A Mother’s Curse

Summer 1967

It had been a while since I’d worked on a ship, so I’d run out of money. Since I was the only one paying rent on the Alamo Square apartment we called “Cave Seven,” the landlord asked my friends and me to vacate the place.

Beyond being broke and homeless, I felt I needed to go further and deeper, so during one bust-out acid trip, I threw my last pair of shoes into the Pacific. They were Cordovans, dress shoes, the last vestige of clothing from my previous incarnation as a grad student.



… there was a letter from my parents. I opened it quickly and found a check for twenty-five dollars. There was a note as well, but I crumpled it up and tossed it out unread.”

Ridding myself of my only pair of shoes was stupid and self-destructive, but there was an idea behind it. I hoped it would free me of the last traces of the nice Jewish boy I was determined to kill. So I went barefoot for weeks, which gave me a too-intimate connection to tar and pavement and all those tiny bits of gravel and glass the eye misses but the foot feels. No money, no place to live, no shoes. For the next few weeks, I navigated the crawlspace of bare-bones living.

I survived by staying with friends — or strangers — kind enough to offer me a couch. I foraged inside people’s refrigerators and pantries, and cooked —for them and for myself — whatever I found. I lost weight, slept in the park, and used the free clinic when I got sick.

One day I went to look for shoes at the Diggers’ Free Store, where everything was free for the taking. There were no shoes my size, but I came under the spell of the Diggers — the anarchist group behind much of what was going on in San Francisco during the so-called “Summer of Love.” At five-foot-five, with a devilish glint, long hair, and a receding hairline, Peter — the Diggers’ chief strategist — looked like a garden gnome come to life. He was a non-stop ideologue whose slogans stuck in my head: “Private property is the limit of good faith”; “Ownership is theft”; “Tomorrow has been cancelled.” When I asked him what kind of world he wanted, Peter smiled wickedly and said, “Life without death and acid without speed.”

Peter was a bundle of revolutionary energy and recruited me to be Digger cook. He introduced me to a Unitarian minister who let his church’s kitchen be used to prepare free meals for homeless teeny-boppers who’d descended on San Francisco from every part of the country. Every day we’d go to supermarkets to scavenge for free food and bring it to the church to prepare a stew that I served in the Panhandle every afternoon at four. We were outdoors, surrounded by palm trees, in beautiful San Francisco, but it felt like a Depression-era soup kitchen.

Peter’s teachings found resonance in me; the groundwork had been laid. Because of acid, I had not just understood but felt the difference between what Peter called “direct process” and “learned form.” Direct process is what’s always been true in all places and all times, while the learned form applies only to the time and place in which one lives. He said that money is a learned form. Political power, a learned form. Clothing styles, hairstyles, professions, college degrees — all learned forms. Even possessions are a learned form. Especially possessions since all we really own — if that — is the blood, bone, flesh, and skin of our own bodies.

In contrast to learned form, direct process is what has always been true to all people in all places at all times. It has always felt good to drink cold water on a hot day and always will. It always felt good to bathe in warm water; to be touched gently.

Living on the street and from hand to mouth, I realized that clothes, too, are a learned form. More and more, it wasn’t unusual for me to find myself in groups, even crowds, where some or all were naked, though I was taken aback once when I recognized, among the naked bodies, an English professor who’d been one of the questioners during my master’s degree oral exam.

In the middle of that period, I stopped at “Cave Seven” to see if there was mail for me, and there was a letter from my parents. I opened it quickly and found a check for twenty-five dollars. There was a note as well, but I crumpled it up and tossed it out unread. I recalled that my friend Ron had left for Baltimore two weeks earlier and had said he’d probably contact my parents.

“What should I tell them about you?” Ron had asked me. I saw that even he thought I’d gone over the edge.

“Tell them your version of the truth,” I’d told him.

Now here was this check for twenty-five dollars, which I had not requested but was apparently a reaction to what Ron had told my parents about my condition.

The last time I’d had personal contact with my parents was eight months earlier. As far as visits with my parents went, it hadn’t been one of the worst. Oh, sure, we’d had the usual dust-ups, but there hadn’t been any screaming or stomping out in a huff.

