Short story: The Black Sheep by Italo Calvino, from Numbers in the Dark and Other Stories. Highly Recommended.
Poem: Daynight with Mountains Tied Inside by Alice Fulton, listened to on the Poem of the Day podcast, from December 2016. Recommended.
Essay: The Shape of Our Time by Adam Gopnik, listened to on the BBC’s A Point of View podcast, from December 2016. Recommended.