Washington College's Student Literary and Arts Journal

Issue: March 2014

Moses Goodreau and the Matter of the False Idol

Part IV: Nowhere All at Once Moses needed a gun. He wasn’t partial to packing heat, but with his girlfriend kidnapped and at least four other parties bearing down on this strange idol, he’d have to adjust. Stepping out into the street, Moses hailed another […]

Fall

I brought in fall’s leaf a few days ago meaning to study its red-orange fire color, the deep russet hue running like hot veins with pulsing blood throughout. Now, it’s dried up, curled like stiff, cold fingers, rusty, crumbling. The tree outside empty; an eggless […]

Spring

Lying in grass,
millions of soft prickles
lining my belly,
coating my clothing
with damp incense,
I see the liquid yellow
of ants crawling,
catching smooth sunlight,
hastening away
into their round pillars of dirt.

I stroke one blade,
rough on the underside,
and it leaves tiny patterns
on my fingerpad,
shallow grooves, small rivers
in the skin.
I hold it in my mouth,
against my tongue,
feeling emerald sandpaper,
coarse earth.

One light whistle
trickles into heavy air.
A bird cries,
replying,
confused by the call.

Kellen

I tried to write your name in the stars but I just couldn’t make them align. No matter how hard I tried, or squinted my eyes, nothing would take shape. They continued shining brilliantly in their far-away place. I tried to sing your name out […]

Texas Dust, Maryland Soil

What do we do with the body, the poem sits on my polished desk. Do we set it in dirt, or strike a small match? What did they do with his body, I ask from across the coast. Did they burn him? Bury him in […]

6 AM in an Asphalt Jungle

Feet bleeding, I marched through the Red-
Light district alone with shoes in hand

and cigarette in mouth, unlit, as I had lost my lighter
my only pick-up line in a sparse arsenal

for the girls who had long since gone home
to their mothers or lovers and all I could see then

was the curbside garbage and the roaches skirting
through alleyways and gutters like me but not lost

like me and my biggest regret was not forgetting
my address but how to ask for directions

another pick-up line for the girls
who had long since gone home

The Old Peculiar

The two girls, the ones he’d met in Keld, were walking across the green toward the pub. They had come up the road which wound out of town and on to Richmond. He could see them through the window of his small and tidy room […]

The Electric Company Cut Our Trees Down

I grew up on a farm near the Mason-Dixon. We lovingly called it the Valley of Death because nothing grew, but it was our land. When friends from Catholic school would walk with me through the woods, I would joke yea that we walk through […]

First Friend

Tadpoles born in the storm gutter
House half-constructed, like me
House with a mud lawn, a broad imagination Time ticking in a bucket on the porch Backyard with old woods & doors
between the jaws of barking trees;
A white-foot cat, half-ghost
His robin, bleeding from the throat
A colony of quiet wasps living
in the shell of my head &
a mean one under your hand
Frogs & toads
Grouping in the rain pools, confidently native spreading themselves like secrets in the lawn I stepped on your favorite
under the bar of the swing set
Flat in the grass & awed by your tears
I stole your pony toy in my sock &
thought about it
for years.

Editor’s Note

One night during my sophomore year, when I was overwhelmed with homework and annoyed by the glare of fluorescent dorm lighting, my roommate suggested we take a walk. It was nearly midnight, but I agreed, and we headed outside to frolic across the dark campus. […]