One morning over coffee, Jessica says she wants us to take a horse to church. My wife doesn’t mean using the animal for transportation. She wants to walk a horse up the steps, down the aisle, and let it stand there during services.Continue reading “Whacky Ideas by Dave Henson”
One night, five days before departure:
“I’m not staying for you,” Andrew says.
He lies next to me in bed, his eyes aflame, half-hidden by a lock of hair fallen across his brow. A bead of sweat carves a shimmering trail down his chest.
I prop myself up on one elbow.
“Then why? Soon there will be nothing to stay for.”
“The people, Sarah. Are they not worth staying for?”
I roll my eyes.Continue reading “Departure by Callum Rowland”
I slink across January ice. The sun shimmers over clear, cold icy sheen.
I look ahead, but still slip.
I flail, feeling the world tumbling. The sky leers, pale blue, puffed-up clouds surveying me. Frame houses line the street, staring with cheerful yellows and greens. Oak trees stare with naked arms.
I right myself, arms flailing. It’s a miracle, but relief evaporates, replaced by shadows of shame.Continue reading “Iceberg Theory by Yash Seyedbagheri”
The 11th of November was a Monday. We were patrolling in dense fog near Mons when at 11 am, Lieutenant Harrison ordered us to halt then glanced at his watch.Continue reading “Just Let Go by Anthony Billinghurst”
The odor is an eye-gouging, throat-punching combination of sour milk served over steamed shit, with a dab of honey. Like the killing fields of Gettysburg in 1863, scorched into an indelible stench.
“This is atrocious, Leo,” I bellow through the deafening grind of the gigantic truck’s engine. “Can’t you smell it?” I’m kneeling in a puddle of something brown and viscous, trying and failing to latch a chain onto a brimming green dumpster.Continue reading “History in a Trash Heap by Mark Fellin”
Eddie Kidney lived in a Jiffy John in downtown Buffalo. Kidney was not his real surname, of course, but it seemed to fit so that is what we called him. Besides, Eddie liked having a last name and smiled when anyone referred to him as Mr. Kidney.Continue reading “Eddie Kidney’s Thanksgiving by David M Robinson”
I always feel awkward in social situations with strangers. I guess everybody does. But for some reason when I find myself at that point, my reaction is beyond control: I start lying like a madman.Continue reading “Submarines, Like Ships in the Night by Steve Sibra”
The execution notice tacked to a wooden fencepost flapped in the wind as early morning light crept through the tree branches. Soraya tried not to slow her pace or even to glance at it. She already knew the details and her heart grieved for her only son. Pulling the faded cotton scarf tighter around her head, she walked in a hunched-over manner befitting her age, taking a circuitous path to make sure she was not being followed. The Janissaries had posted notices of the execution for today. They intended a very public message that rebellion and insurrection would not be tolerated. The Sultan of the Ottoman empire had spoken.Continue reading “One Last Act by Gail Boling”
With time and reflection comes meaning, or so I’ve heard my therapist say many times. But what she doesn’t understand, even with all her schooling, is that despite all, a person can never go back in time to seize an opportunity, to rectify a wrong. At least within the luxury of these solid walls, and as is usual at this time of the night, when all is quiet, and neither breath nor movement intrudes, I can remember the facts as they suit me.Continue reading “The Incident with the Knife by Monika R Martyn”
I go to Rodney and Betty’s grocery only for the credit, because they sell mealy hamburger and I won’t touch the chicken anymore after the kids found feathers stuck in their drumsticks. It was at a barbeque, a really rare day when the sky is clear cornflower. It is unusual having a summer day when the air is light, light, without so much humidity trapped inside it you could suffocate.Continue reading “Self-Made Grocers by Susan DeFelice”