“I’ve eaten your plums,” he sneered.
A fruit fight ensued. Mangoes, a hail of cherries, a ballistic Crenshaw melon.
After, we lay prone, exhausted and covered in juice, near the icebox.
A non-participant plucked the last plum off the kitchen counter.
It was delicious and sweet and cold, he reported.
Erin Gilmore is an artist and editor living in Los Angeles.
Editor: The title refers to this classic poem.
Sugar is the enemy. Fat is poison. Mantras like these run on a loop inside my foggy mind.
Staring down the overflowing plate, my heart thunders against my ribcage at the thought of eating blacklisted snacks.
Grimacing, I take a bite of the Hershey bar. Recovery is a slow process.
Lauren is an undergraduate student studying Creative Writing at Emerson College.
Minuscule irritants in nasal passage of the cosmos, we insist on festering and aggravating, even destroying the dust particle on which we blew in.
While some continue solipsistic hedonism, others try to repair the sins done by action and prayer.
Watery-eyed, The Maker sneezes.
“Gesundheit!” an archangel declares.
Irish writer Perry McDaid lives in Derry under the brooding brows of Donegal hills which he occasionally hikes in search of druidic inspiration. He even finds it on occasion.
My heart has shattered and the shards are everywhere.
Each shard a memory, each memory most precious.
Goodbyes were said, tears were shed, hugs gratefully given and received.
The end of the school year; I will never see most of these students again.
China is a long way from America.
Daniel Quillen is retired and living in China, teaching English at a Chinese university. He just wrapped up his final semester there.
Glass shards sparkled against the flagstones in the light of stark realization. He repented and reversed time, erasing the mess and its memory.
The crystal ball sank heavily in his hands and glimmered darkly, foreboding.
He could bear no more. He hurled it down.
Glass shards sparkled against the flagstones…
John Samuel Anderson lives one nautical mile from the beach and five light-milliseconds from space. When not speculating on human colonization of the stars, he enjoys life on Earth with his wife, seven kids, a cat, and a bunny. See more at twostarshipgarage.wordpress.com.
Hans watched from the observation deck as the ground fell away.
In his mind he imagined the look on Dieter’s face when he checked their company bank account and found it empty. He grinned with spiteful delight as the Hindenburg rose and began its fateful journey across the Atlantic Ocean.
Bill lives in Aberdeen, Scotland. His parents were time-travellers from the 22nd Century and he knows the result of every single significant sporting event for the next hundred years. Watch out for Soviet Union II winning the 2046 World Cup.
Yosef was the family exterminator. Marie was Buddhist—didn’t want to accumulate bad karma through killing.
A new insect appeared daily. Yosef stomped them, swatted them, drowned them. Crumpled chitin and ichor crowded his nightmares.
When he left for work, Marie scoured the garden for the next victim to plant.
Tim Boiteau lives and writes near Detroit with wife and son. Follow him at @timboiteau.
It wasn’t my fault. The kid went over the side all by himself. Being an idiot, I went in after him. Hit the water like a sledgehammer; seemed more fun when I tried it as a boy.
Anyway, he didn’t say much while we waited. Just as well. Some cruise.
David is 67 years old and lives in Victoria, B.C. He started writing a year ago and enjoys posting poetry and vss on Twitter as @DavisLunnThe3rd.
She loves me… She loves me not.
I visited her at the cemetery, laid daisies at the base of her headstone. Last time I saw her she was across a meadow wearing a sundress. She was within range.
No need to mind the restraining order now.
She loved me not.
Karin Aurino is currently working on poetry, short fiction, and a first novel, which draws on an early career as a fashion model. She got her start in the talent department at ICM and enjoyed a career as a Longform and Series Television Producer. Her fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in Literary Orphans, r.kv.r.y. quarterly, Agnes and True, and Bacopa Literary Review, and has received recognition from Glimmer Train. Aurino lives in Los Angeles with her husband, two children, and their dog, George. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.
Death comes creeping slowly, quietly, closer and closer.
My Priest says not to worry about it, that the pain will only be momentary. But what does he know? He’ll still be alive.
Ever closer the fatal date creeps, until at last it is here.
Time to take my math final.
Daniel Quillen is a retired HR director and a writer (19+ books). He lives in Centennial, Colorado with his wife. They are the parents of six children, grandparents of fifteen. They are currently living in China, teaching English at a Chinese University.