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March 27, 2013 - Image 10

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The Michigan Daily, 2013-03-27

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Wednesday, March 27, 2013 // The Statement7B

letter from the editor
In all of my previous columns regarding books (all two of
them) I've said in some way or another that I have no authority to
really judge the literary pieces I write about, yet here I am at the
helm of this issue selecting the pieces that go inside. So, I want to
thank Haley Goldberg for letting me choose these pieces after I've
made it publicly known that I don't think I can. Haley, thank you.
I read a lot (you're thinking, no shit, Sherlock, you write
about reading for goodness sake) but reading without a pen in
my hand to annotate and look for critical and stylistic elements in
the text is rare. I always look at writing with the eye of an English
major. So when I picked pieces for this, I tried to, well, not read
the submissions like that. I tried to revert back to the fifth-grader-
who-reads-under-blankets-past-bedtime-because-books-are-
your-best-friend type of reader, and instead of looking for all the
academic hogwash, just reading them for what they are. That
being said, the submissions I got (and there were a lot) were
impressive to say the least. Y'all can write! And so there I sat,
crouched over the submissions and frazzled in a coffee shop, and I
had to make the hard decisions.
I hope what I chose, and what graces these pages, takes
you to some new places and makes you think a little bit differently.
paige pearcy
students of the year 2012-2013
Each spring, The Statement fills its pages with the faces and stories of the students of
the year. These students contributed to the University academically, philanthropically,
athletically, musically and in many other ways. This year, we want YOU to help us select
the 2012-2013 students of the year.
Tell us who you think made a difference this year and why we should share their
story. Your recommendations will help us make the "Students of the Year" issue high-
light the Leaders and the Best on campus.
Nominate a student today at michigandaily.com/blog/tangent
Nominations accepted until April 1

Fucking
Locally
By Allison Epstein

Likewise
By Logan Corey

these are my people
who mistreat cashmere sweaters
stolen Salvation Army
who fish boxes Tiffany blue
upturn garbage can NewYorkCity
who memorize Bryant Park
newness, plaster discarded circulation leaflets
in grimy spirals against a mouthy palate
who travel by discount commuter train
borrowed boxcar redeye voyage
who never buy
tickets to sold out shows,

who scratch the bottom of the barrel
and reevaluate the notion of food,
who buy the biggest, cheapest bottles
of foulest champagne and toast wordless
speeches
to friends they cannot afford to keep
who have never touched their foot soles against
another country's soil-stem
and spend their days manual-clutch training
optic nerve lenses in worship
of counterfeit grail that manic-gleam reflects
the uninhabitable absence of Here.

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ILLUSTRATION BY MEGAN MULHOLLAND

She was one of those Greenpeace
tree huggers; that much was obvious.
Combs were made of plastic, made
of oil, made of crushed-up dinosaur
parts: theyweren'tvegan, shewouldn't
use them, she had dreadlocks. They
reminded me of hemp rope, and they
scratched against the sandpaper of my
lazy July beard when we kissed. Once
one brushed against my neck when
she was biting my ear and I felt like I
was being hung. Hanged. Whichever.
Not a bad way to go, though. If I had to
kick it, I wanted someone to help me
get off in the process. Death in orgasm
would get me damned, but when you
spend summers on a farm in Nebraska
hell ain't so far off as it is.
She told me her name was
Merrily. Like the song, I said, and
started to sing. We roll along, roll
along, roll along. Shut up, you prick,
it's my goddamn name, she said.
Okay, I said. Sorry, I said. Anyway,
we rolled along and along and life
was but a hot summer dream, one
of those dreams you have when the
fan stops working after you fall
asleep and you don't have central air
because you live in fucking central
Nebraska and your brain overheats
and the curtains of your mind come
up and show the craziest, most
unbelievable, most awesome shit
going on onstage. That was how our
summer went.

Neither of us had a car, which was
fine because it would have taken forty-
five minutes to drive to the nearest
shopping mall and neither of us liked
shopping anyway, much less that
awkward silence when you're in a car
with people you don't know that well
and you turn on the radio to fill it only
to spend the whole time wondering if
they're secretly judging you because of
your music. Plus, imagine how many
dinosaurs that would've wasted. We
found ways to fill the summer days,
alternative forms of energy. Fuck locally,
she'd said with a shrug, and we explored
my uncle's farm and each other top to
bottom. Hay lofts, hay stacks, hay bales,
I spent hours pulling pieces of hay out
of her dreads which was harder than
it sounds since you can't really tell the
difference. The hot summer air hung
heavy around us, but I didn't miss the
rainy misty grayness I'd left behind in
Seattle. I got more sunburned than ever
before, until I tanned to the color of
hay bales and the toughness of saddle
leather. I started to think of myself as
a Rastafarian, one of two in the corn
belt, drumming away like a barn dance
from Little House on the Prairie, except
Ma and Pa were stoned and the cider
was Jack Daniels and we were saving
the dinosaurs and the polar bears by
drinking whiskey out of the bottle
without cups and not shaving, either of
us, and fucking locally.

Desire Under the
Mosquito Netting
By Giancarlo Buonomo

"Hunger is good discipline and you
learn from it."
Ernest Hemingway
We shared a cup of tea
in Mysore when I still
felt like Ernest Hemingway
I wondered if the mix of
our sip on the lip
constituted a kiss
Exotic as jackfruit and as juicy
as the Georgia peaches that
you said grew in your backyard in Atlanta
And I believed you
We read A Moveable Feast in the
backseat of an old British car
on our way to town to
buy antibiotics and chocolate

The bindi that you placed on
Hemingway's forehead is still there
We lifted bricks every day
that villagers stacked in neat rows
before we woke in the morning
and yet I referred to the two of us
as the Hebrew slaves and hoped that
together we could dance the straw into
the mud and make bricks
And you laughed
Together we could be
Sahib and the lovely lady
Riding elephants along the Ganges
and hunting tigers in the jungle
Me under my sun-helmet
You under a silk umbrella
Us under the mosquito netting

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