Best of all, the visit had been mercifully short — only a few hours. When I said goodbye, I was in the apartment building hallway, my sea bag over my shoulder. My parents stood in the doorway. A man of few words, my father had a straight posture and military bearing. He’d worked as a weapons expert whose career had been to buy arms and ammo for the government, a civil service job he stayed with for many years before leaving and working as a salesman for a textile business.

I saw that my father wanted to say something, so I waited impatiently, waited during what seemed an interminable stretch of silence and tension, dreading what he felt he needed to say.

Suddenly, he burst out crying, sobbing uncontrollably. I’d never seen my father cry before, much less sob; I was astonished and a little scared. My mother touched my father’s shoulder and it only made my father cry even more deeply. Neighbors peeked out of doorways to see what was wrong, then quickly went back inside.

I knew, of course, what this was about. My underachieving life and self-destructive choices: living on the fringe, working as a merchant seaman on ammo ships, taking massive amounts of psychedelics. Unlike my older brother — a great success and an ideal son — I was throwing my life away and they felt powerless to do anything about it.

I couldn’t bring myself to hug or touch my father, or even offer words of solace. I hated that they had high expectations for me, hated that they felt I was living a life they couldn’t brag about to their friends and neighbors, hated that their implicit message was that I should live my life for them and not for myself. No, I didn’t want to play that game, no matter how much suffering it caused them. If I destroyed my life, so be it. It was mine to destroy.

Still, my father’s crying was painful for all three of us and I couldn’t just walk away. So, we all stood there, at the doorway, a tableau of timeless family grief — parents distressed about their child, at the life choices he’d made.

My mother finally spoke: “All I hope,” she said with a flat affect that chilled me, “is that someday you have a child that does to you what you’ve done to us.”

I closed my eyes and nodded. I was woozy. With my mother’s curse stuck deep in my gut, I left quickly — almost running — my sea bag slapping at my back as I headed for the elevator.

That was the last time I’d had contact with them, and now I had a check from them for twenty-five dollars. Clearly, it was a signal that giving me anything more would be throwing good money after bad. Or maybe they were showing confidence in me, that I’d work my way out of this without help from them. Or maybe they simply didn’t have any more to spare. I realized I knew nothing about my parents’ financial situation, and I also realized I didn’t care.

Though I was stubborn enough to believe I could continue living on nothing, that twenty-five dollars actually did come in handy. Some friends had just rented an apartment in Potrero Hill, so I now had enough to pay twenty dollars for a month’s rent on a small room where I could sleep and stash my few belongings — with five dollars left over to buy a pair of used shoes.

Decades later

It took a number of years, but I finally left that phase of drifter-seaman-doper. My parents lived long enough to see me become a respectable citizen with a wife, children, house, mortgage — what Zorba calls “the full catastrophe.”

When my two sons were born, I wept with joy. Like any parent, I hoped they’d have their share of happiness, and wished them success, however they chose to define it.

At the same time, as my kids grew, I was aware that children rarely conform to their parents’ dreams, any more than I had. When I saw these changes in my own children — when I saw a brilliant student devote his life and energy to creative pursuits which didn’t yield the results he hoped for; when I saw a child who glowed with creative curiosity become glued to video games and ganja — I grieved for my children and for the hopes I had when I took them home from the hospital, or drove them to school, or read books with them. I told myself it was a phase. After all, hadn’t I changed?

Then I thought: Is this my mother’s curse?

Maybe, but I sensed it was more than that. Perhaps this cycle of parents being distressed by their children’s choices is true of all times and all places. Perhaps the pain of seeing one’s child go astray — and being unable to do anything about it — is as ancient as the human race itself, and as much direct process as a warm, soothing bath, or the taste of cold water on a hot day.

Roberto Loiederman has been a merchant seaman, journalist, and TV scriptwriter. His work was nominated for the Pushcart Prize in 2014 and 2015, and he is co-author of  The Eagle Mutiny www.eaglemutiny.com.
Photo by Mathieu Turle.

Between Friends

“You’re not supposed to be friends with your husband’s ex-wife; it’s not natural,” a girlfriend once advised, adding, “I know, I’m Italian,” for emphasis.

I’m Dutch and Russian, though that didn’t explain my liking my husband’s ex-wife from the get-go. She was funny and smart, drove a motorcycle, knew twelve ways to cook corn, and best of all, seemed non-threatening. Divorced for a decade, her relationship with my husband had distilled to a friendship that centered on their kids. If she had a shortcoming, it was having suffered a lapse of judgment. After all, she’d divorced the man I married. My flaw, perhaps, that I’d married the man she’d divorced?


