Category: Fiction

A MOMENT OF FIREFLIES BY JOHN MCCLUSKEY (EXCERPT)

Michael looked at his watch and saw that it was time to leave for ten-thirty Mass. Lily remained in the bedroom, the door closed. A few sleepy sounds could be heard from Meggy’s bedroom. David felt relieved that his mother would have to stay home with Meggy again; he did not want to see the whole family together in one place just yet…

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ON LEAVE BY JOSEPH S. PETE

Michael felt a great burden amassing on his shoulders. His brother was more or less gone, but still very much here, grounded to this place. He had no one to really look after him. Their mother wouldn’t live forever. He was in the custody of an indifferent institution that would grind on with or without him.

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HEAVENLY BY DANIEL L. LINK

“You’ve got to take me,” she said, reaching across the table and taking my hand; “I need to go.” It was getting harder all the time for me to keep the pain from showing. My Lorraine, Lord bless her. I didn’t want that on her conscience, not on top of everything else.

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THE CONVERSATION BY DENNIS CARISTI

The old man sat quietly gazing out the front passenger window watching the changing landscape speeding past. Small businesses and residences give way to more bucolic scenes as the young woman drives onto the highway. He wonders if his melancholia will transition with similar alacrity over this long weekend, he would see.

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GIRLS CAN’T BE SIMON BY G. M. MONKS

Jay takes off down the creek, getting his new sneakers all wet. The other three look at him running away; then they bolt, except for Betsy. She climbs a weeping willow tree. When she gets half way to the top, she sees Eileen’s mother stomping down the hill.

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DROUGHT CONDITIONS BY CHRISTOPHER ACKER

I caution women everywhere. Watch out for Lulu, this temptress of the plains. If you see her, call her what she is. A skank, or if that word is too degrading, a threat to us women who think we’ve got everything planned out.

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HERE COMES ALEX BY P.S. WRIGHT

I don’t remember where everyone else was that day or why it was just Angela and me at her house playing a civilized game of Chutes and Ladders on the sidewalk in front of her house while eating cookies. It felt surreal and almost like I was watching myself – like an out-of-body experience.

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SMOKING HEART BY KRISTA N. DAVIS

In my memory, I am a child. I come down with an ailment that the doctors say no one has ever survived. My brain is nearly silent on the MRI and the doctors know exactly what that means. Prepare yourselves, they say to my parents.

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