Original and Timely Content
Published Exclusively at fenceportal.org.
Here below is a comprehensive listing
of all the works
that have appeared in Steaming.
by Claire Donato | December 27, 2021
Two housesits in Hudson, NY; two mysterious scratch marks; two bats; two cats; two multimedia art installations; two concerts at Knockdown Center in Queens. Youtube clips. Instagram posts. Lyric meditations. This is a lucid new hybrid essay only partially containing an interview with queer punk troubador Xiu Xiu’s Jamie Stewart, who is writing a book about childhood abuse and adult sexual misadventures, while the author of this piece is writing not only this essay before you but also a book about cracking eggs into a bowl until she finds a double yolk.
by Katie Kane | December 17, 2021
Starla and Ashley were in the back seat of the Bronco II talking to each other. Starla who is Blackfeet was talking to my niece and daughter Ashley Rose who is Salish and Irish and also Chicana. Starla said “Oooks! Did you see that caddy purple jacket Sheila had on? She was standing by the door with Chaw Felix and them.” Ashley Rose who lowkey disliked Sheila said “Fuck her caddy.”
by Michael Chang | December 13, 2021
"i may have a hog body but at least i’m a strong-willed pig [ !!!! ]
if u see someone w/ the exact same face kill them
for instance kirsten dunst
lube via lather—intimacy via stand-in—ice floe via polar bears..."
by Tan Tuck Ming | November 28, 2021
In the film, her husband is seen only once: his back at a table, playing mahjong. Otherwise, he is said to be traveling. His wife is seen twice: her back and a green telephone, through an oval-shaped window. She is said to be working late. Other ways they appear: as disembodied voices in a doorway; imported rice cookers, handbags, boutique ties brought as gifts.
by Casey Haymes | Nov 27, 2021
"Pale thorns reach from emerald wings. I kneel in the clay-dirt and pinch the root stem of bull thistle. Exhume. Blood drops gather and wash my calloused fingers. I twist at the wrist, and the outdoor faucet beneath the window screeches. Water traverses the slight hill via hose, a green snake with a yellow stripe and coiled metal skin, up to the bent rim of a mouth..."
by Craig Willse | November 30, 2021
I am in Los Angeles, hiding from winter and rethinking my life. Or maybe I am rethinking winter and hiding from my life. I have been coming back to this city for twenty years, its ugly beauty beckoning. It is a cliché in conversations with displaced New Yorkers – Los Angeles is wonderful, but lonely. I am more scared of being lonely than being a cliché, and so I commit to living in public as much as possible.
by Lauren Westerfield | Nov 27, 2021
"All of this revolves around my body. This dream, the narrative, too vivid, bright—more real than bone. Teeth are barriers. My mind assaults the bone to keep from feeding on itself. Plastic does not work the same. The dentists warned me: this thing inside my mouth won’t stop the grinding. It only mitigates the damage. I do not want to lose my teeth. I also do not know if he and I share understandings of this word: DAMAGE..."
by David John | November 28, 2021
"A face equals an approximate half-second.
"A face looks to be ever on the edge of death, ha.
"A face met repeatedly reforms itself into visual static.
"The face composed of polemical chant. Observational riff. Trivial blather..."
by Lauren Samblanet | November 27, 2021
right now my sex life is made up of only dreams, both waking and dreaming. i see m, and occasionally f, quite often while sleeping. you don’t know them and don’t really need to know them or our backstory in order to hear about this dream..."
by Wil Weitzel | November 28, 2021
"More often than not, by mid-afternoon, the great structure of the cathedral became unmoored and began to float above its bustling quartier. The tops of the domes gave up their anchorage. An upwelling occurred, as in a nocturnal sea. Once, I saw the ochreous flare of a monk’s robe shifting from one high portal to the next, the dome itself cut off from earth by clouds. Far below him, swallows rafted through the air..."
