Guest Post: Adrianne Kalfopoulou, The Unhoused

Children's shoes lying on the floor

 

If I were asked to name the chief benefit of the house, I should say: the house shelters daydreaming, the house protects the dreamer

The Poetics of Space, Gaston Bachelard

 

In her 1943 essay “We Refugees” Hannah Arendt explains the predicament of the suicide that “in their own eyes” feel themselves as having failed life’s standard. Having given into despair in themselves, they die “of a kind of selfishness”; the failure of how to define, or redefine, one’s self-worth given the loss of assumed standards makes for the quandary: “If we are saved we feel humiliated, and if we are helped we feel degraded.” This quandary speaks to standards of citizenship and social belonging that in turn speak to systems of society and behavior that are radically reconfigured in the lives of displaced peoples. The refugee being a prime example of such, one that Girogio Agamben in his 2008 essay “Beyond Human Rights” argues as “perhaps the only thinkable figure for the people of our time and the only category in which one may see today… the forms and limits of a coming political community.”

I am learning of how standards are reconfigured in a year of working with Afghan families living in a school building in the center of Athens. My assumptions of dignity and belonging are changed as I am gradually invited into these lives. It begins with an invitation to have tea on the spread blankets that cover the floor of a classroom, where we leave our shoes at the blanket’s edge. Mattresses are pushed up against walls; some pillows are on the floor. I’m urged to use a pillow as I am a guest but I shake my head, saying it’s not necessary, only to realize this creates confusion and a look of disappointment, so I accept the pillow, and drink the sweetened tea. I have a bag of raisins with me. There’s a feeling of comfort and hospitality, as we drink the sweetened tea and share the raisins. We discuss the fact that some of the children are attending the Greek public school. I’m asked if I will find a dentist for a 3 year old whose top front teeth have all rotted. It will be her birthday at the end of the month. It is not the date on her paper but the one her mother gives us in April. When I’d asked her father he said he wasn’t sure what the date of her birthday was. But her mother knows, and tells me. We plan a party. I still have a string of lights with me, a cluster I’d forgotten to bring to the Christmas party we had in December. I plug them in and they start flickering, this makes Heniah, who takes a quick intake of breath, laugh. She keeps plugging and unplugging the lights as they flicker in their nest of color.

Changed circumstances will change how we see what we see. These small living spaces are made unexpectedly new. Even the city is made new. Omonia square where buses and metro stops make for intersections and gatherings, where information on squats, cell phones, fake passports, border smugglings, and plain old advice on everything from medicine to asylum petitions are hawked. It is also a world where Unés, one of the refugee children I’ve grown close to, notices things I’ve never paid attention to. He pauses in our walk along a crowded street as someone who is selling potato peelers loses his grip, and the peeler skids across the pavement, Unés picks it up, checks the blade and gives it back to the man who is surprised anyone would pick up the now broken peeler, and thanks him. We pause at a pet shop because one of the puppies catches Unés’ attention. There’s also a snake and a parrot on display. When we leave Unés points to a huge ice-cream stand with its exaggerated plastic cone. I must have seen the thing too many times to remember because it sits just outside the metro stop, but this time I see it as he does, and smile.

We speak a mix of English, Greek, and Farsi words, a jumble of emoji symbols, VIBER and WhatsApp emoticons and letters. There is salam, “hello” and bedrood, “goodbye”. Thanks to the weekly games and books and songs in English that Alicia, Judi, Eirini, Stephanie and other volunteers and donors have made generously available some of the children are now speaking in near-fluent English phrases. We have become as familiar to them as they have become to us – Rocha, Heniah, Unés, Narghes, Rakia, Azize, Maedeh – we know each other’s names, even ages. Judi is asked why she isn’t married, and if she was ever married. I’m asked if I have any children. One afternoon I show a video on my cell phone of couples dancing tango at the studio where I go. I’m asked if I do this too, Azize and her sister would like to come with me, next time I go. We go to a Luna Park where there are bumper cars and a Ferris wheel, and high-flying space-cars in which Heniah, fearless, pushes on the gears so the air-borne car will go higher. She is giddy and I am anxious. Maedeh, who is 14, comes with me to a play my daughter is in. It is Ramadan and she asks if she can skip the fast since she will be walking in the heat to the theater. Her mother is okay with this, and she dresses in white tights and her scarf and tells me you can tell the difference between Syrian and Afghan women by the way they wear their scarves. The Afghan women wear them more loosely around their heads, less tightly folded around their faces. There’s a moment in the play when the top comes off one of the actors, it’s a split-second; the actor is a statue that comes to life, her white, spray-painted breasts are bared. On our way back to the squat Maedeh will mention it, that the actor “lost her blouse” and I will nod and ask if she will tell her mother and she says she might which makes me think I may not be invited to take her daughter anywhere after this, but ask then if it surprised or bothered her. She shakes her head and says, very simply, “This is Europe.”

