• #11Forklift, Ohio: Issue #11
  • #12Forklift, Ohio: Issue #12
  • #13Forklift, Ohio: Issue #13
  • #14Forklift, Ohio: Issue #14
  • #15Forklift, Ohio: Issue #15
  • #16Forklift, Ohio: Issue #16
  • #17Forklift, Ohio: Issue #17
  • #18Forklift, Ohio: Issue #18
  • #19Forklift, Ohio: Issue #19
  • #20Forklift, Ohio: Issue #20
  • #21Forklift, Ohio: Issue #21
  • #22Forklift, Ohio: Issue #22
  • #23Forklift, Ohio: Issue #23
  • #24Forklift, Oeno: Bin #24
  • #25Forklift, Ohio: Issue #25
  • #26Forklift, Ohio: Issue #26
  • #27Forklift, Ohio: Issue #27
  • #28Forklift, Ohio: Issue #28
  • #29-30Forklift, Ohio: Issue #29-30
  • #31Forklift, Ohio: Issue #31
  • #32Forklift, Ohio: Issue #32
  • #33Forklift, Ohio: Issue #33
  • #34Forklift, Ohio: Issue #34
  • #35-36Forklift, Ohio: Issue #35-36

 

Franklin K.R. Cline

SO WHAT

We left town for four days and five nights and when we got back the apartment stunk. We couldn’t figure it out. We tried changing the litterbox, flushing the toilets, taking out the trash, taking shots of whiskey, cleaning the fridge, reading books, fucking, inviting Peter over, side-eyeing the cops, feeding the cats, eating, not eating, sweeping, pissing, watching television, charging our cell phones, playing guitar, napping, making the bed, going to poetry readings, breathing, mopping, drinking wine, gardening, doing our taxes, getting into cards, going into different buildings, alphabetizing our records, scratching our arms until they bled, tipping our bartender, setting the table, buying more books, setting the heat at 69, using the Internet, washing our clothes, hanging pictures, taking out the compost, reading the news, crying over our dead grandparents, telling anyone who’d listen there used to be grass here, fighting, voting, taking the highway, rooting for the Kansas City Royals, dividing the apartment into halves, masturbating, talking about Palestine, vomiting, trying to figure out where to score coke, wearing scarves, protesting police, watching Westbrook hang 54 on the Pacers, paying rent, texting our friends pictures of the cats, yawning: basically everything we could think of. Eventually we were exhausted and we collapsed simultaneously on our queen-sized bed with the tender eyes of streetlights as faraway sirens wailed, and we felt comfortable knowing those sirens were far away. When we woke up the smell was either gone or we got used to it.

 

 

Jaime Zuckerman

My mother is a cigarette—

yes, she’s the smoke,

the hot cinder

beneath ash. She’s

 

acrid to anyone

who hasn’t spent

a lifetime inhaling her. Here,

 

these are the marks

she left on my arms.

Here, this pot of dust

 

left in my lungs.

Each day, she edges

closer to the filter,

 

burning hard, dependably

toward the end,

coughs blood, fears

 

nothing but the possibility

I will not love her

exactly as

 

she is—impossible

to argue with

such logic.

 

Jeffrey Little

 

Sea Hen and Sweet Potato Chips

Author: Thomas Bernhard

Prep time:  An indistinct haze confronts the magi

Cook time: Stillness, at noon, extended

Total time:  Look for blisters, and spray away from the body, a full 30 years, or until smooth

 

Ingredients

2 large sweet yamhocks, or Port Side Goonies

Optional:

¼ cup melted ego

½ to 1 tsp backbeat and keytar

 

Instructions

1. Wash and dry the cliff face to which each of us aspires.

2. Slice as thin as possible, with a mandolin, or zither.

3. (Optional: Steam blanch until burning with a hard, gem-like flame.)

4. (Optional: Standing in a large ceramic bowl count to twenty, making sure all thoughts are coated in oil.)

5. Place device on a dehydrator tray; not much space is needed, as the device will shrink as it dries until nothingness is achieved.

6. De-Re-dehydrate at 125°F for 8-12 hours, checking halfway through for squirrels. The chips should be turning, and turning, as in a widening Irish gyre.