by Francesca Abbate | November 20, 2021
"Halfway to the opulent hotel for his friends’ wedding, Not Baby, who can’t tell if the engineer’s attracted to her despite the scar or if desire veils it the way daisies—or any leggy wildflower—will a rut, nearly missed the enormous yellow crane that had fished a boat from the river and left it to pasture in wakeless blue..."
by Chris Campanioni | November 8, 2021
"Later on, or in another book, there’ll be a video of me walking around the Musée d’Orsay & you can click play to roll the footage & you can watch & you can listen to the everyday sounds of a museum as you read this & in that way, you will have gone further than the text..."
by Dominic Jaekle and Hoagy Houghton / October 9, 2021
The first in a series of 36 photographs and correspondent texts in a collection titled 36 Exposures (forthcoming from Dostoyevsky Wannabe). Over the course of a single year, Houghton would send Jaeckle three photographs a month from his archive; Jaeckle would respond with an accompanying prose-work for each image...The texts number fragments, at turns essayistic and anecdotal; short stories, prose-poems, and assimilated citations. The images are largely personal: snapshots; familiar faces; passing objects of interest and attention.
by Carly Stone | October 7, 2021
"I wish I had something funny to say about the garlic clove but all I can think about is how small and happy I feel when I hold it. Look at the picture of the old man again. Something inside you has shifted and now the onion isn’t very big at all. Through some cognitive miscalculation, the onion becomes normal-sized, and the old man becomes very small. This is good. You feel like your head has come off your body. Let your mind rearrange the proportions of the world. Let your body dissolve into the soup of reality..."
INTERPOLATED VISIONS @ INDETERMINATE INTERVALS: MOTH, THIN NIGHT, BRILLIANT SKY, DENSE NIGHT, TEAR GAS, & SHROUDS
by Brenda Beardsley | October 6, 2021
"[Interval] moth: A moth flusters at the screen, needs to be in, while I yearn to be out. Cool air carries a far-away voice. Across the road, reedy, pubescent bodies gather in what is left of the light: nowhere to go, because of the pandemic, not even supposed to be together. While dusk slips into night, they pass an ash-laden cigarette from one pouty mouth to another..."
by Hazel White / October 7, 2021
Marin Headlands, Pacific Ocean
"Colonel in the U.S. Army greets me one morning. He enlisted in 1984, knows the 'armpits of war.' I sidestep to our view—'In Afghanistan, there was hardship. I was engaged with the terrain, we had to move supplies through it, the view of the mountains there was enough,' he says. This view, 'a place where I should feel, . . . oddly uncomfortable...'"
by Nathan Dixon | October 5, 2021
"I heard what sounded like a muffled scream as we unloaded beach bags from the car. 'Did you hear that?' I asked Caroline. 'Hear what?' she responded. 'I don’t know.' I couldn’t tell from which direction it had come. I sometimes hear things that are not there—songs in the static of sound machines, whispered conversations in brewing coffee pots—a trait perhaps inherited from my father’s father, who in his final years complained of a baritone singing 'Silent Night...'"
"For me, on that particular night, ROMA had been, above all else, a film about all the quotidian ways in which men are de mierda cagado by/under/a causa de/debido al patriarcado...how it is the particular social world into which we are born, the particularized enmeshment of power relations, that sets the conditions of possibility for the extent to which we are able to reach our creative potential—y/o externalize our own inevitable suffering onto others..."
by Katie Schaag | September 2, 2021
an erasure of Ronald Lockley's novel Seal Woman (1974)
An undulant fantasy for fanciers of Wild (female) Things who make the heart sing even underwater, as does that of the narrator who pursues the smooth Pinnipedian form of Shian, the seal-woman...
by William Lessard | August 8, 2021
"When Mike Kelley strung thrift store rag dolls and stuffed animals from a canvas, he was mapping the territory of abuse. Each doll a tiny parcel holding the sweat and tears of their former owners. Bodies sewn head to toe, toe to head, between a scream of blanket. Like Rauschenberg’s Bed from a generation prior, More Love Hours Than Can Be Repaid (1987) unspools yellow tape around the scene, marks the spot where the victim anticipates nocturnal recurrence..."
