Tag Archives: fiction

Natives by Chuck Nwoke

Wildly crowded beach
 

  They arrived at the beach at dawn. The Family: Father, Mother, Son and Baby Girl. They enjoyed sole ownership of the beach, playing, swimming and napping as the tide rolled back. Morning settled in and they returned from their long swim to find they had neighbors, scattered far away but close enough to be acknowledged. The Family didn’t mind. There was plenty of room for everybody, they thought. However, as more people arrived, staking their plots of sand with umbrellas, tents, chairs and towels, the Family worried for a moment that they hadn’t brought … Continue reading Natives by Chuck Nwoke

Accidents Will Happen by Nancy Christie

Dollhouse man in a dollhouse bedroom
 

  Catherine carefully dumped the coffee grounds onto the center of the front page and then folded over the four corners, making a neat bundle. Robert didn’t like to read the news and she was always careful to remove the paper before he came down. The headline would have really set him off: CYANIDE KILLER CLAIMS ANOTHER VICTIM! STOMACH REMEDY DEFINITE LINK! She carried the bundle of paper to the trash bin, wincing a bit when she raised the lid. Her shoulder was still sore, although the bruise had nearly faded. At least it wasn’t … Continue reading Accidents Will Happen by Nancy Christie

Invisible Girls by Tonja Matney Reynolds

Sheer girl's top that is glowing
 

We were the ones who fell between the cracks in the social order. We loathed the popular kids—the jocks, cheerleaders, and rich kids. We pitied the stoners and the nerds. To all of them, we were invisible, shadows on the tile. We wore camouflage pants, oversized shirts, shoes with untied laces, and only enough makeup to cover our zits. We were grunge before Grunge was a thing. During pep rallies, we read Sartre and Flaubert and Nietzsche. We were adored by the administration for our GPAs, AP scores, and early admission letters. We challenged the … Continue reading Invisible Girls by Tonja Matney Reynolds

Tooth by Jennifer Coffeen

Teeth lined up on a table
 

  She felt the first loose tooth at 5am on Tuesday. A back tooth on the lower left side, her wisdom tooth? She felt it the moment she woke up, lying in bed while the monitor screamed in her ear. She pushed her tongue against it and the tooth moved, like a rock rolling around in mud. Nearly painless, she found herself pushing her tongue against it over and over to the tune of the screaming monitor. It reminded her of picking a scab, how the little wince kinda felt nice. “You should do something … Continue reading Tooth by Jennifer Coffeen

Nancy Christie Interviews Our Fiction Editor

purple typewriter
 

Full disclosure: I didn’t ask Erika Raskin* to be this month’s interviewee until after she had decided on the story I had submitted. That being said, once she had reached her decision (a yes, by the way!), I followed up with an invitation to be on my Focus On Fiction blog, and she agreed. —Nancy Christie What is your role at Streetlight Magazine? I’ve been the fiction editor of the (beautiful) online arts journal for a year and a half. As an editor, what do you look for when deciding which piece to publish? I … Continue reading Nancy Christie Interviews Our Fiction Editor

The Joplin Room by Anne-Marie Yerks


 

The woman walking into the lobby wore a brown skirt, white tights, and a pair of clogs. Her name was Shellay—she-lay—and she had a Polish last name that was hard to pronounce. She said she was a librarian and had a nerdy, unkempt look about her: Stringy hair that was dry on the ends, a pasty complexion, and a long thin nose. She wore glasses, of course. All librarians should wear glasses. Hers were a pale shade of rose. She wasn’t from Ohio, as Darcy was guessing, but from Oregon. “I’d like to stay in … Continue reading The Joplin Room by Anne-Marie Yerks

Memo to Right Brain by Will Conway

ink doodles on notepad
 

TO: Right Brain FROM: Me SUBJECT: Annual Evaluation Your full Annual Evaluation Report will be sent shortly but I want to go over some of the highlights briefly. First of all, thank you for finally returning the questionnaire. Frankly, Corporate was getting a little peeved at the delay and hadn’t bought your excuse that it spontaneously burst into flames. Chumsworth said he saw you rummaging through the piles of clutter on your desk muttering, “It was just here…” Be that as it may, we’re glad you returned it although some of the executive team didn’t … Continue reading Memo to Right Brain by Will Conway

Encounter by Lori Franklin

Neon lights reflected in teacup
 

Her car was still sprinkled with debris from her recent move to the city. A misshapen yoga mat, tea towels, her boyfriend’s guitar pedals, a bedside lamp; the persisting clutter of merging lives. Wishing she’d taken off her cardigan, she baked in the afternoon sun. The air-conditioner was broken, pushing a current of hot air around the interior, and making the berry-scented freshener tap softly against the windscreen in the artificial breeze. Checking her mirrors, she signaled to change lanes. She always felt better—more insulated—driving in the middle lane in the city. The traffic was … Continue reading Encounter by Lori Franklin

Belle Isle Aquarium by Amy Kenyon

Belle Isle aquarium interior
 

“Mother?” Plump, magnified, younger lips open and close. “Mother?” How many years must she hear it? Mother Mother Mother. How many years already? The lips are those of a luminous fish suspended in water when it ceases to swim back and forth. A fish that hangs in eerie silence, mouth dropping open and then locking upward as it takes in water before pumping it back through the gills. Breathing. Once, as a child, she visited the aquarium at Belle Isle. Nina held her hand as they moved slowly through the large gallery beneath an arched … Continue reading Belle Isle Aquarium by Amy Kenyon

The Peninsula by Christi Craig

campground with RV
 

Bobbie Ellen leaned against the wall of the arcade at Minnow Lake Campground and squinted at Nick Baker. The first wave of a thick Oklahoma summer had sent her inside with the rest of the gang, where the dark room and A/C kept them all from drowning in the heat. Not that being inside offered much relief, since Nick hogged every inch of cool with his seventeen-year-old self as he stood in front of the air conditioner and worked his usual game, Primal Rage. He dropped fifty cents into the coin slot and played another … Continue reading The Peninsula by Christi Craig