There Are No More Pets in My House
There is death in my house.
“It's gone to a better place,” she says. "Now flush it down the toilet and wash your hands. Breakfast is ready."
Like that, she cans Juju, our goldfish. She did the same with Didi, Ma’s parrot, ...
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Revenge of the Fishy
Leona Pence & Tom Whitehead
Tom Whitehead: (In the deep husky Marlboro movie guys voice) HEEEEEEEEEEEER FISHY, FISHY, FISHY!
It was an early Saturday morning. He thought it was just another day of fishing, then all of a sudden out of nowhere he...
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David Porter watched his wife and two sons as they played on the monkey bars at the park. He smiled in contentment as peals of laughter rang out. Two short weeks ago, he’d been in danger of losing his family.
Read more: Temp-Tation
Free Range Souls
Samael and Malachi, two brothers working for different bosses, sit on the fence dangling their booted feet each on their side of the divide. One pair of boots is caked in white droppings; the other scrubbed clean. It’s like a dare. Trespassing? Not quite. ...
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An elderly woman shuffled up the sidewalk and took a seat on the bench across the way from me. I watched her slow steps and noticed her feet stuck in matted slippers and her swollen discolored ankles. Breathing a sigh of relief, I felt grateful...
Read more: Einaudi
We sat around a campfire in the backyard that evening, our parents and us four kids, aged four to fifteen. Dan, the oldest at nineteen, was in the Army serving somewhere that Mother didn't want to tell us. "You don't need to worry," she said. "I'll...
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Jack and the Beanstalk
The global wealth distribution has been heavily off balance, the scales of capitalism have plunged so far into disproportion they will fall before they will be fair again. Jack and his widowed mother have economically crammed a century of mourning into an egregious year but failed...
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Lost and Found
Smelled: a gamey odor downstairs in the basement. Searched for its source but couldn’t find it.
Found: one dead mouse with reddish-brown legs and a white underbelly in the basement bathroom. A deer mouse. Picked it up with tongs, took it outdoors, and tossed...
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One Hundred Yards
A deep sigh came just as Jason was pulling off the highway onto Route 11. He was close and could feel his back tingling as if his whole spine had suddenly fallen asleep. This happened every time he headed into a small town, no...
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Yearning - F2k WINNER!
Trish pushed her hair to the side to show off her sparkling diamond earrings. “Alvin just got these for me. I didn’t even have to drop a hint.”
Heather leaned forward for a better look. “Oh Trish, they’re beautiful. And LuAnn, did I see you drive up in a new...
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We’re late, of course. Won last-minute tickets to a concert at the Greek, the Gipsy Kings, but now parking is impossible. Ten years of driving in LA and the traffic makes me want to move to, I don’t know, Kansas. Then my date points to a...
Read more: Flamenco
I had plans for that summer and everything changed because of the marbles. But I’m way ahead of myself.
My brothers, Jeff and Mick, hung around Farmer Tom’s place, feeding chickens and riding on the tractor with him, watching while he milked his yellow cow, Bess. I’d...
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Ruler of the House
We never should have bought this old house. We sunk all our savings into it plus we took on a mortgage so huge that at this point I would have to pay out money just to get rid of the place.
I hate the sounds...
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Abe, the Teenage Hypnotist from Planet Garfunkel
You’re hearing a voice, but no one else hears a sound. It’s a deep distant whisper, soft, safe, and inviting: the words of which you can’t yet make out. The harder you listen, the softer it gets; softer and softer, deeper and deeper. The more you listen to it here, ...
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A Night in Fontana
Brody Carlisle halted his horse on the crest of a shrub-covered hill, slapped his Stetson twice sending dust floating skyward, and after placing it back on his head, coaxed a swallow from his canteen.
To the west, the sun slid behind a scattering of tall pillar-like plateaus. Their...
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Food. Globes of mashed potatoes glistening with a thin layer of gravy, plump slices of pie gushing with ruby red cherries–food wassensuous. It was sensuous before Abby even knew the meaning of the word. Sparkling Christmas goodies enticed her as a child. She would sneak from her...
Read more: Full
Stan stood on the sand, crumpled by how many people and birds running and sliding into it today. Now, it was getting dark, the last of the purple, streaky clouds turning black against a pale, gray sky.
Go or stay, just two choices.
He reached down...
Read more: The Decision
Amos stood on a thick, muscular knoll on the shoulder of a dark river. He shivered, soaking wet from his silver hair to his leather shoes, and stared, disoriented, at the pines across the river. They seemed to stand with their backs to him. Amos felt...
Read more: Swiftwater
In July the monsoon rains returned and with them came the little green frogs. Price Aurigena had first seen them in the summer of 1969 when he’d arrived in Korea and now, a year later, they were once again everywhere. Frogs sprang from the ground like exploding popcorn...
Read more: Minerva Shield
I have studied martial arts all my life: Karate, Judo, Kenpo Tae Kwon Do, Aikido, and Hsing-I, but as I've gotten older, I pretty much stick to Tai Chi. I used to study Tai Chi at a park in Washington, D.C. called Glen Echo Park. It's an old...
Read more: Seinfeld Moment
Wedding Portrait – Life Portrait
July 20, 1942
Escorted by her eldest brother Neil, Annabell walks across the front lawn to meet Bill. her groom. She is dressed in a long gown of pink net overlying pink point d’esprit. A bandeau of artificial roses secures her pink net veil. She also...
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S is for Scintillation.
Their arms and elbows locked as they vied for control. Major released her grip and dredged her beet-colored nails across his muscled chest. Zane glanced at the four lines of ripped skin, blood dripped onto the rim of his pants. He lunged forward, grabbed...
Read more: Salvation
Glennis Walker Hobbs
Black, ginger, and tortoiseshell felines zoom through the open screen door onto the deck. Black Nic pauses and surveys his domain from the top of the steps. Kittens race down the ramp and scamper into the backyard. Glory, the tortoiseshell, runs to the maple in the corner, ...
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Beckett – you asked for this
Here am I, on this grey morning, here I am again, entering this day as I entered yesterday and the day before and unless I am spared by death will enter tomorrow and the day after, endlessly growing older with the anxiety that brings, the fear of coming...
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Mattie opened the front door. "I'll be back in a while, Henry," she said, then stepped onto the porch and clicked the door shut.
It opened behind her and Henry stuck out his head. "Wait, I can come with you."
She shook her head. "I need...
Read more: Reconciliation