The Momentum Issue

Foreword to Issue #4

by Rick van der Waarden
With “The Momentum Issue,” Expanded Field is excited to present its fourth collage of words and images with a recurring leitmotif.

The collection of creative works in this issue is the sum of a variety of themes and tensions we found in and among our submissions. Such an underlying tension is one between technology and nature, or the push and pull between the weightless and the weighty. Factors such as these seemed to close in on the velocity of modern life times the mass of memories; and so, the overarching theme of momentum established itself. We are eager to present these newly selected creative works; their subterranean, thematic commonality excites us even more when we consider that their creators are a diverse group of international artists.


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March 29, 2019

Between Tomorrow and Then

On a steep incline the houses seem to pour down the earth. Then they repeat again, from decline to peak; my bicycle takes me round and round and round. The sensation of sliding, as if to some inevitable conclusion. How those rooftops roll And the bike must be cycled. And the houses must be homes (must they?) I am taken by them, and through them. clap! […]
March 29, 2019

Trapdoor

It’s a death trap. Damn druggies, breaking the lock to count a pile of quarters they ripped off from the laundromat. The landlord will probably never fix this door. “Let me out. Let me out.” I can’t believe I’m stuck inside a vestibule—it’s definitely not a lobby; it’s hardly big enough for two people. I’m freezing in this old T-shirt—his old T-shirt. I could have at […]
March 29, 2019

The Olive Branch

Despite the dentist’s soporific My imagination transformed The street where I walked Into a takeoff field Where I felt weightless Like a feather in the wind. As I wandered along the street, I discerned an olive branch Protruding from a tall brick wall Like the promise of the vital oil Proffered by the olive trees To soothe my mouth and guts After the dentist’s cure.
March 29, 2019

Wake—Let’s Go!

We woke to the explosions and jumped on our bikes. Many of us were armed with nothing more than cardboard tubes, and rubber bands and paper clip ammo wiggled to mean barbs like our hearts. Others had sling shots and ball bearings, exploding bottles of tacks and cherry bombs, Molotov confections launched from lawn chair catapults, spray-can blow torches set off by our fathers’ regimental Zippos, […]
March 29, 2019

The Circle

As far back as her memory stretched, she was just one of many clustered around the fire. At first, the circle had been small, but, as she grew older, it widened to include all those who brought warmth into her life. These were not people on television or on the web or in the newspaper; they were real people. People who gave a smile or a […]
March 29, 2019

Oosterschelde / Thalassa

barely a month into a new year when God gave us a clean start we had not kept our resolutions he did not let us build our arcs when the sea finally came to claim us if we are people of the sea we too should live in salt she nurtured our children the sea is their mother too let there be no distinction between us […]
March 29, 2019

Changing Clothes

We were in the locker room getting ready when they came in with their offer. The team owner and three suits from the TV network. The first one said: “Triple the amount of your salary this season. Waiting for each of you in offshore accounts.” “Tax free,” said the second guy, “tax free.” All of us changing at our lockers turned to listen. The guys who’d […]
March 29, 2019

A Little Alone Time

Much of life sounds like feet travelling up a staircase in a public or semi-public corridor. That might-be-coming-here noise. That maybe-it’s-for-me. That can’t concentrate expectant fear, trembling hand hovering between two interrupted once-connected actions murmur, that waiting for the doorbell to ring, that not doing anything because there’s no time because maybe this summons is my one. That perhaps it’s the boss, the post, the partner, […]
March 29, 2019

Cover Artwork by Chuxin Wei

March 29, 2019

Authority

It feels as though I will never catch up. Every time I see the news, a panel show, people playing instruments. Anyone being interviewed on the radio about anything. A name attached to an article. Casual sign-offs (by strangers) to emails. . My baby walks with more conviction than I do. Practices with her tiptoes, goes backwards, circles the room. Never minds the other obstacles. Walks […]
March 29, 2019

Memento Mori

2099 24 March Dear reader, You might be tempted to throw this manuscript into the fire. But for your own sake, please continue to read. I don’t exaggerate when I say that your life depends upon it. As for me, my life will be over soon enough. Or maybe it will be worse than over. As I type into the wall monitor before me, I leak […]