Emailing in the era of Facebook Messenger was the equivalent of handwriting a letter and sending it by pigeon. A phone call was as intrusive as ringing the doorbell. I could wait to see her, but with her kids grown, those dinners were becoming infrequent. So I opened my computer and did the only thing I could think of: I sent her a friend request.”

We chatted during kid pick ups and drop offs. By year two, we lingered, prompting her children to honk the horn, and my husband to throw me a sideways glance afterward. Not that he was really worried. He’d married a middle-child pleaser with an easy-going reputation, to the bafflement of my friends (the Italian in particular).

Maybe I had a skewed sense of marriage, but I didn’t see inviting her to an occasional Thanksgiving as odd. Nor did I balk at congregating for birthday dinners. Why shouldn’t the kids enjoy dining with both parents? I wasn’t going to be the ogress to deny them that. Sometimes, I offered to sit dinners out — if that’s what they preferred. With or without Stepmonster was their choice. Though secretly, I was happy when they invited me.

Our routine carried on like this for a few years. Her kids grew up and went to college. My own daughter entered grade school. While she and I never grew closer, neither did we grow further apart. So when she friended me on Facebook, I naturally accepted.

A decision I would regret as instantaneously as I had liked her.

Of course, there had been warning signs; moments I’d questioned whether we’d have exchanged numbers, if not thrust into this arrangement. We led different lifestyles. I worried, for example, about pesticides in our fruit, the horrors of factory farming, and GMOs. She worried about people who worried about those things. I owned a juice bar and believed in cleansing. She was a doctor — a fact she brought up often — and did not believe bodies needed detoxifying.

But I shrugged off our polarizations because, besides the fact that I knew I could be a major pain in the ass, I wanted to believe in our unique relationship. Also, she probably was smarter than me.

She’d come from an ivy league and I’d come from the city university. She was a doctor who’d spent years in medical school. I’d studied iambic pentameter. How much did I really know about the human body? Or human nature, come to think of it. I suppose here’s a good time to confess that by year seven of marriage, I chuckled, if not laughed maniacally, at my “lapse in judgment” idea.

But the main reason I refused to get all hot and bothered about our imperfect conversations was that I knew I could walk away. There was something called a front door that I could physically open, wave adieu, and promptly close behind me.

Having become a full-blown addict who checked her feed a few times a day — as anyone reading this on a smartphone surely understands — this was not so on Facebook, where the door was always open, and I didn’t have the willpower to shut it. Any day now the CDC will announce Facebook is the new tobacco.

Apparently, she suffered similarly, because her opposing comments to my juice posts were immediate, and, without the etiquette that being face-to-face requires, increasingly critical.

Were there a few times I deserved it?


I mean, I guess I didn’t have to share PETA’s video of chickens getting smothered in foam. Although, I did post a quote by Johnny Depp that said, “If you don’t like seeing pictures of violence towards animals being posted, you need to help stop the violence, not the pictures.”

But couldn’t she also have acted as others did, like what I do when someone posts something anti-feminist or downright stupid — and skim past it?

I honestly don’t recall her exact response, but it riled Italian. “It’s beyond obvious that she’s trying to humiliate you. You should put a stop to it.”

But I didn’t put a stop to it. Not even after I shared an innocuous eagle video in which the bird swoops onto a playground, threatening to carry off a toddler, until, unable to hold the weight, the bird drops its prey. The ex promptly debunked the video for being staged by college kids.

Did I hit my wall then with the who/whom post?

No, because if ever criticism was deserved, it was then. I’d been watching Millionaire Matchmaker — cause enough for self-flagellation — and Patty Stranger was driving me crazy with her question, “Whom do you choose to go on your mini date with?”

“Is that right?” I asked my human Strunk and White husband, too lazy to look it up myself, as I slurped dregs of a Green Goddess Smoothie.

“I don’t think so.” He looked up from emailing. “No, that definitely sounds wrong.”

Who, Patty Stranger!” my thumbs flexed, lobbing out my stupidity. “‘Who do you choose to go on your mini date with?’ Not whom!”

I sat back to bask in superiority, when ping, the ex was on the case with a response that I actually think was pasted from The Elements of Style.

