2/5/15

End

In 2009 it occurred to me that there was nothing standing between me and an online journal called "Everyday Genius," which would feature a new piece of writing every day.

I am so grateful to all the people who made it work. To my friends, who at the beginning were willing to give me a poem or story at the spur of the moment, and later the strangers who were willing to send work as a submission, thank you. A very special thanks to the guest editors who came up with unique ideas and filled the days with groundbreaking work. Over the years, Everyday Genius published nearly 1500 writers. There were photos and audio and postcards and live revisions and recipes and videos and so much amazing writing.

I don't know if all good things must come to an end, but Everyday Genius must, and this is that. I hope you'll continue to join us daily at Real Pants.

Gratefully,
Adam Robinson

(click an editor's name to view their month)


2015

1/30/15

Kalliopi Mathios

tapping into the timestream

i drink more tequila and stare
into the dark night of a deep set
suburban backyard, one mother tree,

wet dirt, and a dead rose garden
i bury the leftovers, i bury them twice
a clown called the cult pure family

having gone missing still feels simple
they’re always wearing blue suits
i’m always wearing pink eyeliner

i call it feeding abomination
i call it bending abandon
the truth is somewhere between

a chili’s parking lot and an
all you can drink, all you can eat
river gorge tubing trip

fifteen years ago, laying flat
on my back, eyes closed, listening
to a relaxation tape that ordered

me into the woods; i stretched
on a beautiful mossy patch
and never came back


Kalliopi Mathios lives in Brooklyn, NY, and is a poet, librarian, and Editor of White Rabbit, an imprint of Civil Coping Mechanisms. She curates the Blackmail reading series at Mellow Pages Library, and is the author of Horsegirl (Plain Wrap Press, 2014). Follow her on Twitter at @kalliopiiiiii.

1/29/15

Kyle Wing

is this modern? (coffee table diplomacy)



utopian trash


Kyle Wing is a designer and architect, going to school in Pittsburgh, PA and living in Sacramento, CA. He makes images and designs things. See his work and send him pictures of weird attempts at flying machines.

1/28/15

Cecilia Pavón

Facing North

An entire life buried in the heat of
coming back and finding a being that lives,
breathes, waits for me, is my other half.
When the birds were eating from my hand and
I could feel that they were of flesh,
with blood beating through their bewitched
bodies.
And I didn’t care about the cold weather because
the mornings were hot, and it felt like we were
living in the nineteenth century, in the emptiness, in the humidity.
Because of the kisses everyone else gave
each other, and the rapes, which were
games. Not real, not martyrs.

We lived in a horrid building, but I
didn’t see its ugliness, because it was
surrounded by greenery, and it was lived in.

The tropics were a dream, an amulet.
Any body a blessing, the
emotions rays that like lizard
tongues brought together the surfaces of stigmata.

I thanked the heavens for a window, I drank
that which purifies like a gift: The pole,
falling, and dismantled. The wind
erasing the shapes.

I washed myself with bleach. I never got around
to washing the sheets, I wanted them to be white
too so I could dream that life was a
dream. I robbed an elderly woman, to put dinner
on the table. That night, in my head I
composed odes to beauty and I wanted
to throw myself into the lake of fever. At the
party there was a party and you could hear screams,
a party of whales, with wreathes
on the door. And the two of us, beyond
mute, were opening holes in another wall.

But love arrived and we rented a car
to travel to the Magic Kingdom.
I named the desert and the palm trees
Mickey Mouse. But the warning for
deadly hurricanes went off, and I left
to take cover somewhere where there weren’t
any sirens. To the hotel, to seclusion, to
transmutation in voyage.

Writing the prayer for chaos down
on a piece of paper: If I die, let them bury me
alive, and they shall give him the portion
of my heart, but they shouldn’t revive me.

It’s just a lie, all that we see.
And details.
Sometimes I freeze,
or imagine everything that happens inside
my body as caverns.
Or the encounters are enchantments
and the apparitions virgins or
detachment of the flesh
of others.
I never got to see an animal, so I don’t know.

It’s asphyxiation, it’s the flicker
of hope that faith will come.


About the AuthorCecilia Pavón was born in Mendoza, Argentina, in 1973. She has lived in Buenos Aires since 1992. She holds a B.A. in Literature from the University of Buenos Aires. In 2012, she published her collected poetry in Un hotel con mi nombre (A Hotel With My Name). Her other publications include 27 poemas con nombres de persona (2010), the ebook Once Sur (2012), and the short-story collection Los sueños no tienen copyright (2010). She has two forthcoming translations into English to be published in 2015: Belleza y Felicidad (Sand Paper Press) and A Hotel With my Name (Scrambler Books).

