Essays

Outside(r)

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I’d never thought of myself as separate from the world I lived in; the Outside I came from was sensory-rich and immersive, there my interactions unfolded organically and overlapped, building intuitively like the scales on a pinecone, rewarding curiosity with wonder.

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So You Want to Feel Better: Navigating Grad School, Disability, and the Language of Pain

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The term “invisible disability” is commonly used to describe disabilities that are not readily apparent to the eye, but I want to push back on this term. When you pay close attention, most disabilities become visible. Poems are not encoded messages that we’re meant to decipher, I frequently remind my students, they are language organized in ways that demand a different kind of attention. And so it is with invisible disabilities . . .

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Gone

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His arm jerked. Every time I spoke, it happened. I wanted it to stop. I didn’t want it to stop. I kept looking up. I didn’t feel my son’s presence in his body anymore, but his body was all I could reach of him.

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From the Archive: Rivers of Babylon: The Story of a Third-Trimester Abortion

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. . . I desperately, beyond reason, wanted an intact body for burial. I wanted it viscerally, animally, the way your body wakes up in the night looking for a newborn, the way you feel a physical connection to your children even when you cannot see them, the way you want something when everything else has been taken from you. It is the same reason I buried him; I wanted to know where he had gone from me and how.

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From the Archive: The Saturday Rumpus Essay: I Left My Heart in Taos

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You might gasp. You might gasp and your heart slips out. You whisper and let red willows drift toward the river.

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