Mar/Apr 2019 • Vol. XLI No. 2 Fiction |

Secret Identity

I didn’t finish elementary school the way I was supposed to. I missed the party, cupcakes, and Hawaiian Punch cut with 7UP in Dixie cups. Our desks were covered in those fibrous bathroom paper towels in case we spilled. After three years of my complaining that I couldn’t see the chalkboard, my ma finally considered my claims were not a desperate desire to look like Clark Kent. She seemed not to get that looking like Clark would have been undesirable — that he removed his glasses to hit his stride in the skies above Metropolis, not put them on. Even Marvel Comics knew that glasses were a dead end for a superhero, so Stan Lee wrote them right out of Spider-Man’s life in his first year of stories. It was as if Peter Parker had never worn them, or he’d gotten LASIK. Glasses were such bad news Stan and Steve Ditko flushed them from the collective Marvel Universe memory. “Hey!” a lunchroom lady stage-whispered, as I walked the hall with an early dismissal pass. “Where

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Photo of Eric Gansworth
Eric Gansworth, S˚ha-weñ na-saeɂ (Onondaga), writer and visual artist, was raised at the Tuscarora Nation. He is a professor and Lowery Writer-in-Residence at Canisius College. In 2016, he was NEH Distinguished Visiting Professor at Colgate University and was one of fifteen writers chosen for LIT CITY, a public arts project celebrating Buffalo’s literary legacy. His books include If I Ever Get Out of Here (YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults), Extra Indians (American Book Award), Mending Skins (PEN Oakland Award), and A Half-Life of Cardio-Pulmonary Function (NBCC Good Reads List). His most recent book is Give Me Some Truth.

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Engagement

By Eric Gansworth

I didn’t finish elementary school the way I was supposed to. I missed the party, cupcakes, and Hawaiian Punch cut with 7UP in Dixie cups. Our desks were covered in […]

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