Tag Archives: fiction

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

City of the Dead by Caleb N. Humphreys


 

The view from the bus station was disappointing. All I could see was the traffic on Calliope. That, and the bottom of the Causeway, all concrete and metal, darkened by decades of weather and exhaust. The fall air was saturated with car fumes and diesel: a smell that always gave me a headache.  I sat, as patiently as I could, on a metal bench that was peppered with rust and dried bird shit. I waited and hoped that Mary remembered I was coming. Eventually, I saw her working her way towards me, weaving between the … Continue reading City of the Dead by Caleb N. Humphreys

Date Night by Nicholas A. White

3d movie goers
 

I haven’t seen Dave this excited in months, since before our son left for college. “We’ll see a compressed version of Arnold’s life,” he says, sprinkling his fingers like falling fireworks. “Can you imagine? You’ll love it. It’ll be like one of our movie dates, but better.” “Well, okay,” I say. “I guess we can go.” “It sucks for Arnold having leukemia and all,” Dave says, checking his phone. “But there’s nothing we can do, you know?” We first learned about the Deathwatching app while dropping our son off at his dorm back in August. … Continue reading Date Night by Nicholas A. White

The Trapper by Alex Lowe

black bear in woods
 

Sometimes he dipped his popcorn into his coffee. He only did that when the popcorn was burnt. Today, it was the coffee that was burnt. The popcorn was soggy. But it was breakfast. The same breakfast he had eaten every day for most of his adult life. Popcorn was cheap. Coffee was cheap. Milk never agreed with him anyhow. The sun still was not up, but the sun always rose later in Mississippi. When he lived in the city he never made it awake before the sun. But that was many years ago. Now the … Continue reading The Trapper by Alex Lowe

The Space Where You Were by Nina Denison


 

It was like one of those dreams where you’re trying to reach someone in a crowd and you keep glimpsing the back of their head before they’re swallowed up by the thick humanity. The crowd is impermeable— you try elbowing your way through, but it closes in on you again and you find you haven’t advanced. You’re panicking. You have no voice. It wasn’t a dream, though, and I didn’t need to use my elbows—I just couldn’t get to you. You kept disappearing around corners, into rooms, your shadow bending all over the wallpaper and … Continue reading The Space Where You Were by Nina Denison

A Bald Spot by Karol Lagodzki


 

When the sun catches it right, Lena knows her hair resembles strawberry cotton candy. It trembles on the slightest of breezes, struggles to lift, never dissuaded by the obstinacy of follicles for long. It’s persisted like this for years. Lena’s mother sits on the bleacher just one ahead with her bald spot camouflaged by product and effort. Mom’s scalp supports not one, but two devices designed to lend the appearance of body and fullness. The first—a standard thickener from a squat, purple jar. The second is turf—plastic fibers in a spray. It’s not too dissimilar … Continue reading A Bald Spot by Karol Lagodzki

Come and Get My Gun by Sean G. Murphy


 

“Do you know how fast you were going?” Not fast enough, you don’t reply. You have somewhere to be, and you can’t get there quickly enough. It’s not your own bed (that’s where you just came from) and it’s not her bed (that’s where you won’t be coming again, anytime soon); it’s the house you are usually driving away from at this hour, hoping to find the way home through half-shut eyes. You’ve seen this little piggy before, you think, as he holds his flashlight expectantly in your face. And not just in those recurring … Continue reading Come and Get My Gun by Sean G. Murphy

The Ones Who Stay by Jenna-Marie Warnecke


 

August 2012 Paris is empty. There’s no one left except the tourists and the Chinese. All the Parisians and even the other expats are in the south, or in Spain, or on the Côte. Everything’s closed; not one event scheduled until September. Even the blogs and guidebook sites I shoot for are quiet this time of year. I’ve taken every possible photo of Paris. There’s not much to do except walk around and look at shuttered doors. I’m the only person I know who has enough money to live in Paris, but not enough to … Continue reading The Ones Who Stay by Jenna-Marie Warnecke

No Matter What by Tracey Levine


 

On the day I found out that I was pregnant I went to a bar and drank heavily with my boyfriend. It was early afternoon and I had a spicy bloody Mary and followed it up with a few craft beers. He drank the same. We stretched our arms across the table and held hands, like newlyweds. The word shot-gun came up. We certainly weren’t getting married, not that we never would. We’d decided before my pregnancy test appointment at the clinic — I didn’t want to pee on a store-bought stick, that we weren’t … Continue reading No Matter What by Tracey Levine