*

In Agamben’s essay he references Arendt’s point that one of the things the Third Reich ensured before Jews and Gypsies were sent to the extermination camps was that they had to be “fully denationalized…stripped of even that second-class citizenship to which they had been related after the Nuremberg Laws.” Agamben is making the point that the concept of the nation-state founded as it has been on assumptions of citizenship and national belonging was a way to draw the line between what lives were “doomed to death”, and which remained with human, legal, rights. He argues the point first put forward by Arendt in relation to the Jews. He notes that “What is new in our time is the growing sections of humankind are no longer representable inside the nation-state – and this novelty threatens the foundations of the later.” In other words, human rights as they have been historically tied to citizenship are now, as he explains, “Beyond Human Rights”, an insufficient insurance, or reflection, of our humanity.

I get a message from Heniah’s brother, who is 12, that her birthday party will be at 2:00, and would Judi and I like to come. Like the invitation to tea I feel it’s important to go, and want to celebrate my fearless 4 year-old’s day. I pick up a lemon pie that looks fancy and some paper plates, cups, plastic forks, party hats, and arrive after Judi. We’re invited to sit on the floor in the classroom that is now the family’s living space, the wide blankets are cleared and what was once a school desk is brought in so Heniah can sit there and blow out her candle. We’ll wait for the guests, mothers and their young children who arrive from other squats, and camps, some from as far as the Malakassa camp, where mostly Afghan families are housed; everyone arrives with a small gift, wrapped in colored paper. There are clips for Heniah’s hair, colored plastic bangles, a coloring book. There are balloons taped to the walls and the Christmas lights I’d brought are hanging from the blackboard where they have been taped. Heniah has had her hair in tiny braids so that now curls all around her face, and Rocha puts new clips into it.

Girls braiding hair

But what is most impressive is the 3-layered cake that’s been prepared for the guests. My bought lemon pie, while delicious, is nothing compared to this chocolate cake, which Heniah’s mother, Azize, has made.

There is excitement as people gather. The women shed their veils and change into clothing that would make them indistinguishable from anyone else in the city. Sleeveless dresses, skirts, loose shirts with low necklines. Azize puts on make-up and earrings. When she wears lipstick I think she looks like an Italian film star, but I’m not sure which one, maybe Monica Bellucci. There is music, and then dancing; the women pull me up from the floor where I’m sitting to join them; Raikia shows me how to move my arms in a slow, sensual wave, I start to laugh, feeling awkward at first, but then happy. The children are also dancing in a circle.

Children dance in a circle

Judi asks me, “who do you think is happier in a moment like this, a group of women in the UK or US or these women?” I say, without much thought, that I think right now this gathering is a very happy one, and that everyone in the room is enjoying themselves. When Judi asks Maedeh why there are no boys, or men, she says they are never present at the women’s parties but that they are not missed either. Judi asks if she wouldn’t want a boy to dance with if she liked him, and Maedeh gives an emphatic “No!” and tells us when the time comes, her father will find a boy for her and will ask her if she likes him, if not he’ll find another one. She says two boys waited for her sister who is 19; “one waited for nothing” because Mina didn’t want to go to him, and now there’s another in Sweden. Maedeh is matter-of-fact, “If a boy wants to wait and I like him then we can get married when we ready.”

We share stories, and our lives. When Maedeh speaks Judi and I expect that she and perhaps some of the other women would wish to have some of the choices we in our western worlds assume are the better ones, and find out that’s not the case, that things are also less patriarchal if more gender-specific, than what we assume. For example, Narghes, who is also 14, tells me it is her mother who will pick the wife, or suggest someone, for her older brother, because her father is dead. She tells me her father had taught her to read, and wanted her to learn languages. At some point in our conversations, I share a anecdote from Greek Orthodox weddings, that the liturgy uses the quote from the Bible about the wife fearing her husband at which point the wife stamps her husband’s foot in symbolic resistance. Azize and Maedeh look suprised, and ask why a wife would be told to be afraid of her husband, I say to remind them of who has the authority, they tell me both have, but each has a different kind.

