She looked through her cataract cloud. Her hair, like the bathroom mirror, had silvered. Her face showed cracks like the tile. Toothbrushes… two?
Nothing looked familiar. Not the photo of children that fluttered from her purse to the cold tile floor. Not the gray-haired man who carried her to bed.
Eileen McIntyre writes to the hum of hummingbird wings and listens to critique from crows in the woods of Northern California.
American Ballet Theatre. Lele auditions tomorrow. Toes blood-raw, shiny cut runs the length of her shin.
Jeté, changement, développé… Feet soaking in tepid water, eyes closed, mentally rehearsing: balance, hold, reach, stretch, point.
Lele wraps her stress fractured arch, traces the stinging laceration—she cut herself so they would see.
Z. Shuff has an M.D. and an M.F.A. She lives, works, and writes in beautiful West Virginia with her husband, their two kids, their dog, and their cat.
A myriad of dots fill the screen. He clicks on one to expand it, then scrolls through as many as he can. In each image he sees only himself. He is the same but subtly different, as each universe is unique.
Somewhere, in at least one, he must be happy.
lives in West Sussex, England. She has won awards for both fiction and drama. Her short fiction has been widely published in magazines, online, and in anthologies. She is the 2017 Regional Winner (Canada and Europe) for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize and has been shortlisted for the Fish, Brighton, and Willesden Herald Prizes. She tweets as @theliterarypig
Soft white grass, pure green sky.
Cotton shirt, like kisses on my neck.
The sun is warm and flowing, washing me in a vanilla-scented mist.
The stab of gin, the spark of tonic on the weather-beaten corduroy wood beside me.
Cane in hand, my dog at my side.
Aaron is a fitness and wellness coach. He writes for pleasure and relaxation.
Dr. Gennit was close to a breakthrough. His devotion to finding a cure for Alzheimer’s was legendary.
He’d been caregiver for his mother, watching her steady decline and eventual death.
We thought he was just overworked until he left the lab today.
“I really can’t stay. Mother has dinner ready.”
Candace Kubinec wrote this story.
The storm blinded them
“Fetch your pipes!” the captain bellowed
Play and await a response
Standing upon the bow he played
And soon a droning response relayed
With hope renewed, they followed
Finally breaking through nature’s din
To face the cliffs
That echoed his song
A Sirens song
Paul Hock wrote this story.
He’s rehearsed the lines; it’s almost time.
The train doors slide, he rises, swallows a cocktail of bile and blood.
“Fighting fit,” says his mouth, to keep hers smiling. His sunshine girl.
He flies her bag over his shoulder like it’s candyfloss. “Your mother’s made dumplings, special.”
Same as always.
lives in Manchester UK and writes flash fiction and the occasional short story.
He swallowed me whole each evening, coughing me up the next day in time for school. He consumed my childhood and my parents’ relationship. Comfort came from the belly rumble of the boiler, the hot breath of the stove. Eventually he spat me out – a hairball tumbling in the wind.
writes novels, flash fiction and the occasional poem.
Her scars run deep. Invisible.
A stab in the heart here, a slap in the face there.
She plans her escape with precision, as far as her meagre funds will allow. