Eye and Guy
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Spring/Summer 2003

From the Editor
Thom Didato

Charles Baxter

"The Wedding Present"
fiction by
Brock Clarke

fiction by
David Brizer

"Snow Powder"
fiction by
Josip Novakovich

"Impostor Theory"
"In Vivo"
poetry by
Mary Donnelly

"Old Bardstown"
poetry by
Ellen Hagan

"Yellow-haired Girl with Spider"
poetry by
John Rybicki

"Please be aware..."
"How to Be Well Dressed..."
poetry by
Mónica de la Torre

"Rabun I"
"Rabun II"
"Keowee I"
paintings by
Peggy Bates




At 1 I made my mom exquisite. I’m sure her heart swelled to the size of her vagina when I slid out from beneath her legs 12 months prior. It was November 1978, Kentucky. She told me I was shaped like a loaf of bread when under my blanket and that when she held me I felt like there were thousands of little marbles rolling round from the insides of my chunky thighs to the deep center of my rounded out earlobes. I was her first daughter, sliced directly from her gut, smelling of tap water and baby oil. I had eyes the color of the dirt my mother used to plant her tomatoes in and a swollen belly the size of my father’s outstretched hollowed out hand. We lived together, the four of us; my mother, father and brother, in a split-level near the Nelson county line where I am positive I grew accustomed to the weather at an early age, 6 weeks perhaps. Heat in the bluegrass is humid, moist, snow dripping like the freshness of an outside shower. We had a swing-set, a sandbox, a backyard and neighbors. There were hand-me-down Batman pajamas waiting for my 2nd birthday and a courageous pummel off the city pool diving board preparing for my 4th. A brand new Huffy with a horn and a hot pink banana seat sat in the garage for my 7th and there was a boy who was standing in the shadows eager to break my heart in the 3rd grade. In the wings of the house there were meals we’d all eventually consume together, holidays where we’d devour red wine with our mashed potatoes and gravy and Easter Sundays spent chasing pastel dyed hard-boiled eggs all over the front yard. Behind doors there were X-men motorcycles and the only real Barbie mansion. There would be nights of keeping my brother awake for hours with tales of crocodile eating heathens and the fairy maidens that saved them and afternoons of raiding the cabinets for canned goods to play house with, my brother and I dressed as Lucy and Ricky. And much later there would be nights of raiding those same cabinets, just as my girlfriend’s and my high was hitting a peak. There would be field party acid trips and moments of driving so drunk I’d almost slip into the bay window of our living room. There would be nights of hallucinations, bad sex in cars near 245, there’d be hitchhiking, throwing up, swimming naked, calling home from the police station in the middle of the night. There would be months and months of making my mother the ugliest she has ever been. But at 1, I am sure I made her exquisite.

Ellen Hagan is a writer, performer and educator. She holds an MFA in in fiction from The New School and has received grants from the Kentucky Foundation for Women. She has self published several chapbooks and her work can be seen in the on-line journal La Petite Zine. She is currently working on her first novel, The Kentucky Notes.







From our
poetry archive

Jon LaPree
Issue 5 - Winter 2002

"Dear Daughter"
Thaddeus Rutkowski
Issue 15 - Fall 2004

"Let Her Go"
Amy Holman
Issue 17 - Summer 2005