The Iowa Review

One Such Was

Now that I am old the times stretch behind me and I hold myself, a lock, threaded through the double metal ring on yourself, a door. A lock: when I write stupid things I know I am the unlocked lock, hanging flaccid spent inutile, like: what good are you? Now that I am old the times stretch behind me and I can only write stupid things. One such was: xoxoxoxoxoxo x 1 million! One such was: I am such a dumdum, I meant x 1 billion, you handsome asshole! In my age, I understand that you are a construction of the community, made beautiful and strong by your willingness to be a door hewn from plain wood, by the hands of men like you. One such man was your father, whom I imagine is far plainer and whom I imagine I would say all manner of stupid things to because I am the unlocked lock and I lack all purpose and all restraint and that, yes, is why you like me: because I say stupid things because I hang because I hang like I am not even that old at all like I am not old like I have nothing I'd rather be doing.

The Iowa Review

Founded in 1970 and edited by faculty, students, and staff from the renowned writing and literature programs at the University of Iowa, The Iowa Review takes advantage of this rich environment for literary collaboration to create a worldwide conversation among those who read and write contemporary literature.
     They publish a wide range of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, translations, photography, and work in emerging forms by both established and emerging writers. Work from their pages has been consistently selected to appear in the anthologies Best American Essays, Best American Short Stories, Best American Poetry, The Pushcart Prize: Best of the Small Presses, and The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories.

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Julia Whicker is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop where she won both the Capote Fellowship and the Teaching-Writing Fellowship. She's had her work published in the Iowa Review, Word Riot, and The Millions, among others, and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her first novel, Wonderblood, is forthcoming this spring from St. Martin's Press and Random House Canada. She lives with her husband and daughter in State College, Pennsylvania.

"One Such Was" originally appeared in The Iowa Review Volume 43, Issue 2 (2013).

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on December 27, 2017

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