Submission Countdown: 1 day

“Goodnight” by Ciarra Smith

Love is what she said to me at 3am

when she knocked softly on my door.

It was in her voice as she whisper-shouts,

“Are you awake?”

It was in my hand as I sleepily picked up a shoe

killing the moth camped out in her room.

It was in my eyes as I tell her,

“It’s dead.”

Submission Countdown: 3 days

If I Loved You Less by Anonymous

A variation on Jane Austen’s “If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more.”

If I loved you less,

I wouldn’t think of you as a star-child

glazed in the inky caress of space,

holding so tightly onto the things that make you extraterrestrial.

If I loved you less,

I wouldn’t spring from the planet like one half

of a binary star, searching for my twin only to nd your remains dusted on a million different planets, in a million different life forms.

If I loved you less,

I wouldn’t hear the crackle-pop of supernova

stirrings and think of the way your voice echoed

profundity like a wisp of heat reaching out to the deepest cold.

If I loved you less,

I wouldn’t ride white dwarf echoes

across the Milky Way to nd you, huddled

in frosted whites, in some unknown corner of the galaxy.

If I loved you less,

I’d be able to talk your body without making you

more than you are, without sweeping up your blustering blood and replacing it with starlight and the deepest shade of vastness.

But you’re dying, and if I loved you less,

I would be able to reconcile the penny-sized hole in your heart

as a mechanism of God. But I harbor a star-shaped love— the kind that burns and burns, implodes, rusts away and simmers until its out.

Submission Countdown: 5 days

Memory in Motion by Alisha Britnell

I spilled nostalgia everywhere.

It ran into the cracks and crevices—The little pores of life

were lled by the pieces

that your ngers can’t quite reach.We are nothing more than

tight spaces that ngers

can’t dig into,

lling up with memories;

crumbs of the past wedged

into tiny corners,

packed hard and fast against

the sharp nails of life

that want to dig us out

until nothing remains

but an empty shell.

Resistant nostalgia clings, gumming up the cogs

of a clean ending—

tickling the edges

of an empty room,

begging it to be

full.

Submission Countdown: 7 days

Open 24 Hrs by Katelyn Vance

The word of God

Is neon now—

It screams odious

Love to a silent

Collection of limbs

Beneath it.

Its iridescence

Falls in irradiated

Waves.

It reaches the

Sedate, the wanderers of

Asphalt nightmares,

At last.

They can’t hear it

For the mumble of voices

So they shift to leave

By way of saturated,

Naked streets, steeped

In weariness.

The new God is

Neon—but all the same

Unheard; Its blushing lights

Looking to the morally

Abject; it finds

No one.

Submission Countdown: 9 days

Stoic by Parker Middleton

For the rhythmic beats of a laugh far too resemble

the rhythmic pants of a cry.

So, I withhold my laughter,

for it seems,

one cannot exist without the other.

Stoic it may be.

Stoic I might.

Submission Countdown: 11 days

On Falling Apart by Katelyn Vance

There are lots of ways to fall apart:

With your head in-between your knees Crying so hard your nose starts bleeding Messy streams of vermillion
Into too-clean porcelain sinks

At three in the morning while your roommate
Makes friends with Aristocrats that come in clear bottles.

Or crying in Cal II class
While the teacher dictates numbers that swirl around themselves Derivatives hurt your head
And you’re scared of the letter C.
Nothing feels good anymore
Although you think math never did.

With your fingernails digging into your palms
As your friends slip you out of their lives
As easily as you slip out of the swing in your old backyard. Now you eat lunch in the instrument room
Gummy bears and peanut butter sandwiches,
Alone in the dim light.

When you curl up on the band hall steps, Hair still wet enough to give you hope For pneumonia in the January chill. Your eyes feel like vehicles for salt water And you can still taste his mouth Although you wish he didn’t have one.

Finally, sitting on your mom’s pretty, white quilt Stuffed with goose feathers
Plucked from now flightless birds
With your Dad’s pistol in your tear-slicked fingers. You search the corners of your body for hope,

And can’t find it.

Submission Countdown

Join us in counting down to our submission deadline on November 26th by submitting today!

Each day, for the next 13 days, we will feature a previously submitted piece of artwork or creative writing to inspire you!

In Memory Of by Michelle Wait

You caused me to stop.

As my pupils adjusted to your arms reaching Toward the pale-colored blue,

I took a deep breath.

I tried to see as far as you

Could reach, but it dizzied me.

My balance lost, I sat

And admired your roots.

You bared a lot. The green blades tickled

Your toes;

I giggled for you.

I wanted to lean my head against your stubborn Body, but something begged me to look again. Round about I went. Your impressive body Revealed your immodesty.

I peered inside your heart.

Was there life in there? Perhaps,

A foreign visitor sought shelter

In your warm body?

Could there have been?

A possibility.

Are my eyes invading a space meant for dwellers? I adjust to your internal darkness.

My pupils dilate; all of my color is lost.

So much possibility in a donated seedling,

So much possibility in memory of,

So much possibility reaching for celestial orbs, So, I spilt my water near your skirt.

So, I wandered o with a backwards glance.

She must have been a beautiful spirit

To have a tree like you bear her name.