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  • Her Men Used to be Boys

    by Naomi Leigh The saving grace was that the bar was loud and whatever comments Connor did or didn’t make and whatever comments Esme did or didn’t hear were probably at least partially drowned out by Kylie Minogue and whirring floor fans. Stay forever and ever, and ever, and ever La la la la la la la la But he did make the comments, of course. She knew he did because she knew Connor Anderson and she’d known him since he was a boy with a bowl cut and a gap between his crooked front teeth that his tongue was always glued to and he used to walk up to her door at the end of the cul-de-sac and jump high enough that he could reach the doorbell and her mom would answer. Hi Mrs. Findlay, is Natalie there? And she always was there, and when they sat in the basement frozen in time beneath the humming of the HVAC and the incandescent lights she was pretty sure they could play Mario Kart and munch on Oreos together forever if not for the ill-timed interjections of beeping ovens and dinner calls from moms. And sure, Connor never let her play Mario, but she liked Toad almost just as well anyway. She also remembers when Connor became a man. It happened in ninth grade, four or five years after the halcyon days of Mario Kart—she was on the lacrosse field because the girls’ team played right before the boys’ team and when Connor showed up with his teammates she ran to hug him. At first she thought he was wearing shoulder pads underneath his pinny but he wasn’t, and he towered over the defense pole which he gripped with one hand as the other half-heartedly encircled her. She heard his teammate say Get it, Ando and she saw Connor smirk and raise his fist and make a little humping motion before mouthing I’m sorry to her quietly enough that his teammates couldn’t hear. It wasn’t so bad, all things considered, Natalie figured. Antonio became a man when he sent her a Snapchat of his dick. Hunter became a man when he got his first girlfriend and stopped talking to her for a year. I don’t know, Nat, she’s being fucking crazy. That night her mom tried to comfort her with Carvel chocolate hazelnut from the mall food court, and it worked for a minute until she noticed a stray Oreo chunk had found its way to the lower corner of the waffle cone and the memories felt so close and the present so distant. Natalie snapped back to the present and the lacrosse field faded from her vision, replaced by the bar’s floor-length mirrors and gauche lounge chairs and double entendre cocktails. She saw Esme standing there, her short hair curly and her skin glowing despite the heat, but Esme’s characteristic wide smile was gone and in its place was a furrowed brow. She was sweaty and her eyeshadow mixed in with her sweat and it was dripping down her face while she yelled at her. She couldn’t make out every word but she was able to hear the important ones—This fucking cis white guy…I swear to God Natalie tell me I won’t get thrown out of this bar right now…This fucking city needs to ban transplants… She met Esme’s crew through some mutual friends at The New School and she thought it might be good for Connor to tag along. After all, Connor had confided in Natalie after one too many G&Ts that he wanted new friends and that the other guys were fine, but they were kind of assholes. All they talked about was work. And Connor didn’t want to be an asshole. He told her he wanted to party in Brooklyn, and she didn’t have the heart to tell him that there were assholes there too, with different asshole styles and different asshole words but assholes all the way down. She also didn’t have the heart to correct him when he’d tell her she was so chill, because who doesn’t want to be chill? After all, Natalie reasoned, compared to her friends, maybe she was chill. She never policed her exes’ following lists, and it even made her laugh when Connor showed her Dave Chappelle’s skit about women who dress slutty. Natalie’s mom used to groan when her dad laughed at old Sam Kinison skits about frigid wives and repressed husbands, but her mom also thought Friends was the pinnacle of comedy, so what did she know anyway? The last time Natalie brought Connor out with her friends, it went about as smoothly as a drunk night with him could. They had all just left a downtown Manhattan gallery meet-and-greet with an open bar where they saw their friend Angel’s latest exhibition–Uncarved Dreams. Connor behaved about as well as she could have hoped in a room full of “totemic wooden sculptures dedicated to honoring queer Afro-Indigenous bodies,” although he did whisper “my body’s got some wood, too” at one point to her, and Natalie giggled after quickly looking around to make sure nobody else heard. They were