Revisiting 2020: Our 50 Most Popular Posts of the Year

 

 

Dear As It Ought To Be Readers,

 

Despite everything 2020 threw at us, AIOTB Magazine was fortunate to receive so many brilliant poems, essays, interviews, and book reviews from writers around the world. Below, I have assembled the 50 most popular posts of the year based on the amount of hits they received. I know that few people will look back at 2020 with fondness, but maybe reviewing these posts from the year is a reminder of the resilience people have to continue to create in a crisis, and to channel the anxiety of the world into writing that connects us.

AIOTB Magazine was perhaps the only constant I had in 2020 that began and ended the year exactly the same, and completely intact. I have all of you contributors and readers to thank for that. Thanks for keeping me sane and connected to a community of writers when I most needed stability, creativity, and human connection in my life.

I have no idea what 2021 will look like, but if you keep reading and supporting each other’s work, you’ll at least have three new pieces a week on AIOTB Magazine to count on.

 

-Chase Dimock
Managing Editor

 

Poetry

Omobolanle Alashe:

Jason Baldinger:

Rusty Barnes:

Jean Biegun:

Victor Clevenger:

John Dorsey:

Ajah Henry Ekene:

Loisa Fenichell:

Jeff Hardin:

John Haugh:

Mike James:

Jennifer R. Lloyd:

John Macker:

Tessah Melamed:

THE NU PROFIT$ OF P/O/E/T/I/C DI$CHORD:

Hilary Otto:

Dan Overgaard:

Rob Plath:

Daniel Romo:

Diana Rosen:

Damian Rucci:

Leslie M. Rupracht:

Anna Saunders:

Sheila Saunders:

Alan Semerdjian:

Delora Sales Simbajon:

Nathanael Stolte:

Timothy Tarkelly

William Taylor Jr.:

Bunkong Tuon:

Peggy Turnbull:

Brian Chander Wiora:

 

 

Reviews

Chase Dimock:

Mike James:

Arthur Hoyle:

 

 

Interviews

Chase Dimock:

 

Nonfiction

Brian Connor:

Cody Sexton:

 

 

Micro Fiction

Meg Pokrass:

AIOTB Magazine Announces our Nominees for the 2020 Best of the Net Anthology

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As It Ought to Be Magazine is proud to nominate the following poems and essays for the 2020 Best of the Net Anthology

 

Poetry

 

Rusty Barnes: The Act of Working

Caroliena Cabada: True Story

Leslie M. Rupracht: Hess Trucks and the End of the Double Standard

Anna Saunders: The Delusion of Glass

Dameion Wagner: I Have Returned Home

Brian Chander Wiora: We Might Have Existed

 

 

Nonfiction

 

Cody Sexton: The Body of Shirley Ann Sexton

Carrie Thompson: I Don’t Want Your Hug

 

 

Thanks to all of our nominees for sharing their work with As It Ought It To Be Magazine!

– Chase Dimock
Managing Editor

 

 

 

Image Credit: O.F. Baxter “Pointer Dog” (1860s) Digital image courtesy of the Getty’s Open Content Program

 

Leslie M. Rupracht: “Brothers”

 

 

Brothers 

The phone call behind him,
shock still fresh in his ears,  

the surviving brother    
reaches for memories 
long archived in the depths 
of a cerebral vault, 

untapped for a half-century 
and more until this unending night

Images of two laughing brothers 
upon hand-built rafts forged of scrap 
barn wood, frayed ropes and faith, 
floating on creek waters 

into the rapids of his 
consciousness—

a pair of young captains, 
made of invincible braveness, are
summoned into this sobering moment 
to placate a suddenly lonesome man’s 

shattered hope to bond and build 
more durable craft with his brother

In irretrievable youth 
as in this irreversible hour 
and the tomorrows of his mourning, 
he realized 

he always wanted more 
of his big brother’s time

 

About the Author: Leslie M. Rupracht is an editor, poet, writer, and visual artist living in the Charlotte/Lake Norman region of North Carolina since 1997. Her words and artwork appear in various journals (most recently Gargoyle), anthologies, group exhibits, and a chapbook, Splintered Memories (Main Street Rag, 2012). Longtime senior associate editor of now-retired Iodine Poetry Journal, Rupracht also edited NC Poetry Society’s 2017 and 2018 Pinesong anthology. Swearing off a corporate work relapse, Rupracht co-founded and hosts Waterbean Poetry Night at the Mic in Huntersville, NC.

 

Image Credit: “Portrait of Two Seated Boys” (1850s) Digital image courtesy of the Getty’s Open Content Program.

Leslie M. Rupracht: “Hess Trucks and the End of the Double Standard”

 

 

Hess Trucks and the End of the Double Standard

Dad’s inner child 
drove him to the Hess Gas Station 
weeks before Christmas. It was his yearly 
excursion to buy his son a toy truck—

the kelly-green-and-white kind that takes two C’s, 
double-A’s or 9-volt to set head- and taillights flashing, 
sirens wailing, and guarantee a young boy’s delight 
with Santa’s perfect selection. 

The son collected an array of models 
with varying numbers of axles for a few years 
before his older sister received her first.
“I thought it only fair,” 

explained Dad to his daughter 
on that milestone Christmas—she, 
old enough to know about Women’s Lib, 
Equal Rights, and seventy cents on the dollar, 

and he, thinking she’d want a Hess model truck 
over Breyer model horses or a bright orange 
Easy Bake Oven. Three decades later, 
in a long distance call, 

Dad tells her he just visited Hess, bought 
the special 40th anniversary edition truck 
for her brother—sibling equity 
now a notion forgotten. 

Only weeks before, 
he proudly announced buying collectible 
model cars for his four grandkids—
all sons of his son.

 

About the Author: Leslie M. Rupracht is an editor, poet, writer, and visual artist living in the Charlotte/Lake Norman region of North Carolina since 1997. Her words and artwork appear in various journals (most recently Gargoyle), anthologies, group exhibits, and a chapbook, Splintered Memories (Main Street Rag, 2012). Longtime senior associate editor of now-retired Iodine Poetry Journal, Rupracht also edited NC Poetry Society’s 2017 and 2018 Pinesong anthology. Swearing off a corporate work relapse, Rupracht co-founded and hosts Waterbean Poetry Night at the Mic in Huntersville, NC.

 

Image Credit: Carol M. Highsmith “Old gas station and pumps outside tiny Kent in Central Oregon” (2018) The Library of Congress