There are other ironies and surprises; that we communicate across language and culture in ways that reinvent our language and culture. My VIBER messaging with Narghes was a mash-up of discourses, and went on from our first month of friendship. When she messaged me that she’d like a pair of black tights if I could find them for her, to when the family moved to the Malakassa camp, and finally got their papers under the family reunification law to go to Geneva. We shared hundreds of texts, emojis, voice messages, in our digital exchanges –

Bai Bai [Bye Bye] – Narghes writes, Okey [Okay]; You vato slip??? [you want to sleep???]; Hi you kam tomoro [you come tomorrow]; Andrstan [Understand]; vat taim you kam [what time you come]; Hi Adrianne you kam tomoro my mazr koking for you [you come tomorrow my mother cooking for you]; Ined nmbr hosin and maide [I need number hossein and maedeh]

*

The nation state, says Agamben is in demise, borders are being contested, people are being smuggled through at costs that sometimes include their lives, certainly the EU is in crisis, and the refugee influx has magnified what Agamben explains as the “unstoppable decline of the nation-state and general corrosion of traditional political-juridical categories.” But as Arendt said of the Jews in 1943, “Refugees driven from country to country represent the vanguard of their peoples – if they keep their identity.” These families, unhoused, as they are from country and citizenship are examples of this challenge; rather than feeling themselves as having failed life’s standard, they show us how the standard is life itself, as in sheer life, as in what it means to continue with the traditions and values that shelter us.

Narghes’ mother wants to give me a gift, it is a black patent leather bag someone has given her, and she thinks I might like it. She also ties up the bag of raisins I’ve brought because there are still some in the bag, but I say I want her to keep the raisins, and she says tashakor [thank you]. My proximity to these lives has made the obvious newly tenable, and newly proximate.

References:

Girgio Agamben, “Beyond Human Rights” Open 2008/No.15 Social Engineering http://novact.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Beyond-Human-Rights-by-Giorgio-Agamben.pdf

Hannah Arendt, “We Refugees” in Altogether Elsewhere, Writers on Exile. Ed. Marc Robinson.

https://www-leland.stanford.edu/dept/DLCL/files/pdf/hannah_arendt_we_refugees.pdf

All photos by Adrianne Kalfopoulou

 

Guest Post, Adrianne Kalfopoulou: When Refuge becomes Refugee

In a stupor of grief and dreadRefugees in tents
Have we not fingered the foulest wounds
And let them unhealed by our hands?

“Why Is This Age Worse…?”
–1919 Anna Akhmatova (trans. Stanley Kunitz)

It seems a long time since the picture of a drowned 3-year old Aylan went viral in September 2015. Much was made of the dangling “Velcro straps on his sneakers”, that Aylan was dressed like any child going to a playground in a red T-shirt and blue knee-length shorts – the Turkish guard who picked up the tiny body looked away as he carried the child. How hard it would be to look. And he must have looked when he first picked up the drowned boy. It seems a long time because there have been so many bodies since, and so many of them children. There have been meetings and discussions in various parliaments in Austria, Denmark, Hungary, Germany, and of course Brussels, and some horrid policies have passed through them like Denmark’s law (passed in January) in which the government is now allowed to seize assets of “asylum seekers on arrival in the country and confiscate any non-essential items worth more than 10,000 kroner (£1,000) that have no sentimental value to their owner.” One wonders who decides on what is or isn’t “non-essential” or of “sentimental value”. Similar laws are now in place in Switzerland and southern Germany.

