Issue 2.1 Sara Henning

Forked Roads by John Francis Istel
“How many candles do you see? Mother? How many? Can you see how many? Sit up.

Waking by Karin C. Davidson
“‘Sleep, sleep, sleep,’ my mother says. But I cannot help thinking about waking the next morning.”

The Box by Greg Bottoms
“Danny Glover—a fourteen-year-old white kid from Smithfield, Virginia, not the actor from…”

Form-Fall by Marco Wilkinson
“A tree evaporates into the universe and falls back to earth: timber to paper to coffee cup to compost to dirt.”

Swept by Emily Vizzo
“Startling, this body-bump of asterisks finding its way…

Sea Lion by Emily Vizzo
“The stink of him came to me first, a salty hit of kelp…

Mario’s Grocery Has No Cameras by Chris Mink
“In lane twelve a young mother wearing…

During the Tornado, I’m Thinking of Stars by Sara Henning
“They’re calling them sisters, funnels grafted…

The Dead Wait on the Living to Go on Living by Kim Garcia
“The chairs wide-mouthed and silent in each others’ presence…

Mountain Aubade by Kim Garcia
“Inside a blue-cupped palm, yellow tipped mountain, wild dogwood, pine…

Mending by Ruth Foley
“For once, I am not thinking of a place…”

Doubt is the angel of our time by Ruth Foley
“Of any time, I’d wager—any movement…

Cleansing Flights by Ruth Foley
“The temporary unfurling of the rhododendron…

Pitcher by Will Cordeiro
“I’m such a flirt…

Wild Horse / Wild Deer by John Casteen
“Deep beneath the night, its lidded vault of stars…”

Figure by John Casteen
“As in, cuts an elegant…”

I Saw You by JC Bouchard
“I saw you on the roundabout…”

Sara Henning

During the Tornado, I’m Thinking of Stars



They’re calling them sisters, funnels grafted
to the same spine of rotating air, but I know
they’re lovers by how my jet turns wet

and reckless between squalls, by how the squalls
are raptured from the same nexus of desire.
But I’m thinking of your hands on my body,

not the storm. I’m thinking of your back stained
with the sun’s reconnaissance after a day
of splitting wood, not unstable air pressed

to the craft’s fuselage. On our way to the airport,
cottonwoods throng across asphalt, their catkins
clinging to each tire’s underbelly, while broken

power lines stretch, lithe and sinuous, in slicks
of rain. Haven’t we all known darkness like this?
The kind that requires a wind-up radio and ends

with the only clear station lilting news of crushed
silos and missing children? The kind the plane
taking me away from you tries to rise through

but, overcome, turns instead to a gale’s handfast
ceremony—luggage breaching in the cargo
hold, a woman’s head quick and loose against

the plane’s thermoplastic wall? As my plane,
not felled but wounded, hunts for any runway
threshold that will have it, I’m thinking of last

summer’s solstice, about the man who coaxed us
toward his telescope, the one promising
Saturn’s curves swathed in mist, rings enticing

a brusque liaison with Mars. Yet, as he thumbed
the focusing knob and urged my head toward
the eyepiece, Libra’s quadrangle hid away

in unconsummated trespass; Saturn, cruel beauty,
gave her body to the dark. As I feared the forces
that begin and end our bond to everything,

you only kissed me like a tempest plunges itself
into the border of a larger vortex before the surge
begins. You wouldn’t stop kissing me.

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