Hear Ye!

You’re basking in the limeade-light of Toad 1:3, our first submission-based issue. It’s a smorgasbord of genres and scrumptious art. Poet J.P. Dancing Bear and painter Julie Speed present a platter of ekphrastic proportions. To wet your fancies and fit your whistles, click to graduate student Omar Singer’s illustrated fiction, Amelia Gray’s two sentence story, Linh Dinh’s street photography, or any other of our hoppinin artists.

Here Ya!

We would also like to announce a recent change to our creative response forum: it no longer exists. Instead, we will be featuring a new piece of writing or art every week in our official Toad Blog Forum for readers to respond. Please suspend your suppressed fear of getting picked last for kickball, and get involved!

The Chief

J. P. Dancing Bear

Still Life With Suicide Bomber 1

“Think of the ear as pear shaped—”

Still Life With Suicide Bomber 2

“I used to think I could wear
my digits raw”

Still Life With Suicide Bomber 4

“What if any of the gods just wanted fresh water?”

Matthew Siegel

The boy with the blackbird stitched over his heart is sad

“The bird stitched to his shirt
is not quite over his heart…”

The men at the funeral stand with their hats on

“…the entire sky whited out
is an erasure emerging from the still trees.”

What I Fail to Mention

“I don’t say any of this. I kiss your neck…”

Amelia Gray


“where her man could stub out his cigarette”

Linh Dinh

Kyle McCord

You Can’t Spell Necromancy Without Romance

“I need you to go back to 1975 and eat an hors d’œuvre.”

Ginny in the Dutch Master’s Grove

“I danced
on my heart after you shot me that one small smile”

Rachel Bunting

Alice in Wonderland Syndrome

“even my tongue is swollen”

Rapunzel Syndrome

“My tongue purples”

What, then

“Or worse, that I wanted only to give him something”

Obedience, My Father

“She likes
things that grow cold”

Omar Singer

Henry Blankenship’s Endless Day

“She called out “Harvey!” and I ran over and started yelling instructions like I was a man again…”

Eleanor Bennett

Adam Tavel

The Throat Is an Open Grave

“Finally someone stutters jesus
call his mama”

The Undertaker’s Son Gets Cast as Ophelia’s Gravedigger

I could still smell
her Pantene through the chloroform.

Mary Biddinger

Have Mercy on Me

“We played the eucharist game. It was
disgusting, but delicious.”

A Sunny Place with Adequate Water

“I wore no emblem
on my clothing.”

Inert or Something Else

“come on and open your eyes”

Kathryn Buckley

Reclusive Reputation

“He opts for a lighter one about his first Laundromat attempt where he shrunk his favorite Argyle sweater.”

Jessica Barksdale

Spaces Random and Intentional

“But life, I think, is more like McDonald’s. Clumpy and confusing and mostly disappointing.”

Brent Schipper

Jessy Randall

You Told Me

Gate Three

What Women Want

Chrissy Reilly


“Sometimes I forgot parts
of my personality in winter.”

The Blue of…

“Everything I own
is a window—bay”

Book Review

Tony Rauch’s eyeballs growing all over me…again

by Amanda Zubillaga

“Imagine you’re a normal guy who comes home from work one evening to find a sasquatch on your living room couch watching TV with your wife.”

Shane Watt


Translated by Will Storm

Georgics I

“Father Zeus himself amidst clouds by night heaves
tremulous bolts with his firm right hand”

Georgics II

“neighbors, busying themselves with closing shades, watching the skies
in suspicion.”