Author: sentiencejournal

This is the Day of the Show Y’all!

Hello readers, writers and curious parties alike! Thank you so much for either being an active part of, or randomly stumbling across, Sentience Literary Journal. We are so excited to have you all here for our very first publication! I want to give a special thank you to all the amazingly talented writers who are featured in this issue, as you are the ones who filled it with life and creativity. I also want to give a big THANK YOU to Helen Doremus, co-founder and insanely organized leader of the editorial staff. If it weren’t for you I’m not sure we would even be publishing today. Of course I must mention the remarkable Brianna Vigil and Lisa Croce who are also essential pillars to this literary journal. Okay, fine, I’ll thank myself as well. Thanks, Kelly. 🙂  Isolation is a theme we can all relate to in one way or another, especially as we continue to reminisce on a time when having contact with another human being wan’t such the ordeal it is today. Whether …

“Carol Anne” by Kelly Curran

There are dogs next door, in the house to the right of Carol Anne’s. And not just one or two. She’s tried counting them based on the different barks, but she always loses track. When a siren whines down the road, they all start howling, almost screaming. It’s as if they’re mourning something, perhaps their freedom. Though Carol Anne is not one to get involved with conflict, she’s called Animal Control 3 times since moving here last year. They say there’s nothing they can do for the dogs. At night, Carol Anne stares up at the ceiling, crying, and sometimes she can hear the dogs doing the same. She wonders if the sirens take the place of the moon for them the same way her ceiling does for her.  Carol Anne had never liked her name. The only other people she knew with the name Carol Anne were old people — plus the little girl from The Poltergeist, so that wasn’t very reassuring. To make matters worse, she had bright red hair that often took …

“Will it Hurt?” by Lindsey Anthony-Bacchione

The seasons had passed seamlessly in Los Angeles with a gentleman’s handshake of ten degrees difference between them. Spring had warmed to summer, had warmed to fall, and now we were here having surpassed the crest of the heat in Southern California. The climate fires had all been put out, but the air was still dry. The Santa Ana winds were still blowing.  My husband and I had stopped turning the calendar pages months before. A new baby can do that. Two new babies will assure that. Two new babies, two young children, and a global pandemic will render all markers of the passage of time useless. Los Angeles was still on lockdown on multiple fronts: COVID, protests that turned violent, job loss, an economy in free fall, a country held hostage. Isolation was a word that was trending. The topic had become the source of research and art.  How was isolation affecting children?  How was isolation affecting teenagers?  How was isolation affecting parents?  Mothers?  How was isolation affecting people who were single, living alone? …

“Verses Almost Sent to a Lingering Flame” by Adrian Cepeda

When I close the screen, I feel the light softly go out in the room where your pixelated cheeks just blushed for me. I wonder if, all the way on the other side of your universe, when closing your laptop, do you feel the sounds of our instant disconnection? Feeling   screenshot in isolation, with every Zoom remaining so close yet further away, glimpsing you, glowing  there with one click, turn on the hotspot seeking out the reconnection, yet somehow, we are always waiting for scroll news of the pandemic fading and vaccines at CVS, our wishes reach past our reflections still, is it real without masks? Making out face time, letting my fingers speak… mouthing for me scrolling up a little bit closer to our nightly  midnight view. No matter how long we link, there are no shortcuts from our flickering webcams this resolution of longing, I cursor this LED distance one day we will meet IRL, sans mask after social distancing shut-down ends our persistence instantly  messaging keeps us connected… still before signing off, always clicking sparks more than like, you love our …

“Flight Cage” by Maya Nordine

How overjoyed I was, to hear  her squawking stop so suddenly. She’d boarded after me, birdcage in hand.  Then, after the ascent, three  squawks. Maybe two.  Anyone on a plane, I’ll tell you,  can’t stand the sound.  I’d heard of puppies  dying overhead, the change  of pressure too much  for their little lungs, but birds? She reached over, lifted the cage to her face to peek between the thin,  black wires. Gave it  a small shake. A few  feathers were shed,  clinging to the cage’s frame, but that could have meant  anything. Only when she stood to walk to the back of the plane— carrying her sudden grief, the still, yellow bird— did I see her face, watching  her house, and everything  inside it, burn. Maya Nordine lives in sunny Chicago, Illinois, where she runs a virtual writing workshop called Study Hall. She holds an MFA from Antioch University Los Angeles. Her work has been published in bath magg, The American Journal of Poetry, Small Orange, Door Is A Jar, and TYPO. Featured Photo by Deleece …