After my mother died, I looked at a photo where she had moved into assisted living from the ER. Her oxygen tube in her nose, two small children standing on each side. Her hands around their hands pulled tightly to her chest, the chorus of knuckles still housed, white like stones, soon to be freed, soon to be splashing like horses.
You trash your room. You twist the arms of your roommate’s glasses and shred her grandchildren’s drawings. You refuse to be medicated, screaming that you are being poisoned. Security is called, and you are restrained in a special chair next to the nurses’ station like a naughty student who must sit next to the teacher.
Mom gave birth to me on the vernal equinox, just as the world begins to bloom, so it was no surprise that I inherited her love for the outdoors. We grew together as twin Persephones, bursting with life at the first sign of crocuses, and shrinking into sullen hibernation as the days darkened into winter.
Among the writers we’ve assembled here you’ll find redemptive rhetorics of weather, decipherable stars, children who don’t speak for years, parents who can speak no longer, people calling people animals, signs of disappearance, a word that’s given, then is folded like a map to secret places, some “small speakings,” and several foreign languages.
Our Fall 2018 – Caregiving Issue is here! Featuring a foreword by Guest Editor Heather McHugh as well as essays by Jeff Camhi, Maryah Converse, Desiree Cooper, J.D. Ho, Nancy McCabe, Carol Tell Morse, and Kim Wyatt.
Fiction by Chloë Boxer, Vicki Derderian, Karen Heuler, Kai Maristed, Gregory Leon Miller, Kate Osana Simonian, and Christa Romanosky.
Poetry by Ahmad Almallah, Idris Anderson, Elizabeth Aquino, Amy Beeder, Karen Brennan, Marc Brenman, Rafael Campo, Victoria Chang, Barbara Crooker, Chard de Niord, Suzanne Edison, Jeremy Gregersen, J. Estanislao Lopez, Margaret Gibson, Tom C. Hunley, Joshua Kryah, Heather Lanier, Amy Lemmon, Elisabeth Lewis Corley, Ed Madden, Michael Mark, Sara Parrott, Irma Pineda (translated by Wendy Call), Robin Rosen Chang, Tina Schumann, Betsy Sholl, Shirley Stephenson, and Connie Voisine.