About the TranslatorJacob Steinberg was born in Stony Brook, New York, in 1989. He has published the full-length poetry collections Magulladón (2012), Ante ti se arrodilla mi silencio (2013), and Before You Kneels My Silence (2014). As a translator he has worked with Cecilia Pavón, CAConrad, and Mario Bellatin, among others. He currently resides in New York.

1/27/15

Dalton Day

Take the Body Apart

Not as command
or plea

Lot of fog in the trees today
until I eat it up
How much wolf am I not

I stay awake
memorizing paw prints

& then I wake up
Happy to be here

I like your name
when I say it
I’ve never said a bird before

You said wind
& I didn’t run anywhere

Body & wind

& I didn’t run nowhere

I’m too possible to flood
You made that
You made loud of me

As question

How hard can it be
to eat water

Say that again I say I say

& mean it

Dalton Day is a Pushcart nominated poet & editor of FreezeRay Poetry. His work has been featured in PANK, Hobart, The Millions, & Jellyfish among others. He is the author of Supernova Factory as well as the forthcoming Fake Knife. He can be found at myshoesuntied.tumblr.com & on Twitter @lilghosthands. He’s absolutely terrified.

1/26/15

Tantra Bensko

Virus on Fire


The most beautiful man you have seen is part tree. He lifts his arms slowly in front of the crowd around him. He can barely hold them up, but doing so keeps him trim. His finely formed, cheeks, square, with nice rounded edges, catch all the sun they can. His eyes are deep but you know he couldn't feel you if he reaches out. His hands extend into grey cutanaeous horns, waste material of warts that just keep growing.

He lifts his feet, with their roots, while people cheer; that gives him strong leg muscles, but he's not muscle-bound, as he can't do much work around the place. He keeps to himself, and you want to tell him stories in the corner. Everyone else is busy. Everyone else has felt many women.

You walk up to a tree and hug it, petting its bark, and glance at him. You love trees.

You wonder if anyone has ever put her arms around him. His waist is fine. People stand back, so they don't catch his virus.

You hear someone say it's because his mother must have made love with his father in a tree. But his father left when he saw the branches coming in. And his mother won't talk. Only the man's brother pours his bath, and sews special clothes he dresses him in, and gives him a hand-rolled cigarrette stuck in a stick he hollowed out; he places the contrivance between the tight branches in between the tree-fingers.

One of the other freaks performing moves his head back and forth lugubriously, making his nose, which flops down below his chin, waves squishily. Another one balances a ball on his head like a seal, and claps his malformed flippers. Tree-man can only perform with them once a month and you can see why. After he curls into a ball, uncrouching slowly, raising his giant hands to the sky, and standing on his toe roots, looking up, he becomes a little more tree. He can barely move afterwards. His sap is running downward, but you want to make it rise for you. If he could just get better, he would have so much more life to live. You would cook for him. You would clean him.

You look in the mirror at the trading circle and make faces while you dance to the drums. You like to make people laugh. One time you drew an outline of your face on the mirror. It was easy to draw it to make it look just like you. But you shouldn't call that cheating. Sometimes the sunshine feels so mellow on your face you can hardly stand it. You barely sneak open an eye, to look at Tree-man to see if he notices the angle of the sun on your sensuous face.

His brother is giving him a cigarette in a hollowed out stick to revive him. The cigarette catches his hand branches on fire. His eyes are closed as he takes a drag, meaning he can't see your dramatic look of horror, and he doesn't feel the horns at all on fire. Until the heat informs his face. His eyes get big and he screeches and rolls on the ground. But the smoldering has gone deep. Like peat moss under the ground, his brother says it will be ever really put out.

You watch, and you wait.

Some of the limbs grow brittle and break off, some harden. His brother tries making one into charcoal but it doesn't work at all; he thinks of eating it powdered to settle his stomach but the thought upsets it instead.

A fire inside makes the tree man more poetic. More smoldering. He looks at you, as his hand becomes closer to being able to feel you. As perhaps his self confidence grows, as he can wave now, relatively smoothly. The fire in his hand would leave an imprint on your body if he touched you long. Your naked body. Your long, narrow back. Your low riding hips.

It would say you are his. Only he could leave a mark that shape. His hand grows smaller, and more beautiful, the other one still tree. The small one looks like a pine cone that went mad. You make sure he can smell you. You stand close to him, as you are fertile.

Your mother always told you it's important to plant trees. You give him a look you hope he understands: you want him to plant a baby tree inside you. You want it to grow, and take you over. It is already made of fire.

