A Community Collaboration: Collaborative Writing

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Jet Fuel Review Issue #17 Cover

For our Spring 2019 issue of Jet Fuel Review (with cover art by artist Delano Dunn) there is a special section that presents collaborative writing, which is writing that multiple artist’s crafted. As a way to celebrate the successful launch of our 17th issue, we’ve asked some of students, faculty, and alumni to join in and construct a piece, or multiple,  that they created with their peers.

Presented below is a segment of the Special Section’s introduction as written by JFR Managing Editor, Zakiya Cowan, and a collection of fantastic collaboratively written pieces by some of our very own editors of Jet Fuel Review as well as some members of the Lewis University community. In summation, each of these pieces remain as a showcase of the bridge of collaboration and we are excited to present this talent.

— Christian Mietus, Blog Editor

The following writers, whose stunning collaborations can be found below, contributed to this feature:

  • Dr. Simone Muench & Dominique Dusek
  • Zakiya Cowan & Patricia Damocles
  • Zachary Klozik &  Katarzyna Majchrowicz-Wolny
  • Kammeron Hughes & Kyle Paup
  • Christian Mietus & Salvador Martinez
  • Melissa Ortiz & Stephanie Karas

We are excited to present to you our Collaborative Works Special Section. Jet Fuel Review remains steadfast in our mission to highlight innovative work, and there is no better representation of the dynamic community of the literary world than exhibited collaborative works. From Laura Jones’ essay “The Couple is Present” where she is in conversation with her ex-wife and utilizes her ex’s photos as symbols of their relationships’ condition, to Tyler Mills’ and Kendra DeColo’s poems that interrogate gender roles, and envision John Waters’ experience watching Magic Mike, the pieces in this section emphasize that writing cannot, and should not be done in a vacuum. These selections embody the magic that arises out of collaboration and the bringing together of separate voices and identities to craft a singular, resonant body of work.

— Zakiya Cowan, Managing Editor


Dr. Simone Muench

PictureDr. Simone Muench is the author of six full-length books including Orange Crush and Wolf Centos. Her recent, Suture, is a collection of sonnets written with Dean Rader. She and Rader also edited They Said: A Multi-Genre Anthology of Contemporary Collaborative Writing. She is Professor of English at Lewis University where she teaches creative writing and film studies. Currently, she serves as faculty advisor for Jet Fuel Review, as a senior poetry editor for Tupelo Quarterly, and as founder of the HB Sunday Reading Series.

Dominique Dusek

Dominique Dusek’s chapbook Self-Portrait with Playroom & Diazepam was published by dancing girl press. (2019). Her work has appeared in Jet Fuel Review and Windows Fine Arts Magazine. After earning her Bachelor’s in Creative and Professional Writing, Dominique decided to return to school to complete her graduate degree in Secondary Education. She hopes to someday apply her passion for teaching writing as a high school English Language Arts teacher.

Muzzle by Dominique Dusek & Simone Muench

My throat an open sepulchre, my tongue
tacked into silence. I signal to the trees.
I signal to the wolves. The forest is a song
for women who are wronged. An abscess

rooted in my cheek, swelling in my mouth
until it hurts to speak. Too many women
are entombed, voiceless. A parliament of owls
conducts a symphony inside the rotting bodies

of tree trunks. Night assembles in an arsenal
of teeth. A convergence of fur & tremble.
I archive the fading notes. Archive the stifle.

I’m reborn a wolf, another voice to join the collective
howl, the forest is a chorus to raise the dead.
Silence—just a stone in the gullet of a swallow.

