Smoke Point

By Keith Dixon

Essay

My wife and I are talking about making the ultimate financial gamble: that of buying an apartment in New York City during a recession. Over and above the fears I harbor about committing more money than I can fathom to a place I’ve spent maybe fifteen or twenty minutes in, I’m also having some genuine anxieties about giving up something I’ve deeply cherished about our current apartment: the window in our kitchen.

This past February, at this year’s AWP (Association of Writers and Writing Programs) conference in Chicago, many of the overheard conversations did not involve the usual topics—Where’s the best place in the city to score a discount bottle of Booker’s bourbon?Do you know anyone who brought a bag of weed?Let’s get drunk/stoned, sit in a circle in someone’s hotel room and read some poetry/fiction/creative nonfiction, then seduce our former Russian Lit/Forms/Creative Writing Pedagogy professor.