Where does it go? The madness, I mean. Thornton tells me to bite down on a piece of rubber. He tells me that I won’t remember a thing. I remember the sound. It was like a train braking inside my body. I know there is no God, or at least, not a caring one, because waking should never be painful. Reality should not be harsh. The grass cuts my feet. I imagine a still lake. Almost imperceptibly it starts to ripple. The silence is broken by the braking train. When I open my eyes,
“I knew these would come in handy one day,” Marsha says, wedging the last tote bag into the truck of her car. Years ago canvas tote bags were a popular gift item. Marsha received many from family and friends. Now all those bags are stacked neatly in her car, filled with books, clothes, and household items. She shuts the trunk and walks around to the passenger side. Her cats, Daffodil and Dandelion, are huddled in a big cat carrier, growling at each other. “Behave,” she scolds
Mother never waved me off on the school bus. Julia's Mum ran alongside the bus, blowing kisses as it rolled away. Mesmerised, I watched Julia turn her back to the window; how I longed to be on the receiving end of such love. I raised my hand and fluttered it at the window.
When the teacher called our name, we had to stand up. Julia was petite, and upon hearing her name, got to her feet.
'Stand up, girl,' the teacher said.
'But I am standing, Miss
That’s what Mama says I should be doing when Dooley Parker hasn’t called. When he’s gone on his monthly like he does on the regular. When life gives you lovers, Mama says. I say no Mama, that’s lemons. Same difference, Mama says. You take a lemon. It’s not at all like a tangerine. You can’t just pop it into your mouth, Fact is, a lemon’s not good for anything. But you squeeze out the juice, mix it up with a little sugar, and man, oh, man. I love seeing my mama like this, all
Candles Word Salad (Som Tam) Rob Stuart was born in Cambridge, England, in 1972. His poems and short stories have been published in numerous magazines, newspapers and webzines including Asses of Parnassus, Ink Sweat and Tears, Light, Lighten Up Online, M58, Magma, New Statesman, The Oldie, Otoliths, Popshot, The Projectionist’s Playground, Snakeskin, The Spectator and The Washington Post. He has also written the screenplays for several award-winning and internationally exhibi
broken toy & lemon juice when i clean the tank hands tacky with fish muck pebbles make a pit of house to weave through me & you & bitter skinned my leg haired like grandmas & you so sullen so sudden sullied fish food morsels and organ music only i never prayed only made offering of smoke & potted house painted mushroom wrinkled fruit leave oranges on the side where hidden toys lie broken i have no heart to refuse JW Summerisle lives in the English East Mi
Freedom 21 She awoke that morning, to discover everything had altered overnight; skies brighter blue, room calmer space, bedclothes forgiving, dense-weave cotton warmth: binding affluence within ability. Her family, unexpectedly, were happier, more caring versions of their previous selves; dark dog days banished to that safe space behind the luxury three-piece suite upholstered with a lie, deceptively protective plastic sheath. Breakfast wasn't microwaved, conversation craved
Filter.tint/Forestgrove silence, streams in the forest we cry out to false gods—ourselves, make manifest dreams, soft light, protruding, specters wherefore is the light arising? Prognosis Elimination State OVERLAND Sequence • belief in goodness o falsehood fails inertia, o Ψ waves, Σ = wholeness • sleeping is microdosing death o soundscape, screaming choking drowning [ title not found] o WHAT IF???, no that can’t be... o dark matter puts me there, • sonnet
I’ve been swallowing glue to fill up the places that could leak spreading it from headtotoe as a second layer of hardening skin to keep me in and seal you out for good but it’s sticking in my throat and I’m choking and the outer layers peel molting in flakes a ludicrous salt ruining the taste Jasmine Williamson (she/they) lives in Cincinnati, Ohio with her two children, three cats, two guinea pigs, and a tortoise. She earned her MA in Creative Writing at Northern Ken
deepfake. The gals got me good. She’s two or three layers down, minimum. deepfake. She’s someone, then someone else. Now she bears the likeness of your treasured Tom Cruise. But his face is plastered on a dishboy, whipping a wet rag around, vaquero-style. And this monstrosity is digitized across the deck of a private yacht, in the shallow waters outside Mallorca. deepfake. She’s a nebula. A couple keys, a shifting visage. She’s someone else, then someone else. Just when I tho