“Yasss Child“, a remembrance of one of my oldest friends–one of the earliest AIDS diagnoses in NYC–won First Honorable Mention from the 2018 Christopher Hewitt Award for Creative Nonfiction:
The first time he stepped through my door, I thought Nico’s flamboyance was weakness, but I’ve come to see it as emblematic of his bravery.
From their masthead: “Homology lit is a Pacific Northwest-based online literary magazine for people of color, queer folks, and people with disabilities.” Their Inaugural issue will include “Swarthy”, a remembrance of my handsome, compact Sicilian grandfather, his silence, his erasure, and what swarthiness means in our racialized social order.
Grandpa Tony welcomed my boyfriend, too, while perhaps not fully acknowledging the full nature of out relationship. He greeted him with a broad smile, a firm shake, and a clasp of the shoulder, with laughter that seemed like it was decades in the making. Where have you been?, his eyes seemed to ask as he brought him out to the backyard for a tour, enlisting him in clam-digging and setting out traps.
Many thanks to Tinbete Ermyas for reading.
“Traumatic Book Review, Alive, by Piers Paul Read“, my submission for the 2018 Saints + Sinners fiction contest, made the semifinalist cut.
I read Alive probably too young. I was freaked out by the fate of the Old Christians rugby team, even while longing for their camaraderie. So I grew up to write a short story exploring lust, shame, body issues, and loss.
Warner nudged him awake with a bare foot; Vin looked around to find the library empty. Noting the paperback on his chest, Warner smiled. “Alive. Who knows how that turned up here? Guests in and out, someone must have left it behind…”
Vin roused. “One of the survivors–Canessa–was my first crush.”
“Ah! Now we know. You’re into jock cannibal trade,” Warner joked as he gave him a hand up.
I’ll be reading at this year’s festival in New Orleans.