The Mysterious Woman is Still the Most Beguiling Woman: Oscar Wilde’s “The Sphinx Without A Secret”

As most classifications of people are divided into two primary categories, it would seem that, by and large, there are those who overshare and those who wish nothing more than to guard every aspect of themselves even to those closest to them. It is this sort of personage that serves as the subject of Oscar Wilde’s short story, “The Sphinx Without a Secret.” Told from … Continue reading The Mysterious Woman is Still the Most Beguiling Woman: Oscar Wilde’s “The Sphinx Without A Secret”

“Self-Publishing” and Celebrity

While, sure, the singer-songwriter a.k.a. celebrity “literary” game has never been lacking (and was arguably started when Jewel put out her own immortal poetry collection in 1998, the robust–for a poetry book–160-page opus that was A Knight Without Armour), it seems as though Lana Del Rey has taken to a new level the annoyance of it to those who spend their entire lives trying to … Continue reading “Self-Publishing” and Celebrity

We Christianized Barbarians by Julio Monteiro Martins, Translated by Helen Wickes & Donald Stang

We Christianized barbarians, more alone than ever in the world’s regard, no longer have the Ptolemies or the Basileuses to explain us to others, nor do we have other converted Goths to hoist the two-sided blade in our name. We are alone, without any remedy. Searching the desert that forewarns us of the lions, we see everywhere mirages of wild beasts, naked martyrs forever in … Continue reading We Christianized Barbarians by Julio Monteiro Martins, Translated by Helen Wickes & Donald Stang

Dream Sketched From Memory by David Leo Sirois

We wash our hands with coffee grounds & light, & pulse still. New water reaches for our air in your coffee/tea temple’s constellation of plants. Out-of-doors, Canada Road hides under sharp snow, shares forward-steps & sideways triple-steps with us, dances impromptu swing. Brown-beige blanched façades lost in hollowed histories this shortened sun-span, before the inner Witness ~ spectator of sleep, who records dream-scenes to show … Continue reading Dream Sketched From Memory by David Leo Sirois

Tenement by Liz Duff Young

She was a condemned tenement building –all crumbling facades, erratic wiring, shaky foundation– but of course no, she was just a human, a woman, in whom many cells were born, divided, mutated and died She was not she, not really, she was cells, all so very alive. Rushing up the scaffolding of bone, the choicest among them converged in her brain, elbowing their way to … Continue reading Tenement by Liz Duff Young

Narcissism Can Still Lead to Resonant Writing: Lily Allen’s My Thoughts Exactly

It’s been too long since a female musician put out an autobiography, really. Maybe not since Kim Gordon’s 2015 memoir, Girl In A Band, has such fanfare been made over a literary release of the music world. But, as Lily Allen points out time and time again throughout My Thoughts Exactly, her music has rarely been about the music, so much as exorcizing the long-standing demons … Continue reading Narcissism Can Still Lead to Resonant Writing: Lily Allen’s My Thoughts Exactly

An Alien’s Perspective by Susie Gharib

What’s behind this preoccupation with UFOs, this anticipation of ferocious foes? Aren’t the contorted, alien forms with ugly horns a reflection of your own distorted souls? You project your own mania for wars your abductions of slaves, infants and thrones, your inhuman experiments on animals and clones on extraterrestrial norms. What if our eyes are radiant beams that covet not, nor evil breathe. What if … Continue reading An Alien’s Perspective by Susie Gharib

The Sadness of Past Romance As Delineated by the Depiction of Age in Less

While, of course, there is a bittersweetness to all novels centered on aging, perhaps no other in recent memory gets it so right regarding both the cruel and just nature of time. That novel in question being Andrew Sean Greer’s Less, which miraculously won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2018 in the face of it being a “humorous” work. And, as we all know, … Continue reading The Sadness of Past Romance As Delineated by the Depiction of Age in Less

Black History Month for White People by Giovanna Pompele

Observe all the times you go, But surely Take notice of It was a different time Which draws a bead on It could have been me I could have done that Which frog marches to (Incongruously/invariably) Therefore It wasn’t innocent. It never was. None of it ever was. Not by a far cry. Apologize, apologize, apologize.   Continue reading Black History Month for White People by Giovanna Pompele