Three days after my mother died, I started clearing out her bedroom. I needed to sleep in there; the sofa was making my sciatica flare up.
Under the bed I found various expensive candles I’d bought her, in a box marked: FOR BEST.
I burned them all at her funeral.
Laura Besley writes short fiction and squeezes her writing into the bookends of her day. She has lived in Holland, Germany, and Hong Kong, but now lives in land-locked central England and misses the sea. Her flash fiction collection, The Almost Mothers, was published in March 2020. She tweets at @laurabesley.
Her sweet gaze froze me, yet thawed my soul
Like a microwave-refrigerator, if that we’re such a thing
But we both play bass
We both play bass
Two strings, tethered in parallel
Destined never to cross
Because we both play bass
We could never band together
Kit is an ad student from Florida, and he loves a good story. He’s just a zany kid who has a lot of inspiration and is looking for something to do with it.
I can notch no more on my Colt, yet one still eludes me.
Through rain and snow and rugged terrain, I’ve finally hunted him down.
Outside a bar, in Tombstone, I called him out to end it.
The last notch was etched on my wife’s and two daughters’ headstones.
Warren Clyde wrote this story.
Year: 1935. Two young brothers play games on the sunny, manicured expanse that runs along the edge of the bluff. Beyond, the sea sparkles. A soft summer breeze floats by, lifting their downy hair. Only this moment, this slice of time, separates them from the impending horror of Hitler’s world.
Le Anne uprooted from her native state of Texas to enjoy the cooler weather of the east coast where she enjoys book and writing groups.
They stopped legally selling candy cigarettes because it encouraged smoking in minors. The problem was, I was already going through two packs a day. Now I meet shady kids on the playground who sell them at a premium from inside their overcoats.
I wish I’d never chewed that first stick.
Shawn D. Brink has four novels and many shorter works to his name. For more, please visit shawnbrinkauthor.wordpress.com. Shawn is represented by Liverman Literary Agency and lives in Nebraska, USA.
Grandma says I’m underreacting.
She says back in her day things weren’t so bad. She says I really don’t know just how bad I have it. She says kids today are too lazy—they don’t fight for change like they used to.
I open the curtains and close them again.
Sarah Hausman just decided it was time to write again.
Nothing says desperation like an American college student digging through their wallet. I know that’s what the cashier is thinking while watching me frantically search for my card.
She’s not wrong; though I just paid my $25k tuition, the $10 price of bacon seems a little too steep for me.
Sarina Northway is an English and psychology double major at the University of South Carolina. Though not very experienced, she is working on her first traditionally published novel, Dead Girl Walking.
We hike to a great height and camp. At daybreak, we find the summit overhead has risen steeply since we started.
Will this continue if we go on? we wonder.
However, the summit shines beside a sky deep and blue. Let it grow, we think, and set out towards it.
Norbert Kovacs lives and writes in Hartford, Connecticut. He has published stories in Westview, Thin Air, Headway, Corvus Review, and The Write Launch. See more at norbertkovacs.net.
Upon nearing Autumn’s arrival,
I see Nature’s last hoorah of vivacious manifestation,
A proclamation of her time in youthful fervor
the bassoon’s bellowing croak
amidst a once booming symphony
now all coming to a diminuendo in variance
Like the savory peck of a spry elder
Even still, muffled by prospect.
Lydia is an emerging writer from the Midwest who enjoys long nature walks
Every morning, he sets out in his tiny fishing boat.
No particular destination… Just water, sun, freedom, and an occasional breeze.
One by one, the big, luxury boats leave him tossing in their wake.
He used to dream of owning a yacht. Now, he just prays for one more sunrise.
Susan Gale Wickes is from Indiana. She enjoys writing short stories and watching the sun rise.