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Nonfiction Feature: 42 Poorly Kept Secrets About Montevideo By Carolina De Robertis

 

42 Poorly Kept Secrets About Montevideo

 

1. Old people.
They spend the whole afternoon on this park bench, watching the water leap in the blue-tiled fountain. They strike up a conversation with you in an instant. Their anecdotes grow to epic proportions, spanning decades, their voices overlapping like a fugue. By the time sunset glows pink behind the Ferris Wheel of Parque Rodó, you are like family.

2. Empty factories.
The buildings are desolate but they take up great space: large, silent, riddled with broken windows.

3. Mate.
Green, hot, bitter. Sucked from a gourd through a metal straw. The family on the stoop, the couple on the beach, the man washing his car—they carry their thermos, pass the gourd, pouring boiled water over green leaves, over and over again.

4. The city.
It contains one million people. By far the largest city in Uruguay.

5. The river.
El Río de la Plata was named after the silver that conquistadores thought they were about to find. The water is not silver; it is brown and thick with silt. It snakes against the city, wide as the sea.

6. Grafitti.
“El sur también existe.” (The south also exists.)
“Que se jodan los Yanquis.” (Fuck the Yankees.)
“¡Viva Tabaré!” (Long live [leftist president] Tabaré!)

7. Poorly kept secrets.
Poorly because no one keeps them from the world. Secret because the world cannot know what it does not see.

8. Maps.
Montevideo can be found on many. South of Brazil, east of Argentina, hovering at the Atlantic. A capital city, drawn with a star.

9. Morcilla dulce.
Sweet blood sausage is a delicacy: a blend of walnuts, sugar, orange peel, pig’s blood.

10. Testículos.
Bull testicles are a delicacy: small, flavorful, no part is wasted.

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2019 Poetry & Fiction Twitter Contest #IRDelights

 

Our 2019 Poetry & Fiction Prize is open until March 18!

With our Blue Light series approaching, we want to draw inspiration from one of our authors and announce our latest Twitter contest! Ross Gay’s The Book of Delights, a collection of meditations on the things that bring him joy, was released February 12, 2019.

For this contest, we’re asking you to tweet us a “delight” of your own. For an example, check out “Loitering is Delightful” and the sample tweets below. To get your own copy of The Book of Delights, click here.

One lucky (and clever) winner will receive a free entry into our 2019 Fiction & Poetry Prize and an IR Prize Pack. Our favorite runner-ups will also receive IR Prize packs and, most importantly, be forever immortalized in our blog posts and on our Twitter page. They will also have the divine privilege of having their work read by Ross himself! Who would pass that up?

Delight us with your keen observations, and don’t miss out on your opportunity to apply to our Fiction and Poetry Prize by March 31!

 

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2018 1/2 K Twitter Contest #IRGIF

 

Indiana Review’s 2018 1/2 K Prize opens July 1st along with our Twitter contest, “GIF Us What You Got!”  We’re looking for stories and poems, 280 characters or less, that can be supported by a related internet GIF to illustrate your work. Anything goes, so get GIF’n! Make sure to hashtag your tweet with #IRGIF. The contest is open until Tuesday, July 31st.

One GIF-savvy winner will receive a free submission to our 1/2 K Prize as well as a copy of Indiana Review’s 40.1 issue and Jennifer Givhan’s poetry collection Girl with Desk Mask.

Don’t forget to submit your 1/2 K piece by August 15th! Good Luck!

Illustration by Paul Blow

 

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IR ONLINE POETRY: “Insecticide Poems” by Audrey Lee

I.

It starts with jubilance: swallowing a spider in her sleep. It starts
with failing insomniacs, a venus fly trap. When she wakes up
next to him: cotton-mouthed, dry eyed,
and the memory of a tongue.
There is a dove that eats arachnids and the mossy,
molasses-laden nature of a bug (more so, is a dove
carnivorous
like a plant bringing its jaws over flesh and blood?)
Silkworm bedsheet threads, she wakes him up
and asks if he kissed her while sleeping. He tells her “No,
but the dissent of a web is woven in your teeth.”

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