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Sara Probst


If I had a son, I’d call him River.
If I had a daughter, I’d call her Memory.

This is all that is left: a handful of oatmeal cookies and chamomile tea and beads in our hair and a couple of signatures on books I haven’t even read.

If I was a biblical father, I’d be seven hundred years old and my beard would cover my whole body and people would look at me and think that

I was wise.

Time was the only thing delivered to us by God. We should never have messed with It.

We used to believe that if only we tried really hard, we would be able to stop time. We held each others hands and howled at the moon and wished things on stars that weren’t really stars, but distant spaceships enabling human to leave his footprints on the moon.

The day we conquered the moon was the day we made love.

The day we conquered the moon was the day God died and the signatures on the books became part of history books and glossy fashion magazines.

River and Memory are now nothing but two tiny footprints on the sands of time.

And I am here, fifty-three, floating on the River of Time with Jerry Garcia’s signature on Richard Brautigan’s beard, and with me are the Memories of a life I know existed, a life that we had taken away from God because we had found something bigger, and still it seems so small,

Now that those footprints catch my eye every time I look at the moon in search of the time I spent with you.

Dedicated to a Jerry Garcia look-alike whom I met in San Francisco
and who gave me his sunglasses for my 21st birthday.

The King Is Dead

To Grandma and Anyone Who’s Ever Been to Graceland

I play mentally deranged at 200 miles per hour. My head leaps out of the car window, my toe tortures the gas pedal and I swallow hot steaming air and pink clouds that bump into my face like tiny bits of cotton candy. The sun has held those clouds hostage for too long, anyway.

Jesus smiles at me from the back of my car, this little wooden statue that is supposed to protect me. I realize that Jesus has lost one of his eyes, too, like my favorite teddy bear that is now buried somewhere in a Mississippi field.

And I keep thinking how profoundly sad it is that I am guarded by this half-blind savior.

Somewhere through the clouds I catch a glimpse of Elvis, this beautiful black and white icon I only know from postcards in our living room, no glitter yet, no fat. Hi Elvis, I see you and think of peanut butter banana sandwiches that got stuck in my throat in some Memphis roadside café when I was a child. I didn’t understand what happened to you and why everybody cried when you were gone.

You smile at me with your perfect white teeth and sugar water in your hair, and your breath smells like cherries when you lean down and touch my head with your gorgeous hand full of scars from the cotton harvest.

And I think of how much I love Grandma and Beale Street with its weeping clarinets and how much I miss Southern accents and peach pies and homemade lemonade and how gas stations make me cry. I don’t have the nerve to start the car. Goodnight y’all. I will sit and wait for somebody to tell me that he is not dead after all.

Excerpt from ‘Halo Over Vegas’


You have
a passport
you were
born in
Many Places.

The Road to Americana

In King’s Cross
I think of all the
kings and beggars
I left behind
in Memphis.

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The Showcase section features writings by several workshop participants. The following authors all have their separate pages:

Anne Buerki

Milena Diviani

Alan Greiner

Lucy Hay

Matt Kimmich

Margret Powell-Joss

Matthias Rüegger

Sripriya Sitaraman

Hans-Jürg Suter

Brigit Zogg