As I said, I deserved that one.

So then, did I hit my wall with her meat glue response?

No, but only because another friend hit it for me. When I reposted about food processors gluing four cuts of meat together to present as one, the ex’s rebuttal that this worrisome glue is actually a harmless enzyme found naturally occurring in the human body so pissed off my friend with a food science degree from Cornell that I needed only to observe.

“The ‘glue’ isn’t problematic,” the nutritionist wrote. “But the bacterial considerations of gluing four pieces of meat together is.” Offline, the nutritionist texted me: “Who is that person? I’ve never seen someone so passionate about an enzyme!”

No, it was a kind message she sent about my daughter that slammed the door shut.

I’d posted pictures of my kid wearing a knee length skirt and white Mary Jane shoes, posing as Ariana Grande when the ex messaged something like: She is growing up so nicely, but can I make a suggestion? I wouldn’t post pictures of her posing. There are so many creeps out there trolling the internet. I hope I’m not overstepping my bounds here…

It was thoughtful, concerned, even sisterly; even if it did suggest that I was irresponsible, which even if I was — and I wasn’t, Italian insisted — made me implode.

My finger hovered over the little icon. Remove Friend.

I clicked down.

My husband worried, but he doesn’t understand Facebook. LinkedIn is as far as he will yield, and only for work. How people find the time for selfies in front of guacamole bewilders him.

I explained all was fine. No one would ring her doorbell and subpoena her with “Unfriend papers.” But was it all fine? Even that phrase, Remove Friend, was so deliberate, so final. So mean. And don’t “friends” sometimes point out things you don’t necessarily want to hear?

Trolls aside, who was benefiting seeing pictures of my kid? Certainly not my kid, who didn’t ask to be thrust into cyberspace. Plus, the ex had privately messaged me. Not to mention, she’d gone above and beyond in real life — having my daughter over for dinner, tending to her bruises, teaching her backgammon, attending her school play.

Good God, what kind of friend was I? What kind of person? If I’d never slam a real door on someone, why was it okay online? Although I had to admit, I was enjoying my Facebook cigarette time, unchallenged, as I spent nights — and afternoons and mornings — secretly judging them, privately and silently, the way nature intended. Which brought me to think of Italian’s original point.

So I did nothing and a few months went by.

Then one afternoon, my husband returned from the grocery bearing good tidings from her. She’d seen press about my writing and offered congratulations.

“Did she say anything else?” I asked meekly.

“I knew this wouldn’t be good.”

But nothing had really happened, I reminded him. I tried consoling myself. The act remained an unreality.


Right, except that if I wanted to thank her, there was no casual venue now. Emailing in the era of FB Messenger was the equivalent of handwriting a letter and sending it by pigeon. A phone call was as intrusive as ringing the doorbell. I could wait to see her, but with her kids grown, those dinners were becoming infrequent. So I opened my computer and did the only thing I could think of: I sent her a friend request.

“Now she will definitely know, right?” my husband asked.

I was proud that he was learning, but also nervous about what she would think when she saw that request. Screw her. Or, I thought we were friends. Or maybe, You can’t just Unfriend and Refriend with no explanation!

But why not?

We’d never had a traditional relationship to begin with. Why start now? Besides, there’s something to the shorthand of clicking that one button.

I heard crickets. Which I deserved. Maybe there should be no take-backs online since we do have the opportunity, unlike in person, to pause and think before speaking. Maybe the buffer of that privacy is the second chance.

Three days later, Facebook emailed: “—– has accepted your friend request.”

Humbled, I went slowly, creaking open the door, occasionally liking her pro-Hillary posts. She, too, seemed tentative, offering a generic thumbs up to my “Pets Who Hate Trump” video, but declining to comment.

It was pre-election, and the definition of friend was morphing as an invisible line was drawn between those who shared political views and those who didn’t.

Then the election happened, and things like meat glue became all but irrelevant. The door opened wider, as we not only commented in full sentences on each other’s posts but united to lambaste those against sanity.

One afternoon, I messaged her about a right-wing troll named “Linda” who apparently took issue with me supporting the ex’s post about appealing to electoral voters.

“Are you dealing with Linda or am I?” I texted.

She wrote back that she would deal — and so she did, eviscerating this “Linda” person, our newly found mutual enemy, with a few masterful strokes of her keyboard and intellect, to the point that I almost felt bad.

