Statement of Record

CategoryFiction

Flattening the Curve

F

By Aydin Behnam and John Casquarelli

You must believe me. I had never done anything like this before. Yes, it was his first time coming to my unit. It was my fault. I started it all. I read it in an old book I found in the attic and I mentioned it to him. The book said that it used to be an old custom. I’m so stupid! I should have known better. He had a way of...

Excerpts from Another Love Discourse

E

Edie Meidav

To circumscribe

Here in the time of the great panic, people retreated to their bunkers, the people of the past come forward. Yesterday we found a path at an odd road, named as if after a bad blues song, like Coffinnail Cove: I’m going there to find my beloved. But this was true; at the mouth of the...

WINDOWS

W

By Beverly Gologorsky

The comfort of the couch is an unexpected joy. The early dusk enters the room to brighten the lamplight. Nothing new in the way of decoration has been added, so most everything within sight is at least half my age. Objects long held, whether paintings, photos, worn chairs, even the plants along the windowsill, feel dearer at my age than they once did. What...

The Double Feature

T

By William Cody Maher

To go out with me for fresh air or for some sun and to listen to the birds. . . to go out with me is to watch behind my back to be anticipating what is ahead to look for kids suddenly lurching out of the bushes out of my mind. . . to be out with me is not to be out with me and I don’t know how I can change that unless all the stop lights remain green and no one...

Irina’s Diary

I

William Cody Maher

My name is Irina. My husband is dead. I am expecting our child.

The dust is all everyone talks about in the square. I refuse to wash it from my skin. I go brazenly past the police through the town. I am layered in dust. It is my mourning gown.

The doctors say the nausea is common. . . and that the pain will go away. I laugh at them. I don’t...

The Phantom Tower

T

By Frederic Tuten

His father, the county doctor, loved him. He read to him even when he returned tired from his rounds, from Miss Biddle with her gout and Judge Jackson with his ever-weakening heart and all the others in the countryside who needed him. When he turned eight, the doctor gave the boy books for his birthday.

 “You have reached the age of reason,” the doctor...

Three Sisters (On Disturbed Ground)

T

by Esther Kinsky

M. starts a new round of chemotherapy treatment. It’s been a year now, roughly, since we first came here, in my memory the trees were still bare. Could that be possible? Seems such a very long time ago. M. gets out of the car, walks off, across this little wasteland of tree stumps and rubble left over from the recent carnage on this site, so heavy with history, so...

Micromanagement

M

by Joy Garnett

The river looked grey and cold that morning with its little whorls of current that appeared every few yards like dimples. Above was the low-hanging sky, autumnal, bright white, almost blinding. I remember I had my book out and tried to read it, but my mind was elsewhere. I felt scattered. Maybe fatigued is a better word. I was fatigued by the thought of the workday...

ANATOMY. MONOTONY.

A

By Edy Poppy 

 

Translated from the Norwegian by May-Brit Akerholt 

For my husband, who has given me everything, even what I didn’t want. 

(He is now my ex-husband)

 

JOURNEY TO THE END OF THE NIGHT

It’s late. We’re hungry. We catch a bus in the direction of Kentish Town. I run up the stairs, while the American buys tickets...

Girl in Perfume

G

by Carol Guess

The fear had to be taught. It wasn’t something women were born with. Kirstin birthed the fear in them, not like giving birth, but like controlling a robot. 

It was Kirstin’s job to make women think their body odors were bad. To scare them at the signature of their own scent, sour them on sweat, breath, sticky under the arms, wet between the legs. The product...

The Color Inside a Melon

T

A novel excerpt by John Domini

[Risto—Aristofano Al’Kair—is a rarity in contemporary Italy, an immigrant success story. Out of Mogadishu, he’s earned citizenship and lives now in Naples, with a wife who’s a native. Here, the two take advantage of a rare quiet moment.]

“The kids,” he found himself saying. “Such a, a wonder.”

Amore, yes...

Gun Safe

G

 

by Carol Guess

Every Monday, Mock City. You get up at five am, but instead of driving north to the airport, you drive south through strip malls and suburbs. You drive to the police academy where you were trained and now work one morning a week. Mock City interrupts the parking lot of the academy, a rectangular building with vinyl siding, handwritten signage, and...

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