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Breath & Shadow

Fall 2016 - Vol. 13, Issue 4

"Time and Music"

Written By

Dorothy Baker

Nearly engulfed in six foot tall goldenrod, the shed, empty but for a ping pong table and

a nation of spiders, bides its remaining time.


Arthritic joists, porous sills like aging bones, eroding under the weight of eighty winters, feebly, precariously, support the tarp-covered roof...

"My Cup Runneth Over-Not"

Written By


Occasionally, I check out the selection of vessels at a drugstore for one large enough to collect and transport radioactive waste. Recycled Styrofoam cups or hot tea containers from McDonalds can be used, though a child proof drinking cup with a smooth lip works better to prevent spillage when peeing in a cup.


Written By

Jessica Goody

You were my great-uncle, or would have been,

if such familial labels applied to one long-dead

and never met. After you were born, you were

placed in an asylum for crippled rag dolls...

"Black Kripple" and "An Interview with Leroy Moore"

Written By

Erika Jahneke

There is a lot written today in Movement circles, any movement really, about intersectionality and the way different forms of oppression, such as racism, sexism, and ableism overlap. You can ponder these concepts or watch them in action by reading Leroy Franklin Moore Jr.’s "Black Kripple Delivers Music and Lyrics".

"The Boy"

Written By

Edward M. Turner

William poured sugar in his coffee and stirred it thoughtfully.


Tom glanced at him. "How was your weekend?"


William gave a bleak smile. "Don't ask." He sipped his coffee. "We had a lousy time. Didn't pull into our driveway until two this morning."


"Tired, huh?"

"Grandma's Closet"

Written By

Jennifer Gifford

I remember how it felt to disappear

Into the past of grandma’s closet.

My dressing room.

The smell of White Linen

Hanging thick in the air.

Slipping on arm length gloves, faded with age...

"At The Expense of Joy: Human Rights Violations Against Human Beings With Autism via Applied Behavioral Analysis"

Written By

Dr. Kelly Levinstein

Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA), a multi-billion dollar cottage industry in the United States, is based on the work of Dr. O. Ivar Lovaas, who borrowed the principles from his experiments attempting to cure feminized boys at risk of homosexuality (Rekers & Lovaas, 1974) and the accompanying aversive of electric shock and corporal punishment. Lovaas used the rationale that homosexual behavior was (in California at the time) illegal. Moreover, he also shared the same fundamentalist Christian values as the parents who brought their children in for alleviation of feminine symptomology and possible homosexuality.


Written By

Michelle Zhuang

The garden of my body is growing. My sister tells me, while we are perusing the Walmart greenhouse, that I need a little color on me. She chooses violets when I really want sunflowers, batting my hand away when I reach for the small labeled packet. “But then how would you walk?” she asks, laughing as she presses each small seed into the freshly packed dirt of my hand.

"Before the Diagnosis", "t6", and "Love Letters Series Poem V"

Written By

Heather Ace Ratcliff

i used to think that the

iron scaffolding of my ribcage

was strong enough to guard

the bruised filigree of my ruby heart -

until i heard the buzzing prescience

and learned how it felt when the tubercle slipped from the vertebrae and i was exposed.

"Three Word Memoir"

Written By

Izabela Jeremus

Addiction takes lives. First, it empowers. Answers, you think. All depression, gone. Mental illness, handled. I can stop. You tell yourself. You believe it. Addiction lies, though. It'll take control. Eat you alive. Just one more. The addiction lie.

"The Girl" and "After The Long Dry Spell, New Dress"

Written By

Rachael Z. Ikins

Where is the laughing naked girl

draped on a log spontaneous spring

woods and trillium all around her for her lover's camera?


Who is this woman hungry just to see?

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