All Stories, General Fiction

Mung Beans and Happiness by Emily Khym

Sooner or later it’s going to happen to you. You forget the hand-me-down hanboks, blaring F-84s, stitched up sacks of half empty barley portions from a bustling market stocked with rows of mung beans and buchu. You weave through scenes of shirts drenched in sticky blood and machine guns shooting your neighbors down to become spine-chilling nightmares. You become another identity that hopes to forget the feeling of a complete family—a sort of silent-lipped desire that keeps you from proudly marching into Olympic Mart with your mother for a touch of authenticity you desperately want to forget. You force yourself to grow up to match the number of times you ate seaweed soup on your birthday, fourteen, to keep your ripped up photographs tightly shut in your safe.

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All Stories, General Fiction

Clovis Clayton Holiday by Frederick K Foote

My mother told me, “Clovis Clayton Holiday, you gonna be the death of me with the way you do the things you do.”

My father instructed me, “Clovis, son, sometimes you have to go along to get along, you understand?”

My older sister, Nora, scolded me, “Clo, Negro, you can’t just go and do anything you want to do. You got to follow the rules.”

Nelda, my younger sister, declared, “Clo, You, too weird to be my brother. I disown your Black ass.”

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General Fiction, Crime/Mystery/Thriller, All Stories

Uncle Fail by Salvatore Difalco

Uncle Florio’s face was all lumps, his purple left eye half shut. His swollen lips barely moved as he spoke. “I’m gonna kill him,” he said. “I’m gonna kill that prick.”

My mother, his kid sister, poured him a shot of anisette. He sipped it and grimaced with pain, gently touching his lips. A dark stain splotched the collar of his red plaid shirt. I wondered if it was blood.

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All Stories, General Fiction

Telling Two Granddames Apart by Tom Sheehan     

She was different from my father’s mother, Mary Elizabeth King Sheehan right out of Cork. There was an elegant thirty-year widow for you, tall and gracious, precise of language, with her little black widow’s hat on her head and the shiny glasses on her nose and a bread roll or two in her pocketbook whenever she supped outside her Somerville home. Her pocketbook was always black. It always shone the light around it. A touch of new leather at her hands as if a bargain had just been made. At Ginn and Co. in Cambridge, she was a bookbinder, for more than sixty years eventually, and never baked a pie in her life it seems. Or baked bread. But she could wash your feet and scrub your back on a visit with her slender fingers and make you feel new all over.

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All Stories, General Fiction

The Long Way Home by Tom Sheehan

The sun warm, the air pleasant, but me like a beggar lost in thoughts, I stepped up to the back door of the old farmhouse on Route 182 in Franklin, Maine. Home at last from the army was topping off my day. Coming home from military service, I’ll swear forever, is better than birthdays, weddings, or vacations.

Or should be.

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All Stories, Crime/Mystery/Thriller

The Executor by Barb Lundy

Emmet Emafo started his day running. Broken branches and shredded herbs told the story of the hail storm that woke him during the night. A thin mist still fell. A canvas of fall leaves swayed in trees. He became one with the morning light and shadow. The slap of his footfalls on the wet cement comforted him.

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