A short story from the collection The Dominant Animal.
I am a woman who wakes up hungry. Tom touched only coffee till noon. You do what you’re capable of at some point, so Tom and I left each other.
The cats were entering middle age and felt despair. They had come to realize that life was not a project one could complete successfully. Life was not a treat.
Elementary Poetry No. 1 is the first in a series of short artist books that the Russian poet, artist, and theorist Andrei Monastyrski (b. 1949) produced in quick succession in the spring of 1975 by drawing on typewritten pages with pen.
Girl C is supposed to be hard at work today but she keeps missing her stops, slipping. As the train falls out of view once again, she returns to her world of desire, instead of the world of transport and commuting and punctuality. She allows herself to float into the passenger car, and her pockets empty themselves and her clothing flies off-screen as per instructions provided one hundred years ago.
Of all my clients, I liked Wen Changbao because he never touched me. I just listened to him. For a while I thought of myself as his dog, simply because he was my first friend.
When she was twenty, the woman didn’t think much about skydiving at all. It was an exotic concept and felt far from her life as it was, though on her walks to class she passed plenty of women her age wrapped in rigging, practicing their barrel rolls on the soccer field.
Think high-rises, gated communities, all the places that give you a twitch of existential dread. The Amazon shipping facilities, the dying superstores, the prisons and detention centers, the pig farms, all the boxes that hold products and people and animals, the LeCorbusian landscape one skirts over or through, avoids.
An excerpt from Unferths’s novel Barn 8 (Graywolf).
“People talk about algorithms like they’re magic. It’s easy to see why. They govern how the internet is shown to us, conjured from spells. Their methods are opaque, and yet we put our trust in them.”
What about this? Across Syrian sands the wham of Nebuchadnezzar’s / canonical trumpets presaged an unlikely partner
From the book Tyll by Daniel Kehlmann, to be published on February 11.
Goddamn it to motherfucking hell, she says. I think that ought to cover it, he says. He asks her why she feels the need to swear so much, so deliberately, what depends on it, why it’s so important to her. Why, after so long, she hasn’t grown tired. Worn out in the mouth.
Once there was a man who was tired of breathing. It’s just such a drag, he said. So he decided to stop, but found that he couldn’t—the air just kept going in and out.
A post-apocalyptic story about a sea captain who parents alongside a penguin at the arctic center.
I cannot feel my cat’s fur / with my left hand. / Of course / I also cannot feel / my children. with my left / hand. Their throats. I cannot / feel my own body, the soft / candle wax of it. I cannot go where / I used to.
My second job was waiting in a window / behind the window of the job I was on // the clock for. My third job was scheduled / for that evening, but not yet // confirmed. My fourth freelance job wasn’t active / per se, but I was actively // pursuing clients.
Maybe // There is // A genealogy of suffering // How // This morning // I read // Minimalism is the aesthetic code of gentrification // Really I want to say // Make less art