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“Jen Michalski’s second novel is an intense emotional commitment, but a worthwhile one.” – Ploughshares


“Jen is an astonishingly sensitive writer.” – HTML Giant


“Jen Michalski excels in subtlety that is made possible by her nuanced understanding of voice.” – The Rumpus


“Jen is a writerly heavyweight.” – Nate Brown, American Short Fiction


“We’re lucky to have Michalski before the rest of the world discovers her. But they will.” – Baltimore City Paper

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Blind Faith

"Blind Leading the Blind," by Lee Mclaughlin
I dreamed that I pretended to be blind so that people would leave me alone. I felt along the walls and tables to navigate and looked through people's eyes when I spoke to them. When I awoke, I wondered why I did not use a cane to fully pull off the effect, and whether in the dream people knew I was faking it because I lacked inclusion of this essential detail.

I sometimes wonder if I secretly want people's help but am too proud to ask. In my past experience, depending on people can invariably lead to disappointment. Now that my mother has died, and the person on which I did unconditionally depend is gone, I feel unsure of where to move. I wait for people to take the lead, to come to me. There's no sense stepping forward if you are not sure if there is any ground left where you step.

I feel like a violin that has broken a string for which there is no replacement. Do I relearn the violin using three strings, take up a new instrument instead, or do I renounce music altogether?

Perhaps I just refuse to see what is in front of me. All the love and care in the world. Maybe it is not the right thing, though. Maybe being alone with grief is necessary for healing, for strength. When you get a cavity, should you still eat sweets?