All posts by Erika Raskin

The Last Man in Manhattan by Daniel Goulden

Photo of waves with city in background
 

  It’s not hard to sneak into the Manhattan Exclusion zone if you know what you’re doing. The Coast Guard mostly looks for the guys who don’t know what they’re doing—the ones who rush past Spuyten Duyvil with some loud-as-shit electric motor alerting everyone still living in Riverdale of their presence. It’s good when these guys get caught. They love racing down the flooded streets of Manhattan, usually drunk, disrupting the wild, but still fragile ecosystem bubbling up from below the waves. If you know what you’re doing, you know to launch your boat from … Continue reading The Last Man in Manhattan by Daniel Goulden

Another Fall by William Cass

Photo of open book on leaves
 

Rose sat on the front porch, her custom at that dwindling time of day, watching. She tucked a strand of gray-white hair behind an ear. Her rocker squeaked against the floorboards. Light had fallen near gloaming. She tugged her cardigan around her girth. Not much happening in the old neighborhood. The lady across the street took in laundry from her side yard. At the two-family house a few doors further down, a young couple potted a plant together on their second-floor balcony. A little girl Rose didn’t recognize peddled by on a bicycle with training … Continue reading Another Fall by William Cass

Still Life with Black Pants and Peppers by Christine Tucker

Aerial photo of building
 

  I left my body, my home, and my life at 5:14 p.m. on a Tuesday afternoon in May, just as the peonies outside turned their faces upward and smiled their brightest smile. One minute I was cutting up peppers and onions for a stir-fry, and the next minute I was on the floor clutching my chest, trying to catch a breath. It took no time at all, and it took forever. My grandmother came to get me. She was still her tiny, red-headed, no-nonsense self. She held out her hands and picked me up … Continue reading Still Life with Black Pants and Peppers by Christine Tucker

A Modest Proposal by Erika Raskin

Photo of someone with a sheet over them waiving
 

I have a touch of prosopagnosia (that’s Latin for: oh shit), which is an inability to recognize faces. For me it’s always been a transient condition, hitting without warning. Certain situations are predictably hard. Cocktail parties for instance. I can have a very pleasant conversation with somebody scooping hummus onto crudite’ (that’s a nod to New Jersian, Dr. Oz) then step into the bathroom, come back out and re-introduce myself to the same person now standing by the drinks table. It can also happen in less stressful arenas. One time I glanced up at the … Continue reading A Modest Proposal by Erika Raskin

The View by Kay Rae Chomic

Photo of modern hallway with glass walls
 

Kay Rae Chomic is the 3rd place winner of Streetlight’s 2022 Flash Fiction Contest   Stephanie climbed her porch stairs, nodded at the two pumpkins with carved misshapen noses, mouths, and teeth. One smiled, one frowned. Both held cigars in place by incisors. Inside the house, she hung her purse on the coat tree in the foyer, stripped off her clothes, and dashed to the shower to wash off the day. Judgment day. Wrapped in her robe, a towel coiled around her hair like a turban, she mixed a Manhattan, sat on the sofa next … Continue reading The View by Kay Rae Chomic

Treatise on a Bad Dog by Faye Satterly

Photo of small white dog with blue fabric around his neck
 

The first time I saw Bad Dog Ollie, he gave me the stink eye. He was in a large pen with a flock of adorable puppies, who ran and tumbled and played in a group. He stood to the side, staring up at me with his black eyes. “Isn’t he adorable,” the breeder cooed. “Isn’t he the cutest? And he looks so smart.” Smart, perhaps. Wily, for sure, devious and willfully ill-behaved, definitely. A little dog with six-inch legs who could somehow climb onto the kitchen table, pull down my purse and chew up its … Continue reading Treatise on a Bad Dog by Faye Satterly

Effects by Erika Raskin


 

More than half a century ago (wtaf) when I was five, my parents bought a DC row house that came furnished (an estate sale? someone walking away from their whole life?) with lots of heavy dark furniture and scary art. Much of it stayed. Which, when you think about it, is a little like committing to the headshots of other peoples’ kids encased in the new frames you’ve just gotten from Pottery Barn. While there may have been a certain amount of effort-conservation involved (something, as the World’s Laziest Person, I’m all about) it meant … Continue reading Effects by Erika Raskin

Down the Shore by John Adinolfi

Photo of heart drawn in sand washing away
 

John Adinolfi is the 2nd place winner of Streetlight’s 2022 Flash Fiction Contest     All the times of their lives happened at the shore. She was a lifeguard. He was beach patrol. He tripped over her rescue board and she bandaged his wounded leg. Six weeks later they were married at sunrise, with ocean foam slapping at their feet. Soon, she was building sandcastles with their youngest while he taught the older ones how to surf cast. Later, grandkids would overrun their beach house every summer. Then, when it was just the two of … Continue reading Down the Shore by John Adinolfi

Thank You For Calling by Margaret Watson

Photo of gray clouds over yellow field
 

Margaret Watson is the 1st place winner of Streetlight’s 2022 Flash Fiction Contest   I try my best to ignore the telephone vibrating in my back pocket. I focus on what I am doing–massaging Stephen’s feet. Using lotion, my fingers like feathers, caressing the skin that is now so delicate. The vibration stops and starts again. Whoever this is, they aren’t going to use voice mail. “I’ll just get this,” I say to Stephen. I can’t be sure if he’s heard me. I step back, tap the answer icon, already knowing who it is. Barbara, … Continue reading Thank You For Calling by Margaret Watson

Missing by Ruth Spack

Silhouette of truck against cloudy, dark blue sky
 

  I found my calling on a bleak Sunday afternoon in the fall of 1958, standing at the edge of a fetid swamp, questioning why bad things happened to little children. It was the day four-year-old Billy Flynn disappeared. I was nine at the time, living in Pawtucket, Rhode Island with my mother and grandmother, in the kind of friendly neighborhood that was pretty common back then. That afternoon had started innocently enough, in the Flynns’ backyard, right after Halloween. Decked out in Stetson hats and feathers, a bunch of us boys were playing Cowboys … Continue reading Missing by Ruth Spack