KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 10: Fall 2018
Micro-Fiction: 162 words

Conjuring Her Face

by Linda Nemec Foster

The famous artist from Serbia says she looks familiar: he’s seen her face in a Belgrade cafe. She’s never been to Belgrade. “That doesn’t matter,” he replies. He’s seen her face—the square jaw, the high cheekbones, the way her eyes scan a room for the nearest exit. He’s sketched her a hundred times sipping strong black tea in glass cups, poring over a literary journal filled with oblique poems, impatiently waiting for her lover to stop talking on his cell phone. He’s conjured her face with light pastels and translucent watercolors, layered acrylics and misted charcoal, blue pen and sharp pencil. He’s memorized every nuance of her expression, every outline she exhales on the pages of his sketchbook. “Look at these,” he shows her, “I know you.” Eventually, she starts to believe the evidence: his arguments that she’s someone else. As if she never lived her life, as if the blood of her ancestors never left his country.


Linda Nemec Foster
Issue 10, Fall 2018

is the author of 11 poetry collections, including The Lake Michigan Mermaid (Wayne State University Press, 2018), Amber Necklace from Gdansk (Louisiana State University Press, 2001), and Talking Diamonds (New Issues Press, 2009).

Her work has appeared in more than 350 magazines and journals such as The Georgia Review, Nimrod, North American Review, New American Writing, Quarterly West, and Witness, and has been published in anthologies in the U.S. and Great Britain, translated in Europe, exhibited in museums and galleries, set to music, produced for the stage, and nominated for the Pushcart Prize.

Foster has received awards from the Arts Foundation of Michigan, National Writer’s Voice, and the Academy of American Poets. She is the founder of the Contemporary Writers Series at Aquinas College, and from 2003-2005, she served as the first Poet Laureate of Grand Rapids, Michigan. In 2015, she was honored by the Dyer-Ives Foundation for her poetry and advocacy of the literary arts in Michigan.

Expanded bio at poet’s website

More on the Web: By, About, and Beyond

The Talent of Knowing in Duende (Issue 2, Spring 2015)

Two Poems, “Mount Fuji” and “The Dead,” in Streetlight Magazine (23 December 2016)

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