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   Front Cover:
   LaToya Ruby Frazier
   Self Portrait March (10:00 a.m.), 2009
   (c)LaToya Ruby Frazier,
   from The Notion of Family (Aperture, 2014)

   Introduction
   HIDDEN SHAME, SHAME, SHAME /And I can’t get free . . .
   Must it be my secret for eternity? / Till you know my
   hidden shame you really don’t know me. So goes a catchy
   little tune by Elvis Costello, originally written for and
   recorded by Johnny Cash. . . .

   The Drowned Man, a poem by Alison Hawthorne Deming
   Some week when the roof leaks
   and the cat has been carried off  
   by the fox when my brother’s
   scans sparkle with lesions
   when someone hates me 
   for the good deed I’ve done
   and it’s impossible to sleep or wake up. . .

   Palisades, a story by Allison Kade
   Palisades has the yellowtinge around his eyes like Keegan
   used to warn about. My bro Keegan used to say it was a
   matter of time fore Palisades got it. . . .

   Collected Olive Pits from the Diaries of Strangers,
   stories by Rafik Schami, translated by Kristina Kalpaxis

   FAULTY CONSTRUCTION
   Aunt Rosa is on the phone. Our discussions begin and end
   the same way, every time she calls. First we talk about the
   family, then the entire Christian neighborhood in Damascus,
   then Syria as a whole. . . .

   Always Ruining, a story by Laura Willwerth
   MY WIFE
   It is sometimes nice that my wife tries to make things but
   not always. Coming home after dark, I stop in the driveway
   for a cigarette and I see smoke where it should not be. . . . .

   The Translator, an essay by Efim Etkind,
   translated by Jane Bugaeva

   When the applause had died down a woman’s voice
   shouted, “Bravo! Author!” Laughter sounded from the
   other end of the theater. It wasn’t difficult to understand
   why people were laughing: the production was a dress
   rehearsal of Byron’s Don Juan. . . .

   The Boy Who Would Be Oloye, a story by Maurice Carlos Ruffin
   The M’yongo tribe think they run everything since enslaving
   those grassland nomads. Sure, it was a neat trick since
   nomads are slippery little dudes, but nomads are punks,
   not warriors like my people. Me and my boys ain’t afraid
   to put in work. . . .

   Seventy, a poem by Doug Anderson
   "Death plucks my ear/says, Live/I am coming." — Virgil
   See that fox pelt, tire pummeled dry and the one red tuft wind
      wakened . . .