about to descend to the train at Chambers Street when Esme saw the City Hall Park fountain behind them. “It’s so hot, I swear I could jump into that fountain right now if I didn’t spend two hours on a full beat,” Esme sighed. “You dare me?” Connor interjected. Natalie’s chest tightened. Here it is, she thought. But Esme didn’t flinch. “I fucking dare you Connor.” Before she even finished the sentence, he was off to the races. He threw off his white linen button down and chinos until he was only in his boxers, sprinting to the fountain and swan diving into the pool of water. After several seconds he emerged, and soon began to thrust against the phallic sculpture at the center of the fountain, like it was the most natural next course of action in the world. “My totemic queer body, ladies!” he shouted. To Natalie’s relief, Esme was laughing so hard she was struggling to stand upright. He smirked at Natalie from the fountain, and raised his eyebrows at her. See? He said with his eyes. It’s all good, Nat. And then she laughed some more. Connor made her cry sometimes, too. Ever since sixth grade when Connor and his dad moved to a smaller apartment with fewer ghosts, Connor’s mom changed every few months. Sometimes it was whichever marketing major he was dating at the time. Other times it was a bottle of Woodford Reserve, or Roxicodone, or the unwashed cotton sheets of his bed in Kips Bay that sheltered him for hours longer than they were supposed to on a weekday morning. But most often it was Natalie. On one such morning Natalie was tucked under those sheets with him, after yet another failed attempt to get him out of the house, he leaned over to her and kissed her on the forehead. She would’ve loved you, Nat, he whispered. And he held her tight and she held him back because he needed it and because, she figured, sometimes you just do a job not because it feels good or because it even makes much sense at all, but because somebody asked. And now Esme wasn’t yelling anymore but crying. Connor looked at Natalie and she hoped desperately to find another knowing look in his eyes that would assure her it’s all good, but it wasn’t there. Instead he shrugged and he mouthed that he was sorry but his teeth were perfectly straight and his hair was combed to the side and she pretended not to notice his gestures. It occurred to her that she’d held Connor through tears so many times and Esme so few—and she saw before her another job to do—so she pulled Esme toward her and ran her fingers through her hair as she guided her to the bathroom. Just to be there in your arms Won't you stay Won't you lay Stay forever and ever, and ever, and ever Naomi Leigh is a writer based in New York City.

  • Four Stories

    by Daisuke Shen Faces At times, I have fooled others into thinking we are the same. Inside lovers’ rooms, I would squeeze the other’s face—soft at first, then so hard it often scared them—under false pretenses of intimacy. But I only wanted to feel their incendiary contours, the limitations of their cheekbones. I never allowed anyone to do the same. You of all people know that the world is not fair to people like myself. I was working the graveyard shift as always, at the job no one knew I had. Exhausted, I almost slipped on it. A plain, completely unremarkable face; of course I believed no one wanted it. It fit me perfectly. Every day I wore it, washed it, slept and dreamed inside of it. People began to smile at me. I quit my second job. But one day I walked into the courtyard and all my new friends with their summer hair fell silent. Dietary Freedom My first day of dietary freedom felt majestic and grotesque. I found myself thinking about whale arteries, which are shaped like large foreskins with the penises missing inside. I ate twenty bags of Planters’ honey peanuts and four bags of Cheerios. I tried to eat my brother’s ancient CD’s from high school, but they cut the edges of my mouth. I am beginning to think that freedom is overrated, that CD’s should be made more edible, and that in two days I will walk down the aisle to marry a woman I do not love. Sex in Kitchens I am fucking a man on his expensive designer table. I have been riding him for around 30 minutes already. My thighs tremble with effort. He makes no sound and does not even look much at my body; his eyes are fixed upon my face, the gaze something more intense than pleasure—an unsettling and inarticulate hunger. In the warm light, his kitchen is disconcertingly clean — all marble, not a dirty plate or stain in sight. Even my sister, the cleanest person I knew, would at least leave a glass out from time to time, and then she died. When I first entered his apartment, I’d taken off my shoes. They belonged to a previous lover. I scoped out the bathroom while he pissed. There