Phoebe Gloeckner

The following is an excerpt from Phoebe Gloeckner’s Mistake House Magazine interview that speaks directly to the creative process: Internalized censors are always the most dangerous impediments to genuine expression. Dangerous because they are the most difficult to resist. Censorship imposed from the outside is often invigorating. It’s different from having your work ignored or discounted, which …

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In our third annual photography section, we’re pleased to include the work of eight student photographers.  

Phoebe Gloeckner

Current Staff

Editor-in-Chief, Caroline Bumbaugh  Caroline Bumbaugh (She/Her) is a senior double majoring in English, in the creative writing track, and Education, in the theory and practice track. She enjoys writing poetry, reading, and studying different theories. One of her current favorite collections of poetry is Carl Phillips’ Then the War and selected poems, 2007-2022. When Caroline …

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Carl Phillips

From the very first poem in my first book – “X” – I seem to have been concerned with the body, the conduct of it, the distinctions between what we do and what we intend, between what we are and what we wish we were, the complicated trio of intimacy, trust, and betrayal (of others …

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Carl Phillips

For this Soap Bubble Set feature, Carl Phillips has curated a series of eight poems that span his career. These poems, from X to Of the Shining Underlife, appear in chronological order, providing a retrospective overview of the scope of Phillips’ vision and voice.   X  Several hours past that  of knife and fork   …

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To You

To the drunk kid in a screaming match with their reflection, To the 30-something barricaded in a motel room, shaking with need, To the mother curled up on her remodeled bathroom floor, To the father who sees ghosts on his freshly cut lawn, To the girl in the chapel, who thinks she may be talking …

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Down a Street of Memories

Taking a walk down the street, I remember the noisy nights under the moon when gunshots echoed in the air like lullabies. With a sharp left turn, I remember kissing the ground with my knee while a map was carved on my back with a cane. Walking down the road, I remember the freezing nights …

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Too Many Cheerios

Mango Elote, Safeway watermelon, pink skies mooned nights, grainy mountains, cold rock, sitting in the parking lot while his mother was shot. Little red houses, driving through Granite, skeleton daisies, cold rock, and long walks alone, the pit bull who sat at the window he had cracked. Black rail spikes, running along the railroad tracks, …

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At St. Patrick’s in New York,

a coin for a candle for my namesake Saint. The burning that will make light. Is this it, the countdown, the path, the flicker before eventuality? Think: so many household names gone home— who knew       he was running out           of time? precious time, precarious time, the space between, early …

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Carl Phillips

Mistake House: In a December 2016 article in Poetry Magazine, “A Politics of Mere Being,” you write about the question of the way a politicized self can be read into or seen within poetry that is written for or within a space of individual experience. In that article you wrote, “at no point did I …

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City Beneath the Sea

                                   beneath                      the green and glinted                                     city sea,          …

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Pawnshop Rosary

I found it somewhere in Oscoda, Michigan. I don’t remember if we were in the first shop, Or the third, Or the thirteenth. I just remember that the sun was unbearable, that I was exhausted, and I’d been whistling in the dark for too long.   Our Father, who art in Heaven hallowed be thy name.  …

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Christmas Gothic

Frank Sinatra is singing. You cannot escape him. You put in earplugs; the earplugs croon with his voice. Your youngest daughter has a cough that sound like jingle bells in her chest. The doctor says she’d be jolly soon enough but you aren’t sure what that means. The Christmas tree lot is endless. Bones of …

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An Instagram Influencer Reincarnated as a Corpse Flower

Of course you came back like this— in the form of something safe from direct touch by gloves. Before, you were shielded from my hungry gaze by a screen only receptive to a scroll and double tap. But now, there is no smooth burnt-honey skin. There is no scent like flirty tulips drowned in wine. …

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Ode to a Silver Saturn

Grant Lee drove east with Willie the cat, who looked like a lively piece of taxidermy by his side. The old silver Saturn was stuffed with paper towels in the door wells and window cracks, but all the dust still got in to coat the little hula girl that the sun turned a horrifying purple. …

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Phoebe Gloeckner

Mistake House Magazine: One of the central concerns—and one of the lightning rods—in your work especially in The Diary of a Teenage Girl and A Child’s Life and Other Stories is a cultural dilemma regarding adolescent girls’ maturation and sexuality. On the one hand, girls are often considered to be “good” and “pure” only if …

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The Unbonded Foster Child

The child holds her bleeding knee.  She has no where to turn.  The mother,  not her own, walks away.  She is a pebble in her shoe,  an unwanted mouth to feed.  A burden with each breath.  No payment of cash  is enough.   

Crossing a Line

I open the refrigerator door that               my foster mother forbids me to touch.  Her wooden spoon flies               and as it strikes,  I cry out–              Your daughter stole a chocolate bar  from the store. She shouts …

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From the Editor’s Desk

Issue 9 of Mistake House Magazine, like every edition, asks our readers to consider the nature of a work of art as “a space between ordinary and odd.” The magazine continues to publish diverse works that express a range of ideas and approaches.  The contributors make no attempt to sugarcoat their observations on subjects that …

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Suite of Fiction

Promising Eyebrows, But Odd A tribute to Moussa Bamoufard Mabo Issue 9 Fiction Editor’s Prize   Act I. MOUSSA lives on Fish Pass Street and works as a street door-to-door clothes salesperson. This morning, when Moussa wakes up, he does not notice that he has lost his eyebrows. Moussa usually wakes up early to get …

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A Love Letter, To Me

Writing is funny. It’s 4pm on a sunny day, the birds are chirping, the squirrels are squeaking, the breeze the smoothest and freshest it’s ever been. It feels as if the universe has finally responded to my supplications and given me the perfect conditions for the artist burning inside my body to awaken and flood …

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Issue 9 Editor’s Prize for Photography  

Field Trip

The Substitute

Every day she counts time until bells ring and release the children from their cold desks, different children most days, children she may never see again. She wants no commitment to them or the buildings they fill, no allegiance to their colored tile or the rules in bold letters on the walls of the classrooms …

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Current Consciousness

Hanging Art

Color in Anything

Isolated and Forgotten 2

Behind the Veil


Untitled (My Grandfathers Family)


Untitled (Closely)

Be Safe

Down the River

Phoebe Gloeckner

  Phoebe Gloeckner is a visual artist and graphic novelist who currently resides in Ann Arbor, Michigan where she is an Associate Professor at The University of Michigan Stamps School of Art & Design. Gloeckner experiments with forms of multimedia and current projects include audio, motion, and static images along with text. She attended undergraduate …

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Sweet Ophelia

A response to Ophelia, by Sir John Everett Millais  i have never thought it suited you, the muted sacramentos and hickory. you were always bright to me, creams and lilacs, pastels. your expression isn’t what i had pictured either: eyes glassy, face cracked wide open, wrists frozen in rigor mortis.  but then, i have never …

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Carl Phillips

  Carl Phillips is a prolific, highly lauded poet with a career spanning several decades. He has published sixteen books of poetry, two books of criticism, and one meditation on the writing process. Phillips earned a BA from Harvard, an MAT from the University of Massachusetts, and an MA in creative writing from Boston University. …

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