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Rust Belt Chicago: An Anthology

Rust Belt Chicago: An Anthology


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Chicago is built on a foundation of meat and railroads and steel, but its identity long ago stretched past manufacturing. A city of opportunity from the get-go, it continues to lure new residents from around the world, and from across a region rocked by recession and deindustrialization. But the problems that plague the Belt don’t disappear once you get past Gary. In fact, they’re often amplified. Chicago’s glittering downtown towers stand in sharp contrast to the struggling south and west sides. A city defined by movement that’s the anchor of the Midwest, bound to its neighbors by a shared ecosystem and economy, Chicago’s complicated – both of the Belt and beyond it. Which makes it a perfect subject for a book.

Coming in July 2017, Rust Belt Chicago: An Anthology, the ninth book in our series of city anthologies shines a light on the common ground Chicago shares with the Rust Belt through essays, memoir, journalism, fiction, and poetry. Includes work by Chloe Taft, Sonya Huber, Britt Julious, Kari Lydersen, Kevin Coval, Mark Guarino, and many more. See the full Table of Contents below

Edited by Martha Bayne, Senior Editor, Belt Publishing

For publicity, wholesale information and other questions, please send an email to

Table of Contents
Introduction: Beyond the Belt
Martha Bayne

City of Migrants I

The Last City I Loved
Zoe Zolbrod

Poem: LaSalle Wrote it Down Wrong, 1687
Kevin Coval

Notes on Summer (Or, Black Girlhood is a Thing)
Britt Julious

How to Buy Bread on Devon
Kelly McNees

Sonya Huber

Fiction: The Book of Poems by the Lost Birds of Union Station
Andrew Hertzberg

The Built City

It Is Not Waste All This, Not Placed Here in Disgust, Street After Street
Kathleen Rooney

Poem: Locative
Andrew Cantrell

Where 0 is State Street
Claire Tighe

Poem: Chicago by Water
Carol Gloor

Beyond the Michigan Sea
Garin Cycholl

Spectral Shorelines
Chloe Taft

Scott Wilson

 Fun Town
Jake Austen

Poem: Database
Rachel Arndt

Poem: Mornings With Sarah Jindra
Eileen Favorite

 The Divided City I

Victory Auto Wreckers, Moo & Oink, and the Free Wilson Basketball
Robert Dean

North Sider, South Sider, Bi-Sider
Bill Savage

Poem: Rogers Park Botanica
David Matthews

All Sales Final
Sharon Bloyd-Peshkin

The Pantry
Michael Van Kerckhove

Fiction: Ballast
Christine Maul Rice

Sports Break

Hard Hat, Lunch Pail
David Isaacson

Poem: Disco Demolition, July 12, 1979
Kevin Coval

The Carnival
Paul Dailing

Sixth City
Paul Durica

The Divided City II

Poems: Four Poems
Raymond Berry

Big 10 Barbie
Gina Watters

Poem: Ida B. Wells Testifies in the Ghost of the Ida B. Wells Homes
Kevin Coval

Cotton Cobwebs
Logan Breitbart

How to Win Reparations
Sarah Macareng and Yana Kunicoff

Fiction: Sorry Shit Sucks
Wyl Villacres

The Living City

For Girls Who Straddle Seasons
Ora Faleti

The Urban Rural
Linda Garcia-Merchant

Poem: Thorndale in February
Jacqui Zeng

The View From Wolf Lake
Ava Tomasula y Garcia

Prairie Water, Lake Sky
Gretchen Comcowich

Chicago Water Taxi: Romancing the River
Dina Elenbogen

Poem: Late Storm on Lake Michigan
Laura Passin

City of Migrants II

Gretchen Kalwinski

Beneath the Willow Tree: The Early Death and Immortal Life of Linda Parker
Mark Guarino

Last Call: El Trebol and the Cantinas of Pilsen
Kari Lydersen

Detroit to Chicago
Rob Miller

Chicago Notebook
Ryan Schnurr

Poem: The City Hasn’t Killed Everything
Sharon Dornberg-Lee

Naomi Huffman

Coda: Reasons Why I Will Not Leave Chicago
Aleksandar Hemon

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