How We Wrote It: “The Reach of a Root”

Micaela Maftei and Laura Tansley

Successful literary collaborations are fascinating and rare. Recently, we published Micaela Maftei and Laura Tansley’s story “The Reach of a Root” on KRO. As part of our ongoing interest in exploring the writer’s craft, we thought it would be fun…

Wolf

Ash Bowen

I’ve sweated through the panting night.

I prowl the hills above the house
where you’ve hidden our daughter
from the fangs

Teufelsberg

Aleš Šteger

From the top of the Eiffel Tower’s little cousin one could see across the green endlessness all the way to the Alps and Urals. Only lakes, which like tiny snakes were dragged to the southwest, broke up the monolithic forests, the evening glare of traffic jams on the roads, above which the trace of an airplane every so often sewed together the clouds like threading a roast.…

Sun on Your Back

Bonnie Levinson

A young enthusiastic woman in her early twenties with an interest in the arts approached me recently, curious about my career path. Was there a particular experience or person that motivated or inspired me? …

weekend-readsSteep Declension

John Hollander

The fortune-teller was nonspecific: Will
    I have to fall into some silly well
        Or smash a borrowed car into a wall?…

Rusalka’s Long Legs

Olivia Clare

What she said I believed. My great-great-grandmother Ula could not walk from six to nine, the age I was when she told me why. Her face had a rutted linen-like skin. She had arthritic knees, atrophied legs like a doll’s.…

The Killer

J. A. Bernstein

Private Rotem Katan had never fought a man with his fists before, but as he lay straddling Private Mikhail Koslovsky, he thought rather of the first time he made love. …

Do Something, Anything

Sam Nam

Even though it will never happen, the creep wants to hug the new gal. He wants to hug her because she looks sad. She looks like she’s going to quit or eat pills or sleep with someone in accounting. He…

Tomorrow and Tomorrow

Peter Trachtenberg

Some radio stations refused to play it because of the sexual voltage of the lyrics. It’s ranked 126 on Rolling Stone’s list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time (“Like a Rolling Stone” is number one). …

Encounter

Jerry Harp

It was a hotel lobby. It was
his face, dense with lines like carved stone,
emerging from the other faces.

Last Indian Massacre

Gabriel Urza

The trial is thirty years in the past, and the only reason people still talk about the white girl Lana Thomas and my brother Danny is because of the business with the livestock.…

Sex Education

Christa Romanosky

2011: Televisions broadcast the Arab Spring. Scientists invent a battery fueled by body movements: a snap of fingers or a heartbeat. Your parents finally get divorced. When you fill out your taxes, you have the option of claiming yourself. …

Homing in: Peter Gizzi’s Threshold Songs

Andy Frazee

In his essay “Responsibilities of the Poet,” Robert Pinsky says that the poet’s job is to attend to “the unpoetic,” which the poet can discover “only by looking away from what society has learned to see poetically.”…

Perhaps

Yannis Ritsos

From The Kenyon Review, New Series, Winter, 1995, Vol. XVII, No. 1 Translated from modern Greek by Martin McKinsey It’s quiet out tonight. At the window, motionless, the black swan with glittering eyes. The clock has stopped. Your fingers add…

From “The Animal-Tree”

Gellu Naum

Generally we cannot know for sure whether it is a good thing or not to speak of that banished thing
of the well-known
strange thing we habitually do when alone
of the migrations to the gentle labyrinths where moans can be of an immeasurable value

UNFINIShed

Kathryn Martins

Her fingertips were neither hot nor cold, and since the sunlight was slow to wane I found myself waiting to draw the blinds against what was no view at all: burnt grass and weeds, metal rails dented along the dull, dizzy road.…

Letters To and From Bulgaria

Alex Miller and Boris Deliradev

Letter to a Bulgarian Friend Dear Boris, Clearly you are free, the people of Bulgaria I mean. Men and women walk safely in the streets of Sofia at all hours of day and night. One feels no sense of threat,…

weekend-readsF. Scott Fitzgerald

John Berryman

From The Kenyon Review, Winter 1946, Vol. VIII, No. 1 “In the Twenties, his heyday, he was a kind of king of our American youth”—so a writer of Fitzgerald’s generation remembered him when he died five years ago. It would…

Vodník

Chelsea Bolan

On the morning the boy went missing, a fisherman waded into the river. He took a pinch of tobacco out of his pouch and sprinkled it over the water. Vodník, he said, here is your tobacco. How about a fish…

The Reach of a Root

Micaela Maftei and Laura Tansley

Clare got caught looking at her cunt. A mirror between her legs, her white knickers rolled down around her knees, in the shower block of the girls’ changing rooms.…

A Note on Learning Gaelic

Brian Doyle

Some time ago I wrote a novel in which there was, surprisingly, a lot of Gaelic, and while I tried to write my own raw rough Gaelic, I had the wit to ask an Irish-speaking friend of mine to check and correct all the silly errors I surely had made. …

weekend-readsAppetite

Carol Frost

Would you mind less or more the trout’s
coughed-up shrimp and two hemispheres
of yellow roe in the split belly if you ate
at earth’s common table knowing beak and knowing claw,

Sign up for Our Email Newsletter