Morning Commute by Ally Malinenko

Your One Phone Call

Hey, he says,
you look like my wife.
You Indian?
Hey, he says,
You Indian?
Let me show you a picture of my wife.
Look at that.
Ain’t she gorgeous?
She looks Indian.
But she’s a Puerto Rican.
Isn’t that funny.
I was so excited.
Thought I bagged me an Indian
or a Pakistani
and then she tells me
No man, I’m Puerto Rican.
Close enough, right?
She’s still beautiful, right?
Like you.
I gotta say, I think you’re the most beautiful thing
on this train.
I mean, look at you.
Like my wife.
What’s your name?
Oh, Dasha.
Like with a D.
That’s very exotic.
I like that.
You’re Indian?
Yeah, that’s what I thought.
Dasha, I’m Anthony.
I gotta tell you,
you’re the most beautiful thing
on this train.
I’m not bothering you, right?
I mean, you got a book.
I can…

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Sasha And Dasha by Oleg Razumovsky

Your One Phone Call

Dasha loved Sasha, and Sasha loved great russian poet Alexander Pushkin. He memorized one hundred poems of the poet and shone in the classroom. The teacher of literature, Larissa Ivanovna, praised Sasha very much. She loved him and strongly encouraged to love poetry and all Russian literature. But the student of the same class as Sasha, the tatar named Rashid, did not like Pushkin at all and often muttered in literature classes: fucking Pushkin, Pushkin sucks, Pushkin is an asshole … No wonder the real Russian people claim that we have borrowed the foul language from the Tatars. This is probably true. It is clear that the literature teacher hated Rashid and would like him to be transferred to another class, another school or kicked out of the city and the country for good.

So, Dasha loved Sasha. Sure. He was so great, he recited Pushkin’s poems very well. Dasha…

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Pathways by Tamar Hodes

Your One Phone Call

They did not usually cycle that far. Jonny and Matt liked to keep to the familiar routes near their bungalow (this was what their mother requested, anyway) but today they both seemed to have agreed to cycle further away from home without even having discussed it. This bond that the brothers had bemused others. Their intuitive understanding of each other could make others easily feel excluded. Maybe their foray was a way of escaping the atmosphere at home where their mother, still grieving for her mother, seemed constantly sad.

So today they cycled higher up the Pembrokeshire pathways that led along the cliff edge where, down beneath them, the sea shrank lower and smaller the higher they climbed, like water being drained from a glass. As they cycled, their cheeks red now and their puffing more audible, the water glistened and blinked in the sharp sunlight.

When they grew tired…

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Baby Number 4 by Jo Else

Your One Phone Call

She could have stopped at
But four will show how rich she is.
Now she can draw and play all day,
Paint sparkly cards and faff around,
Make lemonade that tastes like piss,
While Latvian cleaners do the bog
And Aussie nannies mind the kids.

Her husband barely contains his rage
Though much too suave to say.
In six months’time he will be gone
She’s digging her own grave.

Jo Else It’s no fun being a dyspraxic with a deficit visual memory. Imagine if Sylvia Plath had to do formatting- she’d have topped herself even sooner…. Poetry keeps me sane, the rest drives me nuts and I’ve won no awards. And there’s nothing wrong with Readers Wives, my Mum was one.

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Patience And Tenacity: Cutting Stone With Water [Featured Poet]

Hamline Lit Link

This is a column by Vinita Agrawal.

Liu was born in Changchun, Jilin, in 1955 to an intellectual family. In 1969, during the Down to the Countryside Movement, Liu’s father took him to Horqin Right Front Banner, Inner Mongolia. After he finished middle school in 1974, he was sent to the countryside to work on a farm in Jilin.

In 1977, Liu was admitted to the Department of Chinese Literature at Jilin University, where he created a poetry group known as “The Innocent Hearts” (Chi Zi Xin) with six schoolmates. In 1982, he graduated with BA in literature before being admitted as a research student at the Department of Chinese Literature at Beijing Normal University, where he received an MA in literature in 1984 and started teaching as a lecturer thereafter. That year, he married Tao Li, with whom he had a son named Liu Tao in 1985, Liu served as…

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Pickup at Clinton Street by Steven Allan Porter

Your One Phone Call

Feet step over cracks-
some cracks are steeper than others…
that’s when two tall, anemic men in
well-fitted suits appear out of a sleek,
long black car; they’re silent, avoiding eye contact
with onlookers as they both pull white latex gloves
over their gangly fingers, as if they were preparing to perform
surgery publically, or handling an antique vose at a crime scene.
One suited man grabs the immobile victim by his legs
and the other man picks him up under his arms;
they wrap him in a maroon bag and zip it up.

They carefully place the man in back of
the black car and it slowly sputters away.
An ice cream truck drives cautiously down the block;
children lick their cones clean, while the bloodstain congeals.

Steven Allan Porter Steven Allan Porter was born February 5, 1992 in Coral Springs, FL to a Jewish mother and a German father. His influences…

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