The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Susan Lewis’ “How to Be Another”



I hear a voice, although it doesn’t hear me. It says little of interest.
Perhaps I should learn another language, or invent one. I’m trying
to understand the Song of the Invisible Bird. I also incline towards
Modern Paleontology. Once, someone gave me a sample of
Spirited Inquiry, but it didn’t take. Horses & dogs woo me. Even
the grass has something to sell. Gimme is the word I would most
like to quash, with or without a subpoena. Sure, birds do it, bees do it,
but I only have these ancient opposable thumbs. Soon, I’m hoping
to be less awed by the presence of greatness. Dusk & dawn might
be in for a surprise. Whole continents could be affected. You
might see a flowering of pan-atheistic revelry. Forbidden
indulgence will be legislatively annulled. Even the boldest blossoms
will count themselves out. Pay attention, or the clamor in your
head might very well prevail.

This selection comes from Susan Lewis’ book How to Be Another, available from Červená Barva Press. Purchase your copy here!

Susan Lewis lives in New York City and edits Posit ( Her most recent books are This Visit (forthcoming), How to Be Another, and State of the Union. Her work is forthcoming or has appeared recently in such places as The Awl, Boston Review, The Brooklyn Rail, Connotation Press, Dusie, EOAGH, Gargoyle, Otoliths, Ping Pong, Propeller, Raritan, Seneca Review, and Verse. More at

Marika von Zellen has a BA in English and Creative Writing from Cornell College (no, not the one in Ithaca). She’s had poetry and fiction published in Open Field, Temporary Infinity, The Grin City Monthly, and the anthology Rock & Roll Saved My Soul. As an Editorial Assistant for Sundress, she’s copy-edited the book Picture Dictionary (2014); as a freelance editor she copy-edited the photography book Face It (2013). In the summer of 2012, she attended the Grin City Collective Artist Residency in Iowa. Besides writing, she enjoys theoretical physics, playing piano, ghost-hunting, climbing trees, and drinking good Czech beer. She’s also a scholar of Lewis Carroll.

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