“Almost” being the operative word. Truthfully, I couldn’t have been prouder of my friend.

Heather Siegel is the author of the award-winning memoir OUT FROM THE UNDERWORLD (Greenpoint Press, 2015). Her work has appeared on Salon.com, in The Flexible Persona and The Chaos Journal of Personal Narrative as well as on popular websites. She holds an MFA in nonfiction writing and lives in New York with her family. More about her can be found at www.heathersiegel.net.
Photo by Gregoire Bertaud.

The Blessing

Her name, Piedad, meant “piety,” but she wouldn’t give me her blessing for my travels back to the States. The problem, as it turned out, was a technicality.

“Is she Catholic?” the old woman wanted to know. She sat propped against an adobe wall as the dusk settled in.  At the time, she was 99 years old. No one else from her generation remained in Mexico, the generation that had lived through the revolution. All the rest of them were ghosts.



“Was she baptized?” the old woman wanted to know. She shifted against the adobe wall, and I wondered if she might be uncomfortable.”

My friend Patty, the woman’s granddaughter, looked at me. I nodded. Yes, I was. Despite my American accent and my blonde hair and my urban-minded ways, at least there was that — I had grown up Catholic.

“Can she prove it?” the older woman asked.

Patty and I looked at each other. I shrugged. What was I supposed to do? Break into a Hail Mary in Spanish?

“Come on, Abuela,” Patty insisted. “She’s going home — back to the United States. Just give her your blessing. You know, for a safe journey.”

“Was she baptized?” the old woman wanted to know. She shifted against the adobe wall, and I wondered if she might be uncomfortable. But Patty had explained it to me. After a century of rustic living, Piedad refused to live inside a manufactured house, to sit on a sofa, or to use a plumbed bathroom. She preferred her outhouse and her old adobe room, built next to the white-washed cinder-block home that the rest of the family lived in.

,” I told the woman. Yes, yes, I said. I had been baptized.

But Piedad was not a woman to be persuaded easily — not after a century of hacienda tyrants and revolutionary soldiers and government swindlers, and now whatever it was that the United States was doing now to drive down the corn prices in Mexico. “Where’s your certificate?” she demanded.

I blinked. “El certificado?”

,” Piedad insisted.

I looked at Patty again, and we both bit our lips against laughter. Around us, the night was falling. Already, an orange-tipped moon was rising up over the horizon, past the strawberry fields and the goat pastures and the single low-lying hill across the highway that the townspeople believed still held revolutionary gold buried within it.

“I’ve got to get home to bed soon,” I whispered to Patty. “Maybe we can do this another time.”

But she shook her head. “Abuelita,” Patty insisted, “she left it at home. You know, for safekeeping.”

En casa?” The old woman balked, and she said to me in Spanish, “What if your home burned down while you were gone?”

Patty’s eyes sparkled with laughter, and I bit my lip again. But maybe, I thought, they were right; maybe I did need some kind of blessing. What would it be like to go home? After nearly a year in this place, I was heading back to my own life in the United States, where roads had stop lights and houses had washing machines. Where I could speak English and drink from a faucet. But Piedad was not impressed. She’d been to the United States — once, yes, years ago — and hadn’t liked it much.

“You should be more careful,” she told me, relenting at last and motioning me toward her for a quick sign of the cross.

“You got something important,” she said. “You better know how to keep it safe.”

Susan V. Meyers has lived and taught in Chile, Costa Rica, and Mexico. She earned an MFA from the University of Minnesota and a PhD from the University of Arizona, and she currently directs the Creative Writing Program at Seattle University. Her fiction and nonfiction have been supported by grants from the Fulbright foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, 4Culture, Artist Trust, and the Squaw Valley Community of Writers, as well as several artists residencies. Her novel Failing the Trapezewon the Nilsen Award for a First Novel and the Fiction Attic Press Award for a First Novel, and it was a finalist for the New American Fiction Award. Other work has recently appeared in Per Contra, Calyx, Dogwood, The Portland Review, and The Minnesota Review,and it has twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.
Photo by Bernardo Ramonfaur.



