Leanne Staples




you. yourself. a beginner. your metaphor leaks of thingness.
easing into selfness. slipping behind the comfort of furniture.
so safe. a gate. it absorbs your being, whole. welcomes you in.
will you go through it? will you go through with it?

a woman. in dark. mist clouded. ambiguously tousled.
the effect of a comfortable position grows on you.
as does the k/not knowing. there is comfort in the known.
and the not known.

your red event almost went unnoticed.
receding into the material. into the metaphor.
not wanting to be noticed. not waiting.
or weighting. without noun or renown.

a distribution of clouds. on the surface. on the face of it.
forming function. as a condition. in the shape of an organ.
the metaphysics of black. the elegance.
the mysteries of the k/night.


smooth + loose. loosely loose. an undecided position. the urge to understand the empty space. the void. to stand under. single + slippery. an ambiguous entity. lacking definition. like the wind. you can feel it. hugging your being. yet it’s invisible. nowhere to be seen. strewn + dear. a thin existence. ethereal + alone. thin air. hither + thither. a slack scat. weightless + gold. lively adrift + scattered. unattached + open. self multiplying. a layered cosmic joke. a tiered cake. a comedy within a tragedy. or a tragedy within a comedy. a commedia. an anarchic media. a slippery medium. a humble thought. come-hither. come liberates. dressed in crushed velvet. till breathing feels like laughing. being.


i echo & bounce. resound elsewhere. in another place. dropping stitches. in a row. loosely + behind veils. broad casting. along the way. stripping + direct. somewhere in space. what was the question? redefining. shifting + multiplying. again. white flecks. miniatures. strewn + dear. three angles. only slightly overlapping. almost not meeting. loose + elegant. words return to their beginning. leave us speechless. silent + precious. reenter their wombs. when there were fifty words for tears. layers shed. falling back in. directly reflecting beyond.


id/entity. gathered into small visuals. strapped into self image. on a diet. stripping + same. corseted + named. leaking psyche. weightless + gold. hieroglyphics in vials. funny foes + fauxs. shrinking picture. signs on the streets. omens. logos. logos. holding back. slowing down. dissolving + fizzing. withering wind. a number replaced the pronoun. without noun or renown. yes, I repeat myself. I am repetition. no name now. generic brand. it’s all the same. truth is radical love. it fucks the rules. loosens the restraints. grasping the picture. you reappear. revenir. rêve. re/come in a dream.


a bed of borrowed ease. crisply. a transition into a smooth stance. a reaction to the shift. doing it again. just because. just because. plagiarizing my self. self imitation. self limitation. care for things not mine. a curious curator of stolen postures. assumed position. touch without touching. the residue of things misunderstood. loosely ruffled. and crumpled. a calculated pose. amongst trees. blended + lax. ideas on loan. slide into comfort. a smoky refrain. a Satie background. slipping into place. a groove. shifting + multiplying. situated in luxury. in after effects. on a sun day. a down comforter.

Leanne Staples (leannestaples.com) has been writing and taking photographs since the age of 12. Her goal is to create pictures that invoke words and words that invoke pictures. This is her first publication. She would like to thank her muse, who knows who he is.

Editors’ Notes (Posit 12)


In these most anxious and somber political times, it is my honor to introduce the enormously relevant and genuinely fortifying creations we have gathered for this 12th issue of Posit.

When I introduced our last issue, the United States was in the midst of an “election cycle in which the complacency of most notions of “normalcy” [had] been shattered, giving rise to an appropriately pervasive anxiety about the depth and scope of the humanly possible.” Three months and a globe-rattling election later, that anxiety has proven to be nothing if not accurate. Many in the arts find ourselves questioning the relevance of our projects, and even our ultimate endeavors. In this moment when the (non-fake) news carries a toxicity which strikes fear into the hearts of so many, I believe the poetry and prose in this issue makes a solid case for the ability and even duty of writers everywhere to deliver the kind of news William Carlos Williams reminded us we “die miserably every day / for lack of.”

So I hope you will wrest your gaze from the ominous spectacle of our political moment to bolster your courage with the extraordinary literature in this issue — assured that, to quote from Andrew Cantrell’s The Gate is Open: “There is no speaking here not undertaken in defiance.”