7. Chips are Kantian when crisp (if not coated in oil) or otherwise Hegelian (if coated in oil). When in doubt, consult the heavens – ask for Lenny.

 

Maddy Raskulinecz

Dead Animals: 10 Epigrams

  1. In every friend group there is someone with a story about pet rodents cannibalizing each other.

 

  2. Dead fish are the only subject I dream about often. People love to tell me it’s about pregnancy, but my family had a fish tank for the first 20 years of my life and the fish died constantly.

 

  3. After they clean the oil off the ducks from the oil spill, the ducks still die anyway.

 

  4. There is sometimes polite interest in why I don’t eat meat. It’s an ongoing act of submission to someone who has left my life. I let mosquitoes bite my legs that whole summer with him, I never slapped them.

 

  5. Despite everything I would still love to own a lavish ten thousand dollar mink coat.

 

  6. Initially I thought the big dead rat was left outside my door by one of my enemies. But several other scenarios are more likely. Baltimore is famous for its rat problem.

 

  7. Everyone likes to see old people walking old dogs: we’re relieved to imagine no one outliving anyone else.

 

  8. I knew I had it bad for my friend when, on the death of a pet bug, he said, “That’s like being sad your milk spoiled.”

 

  9. How can you tell if something is still alive? There are methods involving medical equipment or the soul, but a quick test is if it’s warm and taut.

 

10. But say you are in a fantasy where the whole ground turns out to be an enormous beast. You won’t know for sure until the giant eye cracks open and swivels up to pin you.

 

Farah Marklevitz

Adjunctified

In an effort to return to the Future and maintain the strength of

What For, because we’re in this Polished Together together, we

are happy to announce our Initiative, but we are pleased to regret

to inform you that there are only so many sheaves to carry and

 

vines to prune. We know you are interested in the short shine

of curved blades: might you also be interested in collecting breath,

minty and sour, and learning this neat cloth trick? We may have

row upon row of tables elegantly set and a need to preserve

 

gasps of delight. Grant us your possible minute hands and what-

ever talent that, when spent, can unspool into breezes of our

photographed seasons, bright ribbons lapping and leaping

into blue above heads whose thoughts and dreams you must

 

love or why wouldn’t you be interested in our gratitude for your service?

 

Cynthia Schwartzberg Edlow

Manless Land for the Landless Man

Susie, Julie, Josie, whatever the name is

of that horse instructor,

insistent those reins

are habitually held too high, way way too high,

bring them closer to the horn,

what’s going on up there,

your reins, your reins.

 

You ride doggie-deep in the saddle,

reins attentive

but rib-high and relaxed.

 

Look, Susie, do you know how many

Westerns I have memorized during three

decades of TV?

I hold the reins up where my lungs

take the air.

The horse likes it just fine. I’ve done this

a few times myself, you know, Julie. I can

feel him giving right in

from the calm heat

off his dun back.

Josie, trust

is a slate-gray bird chirping a tenor bell,

rocking in the sweet forelock

between the pert ears of a true-blue friend.

10,000 cowboys can’t be wrong.

 

Paul Martinez-Pompa

Entirely Unlike Hitler Because Nothing is Like Hitler Not Even Hitler Itself

I’ve never considered the testicles to be particularly attractive, and while I wouldn’t deem them an outright monstrosity, testicles certainly don’t come to mind when I imagine beautiful things like springtime cherry blossoms or that vocal thing Clare Torry does on Dark Side of the Moon. This was the mindset I tried to assume when I found a rice-sized lump near my left testicle. I was terrified, but if it turned out cancerous, I reasoned, an orchiectomy could be a triumph over ugliness. After all, I’d get along fine with one testicle and one penis or, better yet, with one penis alone. Years ago, my acquaintance and sometimes fellow dick-sucker, Oswaldo—a self-proclaimed, bona fide fag—told me that my disposition disqualified me from being a bona fide, for a bona fide holds the testicles in the same high esteem as he does the penis. But what I find far more deplorable than testicles themselves are male writers who write about testicles without even a hint of shame. I swore I’d never write about testicles, and here I am, writing about the cultural logic of late capitalism.