was nothing in the enormous bedroom save for a mattress, one potted plant, and a carton of Parliaments. When we first met, we were on molly. The drug makes me too open, open enough for all the good stuff to come out. I told him my dream about the doctor and the woman crouching like a cat on a kitchen island, the whole kitchen somehow fake-seeming, a movie set, the long white surgical table upon which they would lay my mother. How she’d clung to my arm, pleading: Don’t leave. She’d cried just like that when she’d lost custody of me as a child, desperate, pathetic: Don’t leave. He told me nothing about himself, not even his name. He asked our friend for my number after I left. After fifteen minutes: a slight inhale. He holds my cheek as I start crying. I know he is prematurely grieving me. I cry not because I am sad, but because of how clean his kitchen is, how small our fucking makes me feel. DESIRABLE ORGANIC CHICKEN I sold naked photos of myself while dying. Think: desirable, organic chicken. Confetti unspooled from my ceiling. It wasn't my birthday. There was no cause for celebration. I'd fucked a man and a man'd fucked me. Those are two separate sentences that mean two different things. In that summer I moved into a room the size of a castrated Buddha's palm. I grew fat and happy in the city, like a chicken before slaughter. I never say his name out loud, but now you'll want to know: ( ) On Sundays, church organs praise a God I've long since left behind. Daisuke Shen is the author Funeral, co-authored with Vi Khi Nao (KERNPUNKT Press 2023). Their debut short story collection, Vague Predictions & Prophecies, is forthcoming August 2024 from CLASH Books. Instagram: @ginsengmasque Twitter: @dai__joubu

  • Babar: King of Chai City

    By: Zachary Swezy Before the Fall There was a focus committee forming for Chai City. He told them he wanted the townspeople to be made of little curry pies but the focus committee ended up being rather unfocused due to hunger. Things unfolded nonetheless. Once the foundation was laid, the jasmine planted, and the smell of masala wafted through the air—it was properly Chai City and it was to hell with any unfocused focus committees. The people made out of curry pie ended up being people who ate a lot of curry pie which was quite alright, economically. A lot of objects were made out of gold which was the style of the times. So, these were aptly named the Golden Ages of Chai City. Babar was regarded as lofty and magnanimous. His people knew him to be well-read and well-intentioned. As one of his first orders of business he nationalized a pickle factory for the people, but named it after himself. King Babar’s Pickle Factory was operated by a number of women he knew from his time in the restaurant industry. They specialized in chutneys and tinned fish. The nonperishables went well with the curry pies and every citizen received a quarterly payout from the company. When Chai City was inevitably colonized and razed by invading Brits, as an elephant displaced, Babar found it in his best interests to move on in search of new stories. Everything was gone, except the pickle factory. A Brit and their kippers, as the saying goes. Academia Seeking shelter from his daily reality and a new home in the world after the fall of Chai City, King Babar was accepted into the refuge of Academia, not quite The Real World, which like the television show named after it, is oppressive with violence. In school, he encountered the philosopher, Derrida, and the way human language tried to place people in the driver’s seat, separate from God and in the end quite separate from other men. He outlined the idea for a show called ‘Of Mice and Minerals’ in his notebook during the first lecture. It wasn’t very good but it had potential. In his painting class, he learned that art can function in many ways. For most of Babar’s life the primary function was to glamorize or amaze. His collection in Chai City was huge and historic before it burned. When he learned in school that art can re-awaken us to the merit of life as we’re forced to lead it, he decided to spend his whole life understanding, through art, why he was forced out of his home. Love and its loss In poetry class, Babar Arvind, The Elephant in the Room, met Her. The one. The one who Muhammad Ali Jinnah had declared the national flower of Pakistan. Jinnah, nicknamed The Hummingbird by his acolytes, was so taken with the young beauty, Jasmine, her namesake was planted in every courtyard in the capital city. She wasn’t even Pakistani but no one was fazed. She was considered by many to be the unofficial princess of Pakistan and as such she felt very bored. Eventually, she got so aggravated that she went to art school. She studied hard, reached the top of her