Young refugeesTo be a refugee means the refuge of what once provided the rituals of stability, like home and shelter, no longer exist, that larger threats than those of the risks of being a refugee are being fled. “I don’t want to touch that one” says a friend, “too heavy”, “too complicated” – what will happen if we let ourselves touch the bodies being washed up like the Turkish guard who lifted the dead Aylan from the sand, if we help the luckier to dry land? They will touch us too, the pain and mess of these displaced lives will be real and, especially, there will be names and faces connected to their tragedies. I am about to say something to a friend and warn her that it is unpleasant, and she says, “are you sure you want to tell me” and really means “I’m not sure I want to know” because once told, she cannot, as she tells me “unknow it”; phrases like “the immigrant crisis”, “the Greek debt crisis” desensitize, the particulars are conflated, the faces and names lost. It is more efficient that way, apparently, when dealing with numbers (think of pyramid schemes of debt, think how all the added 0s of the billions lent, and the billions now owed in the Greek financial crisis that are not being addressed in “real terms”; i.e. the IMF – imagine even the IMF – is calling it unsustainable, that the debt cannot be paid back when the economy itself is being cannibalized though there are very real people starving on the streets and homeless as a result); so the question is what are we, or what is “Europe” trying to be efficient about. History has given us some very dark examples of the efficiencies of regimes wishing to keep themselves untouched by groups considered threats to an idea of citizenry and/or belonging. Giorgio Agamben in Homo Sacer, Sovereign Power and Bare Life theorizes the biopolitics of “The Camp as Paradigm” in a chapter that addresses the separation between “humanitarianism and politics” as “the extreme phrase of the separation of the rights of man and the rights of the citizen.” I want to say what Clarice Lispector says in The Passion According to G.H. that “till yesterday” there was a way of “fitting into a system.” That now that system is broken and the privileged do not want to “use an unprotected heart.” Perhaps Europe has lost its heart.

Sebastian Kurz, Austria’s foreign minister, says “the distinction between protection and the right to a better life has got blurred” having been part of a renegade contingency of Central European and West Balkan countries, including Hungary, to react to the immigrant crisis by being among the first countries to close its borders to refugees (and so removing themselves from the Schengen agreement of an open border system – that founding European Union dream that promised the free flow of populations). To Angela Merkel’s credit who, initially anyway, sought a joint EU solution for the crisis, responded that “When someone starts to define limitations [to immigration], others have to suffer. That is not my Europe.”

drawing of houseAs we entered the port for an activity session with some of the refugee children, we all noticed that there were twice as many tents as there had had a week ago; before the borders closed a lot of the volunteer work involved giving activity kits and baby carriers to mothers on their way north. Once they closed hundreds, and in the case of Idomeni, thousands were now stuck (read Phoebe Ramsay’s updates “On the Ground” on her Facebook page). Tents were everywhere, on any open space of pavement or grass, “Welcome to Europe” Alicia said. “Look at this….” Yes, look at this. Look at the woman using cardboard to sweep away the banana peel, cigarette stubs, and used tea bags from the space around her tent. Look at the children quietly returning crayons after doing their drawings, giving their drawings of houses and homes to those of us who sat with them, look at the boy who shows me there’s a hole in one of the sheets at the shelter and would like to know if there are any sheets not torn that he could have. Listen to the teacher from Aleppo who asks if we could bring some white board markers for the lessons she’s giving in the shelter, look at the fact that the toilets are overrun, that someone has thrown out a doll that looks perfectly fine, look at the boy who is downloading music on his phone, tell me where the border might be between them and us, or you and I?

SR Pod/Vod Series – Authors Talk: Author Adrianne Kalfopoulou

Today we’re proud to feature Adrianne Kalfopoulou as our sixteenth Authors Talk series contributor, sharing the process behind writing her nonfiction essay “The Journey Where” in her podcast “Travelers.”

The search for belonging is a major theme that Adrianne discusses in her work, as well as being mindful of its greater context. “What I’m working on becomes a part of something outside of the space of the text itself,” she says, tying themes of travel and the open sea to Homer’s Odysseus and the current Middle Eastern refugee crisis.

The “kind of clash between world views and points of reference has often fascinated me, both personally in terms of my own kind of microcosm, but also how that connects with larger, more existentialist questions having to do with what people are willing to risk for greater freedoms that are never guaranteed.”

Adrianne’s podcast is a thoughtful discussion on the ideas present in a writer’s work and the world. 
You can listen to it on our iTunes Channel.

You can read Adrianne’s essay “The Journey Where” in Superstition Review Issue 16, and listen to her read it aloud in SR podcast #193. She has also been published in Issue 9.

