Nonfiction

"Taxco Cathedral" by Joshua Distler, Photo-etching from Sketch, 8" x 11", Mud Season Review

NONFICTION: ISSUE #10

Bookbinding for Amateurs in Autumn

by Tara Deal
 
 

The creaking space is filled with what looks like torture equipment: guillotines, paper cutters, iron presses, hammers, and chisels. This is not a place for hobbyists, and I am grateful. Because I want to learn how to do something difficult….
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"Oil and Water," Oil on Canvas, 48” x 68”, by Ronna Lebo, Mud Season Review

NONFICTION ISSUE #9

with light steam

by Alex Simand
 
 

A few years ago I began frequenting a Russian bathhouse in San Francisco, a city far from my childhood home of Toronto, far from my pot-bellied uncles and drunken cousins, and Russian curse words. The bathhouse is called Archimedes Banya, and it does not market itself as a Russian bathhouse…
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Borrow Bit, wood engraving by Josh Distler

NONFICTION: ISSUE #8

Like Happy Birthday But Not Really

by Edmund Sandoval
 
 

This year your birthday falls in the weeks between the day when she calls you at work to tell you between sobs that they found something in her brain and the day she meets with the neurosurgeon for the final diagnosis. They is a radiologist whose name we never learn but who, after looking at the MRI scan of her brain, says there’s a lesion right in the middle of it. In the Turkish Chair…
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NONFICTION: ISSUE #7

Throwing Stones at Apple Trees

by John Messick
 

Along the limestone southern coast of Turkey in the port city of Mersin, tucked amid Roman ruins, fields of iambic columns, and newly built high-rises, I spent three days in a back-alley whorehouse. The sign in front of the building was small, barely visible. “Otel,” it read. Old men sat sipping tea in the lobby…Read more

Nonfiction: Issue #6

Shelter

by Sarah Marty-Schlipf
 

On that warm June afternoon when I first laid eyes on Bently, I’d been on my way to teach a writing class at the county jail. I knew our local no-kill shelter taught inmates at the nearby federal prison to train dogs. Because I was early for work, I stopped in to see the place I’d heard so much about…Read more

"Organs," photo of installation, Dublin Cat's Head

Nonfiction: Issue #5

The Origins of Minor Injuries

by Dinh Prince
 
 

Dozens of nights play out in this way: Benjamin twisting out of our arms again and again, arching his back, rolling his eyes, his muscles hardening as he struggles away from our grasp. A baby can be enormously strong, its power centered in the stomach under misleading layers of fat…Read more

Regardless of What You Face by Dr. Ernest Williamson III

Nonfiction: Issue #4

An Unexpected Light

by Shuly Cawood
 
 

Sometimes I wish we could start over—not so we could change it, but to do it all again. I would rewind the clock eight years to that Saturday night contra dance, after I had escaped the crowds to cry in the back hallway of the Carrboro Century Center. Tsafi hardly knew me, but she followed me anyway…Read more

Nonfiction: Issue #3

A Month in a Far Country

by Timothy Kenny
 
 

It takes about 10 days of teaching before I realize the chaos of Baku’s streets has decamped to my classroom. Our accents have begun to make sense to each other: the pronunciations less confusing, the awkward syntax mentally transposed. But asking a question…Read more

Nonfiction: Issue #2

The Swim Lesson

by R.A. Lev
 
 

It’s freezing. He’s freezing. My son’s lips are purple-blue. I wonder if this is still a good idea, if this was ever a good idea. There are other places we could have gone. Pools where the water temperature is kept at a balmy 86 degrees, where the floor is lowered slowly so he wouldn’t notice the gradual lift as his lungs fill with air…Read more

"Rust on orange," Fabio Sassi

Nonfiction: Issue #1

Here in the Museum of Things Gone Terribly Wrong

by Craig Reinbold
 

Setting: an outdoor bus terminal and the place is bustling. S—, a native of Mexico City, has been wearing the same reeking T-shirt for most of a week, and he strips it off now, reaching into a bag on the floor next to him for a clean pink polo, which he slips over his head. He loops a belt around his waist…Read more