*First line by Rosanna Warren

Published in Dominique Dusek’s Self-Portrait with Playroom & Diazepam


Zakiya Cowan

PictureZakiya Cowan will soon a hold a bachelor’s degree in English from Lewis University. She currently serves as Managing Editor for Jet Fuel Review, works as tutor and ESL Specialist for Lewis’ Writing Center, and is a sister of Lambda Theta Alpha Latin Sorority, Incorporated. Her poems “bare: a bout-rimes” and “Asphyxiation” were published in Windows Fine Arts Magazine. Her flash fiction piece, “Good Hair” was published in Split Lip Magazine

Patricia Damocles

PicturePatricia Damocles is a senior at Lewis University majoring in English Language & Literature major and minoring in creative writing. She is the Assistant Managing Editor of the school’s in-house literary magazine ​Jet Fuel Review.​ Damocles’ poem “Mulan in the Suburbs,” was published in a previous issue prior to her becoming an​ ​editor. Aside from her editorial position, she is also a Writing Center tutor and the Events Coordinator of Sigma Tau Delta’s Rho Lambda chapter.

To be a Female Smorgasbord by Patricia Damocles & Zakiya Cowan

  1. Honey-Baby-Q wings with a side of ranch
  2. Finger-lickin’ good
  3. Dumpling clutched by chopstick fingers
  4. Hot tamale wrapped in husked hisses
  5. Soft-shell taco soaked in salsa
  6. All that and a bag of chips
  7. Baked potato stuffed with sour cream
  8. Cocoa-dusted tiramisu
  9. Banana split legs with a cherry on top
  10. Shake that laffy taffy
  11. Bootylicious bubblegum
  12. Juicy fruit
  13. Salted edamamí
  14. Sweet & sour snatch
  15. Blacker the berry, sweeter the juice
  16. Lady Marmalade
  17. Ripe honeydew melons
  18. Plump peach begging for hungry teeth
  19. Colombian coffee bean
  20. Thicker than a bowl of oatmeal
  21. Delectable milk chocolate skin
  22. Melt-in-your-mouth buttered buns
  23. Taffy apple bottom
  24. Waist-snatched pear
  25. Coca Cola bottle body
  26. Watermelon-glossed lips
  27. Sugar-rimmed orifice
  28. Devour me whole
  29. And choke.

Malt by Patricia Damocles & Zakiya Cowan

I asked the bartender to pour me
another shot of the best scotch they
carried so I could burn away the
remnants of coffee sitting on my
tongue, mixed with the charcoal taste of your
cigarette-stained saliva webbing
in between my taste buds. I scorch my
insides with whiskey riptides, tearing
the skin of my lips with anxious teeth,
trying to scrape you off. I can feel
my veins start to erode with bourbon-
blood on the rocks, distilling my thoughts
of starched collars marked with Malbec as
I smear my lips in Van Gogh yellow.

Hades’ Soliloquy  by Patricia Damocles & Zakiya Cowan

I’m mostly a father here, a husband, barely a son,
a tarred silhouette nestling in her peripheral view
partially detected, I am an eyelash battered—
until it crumbles like silken ash, freckling her cheeks.

She’s sometimes a mother, a wife, mostly a goddess,
always there like white noise, yet never loud enough to break
the glass of our greenhouse. She is a palm unread—
worlds are etched in her hands like lily pad lattices.

I tuck canary chrysanthemums in her valleyed ribs,
stitch mauve orchids along the circumference of her skull,
and blanket her figure in delicate daffodils;
My Persephone, a canvas of petaline skin.
Her wilted fingertips paint epitaphs across our
sun-kissed cemetery amid the moon-bitten meadows.

