Emma Stogsdill hails from a small town in Northwest Florida. She has previously been published by The Gateway Review. In her free time, Emma is an environmentalist and lover of all things spooky.
Black Coffee, Blue Corn Chips
Nothing says “comfort” like pantry shelves
filled with corn chips and the ideas of food
I forgot to buy.
So, I pour up lunch.
Another cup of coffee
with a side of crumbs
because this bag went faster than usual.
I know solitude—
a desiccant alone, but if
dehydration was a name it would be my own
Because caffeine and salt course through my veins
like they are being paid to dry me out.
Dry like the years-gone tree frog stuck in the
double paned window of my house that is not my home.
An Elegy for Home
the influenza of wasted emotion.
I never believed that home wasn’t a place until it stopped being one—
Until I carried it behind my retinas so that everywhere I looked,
home burned against my optic nerve as a painful reminder that
a house is just a house and that a home is peace and that peace is everywhere.
And you can never go home because it was never a point on a map,
It was a premonition—
an essence that sat in your mind when your mind sat still.
No Spiders in Sight
July’s insistent heat
parted my lips
and despite my nervous excuses,
Her muggy sighs slid down
my throat like a second helping of
with a dash of what might be regret,
or maybe guilt,
but probably regret
because guilt means you’ve done something.
But I couldn’t seem to move,
and where I stood, July coughed up the
ghosts of spider webs that floated to
lips that should have had
a better answer than
and they stuck.
But there were no spiders in sight.
And silence never fails to float
betwixt spider webs
and the still muggy breeze.
An Unexpected Pause
The threadbare symmetry of autumn is a
lead weight on the sole of my shoe,
seducing my right foot into oneness
with the brake pedal of my car.
as if the sky is only dark for this place.
Stop. There is something here.
And sounds of the bustling world
Fall off into the squeal of wet brake pads—
The stained asphalt like a runway into the unknown.
Uncharted behind a shabby fence
Keeping nothing in,
keeping everything out.
And Silence questions whether power lines
Could possibly hold more energy
than the world around them,
or if the electricity they carry is from the other side.
If there was a switch for nocturnal behaviors
I would flip my circadian rhythm like a pancake
On a lazy morning/midmorning/afternoon
After a long night of writing, musing, hoping, planning,
Because all of my best work happens
when the sun lights the Eastern hemisphere and
the hemispheres of my brain buzz in
the all-encompassing darkness.
They say I’m solar powered,
but those are the people
who fail to understand the distinction
between temporalness, temperature, temperament.
Those who think that
a smile is only a sign of happiness
and that chills are an antagonistic action against it.
From the Editor:
We hope that readers receive In Parentheses as a medium through which the evolution of human thought can be appreciated, nurtured and precipitated. It will present a dynamo of artistic expression, journalism, informal analysis of our daily world, entertainment of ideas considered lofty and criticism of today’s popular culture. The featured content does not follow any specific ideology except for that of intellectual expansion of the masses.
Founded in late 2011, In Parentheses prides itself upon analysis of the current condition of intelligence in the minds of these young people, and building a hypothesis for one looming question: what comes after Post-Modernism?
The idea for this magazine stems from a simple conversation regarding the aforementioned question, which drew out the need to identify our generation’s place in literary history.
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