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Cover
Table of Contents
Editor's Notes
Donations
Submission Guidelines
Website

Stories & Essays
...gone tomorrow
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By jp Rodriguez
Barbie and the Burn Scars
_ By Dion OReilly
Bright Lights
_ By Nicole Exposito
Cricket Theory
_ By Sophia Alev
Dieciseis
_ By Kate Delany
Fines Double In Work Zone
_ By Brian Stumbaugh
Guy and Doll
_ By John P. Loonam
Lake
_ By Erlynda Jacqui Chan
Lala's Diner
_ By Nicole Exposito
Laundry
_ By Allison P. Boye
Love Story
_ By Cynthia Burke
Magic Bags and Forgotten Princesses
_ By Ken Goldman
Squirrels
_ By Benjamin Buchholz

Poetry
Baking Bread and Other Subtleties
_ By Leland Jamieson
Corpus Christi
_ By Taylor Collier
Early Cold
_ By Yvette A. Schnoeker-Shorb
Ekphrasis at the Mall
_ By James Owens
Games In Your Uncle's Den
_ By Robin Stratton
My Spanish Rose
_ By Jose Rivera
Northern Lights, Southern Soul
_ By E.F. Kramer
Posted on Fifth Avenue
_ By J.R. Salling
Sirens
_ By Naiya Wright
Summer Sojourn
_ By Cheryl Butterweck-Bucher
The Himalayan Sunset
_ By Rohith Sundararaman
Time Decays, Clots
_ By Kristine Ong Muslim
Turn
_ By Terrance Schaefer
Where You Rest
_ By Stephanie N. Barnes

Art & Photography
Bissan Alhussein
_ Paintings
E.W. Hung
_ Photography
Papa Osmubal
_ Drawings
Linda Pakkas
_ Drawings
Anastasiya Tarasenko
_ Paintings
Filip Wierzbicki
_ Paintings and Digital Photography
Nancy Xu
_ Paintings and Drawings

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Cricket Theory
By Sophia Alev


My Maths teacher is a genius. You may not think it to look at her, but she is. Everyone who has ever needed a solution to anything logistical or mathematical knows she is. The trouble is, like most genii, she doesn't have a clue about anything else.

When she laughs, which she does sparsely and spontaneously, her head harks back, and her sizeable torso shakes, making everyone feel awkward when the staccato notes hit the air. She closes her eyes and shakes her hair while she talks, and she wears big baggy pyjamas on her way in to school. On her bicycle.

I wonder about her sometimes, mostly silly little trivial things like what colour her living room is, what her best friend is like and where that wonderfully pretty surname comes from. I like to imagine a different situation each lesson. One week she lives in a hostel for young immigrants and cooks them Borsch whilst teaching them Dijkstra's Algorithm, and the next, perhaps she lives in an apartment over a garage with her partner, who is a butch mechanic and desperately in love with her.

She teaches me to differentiate, and I see her in a billowing frock standing on a hill somewhere in rural Yorkshire. When we go on to Integration, she is standing in a power suit giving a presentation to a room full of directors before going home to an empty penthouse overlooking a glittery skyline. She draws squiggly lines over a graph and introduces a new plane. She is in a laboratory with huge goggles on, swearing as her mixture refuses to do as she wills, smacking away the intruding hand of her fellow scientist.

The board is full of hieroglyphics, symbols from East and West and quite occasionally from the top of her head, too. "Pythagoras", someone whispers, and her eyes light up. I wonder if she has Greek blood coursing through her veins, or perhaps she is a sister of Lesbos. I think she is, and she comes suddenly alive to me. She is a genius with a sexual appetite. I cower in my plastic chair and wonder why everyone else is not doing the same. The bell rings and I leave my imaginings for a while, sure to return to them during next week's lesson.

Next week becomes this week becomes today. She is nowhere to be seen. The girl in front of me is busy scribbling homework in her notebook. Others have already started leaving. A distant door slams and there she is, a vision of white in the doorway. The air has to catch up with her as she moves towards the board. The pyjamas are nowhere to be seen, I realise. The draught from her entrance finally smacks my cheeks. I blush.

White trousers, a white collared shirt and a thick, white vest top. There is nothing to imagine today—she is there, in all her English glory. Three lions dance across her chest. She wants to be excused, but ventures no further information. Once again, she starts drawing her graphs on the board, and as she does a sweat patch is revealed to the class. A few snigger but I am fascinated. Does she play cricket every morning? Did she learn it in the Yorkshire hills? Or is her butch partner a fan? The lesson flies by and she laughs occasionally, stark and awkward, but I am not concentrating on the work.

I would rather think about the connection between my Maths teacher and cricket. Her Sigmas become wickets, her S's, n's and x's all balls falling across the board. Her pace around the board becomes a run-up before she ventures a new line of calculation, another deduction to smash towards our minds. Her board marker is a cricket bat with which to deflect assumptions, and to strike at a particularly nasty question.

I watch her with awe, and cannot for the life of me write down anything she is doing. After she leaves, I am the only one left in the room. I pick up the board marker from her desk and treat is as a sporting souvenir. After all, it's not every day that you witness a genius playing cricket.

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SOPHIA ALEV was born in the eye of a political storm. Culture and language are her passions, and her fiction is largely about what happens when you melange them all together. Her favourite things include shopping, coffee and plotting revolution late into the night.

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