Issue > Poetry
Lillian Kwok

Lillian Kwok

Lillian Kwok is originally from Philadelphia and now lives and studies in Sweden. Her work appears or is forthcoming in Hawaii Pacific Review, NANO Fiction, burntdistrict and other journals. She holds an MFA in writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts.

Silent Men

I can love the ghost of a man. Can love
the back, the silence, the absence,
the bones, the shout, the slap of a man.


My six brothers will also cleave children
into their women. Women who ride
bicycles to deliver warm lunches.
And when the women leave they weave

their dreams into their children's hair.
And when the men come they see
the gray waters of Sanya, smell of salt,
green hills. He always comes home

late, and when he's late he's whipping.
And when he comes we stop breathing.
We wish he would go back to Saigon
for another month or two and we could

lay our heads in our mother's lap
and my brothers could be girls cutting
out paper dolls with me. Harmless, like
the photo I put in a locket and hang

from my daughter's neck, make her wear
it until she loves it. Longs for the never-
seen sands of Sanya. Loves the gray man
in the photograph that she does not know.

Impossible Loves

Behind me, the mountain,
the path down to the hidden pools.

Everything has suddenly left
me. Shadow-birds, papery leaves.

I feel the loneliness of the first men
to look out on the hollow world,

to hear the frogs calling to each other
all night. I call out again

and again. The frogs and I can't speak
to one another. And as for you

and I—we've already missed it,
the flying moment of love.


Mark Jay Brewin Jr

Mark Jay Brewin Jr
Santiago de Compostela


Catherine Stearns

Catherine Stearns
Snow in August


Zebulon Huset

Zebulon Huset
Inconsiderate Acts