Writing can be painful. So can April (“the cruelest month”). It’s painful to grow and break new ground, and yet we’re always in the process of becoming. Spring reminds us of our metamorphic nature, and that impermanence itself is a state of being. As Amanda M. Capelli writes in “Human Remains,” our own bodies will outlive us, even when they’re ash.
Some of the poets, essayists, and storytellers in Issue 18 grapple with loss or impending loss, as well as survival. Some are haunted by the past embedded in their bones, homes, or the objects they keep as sacred totems, like an old pair of jazz shoes worn by a ghost. These writers consider the human condition—the heart, lungs, maternal instinct for birds of prey—as well as the beauty of the nature that surrounds them. They’re inspired by family, art, myth, performance, and history; they embark on whirlwind journeys into the unknown, encounter unexpected reckonings, and reach drastic turning points: a gunshot, a punishment, a brutal haircut. There’s a lesson in all of it.
But many also write with humor and wit because life (and even death) can be absurd, so why take it all too seriously? Why not just wing it sometimes? Why not embrace the macabre, reinvent the mundane, and sink into a bathtub full of googly eyes? We’re all blooming wild from the ash that remains, and I hope you keep growing despite the pain.
Sincerely, Amy Dupcak
- Ashes - by Laurel Szymkowiak
- Sonnet for My Beautiful Asthma - by Meghan Sterling
- La Terribilità - by S. Maniaci
- In Translation: Heaven // Paradi Selès - by Patrick Sylvain
- My mother when company comes - by Esther Sadoff
- Women’s Guild - by Alfred Fournier
- Esther Sneaks a Visit with Putin’s Ex-Wife - by Carol Barrett
- Lesson - by Charles Malone
- My Devices, My - by Jennifer A Sutherland
- In Translation: The Dead’s Bargain // De Dødes Handel - by Rolf Gjedsted, trans. Michael Favala Goldman
- Outward Journey - by Sandra Hunter
- Sister Golden Hair Surprise (novel excerpt) - by Wynne Hungerford
- The Last Improv Show - by Robin Doody
- Kiln Room - by Michael Pereira
- Notes on a Reluctant Mother - by Sarah Giragosian
- The Jazz Shoes - by Peggy Stone
- Human Remains - by Amanda M. Capelli
- My Top-Notch Heart - by Gerry Moohr
Iris Adelina Pérez, model and concept
Melanie Leandro, makeup artist
Rowan Levy, photographer
ISSN 2643-3273. Copyright © Cagibi Literary LLC.
CAGIBI publishes four digital issues a year. Submissions are open, and editors are reading.