To wit:

Sam Ace’s urgently tender love song to both the “fairy body in my bed” and our planet itself, from “north of the mountains” to “the fields spread below in a buoyancy of grains,” from “a tarry bit of hot sidewalk” to “the still bare woods” cradling “our nights scavenged in a sleep of mortars” while “others make slings for the dense matter of broken things;”

Andrew Cantrell’s deceptively simple declarations, the matter-of-fact intonations of which belie the profundity of their personal and political investigations into “how practice makes of movement another moment” able to “bear witness to an era of despair” and “construct the artwork as a figure of collective liberation;”

the delicate, suggestive mystery of Laton Carter’s prose poems, which, like the grace of the ballerina in his first piece, “[i]gnoring the straight lines of the boat and the physics of its ways . . . serves to uncontain what . . . is contained;”

Carol Ciavonne’s gorgeous riffs on Simone Weil’s notebooks, evoking Weil’s phenomenological approach to epistemology by unpacking how the physicality of writing echoes and illuminates our very existence, this “tempest of atoms/this wat’ry world,” the universal “shift into being from being other;”

Benjamin Hollander’s tragically posthumous parable about the slippery nature of art, memory, and communication — its bricolage of memoir, art criticism and sociological critique evoking echoes of Pynchon and Murakami, even as it revels in the inimitability of its own voice;

the elegant, elemental, and wry verse of Rich Ives, “dutiful and divided in the single intention of arriving” at such surprising and deeply satisfying revelations as “[t]he opposite of now is not always then” and “time is transparent. You cannot live there, but you can visit/constantly;”

the mystery and paradox of Philip Kobylarz’ densely potent declaratives, “an alternative the same as its opposite” in which “[g]ranite by another name is akin to granite” and “[t]he end is an end and the beginning is a false start towards making ends meet;”

Lori Anderson Moseman’s delicate, genre-defying response to disruption and mortality on the global as well as personal level, stitched together by the rich implications of darning (the collection’s title trope), with its suggestion of mending even while ruing the “nesting artifacts jettisoned” to spawn this “story [which] flaunts its missing gown;”

Trace Peterson’s inspiring monologue, manifesto, and cri de cœur, issuing from a narrative ‘I’ simmering with exultation, defiance, and irony, a self “invisible but . . . unavoidable,” “an ampersand and . . . a pronoun,” a presence which “belong[s] here, where I cannot not appear” in the course of an arrival which “is final as in completely incomplete;”

Jerome Sala’s self-sufficient, comically profound ode to ‘content’ in all of its elusive potency, “a textual form of meat product . . . nothing in itself / but the something out of which all is made;”

Dale Smith’s lyrical prose/verse memoir with its arrestingly beautiful meditations on “past selves pillowed by labor or expansive regimens of age” via stories which do “not focus — they spill” along “a pretended wilderness interiorized like dream energy” even while “hold[ing] in mind the certainty of erasure;”

Leanne Staples’ resonant verbal collage, “a bed of borrowed ease” in which “metaphor leaks of thingness . . . easing into selfness” “not waiting. / Or weighting. Without noun or renown;”

Gregory Vincent St. Thomasino’s enigmatic and tantalizing excerpt from his flash fiction novel, Suicide by Language, enacting its own prescription that “[t]o be poetic is everything;”

and Laurie Stone’s masterful flash fictions, buzzing with the energy of unpredictable yet penetrating juxtapositions fueled by the lived intensity of imagined experience.

Thank you, as ever, for reading.

Susan Lewis


Welcome to the art of Posit 12!

Beth Dary’s sculpture reflect an intense and thoughtful response to the natural world and our relationship with it. Using a wide variety of materials, she draws attention to the delicacy and strength of barnacles and bubbles. Her installations of masses of small objects create artificial universes that mimic nature, asking us to consider life’s interconnectivity.

In the accomplished compositions of Steven De Frank, we see an exuberant embrace of life’s absurd, gut-wrenching, nutty beauty. His work seems to flow from id to paper or wood. The result are artworks that are funny and intense, accessible and mysterious. This is work that demands a second look.

Mie Kim’s paintings offer both a humorous commentary on Asian pop culture and a serious examination of painterly issues. She marries the two trains of thought effortlessly, producing riotous and sensually beautiful paintings that dance the line between abstraction and figuration. Her color palette is downright delicious.

Sandy Litchfield’s paintings play with the balance between urban and green space. She paints portraits of cities, with their tangle of buildings, roads, color and energy. At the same time she often portrays the relationship of urban growth to nature. The intertwining of natural and man-made forms creates an interesting conversation about space and place.

And Amy Pleasant’s spare and elegant work reflects her interest in the body and how it can be broken down into simplified shapes without losing its humanity. Her use of repetitive gesture and reduced palette focuses our attention exclusively on form. There is a deceptive simplicity to her work; deeper consideration reveals the subtlety of its form and content.

I hope you enjoy!
Melissa Stern