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Javier Zamora

from The Book I Made with a Counselor My First Week of School

By Javier Zamora His grandma made the best pupusas, the counselor wrote next to Stick-Figure Abuelita
(I’d colored her puffy hair black with a pen).

Earlier, Dad in his truck: “always look gringos in the eyes.”
Mom: “never tell them everything, but smile, always smile.”
Sally Wen Mao

Aubade with Gravel and Gold

By Sally Wen Mao I’m sick of speaking for women who’ve died
Their stories and their disappearances
bludgeon me in my sleep
Purvi Shah

Saraswati praises your name even when you have no choice

By Purvi Shah You had a name no one
could hold between their
teeth. So they pronounced
Esther Lin

Spratly and Paracel

By Esther Lin After learning his appointment was canceled
and his senior bus won’t come for another two
hours my father calls from his waiting room
Jeanann Verlee

Grease & Salt

By Jeanann Verlee I finish a small hot plate of grease & salt, & push the scraped-clean plate across the counter for someone else to scrub / this, I say I have paid for but it doesn't fit
Allison Pitinii Davis

THE MOTEL CLERK’S SON DRIVES OUT TO CHECK ON BUSINESS, 1977

By Allison Pitinii Davis Before him, stickers fade across the bumper:
LAST ONE OUT OF TOWN, TURN OFF THE LIGHTS.
The last employer in Youngstown is the weather:
the truck behind him plows grey snow to the roadside
Marcos L. Martínez

2001 Mill Road, Alexandria, VA

By Marcos L. Martínez There are immeasurable ways to count days: on the median the sunflower tracks UV streams: east to west then sleep; an acorn gets weeded out of the common area ‘til another live oak drobs a bomb then sprouts till, yanked away again;
Geffrey Davis

What I Mean When I Say Truck Driver

By Geffrey Davis During the last 50 miles back from haul & some
months past my 15th birthday, my father fishes
a stuffed polar bear from a Salvation Army
gift-bin, labeled Boys: 6-10. I can almost see him
David Ebenbach

Looking for a Job

By David Ebenbach What you want, at least, is the dignity
of a Sisyphus—you want to see yourself
on a hilltop, your muscles and hands
afire and chest roaring for breath, and
Alison Roh Park

My Father’s Hands

By Alison Roh Park My daddy's hands were scarred
and through the smallest details escaped
years ago I remember them a strong
brown like here is the axe that missed
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