 

More About the Author:

Adrianne Kalfopoulou lives and teaches in Athens, Greece. Her most recent publication is Ruin, Essays in Exilic Living (Red Hen Press 2014). Her poems and essays have appeared in online and print journals including Hotel Amerika, The Harvard Review, WORDPEACE, and Superstition Review. She occasionally blogs on Greece, and is the Writing Program Director at Deree College in Athens.  adrianne kalfopoulou’s website

 

About the Authors Talk series:

For several years, we have featured audio or video of Superstition Review contributors reading their work. We’ve now established a new series of podcasts called Authors Talk. The podcasts in this series take a broader scope and feature SR contributors discussing their own thoughts on writing, the creative process, and anything else they may want to share with listeners.

SR Pod/Vod Series – Recording: Author Adrianne Kalfopoulou

Adrianne  Kalfopoulou greyscaleThis Tuesday, we’re proud to feature SR contributor Adrianne Kalfopoulou reading her nonfiction essay “The Journey Where” on our podcast.

You can listen to the podcast on our iTunes Channel.

You can follow along with “The Journey Where” in Superstition Review Issue 16, and read more of Adrianne’s work in Issue 9.

Also check out Adrianne Kalfopoulou’s Authors Talk podcast, posted Friday February 12th.

 

More About the Author:
Adrianne Kalfopoulou lives and teaches in Athens, Greece. Her most recent publication is Ruin, Essays in Exilic Living (Red Hen Press 2014). Her poems and essays have appeared in online and print journals including Hotel Amerika, The Harvard Review, WORDPEACE, and Superstition Review. She occasionally blogs on Greece, and is the Writing Program Director at Deree College in Athens.  adrianne kalfopoulou’s website

SR Pod/Vod Series: Writer Adrianne Kalfopoulou

Each Tuesday we feature audio or video of an SR Contributor reading their work. Today we’re proud to feature a podcast by Adrianne Kalfopoulou.

Adrianne KalfopoulouAdrianne Kalfopoulou has had her work appear in print and online journals including Hotel Amerika, World Literature Today, ROOM magazine, The Broome Street Review, Web Del Sol, VPR (Valparaiso Poetry Review) and Fogged Clarity. She lives and teaches in Athens Greece, and is on the faculty of the creative writing program at NYU. Adrianne written a poetry collection, Passion Maps (Red Hen Press), and her collection of essays, Ruin, Essays in Exilic Life, is forthcoming from Red Hen Press in September 2014.

You can listen to the podcast on our iTunes Channel.

You can read along with the work in Superstition Review.

Guest Post, Adrianne Kalfopoulou: Literary Antidotes & Monster Epidemics

This week’s post comes from Issue 9 contributor Adrianna Kalfopoulou. Adrianne has had her work appear in print and online journals including Hotel Amerika, World Literature Today, ROOM magazine, The Broome Street Review, Web Del Sol, VPR (Valparaiso Poetry Review) and Fogged Clarity. She lives and teaches in Athens Greece, and is on the faculty of the creative writing program at NYU. Her most recent book publication is Passion Maps (Red Hen Press), a poetry collection.

I recently attended the EAAS (European Association of American Studies) conference in Izmir (or Smyrna, to the Greeks). I love these large gatherings of writers and thinkers which provide opportunities for sudden influxes of ideas and energy. The conference, hosted every two years in a European city, seemed atypical and enriched by the fact that we were in Izmir, not-quite Europe, or more precisely Anatolia that bridges East and West. This city and its bay was potent with resonance, as much for its location as for the conference theme — “The Health of the Nation” (March 30-April 2, 2012) at Ege University. Discussions of the health of the nation, or nations, in this particular part of the world took on particular immediacy. What constitutes “health,” ironically, found papers focused on the various symptoms of disease, and dis-ease, beginning with the opening keynote lecture given by Ayşe Lahur Kirtunç who spoke of Turkey today and focused on discourses of fear. From the media’s ongoing barrage of catastrophe documentation to dystopias of vulnerability and anxiety, Kirtunç’s talk was a brave mapping of the various threats to our physical and psychic wellbeing. While, in her words, “we have devised technologies to listen to chipmunks, dolphins, whales…we still have difficulty listening to each other.”

