For the last 24 hours, I have been an A+ editor (but a crappy sleeper). Last night, I tore through my pile o’ reads for Vestal Review. Today, I polished off my stack for JMWW Journal. This weekend, I actually get to edit some stuff for JMWW, rather than simply assess. Juicy, long-awaited editing, here I come!
There is a nice story—not true—that holds when Hitler decreed all Sweden’s Jews wear yellow stars, their King replied, “If our Jews wear yellow stars, we all wear yellow stars.” Again, nice story; not true.
What would be different if all of Europe had worn yellow? Nothing but yellow.
This is a photo from one rally protesting the visit by Trump this morning to Pittsburg.
She was stretched on her back beneath the pear tree soaking in the alto chant of the visiting bees, the gold of the sun and the panting breath of the breeze when the inaudible voice of it all came to her.
I read Their Eyes Were Watching God in my first-ever Women’s Studies class. I was nineteen years old and in love with Zora Neale Hurston’s lush prose. Set in rural Florida at the turn of the 20th century, Their Eyes Were Watching God is a most intense and most-er satisfying telling of Janie Crawford’s journey as a beautiful, light-skinned black girl to a woman with agency.
It is not surprising that, commercially, the book did terribly. Hurston and who else cared about the lives of Black women in the late 1930s, when the book was written?
Rediscovered in the 1970s, Their Eyes Were Watching God went on to greatly influence the work of the next wave of African-American writers such as Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, and Rita Mae Brown.
GREATLY INFLUENCED BY ZORA NEALE HURSTON:
This week, all week, jmww journal is publishing a special issue: all flash nonfiction, all week. Titled “In the Pocket,” pieces 350 words of fewer have been running as of last Friday. New pieces post every day, through this coming Friday.
By way of a preview, please follow along as Walburga Appleseed wrestles with a question that continues to plague this nation, down to the individual.
What It Is by Walburga Appleseed
“It’s just a blob,” says the counselor on the other end of the line. “Just a blob of cells. It doesn’t even have a heartbeat yet.”
She is trying to be helpful and kind, and I want to believe her, but the thing that invited itself into my womb is not a blob. It is a universe.
- Saskatchewan by Mindy Haskins Rogers
- You and I Were Never Going to Trade Spare Keys by H.E. Fisher
- Philoxenia by Lisa Reily
- Maybe in the Fall by Sue Repko
- A Daughter’s Plea by Sara Siddiqui Chansarkar
- Stop Everything You’re Doing, and Observe Carefully the Numbers by Mark Budman
- Boys in the Snow by Samantha Claire Updegrave
- Coronach by Linda Kempe
- Fat Black Woman With No Ass But Breasts That Make Up For It by Katherine D. Morgan
Last year, I was a nominee. This year, as an editor, it was my privilege to nominate. My nominations are in the Nonfiction category. I listed the other categories’ noms, just in case you’d like to read those, as well.
Best of luck to …
Sorrow for the Wings by Shawn McClure
But It Is Dark by Jennifer Fliss
Leave Her Wild by Shannon L. Bowring
Lifecolor Indoor Latex Paints – Whites and Reds by Kristen Ploetz
My latest editorial undertaking, starring author Richard Prins (pictured below with two fellows who show up in his charming and honest nonfiction, Already Yesterday.)
This is a scared man’s bet.
–from “A Prayer Called Raspberry Affair,” the newest essay on jmww,