There’s a hawk in my backyard. She’s dark and broad and patient, and she sits in the same tree, on the same branch, in the same spot, hour after hour, day after day. She perches and she waits and nothing ever changes her mind. Sometimes the wind races through the yard and sometimes it pours down rain. The hawk’s feathers might ruffle and lift and resettle, but she stays so still, and she watches.


Her movements were precise and efficient and repetitive. She didn’t lift her wings or reposition her feet, and she never scanned her surroundings to see who may have been encroaching.”

I watch her from my spot at the kitchen window, from the same place to the left of the sink, planted there like a weed grown from the scruffy wood floor, and I watch her.

Sometimes I move to the family room, where I open the wood-slat blinds and tuck my legs up under me in the corner of the sectional, and I face out, and I watch the hawk watch the yard.

This afternoon, while scrubbing bacon grease out of my favorite red skillet, I looked up and saw movement near the tree, on the beveled top of a dull gray fence post. She was there, legs rigid above clenched talons, her feathers plucking windward into the air around her as she lowered her head and pinched hard with her hooked beak and yanked up, sharp, stretching red raw flesh, stretching it taut and snapping it before swallowing it down. Her movements were precise and efficient and repetitive. She didn’t lift her wings or reposition her feet, and she never scanned her surroundings to see who may have been encroaching.

Nothing encroached.

It occurred to me that her meal had been breathing and warm — alive with rapid heartbeats — only moments before, and I was grateful that I hadn’t seen her dive, sharp like a bullet from her spot on the branch of the tree, that I had missed the chaotic shock of one, and the unblinking, resolute accomplishment of the other, that I hadn’t heard a shriek or a scream.

Not a twitter.

Later, when my red skillet was drying — propped up in its usual place on the spindly dish rack on the green and white striped tea towel — I glanced up and saw my hawk in her usual place and I wondered if I went outside, if I tiptoed through the muddy frozen grass and stood straight and tall under the bare red oak, would I see the stain of blood seeping into the rotting wood of the fence that separates me from the other side?

And would she watch me as I did?

Marie DeLean lives in Chicago with her husband, two children, and a bearded dragon named Harold. A former marketing executive, fine art photographer, and aspiring writer, she spends a significant amount of her free time staring into the backyard while waiting for winter to end. When not writing, she likes to travel to faraway lands and take long naps in sunny spots.
Photo by Annie Spratt.




On those summer nights, after my brother came home from the hospital, he would grab his baseball bat and take one hundred practice swings.

While he was gone, he’d missed a significant number of games, so maybe he wanted to make up for skipped batting practice, or maybe it was something he’d always done and I just hadn’t noticed, but every single night that summer, he took out his bat in the fading summer light to swing.



His swings scared me, but not as much as his silence.”

These were not half swings.

The swings he took in the living room were full of power and anger and maybe a little madness. Sometimes, I pictured what would happen if he lost his grip and sent the bat flying across the living room, smashing into furniture and hitting me while I sat on the couch.

There was a green lamp that broke years ago when my brothers were wrestling in the living room. You could still see the repaired cracks. If his bat hit that lamp now, it would be done. Then, there was the corner of the couch where he accidentally made contact last summer. You had to look closely to notice the perfect tear. It didn’t seem possible it was created by my brother’s baseball bat.

His swings scared me, but not as much as his silence.

The violence contained within the motion of that bat would have made more sense if he took to our world with his bat, shattering the silence and destroying the façade of sanity. In that chaos, I might have understood the kind of crazy that came home with my brother from the hospital. Instead, there was the whirl of metal cutting through thin mountain air and the rhythmic rush of his breath.

Usually, there was a ball game on the TV with the volume turned down. I sat in the darkening living room, in the glow of a distant baseball field, half-watching the game, half-watching my brother swing. I watched for a slip or a misstep, for the bat to come hurling from his strong hands.

I didn’t know it, but he was swinging his way back to sanity. He was using all of his power and focus and discipline to stay with us.

As long as I watched, for all of those nights and all of those swings, my brother’s bat never slipped.

Noriko Nakada writes, blogs, tweets, parents, and teaches middle school in Los Angeles. She is committed to writing thought-provoking works of creative non-fiction, fiction, and poetry. Publications include two book-length memoirs: Through Eyes Like Mineand Overdue Apologies, and excerpts, essays, and poetry in Meridian, Specter, Hippocampus,The Rising Phoenix Review, and Linden Avenue.
Photo by Christopher Campbell.