My Third Divorce by Terry Tierney

My first divorce is a hippie divorce. We have few worldly possessions other than our record collection and our philosophy. We remember who bought each of the records, but the philosophy has no origin we can identify. We don’t fight over the wire spool, our major piece of furniture, or our Sears portable stereo. Since we never got around to having children, there is no custody fight, except for the dog, a black and white beagle mix my wife rescued from the pound. When he brings home the blackened carcasses of chickens and other animals, she says they are gifts for me. She claims he loves me best. You take him, she says. No, you take him. We agree on a visitation schedule carefully planned with intervals for cleaning and disinfectants. I consider running away when it is my turn, but he runs away before I can. I know he survives to terrorize another neighborhood and sire a pack of vicious little dogs. One day I expect the pack to come for me.

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The Smiling Face of Darkness Glows Green By Leila Allison

 

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Walking Boss Cooper (from here, WBC) attempted to lure me and Renfield from the company bowels to her palatial office on Tuesday, for a “little chat.” She did so by email. As anyone with more than ten minutes’ life experience knows, an email come on is just that–an email come on. Like the confession of true love the magical soul of an email come on usually exists only in the heart of the sender, whereas the recipient may choose to reply or (as we had) blow the damn thing off until something better comes along.

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Twelve Weeks by Hugh Cron

Week 1.

You are here now and it is you who calls the shots.

If there is anything you want to talk about, you can.

I see you’re doing very well in English. Miss Patterson is impressed by your story telling. You express yourself very well.

But that’s writing, it’s not real is it?

And even if there is some of you in there, nothing is as powerful as hearing your own voice.

When you are ready…

…Talking is what you need to do

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End of the Road by Richard Ferri

I sit up in bed when I see the headlights of a car arc at the end of the driveway, pause for a second over the mailbox, and then stop in front of my house. I reach across the bed to wake Susan before I remember she’s not there.  Mine is the last house on a rural cul-de-sac in upstate New York. Sometimes in the summer, late at night, I get kids making out or drinking beer at the end of the road and if they make too much racket I walk up with a flashlight and ask them to move along. But it’s early morning, the week before Christmas, the kind of dry cold air that pinches your nose shut in the time it takes to check the mailbox. No one is drinking a 40-ouncer this morning. The newspaper guy used to drive by at this time of morning and slide a paper into the box, but I cut that off six months ago, when Dylan deployed. Some things you don’t want to know about. The headlights extinguish, and I can see the glint of the car chrome in the early morning moonlight. I slip my feet over the side of the bed, find my LL Bean moccasins, wrestle into a flannel robe, and turn on the light to go downstairs.

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