class, and once again became pigstuck with ennui. When the unofficial Princess Jasmine met the deposed King Babar, Lotus of Half-India, they were both severely tired. Once they hit it off, they spent a lot of time watching old movies and waiting for greatness to find them. For six endless months the two students dedicated themselves to becoming bored of one another. Babar could tell it was real love because she would watch bad reality television shows off his broken laptop screen with him. They couldn’t see a thing. When their romance ended it barely felt like an ending. He told her to work on her posture and she refused. It seemed a bit melodramatic to him but that was that. The climax of their relationship didn’t come until exactly one year after they parted ways. Babar felt restless, as a lot of sophomores tend to. He bought a moped but that wasn’t cool and he wanted to stop doing Midnight’s Children stuff. He would not let himself be happy. Neither Jasmine nor Jesus could hold him permanently in their heart, not the way he wanted—and he couldn’t hold them either. On the advice of a pink-haired witch named Angel Aglaomorpha, on the night of a strawberry moon, he cast a spell. That is to say, he took a poem from his notebook and lit it on fire. Then he prayed and prayed to God. Despite his skepticism the spell worked. Calamitously, It worked on a macroscale and in the completely wrong way, as spells tend to do. When Babar set out to reunite the Lotus and the Jasmine, he, silly as he is, forgot how universal that metaphor could be. It was a sloppy spell and a heavy-handed poem. The morning after the strawberry moon, he rolled over to find his phone. Opening his News app, he could immediately see the effects of his spell. Pakistan had declared its undying love for India. They were to be wed. The amount of paperwork and political turmoil was untold. Muslim and Hindu families that had been fissured in the 40’s reunited at long last. The Hummingbird, former leader of the All-Muslim League and Governor General of Pakistan, turned over fifty times per second in his grave. He was moving fast as hell. Bengalis and Kashmiris stood befuddled, wondering where they fit in now. The ripple effects were innumerous, and brought Babar not an inch closer to his past love. IndoPakistan First on a whim and then with the noble goal of elevating journalism into Art, Babar boarded a plane headed straight to the Indo-Pakistani border. He wanted to collect all of the stories he could. Upon arrival, he remembered to call his school. “I’m going to livetweet the reification of Indo-Pakistan.” “Is That Art?” they asked. “It will be,” he answered. His first tweets: “Shit’s popping off.” “Who’s in Indo-Pakistan?” “The McDonald’s menu here is wild, bro.” They received little attention. While “Indians make due when kush comes to shove,” and a photograph of himself by the Ganges captioned “Reporters and locals agree, this river does indeed smell crazy,” garnered middling popularity in low-brow circles. They told him he could have three credit hours towards his independent studies and he could defer the rest of his classes until his return. They were very understanding of his plight. One of his first basic observations was that Indians don’t typically eat cows, and Pakistanis don’t typically eat pigs. He didn’t really see how that would be such an issue until the state-mandated vegetarianism came into play followed by the black market meat, the chicken poachers, the bloodshed, the thousands slewn in the street, and finally the armistice known as The Great Goat Curry Caveat. Everyone could agree on loving goat curry. From Kashmir to Mumbai, Kids Were Being Curried with Great Fervency, one headline read. Years of observations took place. He made himself almost at home, nestled in the mountains. A lot of other journalists seemed to think that the reunion of India and Pakistan was more devastating than the separation. Alot disagreed. School felt like a different lifetime. He became frustrated with them and himself. None of them were connecting the dots. One hand would say something partially true and the other would deny it all. He himself was failing to identify the cohesive themes of the embroilment. He read story after story, each one revealing itself as incomplete. It seemed a mess, not quite like war but not wildly different. When he did read a particularly stirring piece by one of his fellow journalists he’d grapple with his own insecurities. In IndoPakistan, on many days the large elephant was beaten relentlessly for his effeminate manner of speech. People called him “Gaynesh.” Not everyone took kindly to his sorts. One day he grew bored of it and fled the border country and the Kush mountains and the river Ganges. With the sinking feeling about how