Creative Nonfiction

STAYING CLEAN by Megan Premo

The foamless rectangle was greenish-blue, an institutional color, not a tropical one, and it smelled like something meant to clean dishes or toilets or floors, not human hair, not fourteen-year-old girls’ bodies.

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OYSTERS AT THE FAMILY FARM by Jo Unruh

The old say to the young: 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘸𝘰𝘳𝘭𝘥 𝘪𝘴 𝘺𝘰𝘶𝘳 𝘰𝘺𝘴𝘵𝘦𝘳. And when the old men speak these words, they are sincere, because the world has been delivered unto them, and the world is now theirs to bestow.

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FACTS OF LIFE by Laetitia Keok

Male emperor penguins protect their eggs from the harsh Antarctic elements by balancing them on their feet. When I tell you this, you lift me up and balance me on your feet. I am four and weigh nothing. You are a mountain of a man. With my tiny feet stacked atop your larger feet, you hold my hands and start taking wide, steady steps. We pass the balcony, and I feel the warmth of sunlight as it filters through the glass door to fall onto our bodies. Our shadows dance on the floor tiles like puppets. Then, I am flying.

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STICK FIGURES by Sara Solberg

In an eastern New Mexico desert, amid a forest of mesquite and bluestem grass, overlooking nothing but miles upon miles of iron-pressed, sunbaked earth, sits the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP for short). On the surface, it looks like any other government base: a simple grid of unremarkable squat buildings, the tan color of which bleeds into the surrounding arid landscape. But step into one of the elevators that spend their days bobbing up and down WIPP’s vertical mine shafts, ferrying hard-hatted workers between ground level and the ancient salt bed 2,150 feet below, and it’s a different story. One

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A RIOT OF THE HUMAN HEART by Jillian Luft

Boston is burning itself over a baseball game. Outside of Fenway, the local evening news zooms in on a few torched sedans. Undercarriages in flames like hibachi grills. White boy ruddy faces rejoicing. Game 4 of the 2003 ACLS. A Red Sox victory. I care about baseball because I love you. I want to wake you up to celebrate Johnny Damon and Pedro Martinez and all those other shaggy-haired rascals hellbent on breaking the curse. Once you view the game highlights, I want you to bang me against the TV, so my bare ass kisses static. I want you to

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