*Credit to Craig Morgan Teicher’s “New Jersey” for the first line


Zachary Klozik

PictureZachary Klozik is a junior at Lewis University, majoring in English Creative and Professional Writing. On campus, he also works as a tutor for the Writing Center. Zachary especially enjoys reading and writing poetry. His favorite author is Jhonen Vasquez and that is why one of his favorite television shows is Invader Zim. He also loves Vasquez’s graphic novel Johnny the Homicidal Maniac. Zachary likes to spend a lot of his free time listening to music and watching movies. His favorite genre is science fiction which is why some of his favorite movies are Donnie Darko and A Scanner Darkly

Kasia Wolny

PictureKasia Wolny is a senior at Lewis University, where she enjoys her studies in English literature and creative writing. In addition, she works at the Writing Center where she is a Fellow in the ELL program. Kasia loves to read literature from around the world and across genres; some of her favorites are Ernest Hemingway, Toni Morrison, Khaled Hosseini, Wojciech Kuczok, Jhumpa Lahiri, and Diana Gabaldon. In her writing, she likes to focus on short story and essay composition, and on Polish-English translation of poetry. Kasia is a mom of two teenagers who, being bilingual, regularly poke fun at her for mispronouncing English words. In her free time, she likes to hike, cook, tend to her garden, visit art museums, and drink tea with friends.​

Recipe for a dumpling by Zack Klozik and Kasia Wolny

What you need

  1. Organic flour not necessarily white, but sifted—pure
  2. Whole egg—the binds
  3. Water, very warm, clear, filtered, although who knows how old the pipes and how rust-lined the source…
  4. A seasoned organ, ground

What you do

  1. Work with a clean slate, wiped and bleached
  2. Wonton squares could be used but they tend to be dry and tough therefore
  3. Mold your own dough
  4. Mound the flour, make a hollow in the center
  5. Crack the eggs into the pit and drown it with water
  6. With a finger or a knife stir the center, let the layers of dust collapse into the wet muddle
  7. With both arms gather it all, a few caresses, patience and understanding underneath the pads of your thumbs
  8. Knead this mixture, calm its doubts with dough in between fingers, with firm pressure, fold, coil, twist
  9. Convince the dough that it needs your velvet touch: make it soft, pliable
  10. It will yield then even when you tear it apart, skin worked separately to shape each according to your recipe
  11. Rolling requires strong backbone, a steel hand: you know that it needs to be flat and thin, stretch it like a tanning rack
  12. Roll and slice the dough, careful as marks left by a knife are forever tattooed
  13. Take each piece and fill it with flesh, praise or bluff
  14. A dumpling wants to be pinched firm and thrown into the rolling boil where it assumes its shape and hardens, only to soften in the end
  15. Don’t let it soften too much, or fall apart
  16. It needs to withstand the heat of the pan, the sear on its belly
  17. Dumplings are meant to be eaten

Kammeran Hughes

Kammeran Hughes is a sophomore dual major studying History and English with a Creative Professional Writing focus at Lewis University. While attending college, Kammeran is working as a CAD designer for Koziol Engineering. With a personality derived from pop-culture gone flat, his interests are sporadic and many. As a writer, Kammeran seeks to amalgamate his collection of eccentricities into addictive imagery. Between drafting countless projects for work and school, Kammeran can be found struggling to enjoy his hobbies of relaxing, reading, and playing role-playing games. Some of his favorite authors include Alexander Dumas, Edgar Allen Poe, Ray Bradbury, and H. P. Lovecraft.

Kyle Paup

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Kyle Paup is a junior at Lewis University double majoring in English Writing and Philosophy of Law. He works as a Communications Intern for the City of St. Charles, and has previously served as a poetry editor for Jet Fuel Review and the Editor in Chief of his high school newspaper.

27 Possible Poems by Kammeran Hughes and Kyle Paup

  1. Birds of Praise
  2. The Imitation Game
  3. Indiana Jones And the adventures of the Terrible haiku
  4. The Thin Red Line Break
  5. The 6th Sestina
  6. No Cliché for Old Men
  7. The Good, the Bad, and the List Poem
  8. Free Form Club
  9. Prose Fiction
  10. The Shakespearian Redemption
  11. The King’s Soliloquy
  12. Interview Poem of a Vampire
  13. Big Heroic Couplet 6
  14. The Last Stanza
  15. The Sonnet: An Expected Journey
  16. Epic Poem Movie
  17. (Self) Portrait of a Lady
  18. Pantoum Raider
  19. Blackout Down
  20. Casino Villanelle
  21. Octet-Man
  22. The Limerick of the Rings
  23. Collaborative Robinson
  24. Bad Bouts Rimes
  25. The 6th Cento (Source: Line 5)
  26. 47 Meter Down
  27. Happy Feet

