The ghost chases me
Down my corridors
My past future and reality
I walk carefully
To look back
I infuse positive thoughts
Walk next to me
My hearts desire
An altered past
But must live
In this calamity
Old age brings desires.
Legs straight, toes pointed, epicenter straddle split. Stand tall, back tree solid, arms regal, fingers pretty, chin queen high.
Grandkids whoop and holler and beg, more more! Curtsy regrets; hip pops on the low bend. Smile. Massage silent. Babies wheel the yard, breathless with dynamic pliable hips, mute with youth.
Sheree Shatsky writes short fiction believing much can be conveyed with a few wild words. Her work has been published in a variety of journals including The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature, Bending Genres, New Flash Fiction Review, KYSO Flash and The Conium Review with work forthcoming at Fictive Dream and Saw Palm: Florida Literature and Art. She is twice-nominated for Best Microfiction 2020 by Fictive Dream and MoonPark Review. Read more of her work at shereeshatsky.com. She tweets at @talktomememe.
When I was a child,
my mother lived
in a converted school bus
on a rocky, wooded hill.
I thought it was neat–
I didn’t know it meant
she was dirt poor.
Now I understand:
Freedom was more important
to her than wealth,
but she wanted more
for her children.
Casey Laine comes from a long line of talkative women. She works as Fantasy Editor at Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores, and publishes an annual anthology of fiction and poetry for her writing group, Writers Assembled. In her spare time, she chases butterflies with her camera. Find her at Facebook, Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores, and Amazon.
You say they’re a beautiful sky blue—
that may slow your tumors.
You take the sky
into your body
with your morning tea.
I imagine you
in today’s snow, making angels
as we did when small—
____ice-crusted fringe of tree-tops,
____glint of winter sun, the dazzling
Jennifer L. Freed mostly writes poems, which have appeared in various journals and anthologies. The above was originally published in The Worcester Review (at 57 words), but someone inspired her to see if she could trim it and send it here. The above-mentioned pills worked for about ten months. See more at jfreed.weebly.com.
Nick’s hometown is missing. Where are silent evening streets, where he cruised in his Subaru and listened to oldies?
Cars roar, faces consumed by exhaust.
Where are the small shops, sizzling with pizza and cigarettes? Easily walkable blocks?
Skyscrapers rise, proud monsters.
Nick wanders, denying, not ready to bury home.
Yash Seyedbagheri is a graduate of Colorado State University’s MFA program in fiction. His stories are forthcoming or have been published in Café Lit, Mad Swirl, and Ariel Chart, among others.
I rolled him onto his back.
His eyes were wide open.
Blood trickled from his mouth.
I touched his throat, feeling for a pulse.
It was a dumb thing to do.
Cold as he was, there remained a warmth in his eyes,
as though some reflection had gotten trapped there.
Bob Thurber is the author of “Paperboy: A Dysfunctional Novel” and four collections of short fiction. Regarded as a master of Flash and Micro Fiction, his work has appeared in Esquire and other magazines, been anthologized 60 times, received a long list of of awards, and been utilized in schools and colleges throughout the world. He resides in Massachusetts. Visit his website at BobThurber.net.
“It won’t work.”
“Course it will, son.” Pa was an optimist.
So Pa brought the cat to his house. The dog went crazy. The fighting lasted a week until Pa finally had to throw the cat out.
He’d thrown Ma out the same way. But nobody listens to a ten-year-old.
Dedicated to education and being a father, E. F. S. Byrne has finally found more time to devote to his writing and is currently working on everything from very short flash stories to full-length novels. Samples and links to over thirty published stories can be read at efsbyrne.wordpress.com or follow him on Twitter at @efsbyrne.
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Andrew C. Nosti is a recent graduate of Gettysburg College, having studied English with a writing concentration and history. He has been published in Gettysburg College’s The Mercury and the Emerging Writers of Pennsylvania series.
Cruelly, the mirror mocks me, shows me what I’ve wanted for so long.
A sideways glance reveals my swollen stomach,
Neatly rounded, bloated from the drugs,
Curving out as though I’m six months pregnant.
Empty, stitched and sore when all I dreamt of was a child.
Realistically, that’s impossible now.
Jo Withers writes micros, flash, and shorts from her home in South Australia. Recent fiction can be found in Milk Candy Review, Ellipsis Zine and Lunate.
I was six when my father left. I remember his hands, large and coarse, letting go of mine to hurl a battered suitcase into his rusting, coughing car.
Now his hands seem small and frail, shaking with fear for his next long journey.
I cannot bring myself to clasp them.
Charlie Swailes writes short and very short stories when not teaching English or looking after her two small boys.