the school would receive his tardy return, he was again desperate to find a new home. It was on his departing flight while reading the articles he and his colleague produced that he realized all of their stories together began to hint at the beautiful truth he was looking for. He realized then that it took a lot of stories just to tell one. Art School Dropout Because he neglected to check in with his professors for two years, Babar failed out of school. Mercilessly, they had also found a new pickle supplier. To cope, he attended art therapy, where he developed a rare candida yeast infection in his brain^. With his savings dwindling, he decided to live in a leaf cutter ant colony due south of where he was in school. Unfortunately, they had no home for such a large elephant so he lived in the jungle chatting with them and recording their thousand and one stories instead. They had never seen someone so big before and they regarded him regally. The rent he paid was next to nothing and together they formed a modest company of mushroom farmers. He felt right at home. The space was lush and secluded—the clay ruddy and malleable. It was a place the Gods had fled. Babar delighted in making Khôras with his small elephant mouth. He made amorphous statements, noises that danced around words and meanings. If the blind runner Lavi Pinto had not hobbled up to Babar’s encampment, he may have transcended language, given enough time. “Do you know where you are?” asked Lavi behind a pair of circular glasses with one snake curled around two darkly mirrored lenses in a figure eight. “This is where I am. I live here with those very cool ants. They cut down leaves. See,” He showed him, “To feed their mushroom." He was sheepish, afraid to give this unstable man the wrong answer. “Mushrooms? This is Wackistan! Mediocridad! Aren’t you bored?” petitioned Lavi with a loud flatness. Lavi had been blinded in the Helsinki Olympics by a few stray grains of sand. Babar had never heard of those countries but they didn’t sound like great places for him to call home. Nothing seemed to compare to Chai City but he enjoyed frolicking with his boys here. “It’s dreadful here. No single event can significantly change the total, you know?” informed Lavi. He stood and lectured—that was his thing. Babar kind of knew but he thought Lavi was describing a lot of places. He tried to remember what little he knew about statistics. “There is a place with black swans and dragon kings.” The elephant’s hairs perked up tentatively. “It’s the opposite of here, it’s called Extremistan*,” coughed Lavi, rolling a cigarette. Babar hesitated but finally decided to play along. “What’s it like? The place, I mean. Are there a lot of black swans or just the statistically probable amount**?” Lavi exhaled curls of smoke and explained. Apparently, Extremistan is a place equally as tyrannical as Mediocridad. The tyrants there are: The Singular, The Accidental, The Unseen, and The Unpredicted. It is a place subject to Type 2 Randomness. It literally produces black swans. Wealth, Scalability, Celebrity, Planetary Mass, and even humdrum Economic Data all reside there. In truth, the tyrannical boredom he suffered in Mediocridad and everywhere else could make any place sound appealing to the former King. He was a real do-anything kind of guy, he thought. “Tell me about the Dragon swan,” said Babar. “Dragon Kings live beyond Power Laws,” Recited Lavi. “Hm.” “Seriously, check the Wikipedia page!” “They are events, large in size and unique in origin. Think: stampedes, forest fires, earthquakes, or smaller, brain activity.” Lavi soliloquized, “Dragon Kings are more predictable and even more profitable than black swans.” “Lavi, if we are in Mediocridad as you say, what hope is there for us to escape the Tyranny of the Mundane?” With venom in his eyes he said, “I can do acoustic levitation. I have a 3D bioprinter. Ok? T-cells on deck, man. I mean I have a degree in complexity sciences from the University of Chicago.” Babar saw doubt stinging at Lavi and draining him of his charisma. Their conversation came to a halt. Lavi sat smoking in silence while his face contorted from one pained expression to the next. It occurred to Babar that Lavi had not seen himself in many years. He looked weird. A Heroic Journey “Listen,” said Babar, “I’m taking a brief sabbatical from my studies. I am doing self-guided learning. Those leaf cutter ants are teaching me some farming basics. I have a small patch of mushrooms if you’d like me to saute some. I also have them pickled.” Lavi perked up when he ate. “Once we get to Extremistan we just have to produce more stories, more digressions—then we wait for the wealth to roll in. That’s how you make your own black swans.” He crunched into a pickled mushroom, smiling. “Look, you