This week I felt fortunate to celebrate holidays with my family and reflect on what chosen family and community meant to me in 2017, including how to keep the door open for these things to grow. Whether the new year is one you enter with intention & resolution or it’s just another day, here are some writings to real along the way.
As I Near Forty I Think of You Then by Allison Adair: “Years my father spent / quoting the Bible as you swept and stewed, saved, / let out hems. While we kicked and bickered / your thirties away.”
from The Colony is Collapsing by Anthony Frame: “When all we have left is skin and power. / Where there’s power, there’s money. / Where there’s faith, redemption?”
“Summoning her is summoning me” by Angel Nafis: “Here I am glad to be another loud mouth / through an open window exercising the right / to be beloved”
Stopping at a Gas Station on the Third Day of Driving Across the Country by Chloe Honum: “Pumping gas, feeling the handle pulse—who was he that even now / his silence gives the note I tune my voice to?”
During my top surgery consultation, my partner says to the doctor, tell me what you will do to their veins by Kayleb Rae Candrilli: “I am scared / of my partner // being face to face with my blood / because I love them.”
“There are worse things than a dead kid,” I think by Alexis Rhone Fancher: “when I hear the latest, secondhand, about my niece. My sister no longer mentions her when she calls, and I’m afraid to ask, afraid my sister will crumble. ”
Christmas and Resistance to Slavery in the Americas by Yesenia Barragan: “Across the Americas, stories nevertheless abound of enslaved peoples utilizing this small window of, in the words of Northup, “a little restricted liberty” afforded by the Christmas season to escape bondage. The famed fugitive enslaved couple and abolitionists Ellen and William Craft fled from Macon, Georgia to the north during the Christmas holiday in 1848.”
Mom– The Only Person I Knew Who Went to College by Vanessa Fonseca Chávez: “This semester, my son had a project assigned in his high school freshman English class in which he was asked to interview someone who achieved a post-secondary education. He mentioned this early in the year and asked if he could interview me. I wondered what he would ask me and how much I would tell him. In reality, I was only one of three people he could have approached for this interview.”
Stephanie Kaylor in based in upstate New York and is currently a MA student in Philosophy, Art, and Critical Thought at European Graduate School. She holds a MA in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies from the University at Albany and is Managing Editor for Five:2:One Magazine and Reviews Editor for Glass: A Journal of Poetry.
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