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‘Herring,’ by Daniel Blokh

Cheap in the Soviet Union, Dedushka would bring it for my mother to eat with bread. No sauce needed, its salty skin enough to keep his children full for days. In that time, that country, herring flowed in rivers, fell from the sky like snow, the whole Union one big herring waiting to break away […]

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Bouillon Beef Soup Bone Soup Meat Soup Meat Beef

TIE Poet of the Month: ‘Friday,’ by Jen Mediano

I’ve observed you sized you up selected you from the tangle. Now my fingers pry your underside and I rip you open with a hollow crack. Your serrated defenses useless now, my teeth grip the membrane that divides top from bottom. I pick at your insides, shatter your limbs roll your guts in newspaper. But […]

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‘The Pleasures of Peace,’ by David Lehman

It’s not just the absence of war, Scott said, but Hemingway had the last word, and for decades driving an ambulance in Europe in World War I was how you made your mark as a man. Peace in those days meant Paris and a wound and an aperitif. No sooner do I write those words […]

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TIE Poet of the Month: ‘Northerner,’ by Jen Mediano

You flay its skin. You roll the pit in your mouth. You swat the swarm. Your blood and calamine stain your clothes, your collarbone. You smell of smoke. Your scar your chest your eyebrows sweat. You roll the bottle, wet your brow. You grasp at sparks. You stake them, burning, in the grass. You drink […]

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TIE Poet of the Month: ‘Host,’ by Jen Mediano

Stars, cigarettes bright, oblivious to the dawn, the dew, the ground damp beside you; enfold in crook and sweat and slough. I breathe and you labyrinth through to the tips of me, to wrists you release to pinpricks: splayed hand, closed fist. Mosquitoes braille me, welts rise and itch; ticks break my skin, burrow my […]

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TIE Poet of the Month: ‘I Prefer To Be Amazed,’ by Sabrina Hayeem-Ladani

after Wisława Szymborska I prefer black tea. I prefer the green olives. I prefer depth to shoreline, the marshlands to the safety of the riverbed. I prefer noticing. I prefer to bend the corner of the page. I prefer to let the rice be. I prefer to be curious. I prefer to wash my vegetables. […]

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‘Waffle House Love,’ by Donovan McAbee

Nothing’s open here at 2 a.m. except the Waffle House on the edge of town. Cigarette smoke wrapped in fried-egg-smell smacks me in the face as I pull open the glass door. I take a booth and order sweet ice tea. Maybe that’s her getting out of that blue Mustang with a cherub’s smile and […]

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TIE Poet of the Month: ‘Upon Telling My Sister I Fell Between the Train and the Platform’, by Sabrina Hayeem-Ladani

She decides that we need to celebrate, takes me to buy shoes: black suede ballerina flats to show off the high arch of my foot. I wear them out of the store, dancing and limping. Next is dinner: we gorge on things we can’t afford to eat— lobster, scallops drenched in butter lifted to our […]

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TIE Poet of the Month: ‘My Therapist’, by Amy Lawless

I told my friend the reason I don’t go to therapy: I would lie to any therapist and adjust my problems according to what I think the therapist would want to hear He said that means I’m crazy and really need to go to therapy I wouldn’t argue with this point I give a name […]

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TIE Poet of the Month: ‘Ars Poetica’, by Amy Lawless

In sixth grade, Mrs. Nerbonne assigned us the poem “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” by Robert Frost. We had to memorize and recite it aloud both to each other and as a chorus for the principal, a man who wore these Italian suits we’d only seen in movies. I remember standing there in […]

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