already refused your call to adventure.” “Who are all these animals? When did I refuse what?” asked Babar. “Before I met you. Haven’t you studied?” “I have,” replied Babar. Indignantly gathering up his belongings and packing them into his overnight sack, Babar asked about the stories they would produce once they reached their destination. Lavi rambled off narratives interminably. --- “I thought you were blinded in Helsinki,” worried Babar as Lavi led the way through a dense forest, another piece of border country, this time between the mediocre and the extreme. The longer Babar followed Lavi, the easier it was to see that Lavi had never finished a story in his life. Babar was in the same position he’d always been in: he was stuck with a man suffering his same delusions. Just as Babar’s hopes reached their nadir, a large onyx swan cropped into his field of vision. He thought he had another rare infection in his brain but the statues soon started to outnumber the trees. I think I’d like to be mediocre, Babar thought. Let the predictable become meaningful. Extremistan They reached Extremistan. Typical inhabitants were either gigantic, like Babar, or extremely small. Numbers paraded around without limits, completely unrestrained, even the lewd and lonely ones. “Totals” there were determined by a handful of extreme events. While history leapt forward like a tiger, and fluttered its wings like a hummingbird, it took the participants of history a long time and a lot of stories to understand what was going on. After merely twenty minutes inside the city walls, Babar was approached by armed guards. “Come with us, elephant,” said a tiny man dressed in all black, who spat when he walked. Babar looked back at Lavi, who was fist deep in a bag of grain, chatting gleefully with a man over the constantly fluctuating price of it. He felt like complying. When they reached their destination, Babar was quickly made-up and rushed on stage where he was struck dead in the eyes with a spotlight. He was on a live-taping of This Indo-American Life. The audience wanted to know his story for some reason. Babar did what the situation required. He told the audience about the siege of Chai City, the brave women of his colonized pickle factory, how he fell in love and how in his heartbreak he tried haphazardly to heal a whole nation and then document it for art school. Babar told them how he felt listless sometimes and thirsty for knowledge. In IndoPakistan he learned how little he really knew about geopolitics and how he came to love the tapestry he and his fellow journalist wove together in a very human and imperfect attempt to understand their shared history. He felt ambitious. Babar talked passionately about the mosaic he planned to craft out of the stories told by the leaf-cutters. Our hero discussed the blind sprinter and how he helped lead him to a conclusion. Rapt, the people wanted to hear more. He said he wanted to keep piling on regrets and forgetting them. He wanted to live his life in little yarns. He said he was tired of being bored and he was planning to give up the addictive substance, cold-turkey. Overnight, his episode of This Indo-American Life became a black swan event. The elephant felt like a lottery winner. The event generated millions of stories. He did a book tour. He went on television. A production house eventually bought his story and syndicated it a staggering amount of times during Babar’s life. Once the Ayatollah Mitsubishi declared a fatwa against him, he knew he had made it. Resolution Wealthy and famous, Babar visited school where they presented him with an honorary doctorate in Creative Writing. When the king traveled to Indo-Pakistan he saw there was still turmoil heavy in the air and understood that people will live in a wound and have to make it their home. The logic of why love spells are always so tricky was firmly planted in his brain, but at what cost? Lavi died pushing some boulder up a hill for one of his films. Babar had warned him, as his producer, not to do that sort of thing—but that didn’t make him any less sad to lose his mentor. Ultimately, when the elephant mustered up the resolve to return to Chai City, it laid in predictable ruins, tangled in bureaucratic holdups and endless discussions about parking and zoning. The lone chorus of a pickle factory’s many refrigerators filled the air and the ponds bred jasmine and lotus flowers so fragrant with stories of deep life in the undergrowth. ^ * You may blame the equally hated and loved economist Nassim Taleb for the stupid names ** Not very many Zachary Arvind Swezy is a poet and author living in Chicago, IL. He has had work featured by The Poetry Foundation, Paper Magazine, RÚV, Maudlin House, and others. Some people seem to like him.

