A Journal

"I'm going to come back to West Virginia when this is over. There's something ancient and deeply-rooted in my soul. I like to think that I have left my ghost up one of those hollows, and I'll never really be able to leave for good until I find it. And I don't want to look for it, because I might find it and have to leave".----Breece D'J Pancake, in a letter to his mother. 

Afton Wilky


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The essay included in this issue hovers around the idea of souvenirs. As a collection of literary “souvenirs,” a list of souvenirs I wish I had and an essaying attempt to retrace loss, “Desiderata (an index),” is both product and remains. 

desiderata, n. ~ A list of materials, especially books, that a repository seeks to acquire, especially published works.

†115 (Harvey 2000, p. 6): Morris and his successor, Nathaniel Holmes Morison, carefully compiled massive desiderata – or wish lists – of books for the library. Publishing these lists in bound form, they sent them out to booksellers, bibliophiles, and librarians all over America and Europe in what surely must have been one of the greatest literary scavenger hunts in history. 

Pearce-Moses, Richard. A Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology. Chicago: The Society of American Archivists, 2005. Web. 23 Oct 2015.

Afton Wilky is a multi-disciplinary artist. Her work combines writing with sound, digital media and book arts. She is the author of Clarity Speaks of a Crystal Sea (Flim Forum Press, 2014) and the chapbook, Acquisition: an index (Essay Press EP Series, 2015). Her work is in or forthcoming from journals such as Black Warrior Review[out of nothing]SirenTABtextsoundWord for/Word, and Jacket2. She is the managing editor of The Volta. Her website and blog are at