• Online Feature
    Leslie Jamison

    The more time I spent researching, the more convinced I became that the only version of my project I believed in was one that also confessed what had motivated all this research: the drinking and the quitting; all that terror and hope. It would bring together personal narrative, and literary criticism, and biographical research, and cultural history, and it would somehow do all this without coming apart at the seams.

    The Conglomerate
    Adam Ross

    It’s already been a hard winter. Like our cover image, the nation seems to be buried in the impeachment mess, snowed in by snow jobs, blinded by white out. And no forecast predicts a change in this oppressive political weather.

    The Conglomerate
    Hellen Wainaina & Julia Harrison

    I’ve heard writers say that every now and again a story arrives fully-formed in their minds and writing it comes so easily that it feels like transcription. That’s never happened for me. Every time I finished a story in the collection and began another one, I felt as if I were learning how to write all over again.

    Steven Millhauser

    Is it possible to fall in love with a house, as you might with a person, if you are seventeen years old, a small-town boy waiting for the adventure of his life to begin? I felt as if I had opened a secret door and come to the center of things.

    Tyree Daye

    I knew freedom

    was not the act of flying
              but the steady beat of wings.

    It was my steady black,
              blue and my blues were gone,

    I wanted to be
              a bird and became.

    Molly Antopol

    When he died, John had been publishing books consistently for more than fifty years. He wrote more than twenty of them, as well as dozens of individual stories and poems. Much of the work—like this story—revolved around questions of faith and guilt, and he imbued all of it with his characteristic self-deprecation, compassion, and humor.

    Douglas Kearney

                I’m fitful
    when I’m sleeping. Wakeful,
    a minute. My ears wet
    when I get up. Like drowning,
                though I’ve never.
    All my dreams Chevrolet heavy.
    This land would swallow me
               for one damn pearl.

    Kathleen Ossip

    Light: supreme optical clarity, quick-dry, scratch-resistant.
    Clouds: feather-pregnant, groaning, insistent.

    Exterior: A puzzle, one continuous Olde New Yorke alley.
    I did not know you. You did not know me.

    Christian Lorentzen

    It’s no accident that postwar American fiction and television don’t loom as the determining influences on his novels, as they did for Wallace and his cohort in a way that seemed inescapable at the time. Lerner’s lodestars are the poetry of Walt Whitman and John Ashbery, visual art, and the classic European novel.

    Karen Solie

    And maybe a soul is a satellite,
    a small idea orbiting a larger one, a device
    to translate the signal
    and send it back.

    The rat is still a rat.
    There is no getting around what we are.

    Lee Conell

    I was getting too worried about all that noise around symbolism, around beauty, around birds. I needed to be silent in some different way with that scene. If the stupid emotional truths were really stupid, at least I’d try to hear them, to identify them more clearly.

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