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  • DUCK'S ROW | Moot Point Magazine

    DUCK'S RoW Oct 15, 2022 Vintage Illustration Prompts Aren't sure what to write? Become inspired by these images of yesteryear! Oct 15, 2022 Lit Mag FAQ Where to find places to submit, what's a cover letter, and more. Oct 15, 2022 Workshops and Residencies A list & FAQ of writing workshops and residencies.

  • POETRY | Moot Point Magazine

    PoetrY Lina Buividavičiūtė Apr 10, 2023 Fateful temptation A poem in translation by Lina Buividavičiūtė. Bethany Cutkomp Mar 29, 2023 Somebody Spiked the Faerie Mead A poem by Bethany Cutkomp Christen Lee Mar 28, 2023 New Moon A poem by Christen Lee Schuyler Mitchell Mar 20, 2023 Future Fable A poem by Schuyler Mitchell Megan Cassiday Mar 6, 2023 In Which... A poem by Megan Cassiday Deborah Bacharach Mar 4, 2023 The Tent Peg is a Dildo, An Argument A highly convincing argument of a poem by Deborah Bacharach Kaitlin Venneman Feb 20, 2023 gas station at the end (beginning) of the world A poem by Kaitlin Venneman Yuu Ikeda Feb 18, 2023 Two poems “Unfair World” and “Immortal," poetry by Yuu Ikeda Ed Doerr Feb 14, 2023 Daddy Issues A deviously delicious love poem by Ed Doerr Caitlin Striff-Cave Feb 11, 2023 Evidence of Living A poem by Caitlin Striff-Cave Alexandria Juarez Feb 4, 2023 Mother Murders Marion Crane by Ruth Towne On the bathroom floor, dark clothes over white tiles. Behind a gold curtain, a plastic one; translucent, it transmutes the... Caitlin McCarthy Jan 29, 2023 Disgorged A poem by Caitlin McCarthy Louie Anne Jan 25, 2023 a black mirror confessional of a fangirl A poem that reckons with worship and blasphemy by Louie Anne Keith Huettenmoser Jan 22, 2023 Recess A prose poem by Keith Huettenmoser Eric Pinder Jan 10, 2023 Sisyphus Longs for a Weekend by Eric Pinder Only sleep provides escape— a furlough, fleeting, draped in sheets that always ends in the predestined clamor of 7:01 a.m.... 1 2 3

  • ABOUT | Moot Point Magazine

    about us Moot Point magazine is a literary journal that publishes fiction and poetry and maybe some other kinds of stuff soon. We publish new pieces Saturday to Wednesday. We like writing where the seemingly inconsequential, dust-accumulating moments of life become magnified and catch fire. We like for the writing industry to be wide open: no secrets here. That means posting lists about residencies, workshops, and other magazines that have calls for submissions that differ from our own. More on that soon! We have fun here. We want good writing to be accessible to all. We can’t wait to read your stuff! Warmth <3 Editors Poetry & Hybrid ​ Our poetry editor is especially looking for dark, strange, visceral work and is open to hybrid, avant-garde natures, dangerous line breaks, and work queer in nature and form. Sultry and haunting, floral yet feral, kinky and historical, horror, speculative, narrative—all poems in all their shapes will be excitedly considered. We want the weird ladies. The backroom secrets of magical realism madams, forms and narrative that defy gender. We crave provocative, boundary-breaking content and strange, portentous speculative narratives. One must ask: where is the ghost erotica? Submit to us. It's (almost) never too weird. We love it. only submit 1-3 poems at a time—any more will not be considered. sim-subs are welcome, just please withdraw if accepted elsewhere ​ if your piece isn't right for us, please wait 2 months before submitting again if your piece is accepted, please do not submit for 6 months author maintains all rights; we only ask for the right to publish & promote ​ Vintage Prompts ​ As you might have noticed, our site might look a little dated. That is because we are heavily inspired by a nostalgia of first discovering the joy of archives. While searching for images for the site, we've found a plethora of incredible images that we want to resurface. We will be sharing a new image each week and challenge you to write something (under 1000 words) inspired by said image. You can submit those to our submittable (open at all times for this section), and