Month: November 2018

Book Review: Micah Perks’ “True Love”

BY: A.M. Larks

Everyone I know is looking for a way to escape, hit pause on reality, and just take a breath; get immersed in something else, someone else, anything else because the real world seems too much to bear. And I am no exception. I do it too. Because at its heart, that’s what reading is: a way to escape the world around you, which makes it ironic that my escape would be reading about characters who are trying to escape their own complicated fictional lives in True Love And Other Dreams of Miraculous Escape by Micah Perks.

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KICKING: A Coming-of-Age Tale of Two Fetuses

By Karina Cochran

 

CHARACTERS:

HAROLD (any age, any gender)

FRANK (any age, any gender)

(the names Harold & Frank are placeholders; they never say each other’s names)

SETTING: A small space (chairs, pillows, blocks) all pink, representing a womb.

 

(HAROLD and FRANK sit in two chairs next to each other. Harold is sitting on top of a chair, his feet resting on the seat. Frank is sitting in the chair with his feet solidly on the ground. Harold is slightly hunched, reaching toward Frank’s body. Frank is leaning over the chair against Harold’s legs. They are each entangled in pink ropes, surrounded and holding pink cushions.)

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Book Review: Nicole Chung’s “All You Can Ever Know”

BY: A.M. Larks

It is our origin stories that shape us. How we came to be in this world matters almost as much as what we do in it. There is a natural and innate curiosity to know the facts that happened before our consciousness, that ties us to our personal histories, to our culture, and to a larger family history. “Family lore given to us as children has such a hold over us, such staying power. It can form the bedrock of another kind of faith, one to rival any religion, informing our beliefs about ourselves, and our families, and our place in the world,” Nicole Chung writes in All You Can Ever Know. These stories are often simplified down to almost anecdotal summation, like my spouse who blames his perpetual tardiness on being late for his own due date. He came out a month late but only by inducement. He was late in the beginning and therefore will always be late.

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TCR Talks with Ruth Nolan

BY: Nathania Seales Oh

In a time when the power of a woman’s voice rings louder and clearer than ever, Ruth Nolan is putting her money where her mouth is. From the beautiful ecopoetry in her latest project, Fire and Rain: Ecopoetry of California, where she acted as coeditor and contributor, to her deeply personal poetry collection Ruby Mountain, Nolan is, in a word, an activist. She is a profound advocate for the respect and conservation of the California desert, a landscape she has always called home. She speaks not only to its beauty but also to its transformative power. Nolan tells of our relationship, history, and encroachment upon lands where wildfires have burned for centuries. Yes, it’s true. Wildfires are not a new thing. Our living in the places where they unfold, is. She also reminds her readers, students, and fan base of the importance of speaking your truth. As we witness this watershed moment in time, The Coachella Review is honored to spend time in conversation with the passionate and incomparable Ruth Nolan.

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Goðafoss

BY: Jennifer Harvey

She heard them, before she saw them. Felt the tremor in the soles of her feet, as the energy shuddered through her. And when she turned around, there they were. Horses. Too many to count.

She watched them ford the river at a shallow point where the rocky bed was visible, their snorts as wild and free as the rush of the water, and the sight of them frightened her. Something about the movement—the ripple and flow of their manes, the sound of hooves on rock, the way the tension in the muscles was so visible, and the whites of their eyes so emphatic—seemed to slow time and silence everything. All she could do was stand there, in that improbable hush, unable to move.

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Book Review: Kim Brooks’s “Small Animals: Parenthood in the Age of Fear”

By: Felicity Landa

Kim Brooks’s book, Small Animals: Parenthood in the Age of Fear, begins with a flurry of emotions that I suspect will be as familiar to other parents as it was to me. In a rush of stress and worry mixed with the impulse to placate her child in a tense situation, Brooks made a split-second decision to leave her four-year-old son in the car while she ran into the store. She was gone for five minutes. She could see the car from the front store windows. And while her son was perfectly fine when she returned, this seemingly trivial decision led to one of the most monumental consequences of Brooks’s parenting years. Someone had filmed her, and sent the video to the police.

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Lust Will Ewigkeit

BY: Robert Beveridge

The needle at seventy.
The plains states pass,
one endless road and miles
of crops. Now and again,
corn becomes barley.

You, next to me.
The heat was too much;
you cropped your hair, left it
at the last rest stop
hundreds of miles ago.
Your t-shirt lies
on the cooler.
Seat half-reclined
window topless
seventy-mile-an-hour wind
dries sweat before it forms.

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Letter to My Scottish Grandmother

By Priscilla Long

I remember fusty objects, old-fashioned over-politeness, over-furnished rooms. Antimacassars—those lace doilies fixed on the armrests and headrests of upholstered chairs. Paisley-patterned rugs, floral wallpaper, framed scenes of cows, a framed embroidered locomotive. The grandfather clock. You kept parakeets in birdcages. I keep a framed drawing that once hung in your little house, the head of a girl. Who was she? What did she mean to you? I have no idea. There’s no one left who could possibly know.

I remember your Scottish accent, the way you said bean for been. How have you bean?

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Book Review: “Writers Resist: The Anthology 2018”

BY: J. Markowitz

Writers Resist: The Anthology 2018 (Running Wild Press) edited by Kit-Bacon Gressitt and Sara Marchant is a compilation of fiction, poetry, and essays originally published on WritersResist.org, an online literary journal established in the aftermath of Trump’s election. The Resistance is a decentralized activist movement against the powers that led to Trump’s election; the Anthology is a response to the question of the role of the writer in that movement. The book is activism in writing; its pages, a space for debate, confronting oppressive paradigms, and expressing solidarity.

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TCR Talks with Mag Gabbert

BY: J. Markowitz

The physicality of Mag Gabbert’s poetry and essays is dreamily overwhelming. We enter a twilight through the medium of a body—her body—which her craft makes so palpable that it could be our own. Via the sensations of her vulnerabilities, Gabbert delivers us to the liminal spaces between pleasure and shame, power and exploitation, existence and the body. She takes us to the edge of her mortality, because it is there that we are most aware of our own aliveness.

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