Desiree Des, Subway Wall, 2013. Digital photograph from the series Avoiding the Self-Portraits. © Desiree Des 2015; all rights reserved by the artist.
Sleights of Hand

Fall 2015

Edited by Bradford Morrow.

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People of every age and stripe dissimulate, bluff, and beguile, whether in order to harm or protect. The writer, the artist, the magician, the thief—deceivers all. Animals, too, are masters of deceit. Even the orchid employs a wonderfully varied arsenal of pollinator deceptions, luring bees and wasps with a false promise of nourishment or sex. And consider Marina Tsvetaeva, who appropriated from Pushkin the observation that “a deception that elevates us is dearer than a legion of low truths,” thus complicating the subject entirely. This special issue of Conjunctions gathers a wide spectrum of essays, fiction, and poetry on the classic subject of deception, exploring a world in which truth is a most fragile, elaborate, and mercurial thing.

James Morrow, Tactics of the Wraith

Laura van den Berg, Aftermath

Bin Ramke, Five Poems

Porochista Khakpour, Something with Everything

Rae Armantrout, Six Poems

Gabriel Blackwell, La tortue or The Tortoise

Susan Daitch, Piracy, Chemistry, and Mappa Mundi

Can Xue, Story of the Slums, translated by Karen Gernant and Chen Zeping

Michael Martin Shea, From The Immanent Field

Joyce Carol Oates, Walking Wounded

Arielle Greenberg, Seven Pieces on Deception, the Whore, and Anderson, IN

Margaret Fisher, A Monologue Addressed to the Madame’s Cicisbeo

Edie Meidav, Blind in Granada, or, Romance

Eleni Sikelianos, Six Poems

Gwyneth Merner, Wounded Room

Michael Sheehan, September

Andrew Mossin, From A Book of Spells

Terese Svoboda, Curtain Call

Yannick Murphy, Caesar’s Show

Magdalena Zyzak, Zeroes

Paul West, The Admiral

Paul Hoover, The Likenesses

Aurelie Sheehan, From Once into the Night

Peter Straub and Anthony Discenza, Beyond the Veil of Vision: Reinhold von Kreitz and the Das Beben Movement