against meaning


Against Meaning
Andrei Codrescu

Everything I do is against meaning.
This is partly deliberate, mostly spontaneous.
Wherever I am I think I’m somewhere else.
This is partly to confuse the police, mostly to
avoid myself es-
pecially when I have to confirm
the obvious which always
sits on a little table and draws a lot
of attention to itself.
So much so that no one sees the chairs
and the girl sitting on one of them.
With the obvious one is always at the movies.
The other obvious which the loud obvious
is not obvious enough to merit a
surrender of the will.
But through a little hole in the boring report
God watches us faking it.

Photo by Luke Marshall on Unsplash

Sufganiyot – Filled donuts for Hanukkah



  • 1 cup warm water, heated to about 110°F / 43°C
  • 1 tablespoon instant or active dry yeast
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar (a bit extra for dusting)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2large egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, in addition to about 2 quarts (2 liters) for frying
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • About 1 cup filling (you can use jam, pudding or custard, Nutella, pudding, pumpkin butter, apple butter, dulce de leche, pie fillings, ), but this too is optional. I used lemon curd, Nutella, pumpkin mousse, and raspberry jam


  1. Mix the warm water and yeast in a glass bowl and let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.
  2. In a separate, large bowl, mix the flour, powdered sugar, salt, and nutmeg. Whisk to combine and set aside.
  3. Add the egg yolks, 2 tablespoons of oil, and vanilla to the water/yeast mixture and whisk until combined.
  4. Add the liquid mixture to the flour mixture and stir with rubber spatula until the dough comes together. It should be somewhat Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise until doubled in size, about 1 to 2 hours.
  5. Line a baking sheet with a few layers of paper towels. Line another baking sheet with ­parchment paper and dust heavily with flour. Dust a clean countertop and your hands with flour. Put the dough on the counter and dust with flour. Pat the dough into 1/4-in-thick rectangle (it should be about 10 x 12-inches in size), making sure the bottom doesn’t stick (add more flour to the counter and hands as needed). Using a pizza wheel or very sharp knife, cut the dough into 24 two-inch squares (or use a round cookie cutter if you prefer rounds) and transfer to the floured baking sheet, leaving a little space between the squares. Sprinkle the squares lightly with flour.
  6. Add oil to a large Dutch oven or heavy pot to measure about 2 inches deep. Heat over medium to 350°F/176°C. Place 6 dough pieces in the oil and fry until golden brown, about 5 minutes on each side. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the donuts to the paper towel-lined baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining donuts.
  7. When the donuts are cool enough to handle, use a paring knife to puncture the side of each to form a pocket in the center. Place the tip of a squeeze bottle or piping bag into the pocket and squeeze 1 to 2 teaspoons of filling into the pocket. (You can also serve the filling on the side.)
  8. Using a fine sieve, dust the donuts with powdered Serve warm.

memory demands so much


Memory Demands So Much
Denise Levertov

Memory demands so much,
it wants every fiber
told and retold.
It gives and gives
but for a price, making you
risk drudgery, lapse
into document, treacheries
of glaring noon and a slow march.
Leaf never before
seen or envisioned, flying spider
of rose-red autumn, playing
a lone current of undecided wind,
lift me with you, take me
off this ground of memory that clings
to my feet like thick clay,
exacting gratitude for gifts and gifts.
Take me flying before
you vanish, leaf, before
I have time to remember you,
intent instead on being
in the midst of that flight,
of those unforeseeable words.






Jane Hirshfield

All day wondering
if I’ve become useless.

All day the osprey
white and black,
big dry sticks without leaves.

Late, I say to my pride,

You think you’re the feathered part
of this don’t you?

Photo by Karo Kujanpaa on Unsplash

the last time


The Last Time
Donika Kelly

I hardly remember the last time
we touched each other with tenderness:

the evening’s fall, the light dim, the rug new,
our life rambling ahead of us as the valley runs

to the foothills. Surely I called your name,
pulled you close; surely you trembled, our bodies

tangled and damp; yet what lingers in my mind,
what rings so clear is the hot mouth of shame opening

in my gut, awakened by the more I’d wanted: to taste
and at the same time be tasted, to be ridden, to take

inside me whatever you would give. Shame,
in both the wanting and the wanting’s return,

swallowing whatever longing I wanted to voice.
I could hardly know that mouth’s alarm,

gilding the night, was a warning–had assumed
the maze farther south, its center quiet.

Photo by Matthew Kosloski on Unsplash

on hurt


On Hurt
Nikita Gill

Deciding how hurt
someone is allowed to be
with your behaviour
towards them
is the emotional
equivalent of

drowning someone
and deciding
how loud
they are allowed
to scream.

setting someone on fire
and deciding
how much of a mess
their ashes are allowed
to make.

stabbing someone
and deciding
how much
they are allowed
to bleed.

You do not get to
destroy someone
and decide how ruined
they are allowed
to feel.

Photo by Mishal Ibrahim on Unsplash




The Bookshelves
Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin

These are our cliffs, where we hang and grope and slide.
Why should there be a path upwards among such casual
stacks? Somebody shelved them size by size
but still they signal throbbing on shadow types.
Their lightning blazes like a faraway headlight
bound firmly elsewhere. Most times
it’s the finger tucked in the big dictionary that leads
onward (as if under submerged voussoirs, along
damp paving to the ancient reservoir) to tell us
that the jumping flashes on the rockface were the codes
for a name that we could never have otherwise known.


Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

about photography


About Photography
Andrei Codrescu

I hate photographs,
those square paper Judases of the world,
the fakers of love’s image of all things.
They show you parents where the frogs of doom
are standing under the heavenly flour,
they picture grassy slopes
where the bugs of accident whirr twisted
in the flaws of the world.
It is weird,
this violence of particulars
against the unity of being

Image by S Donaghy