Benjamin Stalnaker

We roleplayed Genesis by the creekside;

no serpent in sight of the young lovers

who knew, with certainty, 

in those tender moments 

that we alone walked this world. 

The fruits on the tree remained immaculate,

as we revealed to each other 

everything that God had blessed us with. 

Naiveté left us wanting, until

youthful eyes ate our fill as we

lived a creation myth of our own making.

The sin wasn’t original, even if 

it felt that way to untrained hands 

fumbling in the darkness,

as we thanked God we weren’t the only

double feature showing that night.

Our garden was short-lived, 

even if a year felt like forever;

the entropy of emotions 

too much for curiosity long since passed

Benjamin Stalnaker is a writer and artist residing in Lexington, Massachusetts. They graduated from Brown University, where they were a writer and co-editor-in-chief for Vagabond Magazine as well as an editor’s assistant for differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies. Their artwork is   included in the fall issue of Bait/Switch and another piece was featured in the In Color exhibit at the Cultural Center of Cape Cod.

Madari Pendas

Lucia Coppola