Don’t miss this week’s installment of the Fire Hydrant Reading Series! It will feature readings from past Superstition Review Contributor, Thomas Legendre, and Fire Hydrant Reading Series co-creator, Kristi Carter.
This free and virtual event will take place this Wednesday, August 13th at 12pm Central Time and will last about 30 minutes. It will take place over Zoom at this link or Meeting ID 972 9633 0154. The event passcode is 081320.
Read more about Thomas Legendre here and watch past installments of the Fire Hydrant Reading Series here.
On behalf of ASU Humanities, Social Sciences, and Institute for Humanities Research, we invite you to attend this conversation with acclaimed historian Carol Anderson on Teaching in the Wake of Racial Violence. This event will take place on August 12 from 1-2:30 pm Arizona Time. All are welcome to attend this free event.
Anderson is a human and civil rights advocate, an expert on African American history and 20th century politics and the author of the critically-acclaimed “White Rage.” She will be interviewed by Ayanna Thompson, director of the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and professor in the ASU Department of English, and Mako Ward, faculty head and clinical assistant professor in the ASU School of Social Transformation. The interview will be followed by a Q&A session.
Don’t miss the chance to share in such a timely and insightful conversation! For more details about this event and its speakers visit the event page here and register here.
In this week’s Contributor Update, we are highlighting past contributor Kristina Moriconi and her recently published lyric narrative, In The Cloakroom of Proper Musings. It tells the story “of one woman’s joy juxtaposed alongside her need to survive.”
We previously featured Kristina’s essay “To Make It Make Sense” in Issue 17 of Superstition Review and are very excited for this book debut. In addition to In The Cloakroom of Proper Musings, Kristina has also published a poetry collection, No Such Place, and has been featured in the nonfiction anthology Flash Nonfiction Food.
We are proud to announce that the theme of Issue 26, our inaugural themed issue, is Social Justice. On behalf of Arizona State University and the College of Integrative Sciences and Arts, we have chosen to dedicate this issue to work that promotes inclusion and explores new ways to dismantle racial and social inequality. We believe in the importance of magnifying voices that have been traditionally undermined by our histories, institutions, policies, laws, and habits of daily life.
We hear you and are here for you on your journey to inspire change through art.
What Is Social Justice?
Social Justice is defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as “Justice in terms of the distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges within a society.” It is a movement for change to improve the lives of individuals who are not treated fairly or justly in our society. It is a choice to stand as a community in support of what we believe in.
We believe that everyone deserves an equal chance, regardless of their race, gender, sexuality, religion and any other part of who they are.
In Worstward Ho, Samuel Beckett says, “Sick of the either, try the other.” To write, or to live and to love is to exist in the either. When is it time to try something else? How long must we wait? How many others are there?
When we write, if we scrawl a story, scribble a poem, even if we use a keyboard, we bring something to life, we invite others (do these others include the other I seek) to love as we have loved, to live as we have lived, to rethink our thoughts. Should I say imagination? Should I remind us that the root of the word imagination is image? The images we live are the real sensory experiences the world offers. The images we write create another possibility, a sensory experience made of words. Nothing works harder than words, but when we look closer, they are only words. Is this the other?
Something written is not a lived experience, but it is a version. It may be something that has never happened, and as we write, it happens. Anything we write, it happens. Maybe the other arrives.
Twelve years ago, I found my best friend dead. I have tried to write about it. I lived it, and many times, I have tried to write about it. Version after version, it doesn’t hold together. It is all either. Not enough other.
I knock. No answer.
I stand on the porch of my friend Tom’s trailer house, the trailer where I lived when I was in grad school. Tom let me live there for four years in his spare bedroom, rent free.
I knock again. No answer.
I turn the key, walk in. I say his name. I walk through the kitchen. He is in the hallway on his back on the floor. His eyes are open. He wears a dirty, old t-shirt and boxer shorts. The soles of his feet are toward me. His genitals spill from the right leg of his shorts. I look away. I suppose he was walking to the kitchen, got light-headed, and sat down on the floor. Then, he laid back. Maybe he knew he was dying. Maybe he just wanted to rest.
I say his name again. I bend down, take his cold wrist. I feel his neck. No pulse. I stand. I walk back out the door.
I enter again. He is still on the floor, still dead.
The evening before, I begged him to let me take him back to the doctor. He’d been there earlier in the week. They’d said he had a sinus infection. Does it matter? Do you need to know what his death certificate said? Now, as a metaphor, does he live again? If I had stayed with him that night, if I had refused to leave until he went to the doctor, would I be telling a different story? Where is the other when you need it?
Should I tell a different story now? I call his name, and Tom sits up, adjusts his boxers, and says, “Weldon Kees’ death wasn’t a suicide.” An angel breaks through the floor with a crowbar, climbs up into the room, and takes us all out to get ice cream.
Ok. Fine. People die, but what happens to our writing? Is it either or other? How many drafts have I let go too soon? Do I diminish my old friend by using his death as a figure? Am I grieving? Where is the other now?
I sit and wait. Will something worth saving appear on this page?