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Issue #4, Spring-Summer 2000

At the outset we hoped that in time we could draw exceptional work from around the world. In this issue Slovenian writer Andrej Blatnik's "Mickey Mouse Travels East" surfs the tsunami-sized cultural shifts of Eastern Europe. We also are pleased to be bringing you Lauren Milne Henderson, Britain's reigning queen of "Tart Noir" fiction and her lusty story, "Draining the Snake." The sheer vitality of newcomer Kelly Le Fave's poetry grabbed us, and hasn't let go. We continue to learn and be dazzled by the accomplished Dan Halpern who shares with us his first poetry love. Another thing that continues to impress us is the sheer volume of submissions we've been receiving, and which our talented, diligent readers, Mollie Godfrey, Peter Henry, Allison Dubinsky, and Gabrielle Belfiglio, faithfully comb for nuggets of brilliance. Imagine their surprise to find their names missing from Issue 3's masthead. Mercifully, they have forgiven us and soldier on in the name of discovery. Now that is something to celebrate.


Ron Carlson

EVIL EYE ALLEN • This was a person who did not dance in front of people, a girl who had never really behaved in such a way. She had never been among us.

Aleksandar Hemon

ACCORDION • Maybe that man never played that key; maybe he'll never play that note in his entire life.

Katherine Shonk

MY MOTHER'S GARDEN • The reactor is off in the distance, towering over the town.... From here it all looks normal.

Tara Ison

BALL • I know that the success of sex depends on contrivance, in holding yourself back. It's the tease, not the strip.

Lauren Milne Henderson

DRAINING THE SNAKE • It wasn't a hosepipe. It was a penis.

Ben Marcus

THE FAINTING PROJECT • By not fainting, we surrender our identities to the mundane chaos of time.

Benjamin Gantcher


Christine Bauch

AUGUST, 1981

David Schickler

JACOB'S BATH • Amidst all this wonder was Jacob Wolf, twenty-eight, newly married and utterly dismayed.

Kelly Le Fave


Derek Walcott

Three selections from TIEPOLO'S HOUND

Liz Rosenberg


Charlie Smith


Edgar Allan Poe

Stéphane Mallarmé on Edgar Allan Poe • 'L'Après Midi d'un Faune' may be incomprehensible, but not the Master's portrait of the American writer who helped inspire the French Symbolist movement in poetry.

Stéphane Mallarmé

THE PIPE • 'L'Après Midi d'un Faune' may be... okay, okay, how about the Master's amazing description of his favorite pipe?

Rick Moody

DESTROY ALL MONSTERS; An Ecstatic Haiku Sequence
A Godzilla fan
Celebrates monster movies.
He eats Jujyfruits.

Daniel Halpern

COFFEE & ORANGES • The author recalls his early encounters with poetry, experiencing anew the sensuality and flavors of the poem that first sparked his burgeoning imagination, Wallace Stevens' 'Sunday Morning.'

Stéphane Mallarmé

LETTER TO JAMES ABBOTT MCNEILL WHISTLER • The frequently incomprehensible Master's letter to the great nineteenth-century American painter.

Stéphane Mallarmé


William Boyd

On Her Privates We by Frederic Manning • A stunning World War One novel, first published in 1929 and championed by Ernest Hemingway, Ezra Pound and TS Eliot, is told from the perspective of an ordinary private.

Rachel Resnick

On Stacey Levine's My Horse and Other Stories • A 1993 short story collection by a writer who has been justly compared with the best of Flannery O'Conner and Jane Bowles.

Anderson Tepper

On Near to the Wild Heart, by Brazilian author Clarice Lispector • Written in 1944, this intimate story penetrates the many-layered life of Joana, from her childhood in middle-class Rio to the collapse of her marriage.

Susan Choi

On Edward Newhouse's Many Are Called • A 1951 collection of forty-two gritty and calamitous stories penned by a colorful pro from the old 'New Yorker' days.

Stéphane Mallarmé

POÉSIE DE LA CUISINE (Poetry of the Kitchen) • The Master's simple, to-the-point 'Mulligatawny' and 'A New Year's Eve Menu.'

Elissa Schappell

ODE TO A MARTINI • Juniper berries have never tasted so good.

Paul West