light

Ginger Hintz

Remember when we took turns burning wishes

into the folds of our stomachs? It was the safest place we could think of— no one dared touch us there.

My body craves stillness. I press the coffee before anything begins.

Later, I heard you took my name

and sewed it into your eyelids.

Threaded light shining in the distant

flat darkness, exquisite as a waltz.

Originally from South Dakota, Ginger K. Hintz eventually found her way to Oakland, CA. She is a self-taught poet and independent scholar. Her aesthetic genealogy is borrowed from a working poetics, a magpie practice of creative slanted interruptions. She has an MA in American Cultural Studies.

She was the first person to actively engage with the Audre Lorde Archive (Berlin) materials by transcribing parts of Lorde's poetry courses to learn more about Lorde's poetic vision of racial justice. Her analysis of William Stafford's non-competitive politic as an affect of attention was published in the Friends of William Stafford Journal. Processions, was selected as a finalist for the 2021 Stephen A. DiBiase Poetry Prize. Ginger looks for courage in complexity as well as cats on her morning walks. You can find more of her evolving work here.

You're Not a Girl in a Fairytale

After Hala Alyan

Kali Norris

None of the lights in the wood lead home,

and there’s no earthly reward for honor.

I, too, thought of moving to California,

saw sunsets beautiful enough to break the world.

Then, I spoke Mandarin, and I never cried.

I still could have become anyone, soft as clay.

You want to know about rock bottom?

There were no curses. No toads fell from my lips as I swore.

The suicide hotline rang and rang,

and I laughed harder than I had in months.

Kali is a writer and poet from New York. Previous credits include Construction and JMWW. Find more about Kali on Instagram and Twitter.