From Guest Contributors

Our guest contributors are kindred spirits who also have the writing bug. Some are dear friends and some are writers we admire but don’t know personally. Their bios are included at the end of their individual articles.

Slowingly

  Time races by Like a child Run amok   Splashing at puddles Wishing for luck   I anticipate Cells slowing As they will   Urgency and dread builds Then dissipates   I search for breath and breadth To fill me   With presence and peace   Not so pressingly Now   As I am…

And then

I keep waiting for inspiration to write on the theme “slow.” The only things that come to mind are clichés: slowing down in a sped-up world; staying present in an era of distractions; the art of doing nothing. None of this feels fresh. Frankly, slow is not sexy. The number one rule of writing is…

The anguish of waiting

  I am, by nature, enormously impatient. I always stop the microwave with two seconds left. I just cannot wait for those two beats before devouring my warmed food. I often shoot off a text—or worse, an email—too early, not having the patience to give it a quick glance before pressing send. I cannot stand…

The case for inefficiency

A sigh escapes my lips as I bend over to stack the white ceramic plates in the cabinet. He’s doing it again. His comfortable warmth sidles up next to me, the soft plaid brushing my arm, as he leans in to set the matching bowls tidily in their place. Working together, the dishwasher is emptied…

The root of the problem

It happens here every spring. As leaves break bud and flowers bloom, people are struck with inspiration to plant fruit trees. Summer seems so close at hand, and visions of sun-warmed peaches replace sugarplums dancing in their heads. Local gardening forums are filled with requests for advice on what varieties of cherry do best here…

Simon Alexander

How did I watch Her soft hands pull his stiff body closeto dress his purple skin Still cold from the hospital fridge  How did I watch Her face split with horrorwhen she realized his armswould not bend Not even For his mother    SARAH currently lives and works in Edmonds, Washington. She would describe herself as painfully shy by nature…

Flicker of hope

  Like many people wanting “more” out of life, I am often in search of the thing that will be the answer. Recently, I’ve been finding feathers everywhere. Mostly crow feathers. The internet tells me that this a sign that I am being protected and am not alone. When I asked my energy worker during…

People are presents

It was a calm afternoon, when suddenly someone knocked on our door. My younger brother immediately got up and opened the door, thinking that some friends came to visit us. But instead, one unknown man stood there, wearing black jeans and a white T-shirt. We all were looking at him, wondering whether we have ever…

Poetry of the body (performed)

COURAGE AS A FRAGMENT and THE FRAGMENT AS COURAGE (Faith in the fracture – the bravery of ignoring a/the whole) A Performance* of Cowardice (those elusive fragments of bravery) in poetry and of running hard. *Poetry is already a performance of the labor of words and so to add the body to it we have,…

This week, I found my voice

The thing about catalysts is that they aren’t necessarily loud or obvious or explosive or expected. They can arise out of a variety of places and they can change your life without warning or care for your needs. A catalyst causes reaction. It is the mixture of two disparate objects or notions never likely on…

.This is my blood too.

After I broke the vaseAnd the candle in it too My sister said,“This isn’t like you.”   But isn’t it?Isn’t this me too?This unpleasant sideThat grabs for any object it can throw.   Isn’t this me too?Furious.Shattering my lungsWith high-pitched screams And shallow hums.   Isn’t this me too?The broken glass on the carpet that…

Your own brave life

You are the hero of your own BRAVE life. You  may think you have failed. But no. Your supposed failures are, in truth, the little horrors you subject yourself to in order to see more clearly, the heroic failures of others and of yourself, so that you may be able to accept them graciously for…

To the Bibi that I love

She looked after me when I could not look after myself. She was capable to understand the struggles that I was facing without me saying a word. She was never afraid to lend a hand to anyone in need. She was never afraid to stand up for what is right. She put others’ needs before…

Heart explosion

For as long as I can remember, I have deeply desired to become a mama. I was never fearful of those first few days with a baby, but I was afraid of how I would get there… When I was 15 years old, my cycle stopped, so my mom took me to the doctor. A…

My mom, my hero

I am seventeen years old. I am a Pakistani Asylum Seeker. My personal hero is my mother! My mother’s name is Josephine William. She has been my hero since my childhood because she is an extraordinary woman. What makes her extraordinary is, how she smiles, talks, cares, inspires, helps, and positively reacts to her surroundings.…

The hero of my life

A hero is someone who helps people, saves their lives, and risks his life for others. A hero is a person who cares and loves others. Just like Superman, Spiderman, etc. My grandfather, Mushtaq Ahmad, is my inspiration, my hero. Although he died on 27 March 2016, I look at him as my hero, mentor, and my best friend.…

The impossible possibility of leprechauns

A photo of me sits on the corner of my desk, a photo in which my five-year-old self looks smilingly into the sun of some 1960 summer morning, certain that anything was possible. I look at this photo and think that this younger me was right. It has taken decades to return to that truth,…

Possibilities

If you are a human being it is possible that:   you will make a mess of things, multiple times you will find yourself on top of Mt. Kilimanjaro someone you love will break your heart, crush your spirit, and make you forget who you are for awhile you will water ski on perfect, glassy…

Pittsburgh

At night I dream of Pittsburgh. I dream of a small studio apartment with a single jug of milk in the fridge, of a spring mattress and unmade sheets, and of a cat waiting by a half-full water dish. Of shades drawn and flickering shadows cast across the nighttime floor as I stumble through my…