- By Edward Clifford
In California, in a dumpster, a rattler lay
half-coiled atop a grease-soaked pizza box,
half-cloaked by yesterday’s news.
It was no friend of mine, the snake, though,
to tell the truth, in such repose, no enemy
—From “It’s Never Just a Snake,” Vol. 63, Issue 3 (Fall 2022)
Tell us about one of the first pieces you wrote.
I wrote a pretty epic break-up note to my second-grade boyfriend that, by some twist of fate or good fortune (his or mine?), I never delivered, and so I’ve still got access to high literary phrases like “I know we both tried our hardest to make things work but they just didn’t...