Christian Mietus

PictureChristian is an Undergraduate at Lewis University studying English, Film Studies, and Russian Language and Culture. He is a lover of everything to do with literature, cinema, the arts, and diverse culture and opinion. Currently, he is the blog and fiction editor for Lewis University’s literary journal Jet Fuel Review and has been published in Lewis University’s fine arts magazine, WINDOWS. He is the recipient of the Dr. Stephany Schlachter Excellence in Undergraduate Scholarship Award for 2019 for his collaborative work, Assimilation through SoundIn the future, he hopes to become a writer or filmmaker.

Salvador Martinez

Salvador Martinez is a Junior at Lewis University with a major in Political Science and a minor in creative writing. He is also a transfer student from Joliet Junior College, completing his Associate’s Degree in 2018.

19 Underappreciated Films by Salvador Martinez and Christian Mietus

1.Tetsuo: The Better Tony Stark
2.Kin-dva-dva
3.Industrial Symphony No. 1 is third on the list
4.Gone Under the Wind (V. Sjöström)
5.Nos-vibrato- A Symphony of Silence: an actual “silent” film.
6.Pulp Poetry
7.Samurai films that are too obscure to find or tell you about.
8.The Godmother Trilogy  
8 ½. 8 ½
9.The Matrix Unloads aka “Truth Bombs”
10. Star-Wars Episodes X-M
11.Adam Sandler’s “Ponzi Scheme”
12. Angry Men
13.Dudes on a Plane
14.Double Feature: South, by East North & Front Door
15.The Hunger Games: Battle Royal
16.Titanic 2: “2tanic”
17.荒野の用心棒
18.Disney Dynasty a Marvel Monopoly
19.Onibabadook


Melissa Ortiz

Melissa O

Melissa Ortiz Wayne is a Senior at Lewis University majoring in Spanish Language & Culture while also minoring in English Language & Literature. She is a member of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, Delta Epsilon Sigma Honor Society and Alpha Sigma Lambda Honor Society. When Melissa is not studying, she is a mother to three young adults & a dog named Bruce. In her free time she enjoys traveling, cooking and being with family & friends. Melissa is a bilingual Spanish heritage speaker and loves Spanish and Latin American Literature. Her favorite writers are Gloria Anzaldua, Octavio Paz, Rosario Castellanos and Sor Juana Ines de La Cruz.

Stephanie Karas

20190411_194340Stephanie Karas is a sophomore studying Psychology and English with a concentration in creative writing at Lewis University. She works as one of Lewis University’s operators and enjoys spending her free time reading or writing.

14 Items by Stephanie Karas and Melissa Ortiz

  1. I am a silverleaf calligraphy card on a Hallmark Holiday
  2. The fat, rosy-cheeked cherub poised with an arrow waiting to strike a sucker
  3. White shelves with overpriced high-fructose corn syrup candies.
  4. I am a $5.00 red rose -withered, petals curled in less than 24 hours
  5. Overcrowded restaurants and missed reservations
  6. Crinkled corner store receipt: studded bare skin condoms just for her pleasure
  7. Anonymous love for sale – sleazy motels sold by the hour under the glow of red neon lights
  8. An oozing boil discovered on your groin the next day
  9. 50 ways to Leave Your Lover
  10. I am the illusion of returned phone calls
  11. “He’s just not that into you, deal with it” – A message from his full answering machine
  12. H-E-A-R-T-B-R-E-A-K
  13. a missed visit from Aunt Flo (March 15)
  14. I’ll be back – 364 days for another chance at Love : )

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