We pair bless her heart with insults. We call a woman’s undergarments unmentionables. This encapsulates the entirety of the Southern spirit: concealing what everyone already knows.

Layla Wheelon

my great-grandmother used to say people with two names were not to be trusted, their mouths inhabit bad luck where teeth should be.

Valentina Avellaneda

 

My father bathes me of my grime and the water smells like someone who cares more than the desire to keep clean hands.

Annika Clark

 

Cover image: "A Boy in the Grocery" by Zhenhao Pan