we will publish one (or a handful) of pieces about each illustration. If you are just finding this now, you can pick any image, just be sure to use the title of the image so we know which you are responding to. up to 1000 words any genre make sure to properly identify the image prompt sim-subs are welcome, just please withdraw if accepted elsewhere if your piece is accepted, please do not submit for 6 months author maintains all rights, we only ask for the right to publish & promote ​ Submission Guidelines Inspired by some of our favorite magazines, Moot Point was founded because we think six-month responses are kinda ridiculous. We will be open at regular intervals (biweekly for fiction, monthly for poetry & hybrid) for capped, free submissions, with a guaranteed response by the following call for submissions. That means all fiction submissions will be replied to within fourteen days and a month for poetry (usually sooner.) All of our submissions will go through our Submittable, here. If you are impatient, or want to support us financially, we will be open at all times for $4 submissions with a guaranteed 48-hour response. Moot Point also reserve the right to revoke or remove publication for any reason, not limited to harassment of our editorial staff, bigotry, racism, homophobia, transphobia, etc. Fiction ​ For fiction, we like simple and surreal. ​ up to 3,000 words you can submit up to 3 pieces if they are ~1,000 words (or less) each sim-subs are welcome, just please withdraw if accepted elsewhere if your piece isn't right for us, please wait 2 months before submitting again if your piece is accepted, please do not submit for 6 months author maintains all rights, we only ask for the right to publish & promote ​ MastheaD Moot Point is a new and growing literary space created by and for those who first found their love for writing while searching through dusty archives. We are actively looking for readers and volunteers, with a very open mind about positions. Please reach out to if you are interested in joining our team as a reader, contributing editor, staff writer, or have other skills you want to pitch. Ashton Carlile - editor Ashton Carlile is a writer from Cocoa Beach, FL. Her fiction can be found in Joyland, Catapult, Hobart , and other places. Alexandria Juarez - editor Alexandria Juarez is a Chicana lesbian writer, editor, and pop culture enthusiast from Southern California. A graduate of the BFA Writing Program at Pratt Institute, they have work in Electric Literature , Catapult , Autostraddle , The Offing , and more. They are a Tin House Winter Workshop and Kenyon Review Workshop alum, and the Runner-up of the 2022 Indiana Review Fiction Prize. Leia K. Bradley - poetry editor Leia K. Bradley (she/they) is a Southern born, Brooklyn based writer and lesbian performance artist, as well as an MFA Poetry candidate at Columbia University. She has work in Poetry Project, Aurore, Wrongdoing Magazine, Tarot Literary, Versification , and more, with her poem "Settle(d)" just chosen as the Editor's Choice Best Overall pick for Penumbra Magazine' s 2022 Pride issue. She can be found dancing through candlelit speakeasies or climbing barefoot up a magnolia tree with a tattered copy of Stone Butch Blues tucked into her dress. After climbing out from the coffin of her first divorce, she is accepting love and lust letters through her twitter @LeiaKBradley. Megan Paris - digital editor Megan Paris (she/they) is a lesbian, writer, and gardener based out of Brooklyn, NY. She is previously published in Lesbians Are Miracles Mag, and Bear Creek Gazette . She can also be found at @megg_paris on Twitter. Swati Sudarsan- assistant editor Swati Sudarsan is based in Oakland, CA (Ohlone Land). Swati has received support from Tin House, Kenyon Review, Kweli Journal , and Martha's Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing. She was the runner-up of the 2022 So to Speak Contest Issue, and has work in McSweeney's, The Adroit Journal, Maudlin House and more. Readers: Emma Charlton, Kasey Furutani, Bobbi Rose

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