Spotlight: Bibliotechnical Sins

Can I find the words I mark electronically without the cluster of stars I draw in margins to show what is important? Can I discover a buried treasure finger-flicking entries on a screen? Can I flip pages for perusal of bright maps on unexpected pages? […]

LitDish: Four Questions with Povi-Tamu Bryant, Activist, Artist, Author

I think the question for writers is what do you want the legacy of your work to be? And how can approaching your work through an inclusive solidarity-driven cultural humility framework actually support the expansiveness of your legacy? I want writers to sit with that, to let that shape their writing […]

À La Carte: Trodden

It was dawn when the R.U.F. came. Mama was braiding Hadiah’s hair and Papa was on his way with Hassan to sea to start fishing. We had heard stories about the rebels burning villages to the ground in one swift motion, killing all the elderly, cutting off people’s limbs, taking the young and turning them into soldiers. Every day, families who had been affected by the war would walk through our village telling those stories.

Litdish: Anjali Singh, Literary Agent

Anjali Singh, literary agent with Ayesha Pande Literary (APL), started her career in publishing in 1996 as a literary scout, and later worked as an editor with Simon & Schuster, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Vintage Books, and as Editorial Director at Other Press. She is best known for having championed Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis, after stumbling across the original French version on a visit to Paris.[…]

Rhaiah Spooner-Knight

Spotlight: Culture Shock

My work is a reflection of my passions and creative inspirations. I am hugely influenced by urban music, culture, and the political issues and injustices that have been occurring in the United States of America. Being a mixed-race woman myself, I am constantly exploring and learning about the different cultures, races, and struggles that inhabit the population of the US.[…]

Spotlight: Burdens

The biscotti slipped first, falling to the floor through the space of her forearm. Next went the cheese, then the crackers. Agitated, she dropped the rest of the assorted bags and packaging and breathed deeply. She knelt down to restack the boxes, starting with the largest and utilizing every angle of her arms and torso to balance each.[…]

Pradip Kumar Sau, Untitled 2, 2018, Acrylic on canvas, 60x60

Spotlight: Desire

Life is a journey from womb to tomb. During this journey, man is in constant search of the infinite with his finite possibilities. The material aspects of life, like desire, ambition, yearning for name and fame, pull him constantly down to the earth. Yet the search continues. Search for what?[…]

Spotlight: Déjà vu

Nouns drop from their perches,
seeking a less
hate-driven sentence,
aiming for purpose or purchase
or mere acceptance.

Darrell Black, Temple of the Deity, 2018, Pen and Ink, 11 ½” x 8 ½”

Spotlight: Art of Definism

I work in a variety of formats that include pen and ink drawings, acrylic paintings on canvas wood, and mixed media objects. My creative process is a mixture of works on paper, acrylic paint, found objects, and nontoxic hot glue […]

Litdish: Ashley Lumpkin, Poet

Ashley Lumpkin has been writing since she was seven. She is a poet and started doing slam poetry performance in 2010. She has four poetry collections and a new creative nonfiction collection called I Hate You All Equally […]

Spotlight: Trace of Nicotine

I think I know why his breaths are slower, shallower. The way he inhales before pushing his body off the couch, first a deep breath, and then how he holds it and propels himself forward in exhale, out onto the porch.

À La Carte: Elegy for Black Barbie

You were the villain at tea parties, attacking the blonde society barbies, with skin pale like fragile porcelain and eyes an unblinking blue sky. You were dark as coffee, an uninvited stain on the white rug I played on. I wanted to love you, being a gift from Grandma.

Spotlight: The Tide Pool

It was the usual things: missing mother, bed-wetting, the problem with the pets. They found a dead rabbit under his bed, strawberry blood seeping floorboards. They found a jar of old beetles hard as quarters. It was only a matter of time.

Litdish: JL Stermer, Literary Agent

She uses every square inch of the stage when she presents. She can navigate New York City through rush hour traffic and subway closures. She knows where to shop and where to connect with whom, especially in the ever-changing venues of social media.

