Naked and Fallen
Jenna Citrus

Through Process
Emily Plummer

The Annex
Casey Burke

Tearing at Sores
Regis Louis

The Birth of Our Names
Tesneem Madani

Untitled No. 4
Sarah Kronz

Our Condition
Troy Neptune

On the Fundamentals of Art and the Soul
Ayla Maisey

In the Foreground
Aree Rachel Coltharp

Of a Woman
Jackie Vega

Winafret Casto

The Seventeen Seconds of Odette
Rachel Lietzow

Hidden in Sight
Jenna Citrus

Casandra Robledo

The Passage
Liam Trumble

Resentment as a Kind of Relief
Eric Kubacki

Beauty Standards
Sarah Kronz

Over the Kanawha
Claire Shanholtzer

Anne Livingston

Sponsorships & Acknowledgements


For Empty Spaces
Regis Louis

Liam Trumble

Culled from the Flock
Deborah Rocheleau

Searching for Divinity
Madeleine Richey

From Pillars to Dust
Madeleine Richey

As Best I Could Do
Hoda Fakhari

In Your Absence
Emma Croushore

Sarah Kronz

The Shadow of Paris
Anika Maiberger

The Liffey
Kara Wellman

Memories of Home
Audrey Lee

Jackie Vega

The Beauty in Fracturing
Taylor Woosley

Butcher Paper
Casandra Robledo

Human Scavenger
Devin Prasatek

Babel Was a Second Eden
Luke McCusker

The Painting in Gallery 26
Sydney Crago

Sofia Io Celli

Ayla Maisey



Of a Woman

The position of the gear shift in your car
will be precisely where your wound meets
moving cord of tendon. And while in front
of the mirror, as you peel away the bandage,
you’ll wonder why you’ve never given blood,
which is really just practice for seeing
your own blood. The iron will settle
on your tongue, but that isn’t why the color
in your head is now pooling at your feet.
Because almost losing consciousness,
you will learn, feels like black velvet pressed
against your nose and mouth, feels like sinking
a real flower in a wet foam block. And later
in the evening—when you lie heavy in your bed
like a cellphone drying out in long jasmine rice,
when the blood is thick but smooth like blue
detergent on the rim of a rinsing basin—you will
fall asleep with the lights on, backlit in front
of the window like an animal crossing traffic,
like a billboard in the shape of a woman,
like a mountain, only softer. 


About The Author

Jackie Vega is a senior writing major and French and English minor at Grand Valley State University. She is the editor in chief of Fishladder, Grand Valley’s undergraduate literature and arts journal, and she also works in the university’s library as a research consultant. After graduation, she plans to pursue an MLS as well as an MFA in poetry.