Tantra Bensko teaches fiction writing with UCLA X Writing Program, Writers College, and her academy. Her newest book is an illustrated Neo-Noir Slipstream novella from ELJ Publishing. Her stories nestle into magazines and anthologies like Strange Little Girls, Women Writing the Weird I and II, NonBinary Review, Zymbol, and Holdfast. She loves life in Berkeley. http://lucidmembrane.weebly.com/

1/23/15

MH Rowe

WOKE UP HOT

The light is a curious bright and solar. I feel like my body is changing its font size. The lungs don’t know what to do with water. Entire ecologies where lunchtime astronauts, sitting there with their blankets tucked around their engineering degrees, laugh out loud at the nowhere of outer spaces and all the sea dark. It’s very old fashioned to be distracted by hyperlinks. It’s very old fashioned to goof up and poof like space dust. To support the intricate apparatus of heat, I have several limbs. I protect all the bacteria that live on me. I’m not lonely. It’s just hard to turn into the thing on the last page of the instructions.


MH Rowe's fiction and poems have appeared in The Collapsar, Black Warrior Review, Juked, Spork, DIAGRAM, Timber, Jellyfish, and ILK, among other places. He lives and writes in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

1/22/15

Zoe Dzunko

IRL (Summer of Distance)

If only to know this
unknowable thing, like
can the body hope to
be anything more than
measurable edges,
fifteen colours, a name
and a date. It is not 
enough to find the soft
skin behind the kneecap,
caress it in moments
of tenderness; the lined
palm of mystery goes
on collecting its dumb
DNA memories from the
bodies it skims, urging
close, closer. I know you
like the bent water vision
of the legs that became,
so quickly, not my own;
I know you like the black
screen you dull to at night,
effacing a days worth
of experience. And
ever still, the longing
to know a body down
to its pixels, where they
form their squares from the soft
human curves of a cheek;
the warmth of an ear, lost
in twenty-three rose-hued
variations; limbal
ring blown out, into this
mess of eye.


Zoe Dzunko is the author of All of the Men I Have Never Loved (Dancing Girl Press), Bruise Factory (NAP) and Wet Areas (Maverick Duck Press). She is the Poetry & Short Prose Editor of The Lifted Brow, an Assistant Editor for Coconut Magazine and, with Sarah Jean Grimm, founded Powder Keg, an online poetry quarterly. Her work has recently appeared in Guernica, H_NGM_N, Bodega, The FanzineTwo Serious Ladies et al. She’s online at: zoedzunko.tumblr.com

1/21/15

Peter Berghoef

Woolly mammoths living lavishly in a park I designed

it takes up most of  Siberia

I've been snacking
wearing out the joystick
landing helicopters on purely hypothetical islands

sandwiches most men would kill for
on plates engineered to bring forth the best in both boys and girls

some kind of engine
the fuel could be mice feet or gnarled bones bought at estate sales
a car left running after the groceries have been brought in
or after a trip to the store has been abandoned

a cold turn at the wheel
and the captain has big plans
the night doesn't look like it will leave anytime soon
a man can only do so much

a list of objects to resurrect
in no particular order
slobbering together on the veranda

the actual definition of meandering
into a plastic cup under harsh light
pretending to pass a test
inventing farms to laugh at

those would be the basic rules of the universe I'm talking about
if you can imagine that
a few massive vessels to carry most of us to the nearest habitable planet

not the technical details
the uses of beaks
lengthening the seasons
cracking odd seeds
sweeping the remains to the floor

low self esteem in house cats must be a real problem
there must be studies to prove it
there must be a librarian who can find that for me
I'm simply not explaining it right

between all of the houses are small patches of grass
and driveways and places to leave hoses
these are opportunities to meet mosquitos and fall into chairs
make a plan to wake up at a certain time while its still morning

walk in from the yard
lock the door
put the music back on
try not to disappoint the animals

the cash from a few machines is all it would take
the pictures we would post
the cold chills while the transaction takes place
falling asleep near the front door

this is how we get warmed up
we walk to the gravesite wearing winter clothes
we get the car stuck in heavy snow
one of us must be lowered down to the surface
wearing mittens or something sticky to grab up all the scattered paper

they are near the tennis courts
they are the history of a number of mature trees
inspired to sit out back and pop open the good beer
give the restaurant a kiss on the lips
the sludge moving forward

it is a big hulking monster
on a trip from New York to Los Angeles in less than the history of paint
separated at the river going both ways
Nebraska and Wisconsin

have your laughs
drive your car on the roads
milk the cows you find in the pastures
drink the photos of fading barns
but don't pour them on your cereal

as always have a laugh
injure yourself comically falling from a horse
pretending again
make it a secret how you really hurt your arm

Peter Berghoef lives in Holland, Michigan, with his wife Erin and their cat Charles. His chapbook "News of the Haircut" is currently available from Greying Ghost.