Pulling Free

John Savoie

From the neighbor’s backyard fence
one plank is pulling free—
popping eyes of paired nails,
startled mouth that did not know
it would hurt so much, or guess
that pain could move so slow,
and the deep grain whorling
around that knotted O.
[Read more…]

Outside a Clinic

Mark Amorose

A crimson window framed in black and white
that cracks the slate of February’s sky
lets in a ray of rectifying light
to startle from their sleep the passersby.
What is this great and ghoulish valentine
from which the ruins of a cupid cry
a sanguinary season’s wish? “Be mine,”
the ruddy little body seems to sigh.
Can we still walk in shadow past a place
where lust pays brutal avarice to kill,
and see unmoved a butchered cherub’s face
outside this latest dark satanic mill?
Or has the crimson sign held in the light
turned February’s gray to black-and-white?

Mark Amorose lives in Mesa, Arizona, with his wife, Maria, and their six children. He teaches humane letters and poetry at Tempe Preparatory Academy.

The Theology of Waiting

Genevieve Cunningham

Imagine a flawless note, particular,
Uninhibited, unwound, consummate;
Stroked from tamed wood
To breathe, expand, fill a room,
Press against wall and ceiling,
Seep into the stairwell, seeking
An attic window, escaping;
And pursuit is futile. Listen:
All is silent, vast in the new soundlessness,
Heart racing in the recent absence
Of instrumental sound. [Read more…]

Reaching to the Choir

R.S. Mitchell

For all the symphonic splendor,
how quickly we up and render
a coterie into a crowd
(bumptious, brazen, and very loud)
before the maestro leaves the stage,
despite the blaring program page,
which pleads in large, bold, roman font
PLEASE DO NOT. For it is our wont
to bustle on our breathless routes,
a trodden troop of resolutes,
hacking, feverish, ill at ease,
resolved to hear no melodies
upon this dark atonal night,
no tunes that can’t be heard on sight. [Read more…]

“The Soul of Sci-Fi”: An Interview with John C. Wright

Janice Walker & Eleanor Bourg Donlon

The most widely attributed quote to John C. Wright (at least, in the realm of blogs and livejournals, to which he is a regular contributor) is, “If Vulcans had a church, they’d be Catholics.” This remark brilliantly encapsulates the nature of Wright the writer: a man deeply entrenched in the landscape of popular science fiction—a genre he once described as “one chamber in the sprawling, Gormenghastian pile” of fantasy and horror (and which this interviewer could not resist quoting as any sentence that uses the word “Gormenghastian” ought to be shouted from rooftops)—and gravely committed to the presupposition that “objective moral order” is the bedrock of all good literature. [Read more…]

The Birthday Suit

Tony France

Jimmy Barbucci slept peacefully through the continuing devastation of the Asian markets. He always awoke famished, unperturbed by the streak of bad news from Europe. Whether the markets were up or down, money could be made both ways with a little foresight. His bets were covered—or so he thought. As he left for work one bright summer morning Jimmy Barbucci faced something he didn’t foresee. A tarot card was nailed to the door of his apartment: a young man clad in princely attire dangled upside down from a cross beam. [Read more…]

Who is the Artist?

Eileen Cunis

An artist is a human person who, like all persons, is marked by his Creator with an ultimate purpose. He pursues his unique vocation by power of certain characteristics shared by all humans, and in addition, if the artist is to fulfill this vocation well, enjoys special gifts of the intellect and the body that dispose him for his work. An accurate portrayal of the artist’s identity must develop out of the context of his human purpose; there can be no setting aside of his fundamental being without a drastic warping of his secondary calling. As critic Amanda Coomaraswamy writes, “the artist can be separated from the man in logic and for purposes of understanding; but actually, the artist can only be divorced from his humanity by what is called a disintegration of personality.” [Read more…]

Mary, Queen of Angels 2009

Feature
On the People’s Business  John C. Wright
Essays

Who is the Artist? Part 2 of “On the Vocation of the Christian Artist”  Eileen Cunis

Some Remarks on Autism and Catholicism  Michael L. Ortiz

Fiction

The Birthday Suit  Tony France

Viaticum  Fiorella de Maria

Dirty Little Coward  Gerald C. Matics

Poetry

Outside a Clinic  Mark Amorose

The Theology of Waiting  Genevieve Cunningham

Reaching to the Choir  R.S. Mitchell

Betrayed by a Kiss  John Savoie

Pulling Free  John Savoie

Hamlet, Reviewed  Gabriel Olearnik

Horae mortis  Gabriel Olearnik

itinerant intimacies  Joshua Hren

4/8/77, St. Luke’s Church  Nick Ripatrazone

It’s a dark mimesis, death  David Craig

The right to shape  Tim Davis

Interviews

“The Soul of Sci-Fi”: An Interview with John C. Wright  Janice Walker & Eleanor Bourg Donlon

Art and Photography

Untitled No. 1  Missy Scarlett

Untitled No. 2  Missy Scarlett

Blue Cheese & Beer  Tim Jones

Before They Wake  Cameron Smith

Kristen Reading  Cameron Smith

Detail, Getting Dressed  Cameron Smith

Boy in Fountain  Cameron Smith

Online Bonus

Ten Commandments for How to be
a Writer
 John C. Wright