Category Archives: Fiction

Trespass by Stephanie Coyne DeGhett

Coyote in snow
 

The dog had gotten out, slipped out, wriggled out, sneaked out. Too smart for her own good—clever at door latches, willing to bide her time when the mood was on her to go solo. You’d think it was too cold to want to walk the wild side—somewhere near zero. Kit would go call her in a minute, stand in the pool of light at the kitchen door call Lillie, Lillie. Too late, too dark, too cold to let the dog just return—as she always did—in a few hours. Kit pulled on her jacket, stepped into … Continue reading Trespass by Stephanie Coyne DeGhett

For Sale on eBay by K.E. Ogden

Clothing rack with hangers
 

K.E. Ogden is the 3rd place winner of Streetlight Magazine’s 2019 Short Fiction Contest. One short-haired, German Rex single-owner cat about one year-old, up-to-date on shots, I think, although Mom got a little lax toward the end. Listen up, buyers: This is a great, sweet cat with a spicy character. Shut in a small, Vegas apartment with my mom since its birth, the cat retains a distinctive, sophisticated look even after hiding for two weeks in my mom’s closet under a pile of dirty laundry, next to an eight-foot high stack of sci-fi and fantasy … Continue reading For Sale on eBay by K.E. Ogden

What Do You Feel by Julia Ballerini

People staring at each other in a circle
 

Julia Ballerini is the 2nd place winner of Streetlight Magazine’s 2019 Short Fiction Contest. I was persuaded, if not coerced, to join a group therapy session. My boss was concerned about my mental well-being. I panic when I have to speak in a setting with more than two other people. I rarely utter a word during meetings unless obliged to give a report or am asked a question. On these occasions, I flush bright red from my face down to my neck and chest. I jumble words. My discomfort is highly visible and audible. It … Continue reading What Do You Feel by Julia Ballerini

Firedamp by Tonja Matney Reynolds

Photo looking up at birds in the sky
 

The canary was still. It was too late to run. Too late to escape. Too late to pray for God’s mercy.   Matt had been one of the lucky ones, one of sixteen coal miners chosen to work on a Saturday morning. His boy Luke brought the count to seventeen. Matt expected him to be excited for his first day of work, but Luke had been dawdling all morning. When they finally stepped inside the mine, the other men were already gathered a hundred feet ahead. Their carbide headlamps shone on the uneven, rough-cut earth … Continue reading Firedamp by Tonja Matney Reynolds

Talisman by E.H. Jacobs

Abstract painting
 

Morning hunkered over the house, gray and unyielding, pressing through the spaces between the drawn shade and the window frame. Wes sat on the edge of the bed in underwear and socks, next to a newly cleaned and pressed suit, still in dry-cleaner’s plastic. The only other furniture a three-drawer dresser and two nightstands of unfinished pine. His closet door stood half-open, exposing the dimly lit shelves and the t-shirts, sweaters and pants piled upon them. In searching for a belt, he had noticed a bright blue fold of fabric slumping over the shelf at … Continue reading Talisman by E.H. Jacobs

Gemini by Charlotte Morgan

Photo of stars on sky avove a tree
 

When that technician pointed out two heartbeats and two precious teensy penises on the screen, I was over the moon. Buddy leaned over and kissed me and cried real quiet-like, like he wasn’t actually crying, but I knew he was. Right away the names Elvis and Jesse popped into my head—Mama raised me on Elvis—but I didn’t say that out loud. Buddy would’ve immediately made frying egg sounds and said in a high sissy voice, “This is your brain on baby.” I’d been a total ditz when I was pregnant with Kayla, but so far … Continue reading Gemini by Charlotte Morgan

Salmonella Summer by Suzanne C. Martinez

Photo of person in sky hanging from a parachute
 

I spent four days and nights smashed against a bus window in transit to my first husband’s family reunion half nauseous from breathing in the diesel fumes and the aroma of the chemical toilet a few feet behind us. The vinyl seat stuck to the back of my thighs, as he seeped into my half of the bench I was sharing with him. He was a big guy, Swedish-Norwegian and a lapsed Mormon. Six months earlier he’d announced it was necessary for him to move out so he could enjoy anonymous sex, drugs, drinking and … Continue reading Salmonella Summer by Suzanne C. Martinez

Broken by Alison Thompson

Stairway in a teal hallway
 

On the third visit, they kicked his stomach and broke his thumbs. The bones cracked like an electrical charge shooting through his entire body, exiting via his skull, as if everything he knew, everything he had ever perceived, was wiped clean. For those few moments, the world flashed white, then just as quickly, his whole reality dumped back down on him, a furious writhing mess he could not make sense of. Then he blacked out. When he regained consciousness, he was lying in a pool of his own blood-tinged vomit. He had two thoughts; one … Continue reading Broken by Alison Thompson

Shop of the Heart by Cynthia L. Singerman

View up the stairs through a tunnel
 

“You can get a wax.” She rubs the stubbly black fuzz on my calves, nodding. “A little long.” “Yeah, I know. It’s been cold.” I feel the need to defend myself to the woman painting my toenails. Suddenly my mother has somehow teleported herself into the salon, kneeling at my feet, reminding me that I’ll never be doing it quite right. I look down. The hair is long on my legs. I could braid it. French braid my armpit hair too, but I’m wearing a sweater, so she’ll never know. The guy waiting for his … Continue reading Shop of the Heart by Cynthia L. Singerman