Daphna Steinberg, Driveway, McLean, Virginia , 2018, digital photographic print, 10” x 15”

Spotlight: La Belle Fleur Sauvage

My work has spanned a variety of mediums, including photography, video, collage, installation, and performance. Generally, I work with themes that relate to the experiences of women and the fragmentation of the female body.

Spotlight: Building the Backyard House with Abuelo

The mix in his hands, our skin
covered with clay, horse dung,
hay, and water, his hands […]

Litdish: Emily Faith Grodin, Writer

Emily Faith Grodin is an intelligent, passionate twenty-seven-year-old with autism, which impedes her ability to communicate verbally. Instead, she communicates through writing, creating powerful, moving poems and stories that welcome readers into her world […]

Spotlight: Deaf Rich Boy ‘79 / Earmold / Voice from the Sea

i would one day be the son of that rich man
with a monocle found in the game of monopoly
id own the entire town beyond pamida
i wouldnt think twice about buying
a pair of expensive designer jeans at the down under shop […]

Daniel Kern, Untitled 5, 2018, Graphite and Collage on Paper, 9 x 12

Spotlight: Penumbral Transmissions

This group of pieces was completed over the course of a few months where I had been making notes from dreams and meditations with a great focus on feelings of loss and isolation. All of these are visual manifestations of what I can only describe in a few words as a feeling of howling silence. […]

Spotlight: Before the Arab Spring

A change of lesson plan becomes necessary. Ella has handed
round photocopies of the horoscope pages from the Gulf News
(You will learn… You will meet someone… People with this
star sign are courageous…) in heavy silence. Finally, a thin
serious boy called Sami says, “Teacher, this isn’t true. Not from
Islam.” Others nod agreement. They do a multiple-choice
grammar quiz instead.

Peaceful Protesters-International human rights day, 2012, watercolor on arches paper, 22” x 30”

Spotlight: Political Art and Paintings

I am inspired to paint out of the need to tell a story or record a period of time others may choose not to recognize. My topics of interest are often personal, involving my role and struggles as a woman in American culture […]

Spotlight: Hands & Mouth

I strike a match / to burn the
sage / bundle smoke circles /
in every room / of my silent
home…

Deception of Memory, 10 x 16 Mixed Media, 2018

Spotlight: The Curious Mind

I really like to poke people’s brains. From business, to family and friends, and even love
[especially love], the core foundation of all things boil down psychology, and the workings of
the brain. I think the human mind is a bizarre and peculiar place […]

À La Carte: Saudades

I miss the jungle’s morning breath. I shall never grasp

I used to bathe in lush vines, the Peace that shelters those

and soak that sing with one set of Words.

Spotlight: The Examination

Funny that you ask.
It feels like billions of nerve cells arranged in patterns to coordinate thought, emotion, behavior, movement, and sensation.
An egg frying in a frying pan.

Litdish: Hilary Rubin Teeman, Executive Editor

The bar is often whether I can put it down. I don’t mean put it down for an hour while I deal with something else, but, “Is this book in my head? Am I thinking about how it’s going to end? Do I want to go back to reading it to the exclusion of other things?” If the answer to these questions is “Yes!” it means the novel has hooked me, that I am feeling an authentic connection to it, that I can see myself working on it and championing it.

Untitled, 2018, Acrylic and Ink on Paper, 18” x 30”

Spotlight: Abstract Painting

I am compelled by a clumsy and imperfect nature of painting, especially with a relationship to a more perfect, cold language of drawing. The precise and angular nature of many of the forms I work with lend themselves to a technical vernacular […]

Á La Carte: Safe

He reached over my legs to turn the heater up, then slowly brought his hand back, hovering above my knees. The tattoos on his four knuckles shown towards my mother and me. The words spelled F E A R. I looked away quickly. My mother fingered the door handle.

Spotlight: The Circus

The last time I went to the circus
was also the first day
a boy fingered me behind
the stacks of old smelling innertubes
at the pool on the corner of Thirty-second.