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Posts Tagged ‘Gloom Cupboard’

I just returned from a work trip to Vegas and was reminded again of the immense darkness that lies behind the relentless marquees, the canned attractions, overdone resorts, and extraverted casinos. What intrigues me are the people, the ones who live off the scraps: the immigrants in stained shirts flicking pornographic cards at tourists; the oversunned men undoing the failed Harmon Hotel, tier by black-shrouded tier; the old men levitating objects on the sidewalks for spare change; the trio of girls in extensions and eyelashes who stood in the Cosmopolitan, smiling nervously at the men who ordered them. Those who have nothing extraordinary to show, or no money to buy the time and wares of others, are seen only in flickers: shadowy figures crossing the six-lane intersections, dragging their bags or carts or unresponsive limbs. They do not rest until the others have finished consuming and, when they do, they are always waking.

This issue is dedicated to the darkness—not necessarily melancholy or evil, but the unseen, quiet vacuum that lies between the attractions that compete for our conscious attention. From what do we turn when we look for diversion? From what do we hide when we fill our time with noise, with conversations, with souvenirs, with spectacles—with what I call the dimestore world?

~T.M. De Vos, Editor

Current Issue

Poetry

Meat and three by Rachel Adams

Dim, but not darker than me and What he pawned was black by Ashlie Allen

Inviable and Who Was the Girl in the Window? by Maureen Alsop

Deciding When to Die by Paul R. Davis

Our Dimension by Peycho Kanev

Three Poems by Simon Perchik

Strand, The Golem Visits Coney Island, and The Golem Rides the Amtrak by Yosef Rosen

Creative Nonfiction

Exhibit I[ntrovert] by Kristin Fitzsimmons

Fiction

Sleep Paralysis by Valerie Borey

Public Viewings by Chase Eversole

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We think of certain experiences with foreboding and dread. Yet a truly harrowing experience surpasses distress. There can be exhilaration–of momentum, of transformation–and if one is lucky enough to survive, of escape.
~Bram Shay, Editor

 

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It’s an old story–the child who goes away and the one who stays, the bargain struck and the bond between them and the promises, spoken and unspoken, that must be kept. What does the prodigal one find if she returns? What sacrifices were asked of the one who stayed?
~Bram Shay, Editor

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I’ll Bring Her Back

Konstantina Sozou-Kyrkou

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Some of the best autobiographies (Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt and Wild Swans by Jung Chang, for example) are by people whose greatest claim to fame is the very writing of that autobiography. The less well-known the person is beforehand, the more need there is for the work to be interesting in its own right. By contrast, autobiographies by people who are already famous often turn out to be incredibly dull or self-serving – or both! (more…)

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Memoirist, blogger, and soon-to-be clinical psychologist Rodica Mihailis has undergone many personal evolutions since her defection from communist Romania in 1981. Her recent memoir, The Gypsy Saw Two Lives (Strategic Book Publishing), itself evolved from her popular blog, chronicles the adaptations that have characterized her life on both sides of the Atlantic with humor and perspective—and a surprising amount of empathy even for the least sympathetic characters. In this fifth edition of “The New Xорошо,” Mihailis expounds upon faith, free will, and the funny side of being ousted from an ambulance in February; under separate cover, Colman O Criodain reviews The Gypsy Saw Two Lives.~T.M. De Vos

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Fiction #130

One time Poetry Editor for Gloom Cupboard, I return to the team as Assistant Fiction Editor. My preference for longer fiction shows in the collection I’ve put together here, but I feel each piece is well worth the ride.   Enjoy!

No Hablo Espanol

Richard Neumayer

The instant we cross the border, Mexicans swarm us. I’ve never seen anything like it. I’m terrified.

They’re husky and black-haired with grizzled temples. They have moustaches. They wear white shirts and dark sunglasses. They shout at us and wave their arms, adding a layer of thick spicy sweat to air already choked with diesel and sewage fumes. (more…)

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