We’re Trying to Tell You @ Bull Magazine
My dad says he’s tired of turning off the lights, that he works too hard to be nickel-and-dimed by the energy company, that if we’re only going to move from room to room, eyes pivoting from screen to screen, then the least we could do is flip a switch every once in a while, that is if we want to continue to have Wi-Fi and HBO, and Xbox Live, and soda, and pizza every Friday night. A little respect is all he’s asking for, but of course we ignore him, it’s either that or tell him to go fuck himself, but in our last kids-only family meeting, Jett said we had to keep Dad on the even keel, that if we wanted to avoid counseling and a barrage of new medications, if we wanted to avoid the screaming and the threats, we’d better lay low, that turning up the volume on our iPads was a better way to go about ignoring Dad’s new crisis. Besides it kept Mom from getting her headaches, from binge-watching those trashy Housewives shows.
Hinge @ Star 82 Review
Overcast, cloudy pupils stare at scenes in pictures unremembered. Risqué, her daughter says, with a pointed finger at the loose bathing straps and jilted leggy pose. Who took the picture, the family wants to know. It’s black and white, curled, proof of a life torn from the pages of a calendar. She doesn’t know, a half-truth, lies like medication stuck beneath her tongue.
Everything in Nature Longs for Safety @99 Pine Street
“I guess there are some things I’m supposed to say.”
“What can anyone say?”
“About life. And death, too.”
“We could pretend. Pretend we already have. I’d be okay with that.”
How the Music Died @ The Offing
They started with the bells. The men who cared to follow orders took out the ringers with a precision that created only a twinkle of a sound as though a child’s breath across the combs of a harmonica. For those who were there, it was the last sound of music they ever heard.
The Ache of Sound @ Magnolia Review
“The hall was dark, the pictures on the walls glassy museum exhibits she was learning to ignore. She no longer ran at her age, but she stepped quickly, feeling as though too many children were grabbing and pulling at her shirt sleeves, frantically needing her attention. Her students had been overeager, mouths open, yelling and bawling, working themselves into an anxious state over the smallest things, a broken pencil or a misspelled word.”
God’s Eye @ Split Lip Magazine
After supper, we took the kids down to the road next to Bryson’s Pond to see the body. Picture ran in yesterday’s paper of the accident. The kind of thing that makes news in our small town: smashed up car with the hood rammed through the interior and door sheared off, its body leaning against the telephone pole like a drunk too afraid to take another step.
Flash Fiction: The Defining Sentence @ Fiction Southeast
One of the things I love about reading and writing Flash fiction is that a story can turn or pirouette in one sentence from a standard narrative to something that floats off the page and impacts the reader. These texts only become stories when they’ve been lifted by this sentence, as if given the breath of meaning. The story that I want to use as an example is “The Canyon Where the Coyotes Live” by Bobbie Ann Mason found in The Best of Small Fictions 2015 published by Queens Ferry Press.
A Scheduled Visit @ TINGE Magazine
Stuff had a way of accumulating, until each item became a part of a pile, and each pile became a part of a mound, burying and compressing the items into the carpet until her things lost their individualness and became a shape of debris pushing against the walls of the house.
Out of the Dust @Spelk (June 13, 2016)
A tornado emerges out of the dust from the middle of the baseball diamond. It starts small, but threatens to swallow the six of us that refuse to give up our childhood game.
Continue Reading: https://spelkfiction.com/2016/06/13/out-of-the-dust/
You Said @Wilderness House Literary Review (June 2016)
Finding Fame on Cautionary Billboards @The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts
“I’m leaving these cigarettes here, because my dad said I can’t have them in the house anymore. I used to leave this kind of stuff with you, but now that you’re gone, I guess I’ll just leave them here…”
My Grandfather is a Pilot @The Writing Disorder (September 2015)
“What the hell are you looking at?” he asks, his voice weak at first, but filled with piss and vinegar at the end. A phrase he taught me when I was four, at a Fourth of July parade. I remember the look of horror on my mom’s face while I ran around in circles, shouting “piss and vinegar, piss and vinegar.”
Alone at the End of the World @Boston Literary Magazine (September 2015)
“Oh hell, you know what I’d love?” she said. “I’d love to wake up tomorrow and look out the window and see them gone.”
“Baby, Alone” @ Watershed Review
It’s much too cold for a baby to be alone in a car. I tell this to myself, as though, there are a set of perfect conditions where a mother or father might be allowed to leave their child, an infant almost from the look of its tiny fingers, in a parked car in the parking lot of one of the largest shopping centers in town.