Moscow—Spotlight

The Pull of Home

By Miranda R. Carter

The magazine first visited Moscow as a Spotlight City in our April 2002 issue. We figured it was time to have another look.

It was one of those nights that fell blue and cold over an apartment on Almon Street, full of twenty-somethings padding across outdated linoleum and faded carpet, music waning beneath high-pitched greetings and complaints about college classes, questions about new tattoos and semesters abroad. It was one of those nights that perhaps started with a sense of magic but in reality felt much like other nights in similar apartments arching over my hometown-turned-college town where I was so young but only ever getting older and could feel it, always, this sense of being held and woven together by changing skies, the way many of us grew and stood tall like the stalks of wheat that waved gently in hazy Augusts behind my parents’ home.

I sat on the balcony and the slight chill of the night clipped the back of my neck. I pulled my jacket tighter around my shoulders. Kyle took a deep breath then exhaled, elbows perched on the chipped paint of the balcony’s ledge, eyes falling over treetops and store tops and downtown businesses buried in ivy.

“This place is a black hole,” he said.

I pulled my legs up to my chest. “Why do you say that?”

He shrugged. “People come here once and can’t help getting pulled back in.”

That wouldn’t be the last time I’d hear this.

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Miranda R. Carter

About Miranda R. Carter

Miranda R. Carter is a former journalist and forever writer. Her fiction piece “My Mother’s Sky” won Reedsy’s weekly prompt competition in June 2020. Her articles have appeared in the Colorado Springs Independent, Pikes Peak Bulletin, the Lewiston Tribune, and University of Idaho journals Argonaut and Blot Magazine. She teaches college writing and communication, and hails from the “Heart of the Arts,” Moscow.