Author Archives: hipacificreview

About hipacificreview

Hawaii Pacific Review is an online literary journal based at Hawaii Pacific University.

Living Near St. Catherine School

by Jonathon Medeiros

I don’t recall the question or the response I gave, but I remember the frustration rising in the nun’s face, creeping up her neck before turning her mottled brown cheeks dark purple. She asked again, her words clipped, her lips tight, her long black habit shivering with her consternation, as the class nervously giggled. And another response from me, possibly the same response. I don’t remember saying the wrong thing on purpose. I wasn’t trying to be smart or funny. There was clearly a gap between Sister Scholastica’s query and my understanding of her desires, a gap that distressed me as I watched it yawn open— Continue reading

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Filed under Nonfiction

Cartoon Character (or Not)

by Yvonne Higgins Leach

No man ever told her she couldn’t do it herself.
Nor did the female cartoon characters who
gleamed on the screen. Even Olive Oyl ate spinach.
With the same superhuman strength, she beat
every boy in the 100-yard dash in the 7th grade. Continue reading

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Filed under Poetry

On My First Imprint of Womanhood

by Yvonne Higgins Leach

Because my mind is a bank
of images sparked by emotion

I see you come through the door, Auntie,
in your wrinkled receptionist uniform Continue reading

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Filed under Poetry

Nightingale

by Kaylie Saidin 

Charlie says he saw the kraken but with no proof, he’s a fool, rotten-scented as the sea foam that coagulates beneath the hull. We’ve been on the Nightingale for one month now, sleeping in the red-twined hammocks, sloshing seawater all over the deck, gutting fish and slicing our fingers, eating stale bread and sucking on lemons. Continue reading

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Filed under Fiction

A Home in Italy

by Natalia Nebel

First Room in Italy

At my grandmother’s house in Italy, I shared a bedroom with my sister Clara. My bed was near two large, glass doors that opened onto a balcony. A clothesline ran across it, and every late morning Marisa, my grandmother’s cleaning lady, hung clothes on that line, and every late afternoon she took them away. The practical use of what I considered our balcony bothered me, felt invasive. Our room had an armoire and a large chest of drawers in it, both filled with blankets and sheets, only a little space set aside for the few clothes we had. We weren’t poor, but my mother had been a child in Italy during World War II and she’d retained a frugality brought about by food rations and heatless winter nights. She never became comfortable with the prosperity that marriage to my American father gave her. Continue reading

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Filed under Nonfiction