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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & General Editor
Volume 9, Number 2, June 2015

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Janet Lynn Davis & Susan Burch
Grimes County, Texas, USA & Hagerstown, Maryland, USA


Something in the Air

I catch myself staring at the cracks in her thickly applied pink lipstick. Then it happens. Something from somewhere lands in one of my eyes, aggravating a contact lens and as per usual triggering a mini-waterfall.

At the eleventh hour, just as I need to get serious about my required research paper, my Freshman English instructor, via swift strokes with her red pen, presses me to switch to a more-traditional (aka stodgy) topic. That's why I'm now sitting here in her dank little office behind the classroom: to assert myself.

In a flash, her face freezes as she no doubt notices the waterworks. “Okay. You can go ahead with it,” she sheepishly acquiesces. “I was only afraid things would get too psychological for me.” With that, she officially approves my original topic: Why People Laugh.

This probably wasn't the first time tears saved me. I run with it.

I blink my eye
to get a lash out—
the married guy
sharing the elevator
winks back at me



Authors' Note: For those unfamiliar with U.S. university curriculums, "Freshman English" refers to a first-year English literature and composition course (or courses).

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