The effort to really listen to one another, as she described it, undermines the polarization of ideologies as much as the reductionist ways we view “Otherness;” it was a theme that wove through many of the conference presentations. “Fear is a powerful emotional tool which helps escalate conflict” Kirtunç said, it has us “falling into the trenches of prejudice….” Marc Priewe, from the University of Portsdam, Germany, gave a talk titled “Of Words and Wounds: Textualizing Illness in Colonial America” that spoke to a not dissimilar theme in his discussion of the smallpox pandemic in Puritan America. He spoke of Native American kinship networks that were destroyed by the introduction of the European disease and incited a cultural battle that ensued between “native healing rituals… and the Puritans’ providential views” which rationalized that the disease was God’s way showing the settlers that that God, in John Winthrop’s words, had “decreased them with our increase.” Though implicated in the disease-ridden Indians’ pandemic, the settlers reinforced the disparities and differences between themselves and the natives as a means of justifying their colonizing project. It seems so much easier to fall prey to what Kirtunç called “political demonology” – maybe there’s always been the need to “create a monster” as an excuse to slay it, but whose monster is it in the end – and how much more giddy and Odyssean to find in those others, or Others, not just the Cyclops, but Arete (Queen of Phaeacia in The Odyssey, and in Greek, “virtue”). Literature gives us the opportunity for the kinds of listening that makes for bonds rather than monsters. And Kirtunç’s talk ended on that note, with a tribute to contemporary Turkish artists, cartoonists, actors, and writers among whom was Turkey’s controversial Nobel Laureate Orphan Pamuk which she pointedly said she was not going to talk about because “I have a very old mother, and an idiosyncratic cat I need to take care of….”

I found myself, too, oddly careful of my spoken Greek, after all this was Smyrna, the town and population that burned in 1922 when Kemalist troops massacred the indigenous Greek population. It is a traumatic chapter in 20th century Greek history, one still referred to as the “Smyrna Catastrophe.” But the story like so much history is complicated. One of my daughter’s college roommates in the U.S. is from Turkey, and her parents insisted I visit them while I was visiting. On the last day of the conference they drove me to their coastal town outside the city. It was another surprise, as there in “Urla” was the Greek poet and Nobel Laureate George Seferis’ house. He was born there in 1900. There was a plaque and the Turkish and Greek flags above the entrance. In his book Mythistorema (“story” in Greek) the speaker addresses an angel, and in section 7 of the poem titled “South Wind,” he tells us:

After the bitter bread of exile,
at night if we remain in front of the white walls,
your voice approaches us like the hope of fire;
and again this wind hones
a razor against our nerves.
Each of us writes you the same thing
and each falls silent in the other’s presence,
watching, each of us, the same world separately

George Seferis, The Collected Poems (Princeton UP, 1967)

Translated by Edmund Keeley & Phillip Sherrard

Launch of Superstition Review Issue 9

Launch of Superstition Review Issue 9

We are happy to announce the launch of Issue 9 of Superstition Review. Issue 9 features the work of 10 Artists, 10 Fiction Writers, 8 Interviews, 10 Nonfiction Writers, and 25 Poets. Following are some of the artists and writers featured.

Jonathan Faber

Jonathan Faber

 

Art: Jonathan Faber’s work has been exhibited at galleries and museums throughout New York and Texas, including David Shelton Gallery, Champion, Cue Art Foundation, Austin Museum of Art, and the Blanton Museum of Art.

 

 

 

H. Lee Barnes

H. Lee Barnes

 

Fiction: H. Lee Barnes has published three collections of short stories, a novel, and Dummy Up and Deal, a nonfiction narrative. He teaches in the English Department of the College of Southern Nevada.

 

 

 

Sandra Cisneros

Sandra Cisneros

 

Interviews: Sandra Cisneros is the author of novels: The House on Mango Streetand Caramelo, short stories: Woman Hollering Creek,  and poetry collections: My Wicked Wicked Waysand Loose Woman.

 

 

 

Adrienne Kalfopoulou

Adrienne Kalfopoulou

 

Nonfiction: Adrianne Kalfopoulou lives and teaches in Athens Greece, and is on the faculty of the creative writing program at NYU. Her most recent book is Passion Maps (Red Hen Press), a poetry collection.

 

 

 

Peggy Shumaker

Peggy Shumaker

 

Poetry: Peggy Shumaker is Alaska State Writer Laureate. Her most recent book of poems is Gnawed Bones. Her lyrical memoir is Just Breathe Normally. In 2013, Red Hen Press will publish Toucan Nest, a book of poems set in Costa Rica.

 

 

 

Submissions Period for Issue 10: We publish art, fiction, nonfiction, and poetry twice a year in April and December. Our Fall submissions will open September 1-October 31 for Issue 10, which will launch in December 2012.