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WAR ON THE WAVES BY ZIXUAN ZHENG

Violent current, inviolable Sea, Gallant sailors, at Mother’s knee. For truth, the Sea is unwilling to compromise, Launching an attack on their lives. Black and blue, on and on they fight, Voyaging into the dark of night....

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OCEAN GRAVE BY ZIXUAN ZHENG

If it is the truth you seek, Then you would know the future is bleak. The rising tides, their ebb and flow, Into their depths, we all must go. Deep beneath the ocean’s waves, Lie what will be aquatic graves. We took her life,...

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THIS, I DO NOT COMPREHEND BY JONATHAN BRACKER

“Things are too much in the air, for me. I do not feel grounded, even though I live on only the second floor,” she says. I wonder what she means. Myself, I possess a condo Fourteen stories up with a good amount of sky Outside my...

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A PEACOCK FEATHER BY JONATHAN BRACKER

When the nice young lady down the hall In this apartment house agreed to cut My sweet cat’s claws, she did it very well, Said she enjoyed doing it, would take no money, And continued doing so for several months; She had...

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NO FORGIVENESS BY VINCENT BELL

The fires of his hell will burn his soul in perpetuity. His pain must be as endless as mine. When I knew that I could never be innocent again it was impossible to hold back the solace of...

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HE LIKED HIS DUTIES BY VINCENT BELL

The new priest was a German refugee who (or so he said) was tortured with hot oily rags leaving him with facial scars and a tic. He was younger than the others, so he got the more demanding assignments — after-school gym and...

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HE TRAINED THE ALTAR BOYS BY VINCENT BELL

My wife is scared to wake me in the morning. Every night for decades, I have had the same dream. So afraid of sleep that I numbed myself with whatever was around. There is a man lying on top of me always in darkness, never...

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FOOL’S GOLD BY VINCENT BELL

In my bedroom, the closet door had a mirror, its edges encrusted with blue lead paint. I stood there seeing myself as various people. Sometimes naked, more often dressed in clothes showing who I might be. I was safe and alone in...

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