09/22/2021

George Singleton ~ Bobbleheads

Instead of relax­ing, or mea­sur­ing my breaths, or con­cen­trat­ing on low­er­ing my heart­beat, or think­ing about a pos­si­ble APB, I sat in the hot springs, near-December, plot­ting how to ruin the lives of a group of high school kids. I can­not say that I’m not proud of it. Who cares? Overall, it might be good for them to learn how they can’t ruin a stranger’s life, a per­son who want­ed only to cap­ture them smil­ing, wear­ing clothes they’d prob­a­bly not wear for anoth­er year unless they hap­pened to be church­go­ers. And I would bet that—because of their lies, their ratio­nal­iza­tion that mak­ing shit up about me would be what Jesus wanted—they attend­ed not only on Sundays, but Wednesday nights, as is the norm down here.

            “You find­ing every­thing all right, Gerald?” Vivian asked. She got in the water across from me and stretched her legs out until our toes near­ly touched. I wished that I remem­bered her from two-to-three decades –more

Mik Grantham ~ At the End of the World

I first came here in late August. Not used to the heat. I sat alone in an air-con­di­tioned bar drink­ing High Life, hop­ing to make a new friend, hop­ing some­one would catch my eye. I flirt­ed with a stranger. Little crin­kles formed around his eyes –more

Rekha Valliappan ~ Elephant Sutra

Nature’s great mas­ter­piece, an elephant—the only harm­less great thing.
                   –John Donne

Hanging on the wall in our spare bed­room is one of the few pieces of art I own. It was bought dur­ing a bad time in my life. My boyfriend –more

Meg Pokrass ~ Sandtrap

Too Much Heat

The dog was hot. She could see this because she felt it her­self. Even out­side of the cot­tage, hot and sticky, a guest in her body, want­i­ng to leave. Not near­ly as uncom­fort­able as the dog, with so much fur. Today there were gnats in the air, tast­ing –more

Dale Cottingham ~ Three Poems

As Walking In Fog

As walk­ing in a fog, I am lost.
I see only what’s right in front of me,
lay­ing down one foot then another,
hop­ing the ground will hold
as I sift feel­ings, rethink
what I said at the meeting
or lat­er on the cell
–more

Jianqing Zheng ~ 5 Poems

Stranger

Fifty years ago I was dis­patched to a remote vil­lage for reed­u­ca­tion. After jump­ing off a truck at a dis­tri­b­u­tion cen­ter, I car­ried my belong­ings on my back and fol­lowed a dirt track wind­ing mile after mile to my des­ti­na­tion. When I got there, the –more

Joshua Hebburn ~ The Pervert

Jackie put her high tops, under­wear, and tank top in the freez­er under a bag of Tyson bread­ed chick­en ten­ders. An hour lat­er she took them out and put them all on. She didn’t wear socks in the high tops. She put on sun­glass­es. Then she walked to –more