Monday, August 26, 2013

Redux Open to Submissions September 10 -- October 15

Redux is accepting submissions of fiction/poetry/essays during its annual open reading period: September 10 to October 15.  We’re looking for literary work of high quality that has been previously published in a print journal but that is not available elsewhere on the internet.  Our mission is to bring deserving work to a new, online audience.  Preference will be given to older pieces (i.e. published before 2010).

No novel excerpts, poems that appear in chapbooks, or pieces published in anthologies…even if these books are presently out-of-print.

Please read our guidelines for important submission information.  If your work is accepted, you will also be asked to write a short “story behind the piece” essay a la the Best American series.

Authors we’ve published in our first two years include Margot Livesey, Sandra Beasley, Robin Black, R.T. Smith, Michelle Boisseau, Kelle Groom, Erica Dawson, Walter Cummins, and C.M. Mayo.

We look forward to seeing your work!

Questions: reduxlj AT gmail DOT com

Monday, August 19, 2013

#95: "The Three Weisses" by Michael Salcman


~ This poem was originally published in Aries  (2012).


Shades and graces come in threes: my cousins in Queens
were aunt and uncle to me,
the first I knew as elderly
rich with sandpapered faces
and thin-rimmed glasses they wore like monocles.

My first lesson in the upper classes—
a tinted portrait above the mantle,
Hettie and Syd and Uncle Carl posed as kids
in white smocks and puffy sleeves
as big as their heads, and a favorite spaniel for color.

Upstairs their sentient mother lived in solitary splendor,
my father’s Aunt Rose, a hundred
when I was five, whose backside routinely greeted me
freshly bathed and powdered
with a faint smell of garlic and uric acid in Queens.

Syd’s husband I never knew
or can’t remember, and soon after he died
she moved back in with the other two
and seemed as much a spinster as they ever did,
eternally wed to brother and sister.

Of the past not a word was spoken—
one could never know how Hettie’s young heart
had been broken or why Carl with a smile like Coolidge
never pursued a bride
or wore sweaters in summer until the day he died.


Monday, August 12, 2013

#94: "In the Empire of Cetaceans" by Pedro Ponce

~This story was originally published in Arroyo Literary Review (Spring 2011).

            The annual Pheasant Lake Psychic Fair draws upwards of 300 attendees. Most are curious if not entirely content with their fates divined via crystals, numbers, and totem animals. A great deal invest in products claiming to cure everything from insomnia and stomach upset to the human condition itself. A smaller number, believing that anxiety, aggression, and disappointment are terminal, peruse book bins containing startling revelations about the true meaning of Mayan ruins and presidential assassinations, or accounts of alien abductions by celebrities from decades past.
            Those in attendance during the first weekend of August, 2008, might have missed one of the fair’s most unusual offerings. On Saturday morning, a single placard, printed modestly in black letters on a white background, advertised


followed by a time that afternoon and a room number. The placard’s starkness caused a mild buzz over that morning’s continental breakfast, but it also led to some uncomfortable moments as the dozen in attendance crammed the listed venue, a hotel suite four floors above the designated meeting rooms. Roughly half the audience read the whales as threatened, humans the likeliest culprits after centuries of environmental neglect. The rest read equivalence in the intervening colon, relishing the prospect of a fair and balanced rejoinder to animal lovers. As the sides recognized each other over the murmur of respective platitudes, a young auburn-haired woman checked her watch and straightened several piles of literature for sale on a round table next to the minibar. Five minutes past the scheduled start time, she stood and knocked hesitantly at the door to the bedroom. Hearing no answer, she cracked the door and spoke through the narrow opening. Her smile as she walked away stiffened with resignation.