Hostage #4

    I’m thirteen and I look like a child bride in my Confirmation dress. I receive the sacrament by an old Pastor who’s also my math teacher and it’s titillating the way he grazes my tongue with the wafer. … Continued

Honeydew

    Joe’s eleven-year-old daughter wrote a children’s book and got it published. It was about  a little girl eating a jar of cookies while her parents slept. Scholastic loved it. Joe was upset  because he had also written a … Continued

Clean Exit

    There are enough people suffering, I mean really suffering, that it warrants a special kind  of restaurant. You go in, order whatever you want, eat as much as you want. Then you go up  front and check out … Continued

Bear Man

    The Guatemalan Civil War was still raging and the green berets were running the town, spraying the good buildings with bullets. The good buildings with the good designs by white city planners now riddled with holes and breathing … Continued

The Long Run

    Miranda awoke to an empty house—blankets flat beside her, air cold and breathless. Downstairs, the sheets Lucas had used were piled neatly on the couch, a note at their center: Next time, come to the city! She found … Continued

Mother Static

    I gained twenty pounds this year from eating strictly bananas and avocados. My thighs dimple in the bathtub, and a sheen of moisture coats the mauve and powder-blue octagonal tiles beside me. The bathwater is lukewarm now. The … Continued

Penelope

                                              Weave a new tale for the clever queen. By day she weaves the shroud; by night she … Continued

Cyclones

That night, as Sam slept, Daisy snuck out and drove out of town, the sky clear, the moon half-empty. Ahead of her the tail lights of a semi-trailer. She watched for the gleam of green deer eyes on the shoulder. … Continued

Be Yourselves ||| The Austin Review

    It’s my daughter’s tenth birthday, and Montpellier the rattlesnake is telling her to kill me again. This is what she screams from the living room as I prepare her favorite blueberry pancakes for lunch. She is trying to … Continued

My Exes’ Exes from The Atticus Review

    Mike Ashley’s birthday was on April 20th, the same day as Hitler’s and Columbine and obviously four-twenty, which you observed like a national holiday. Her mother’s name was Marilyn and her family lived on Marilyn Place. Ashley was a … Continued

‘Mysteries of Small Houses’

    To put off doing what I need to, I plan a trip to Detroit with my mom. I spend hours looking at every Airbnb in the city, thinking of all the empty houses. There’s the ones that burned … Continued

The Rat Problem

      The lady upstairs is yelling at her kids. I mean, really yelling. The high whine of these kids’ voices and the pitter-patter lightness of their footsteps suggest the oldest can’t be older than ten—or at least not … Continued

Minor Neil

They’ll be here soon. I’m not denying that fact. But knowing and accepting are not one and the same. I accept myself, sometimes. I’ll never be more than a fan, but that’s okay, because I’m a good fan. For example, … Continued

Once Upon an Ending

          Once upon a time, I wasn’t a good little girl. Momma only had a few rules for my sister, Jane, and me. Rule number one: Always have each other’s backs. Rule number two: Do our … Continued

A Mother of Concern

      Mary worked night shifts because of the babies. At night, when the lights were dimmed in the hospital nursery, she could hold and rock the newborns. During the hubbub of the day, when administrators roamed the halls … Continued

Judith and Ahmed: A Story of Friendship

You know what … I was proved fucking right. That’s what happened. People who disagreed with me were saying, ‘There she goes again.’ But I was proved fucking right.—Judith Miller [Chalabi] published three mathematics papers between 1973 and 1980, in … Continued

all of my days were nights

One night I walk to a bookstore five blocks from my house. The weather is perfect, cool and dry. The Big Dipper fills the canvas of a clear night. I am on my phone renting equipment for work when I … Continued

Summer of Love

By the time I poured my coffee, two men had texted me pictures of their breakfasts. Karan sent an image of a blender crammed with what looked like cottage cheese, peanut butter, and spinach. “Leaning into the masochism,” he typed, … Continued

When Will We Get What We Deserve?

  In late spring, Darla said that she was pregnant. Hermann knew that the baby wasn’t his, couldn’t be his, because she was fastidious about him always using a condom. She made him take it off in the bathroom when … Continued