"I take out the stones and sit there, imagining a new wall, a new way and then I quiet it. I am not an escapologist. I can’t escape. I’ve actually been grounding myself in earth, in trees, in birds and blues. I’ve been returning to nature, to the body and the body of the world. Sometimes, I lose myself in fear, but then I return to rebuild. Sometimes, I take myself out of it all. I take out all the I’s, and then I put them back in."
In Ghana, the air is thick with equatorial heat. Two seasons dominate the year: rainy and dry. I think of them as Wet Hot and Dust Hot. In Wet Hot, raindrops puncture the air so persistently that the holes they make in the grey sky seem permanent. Umbrellas are geometrically impractical, as the rain draws itself as a dotted line parallel to the ground, and perpendicular to the person standing upright...
For a long time I practiced Vipassana with a meditation teacher who talks about the relief he feels when he opens up his mind to nothingness. This kind of meditation brings me a lot of relief when I have anxiety. I did wait a long time wondering if he was going to say something to address the post I made on his Star Wars page. He says nothing. I say nothing...
I was in my mid-twenties when I immigrated from Pakistan to the US, landing in Manhattan. Fresh off the boat, as the saying goes, I never expected to be attending a mushaira in New York, yet there I was, in the packed, smoke-filled conference hall at the Roosevelt Hotel in midtown Manhattan, giddy with excitement […]
After our mother died, The Father began to go through his reporting papers and the heaps and hills of family documents kept in a large wooden chest from Mexico, locked with a giant iron lock and key. The chest, part of the spoils from their years abroad, smelled of candle wax and toasted wood. He […]
* * An attractive figure rounds the corner. Is he? Yes, very. Your gaze locks in his. The moment dilates. Take in the hooded eyes, the aquiline nose. Zero the body. You feel a flush of arousal, a stirring below. Your pulse grows palpable. The mouth wets but you can’t swallow. * * […]
Missionaries (1962) The doorbell would ring, and my mother and I would slink into the living room trying to muffle our giggles until, peeking out the kitchen window, we’d see the backs of their white short-sleeved shirts as they walked toward the street and their next stop. We’d been on their list my whole life, […]
1 In April everyone involved in, or touched by, independent publishing saw a flare go up: Small Press Distribution launched a GoFundMe. SPD is looking for $100,000 to help cover its losses during the covid-19 crisis. To state the obvious, the crisis has profoundly disrupted bookselling nationwide—even and especially by Amazon.com, which has suspended and/or […]
The headache is the limit, the circle, the disk. The black horizon. Sometimes it’s a dull, red glow, soft latitudes of pain. Or a field of searing, orange craters. They burst open through the dark. Or, with a gentler hurt: tall, blowing vanes of magnetized color. Sometimes it’s still. Maybe then, it sleeps. When it […]
“It is not tiring to count dresses.” GERTRUDE STEIN 1 This dress I am wearing in this black-and-white photograph, taken when I was two years old, was a yellow dress made of cotton poplin (a fabric with a slightly unsmooth texture first manufactured in the French town of Avignon and brought to England by the […]
Oonseentia. I go out into the city and find a tulip tree, the tallest tree I can find, the tree called oonseentia by the peoples native to this land, the tree these native peoples use to build their canoes. I intend to build a canoe of my own. I wait for lightning to strike and […]
He touched me, so I live to know That such a day, permitted so, I groped upon his breast. —Emily Dickinson One of the first texts I had assigned for my 2020 spring environmental literarture course, Climate Emergencies, was E.M. Forster’s shocking visionary tale “The Machine Stops.” The story is set on a future […]
Astroturf eats sun like a late meal. The heat greets my left cheek, right cheek rushes with soiled roadway breeze, I reconcile two or more feelings. The astroturf at the Women’s World Cup in 2015 was reportedly 120 degrees at kickoff. Hot surface for the hot […]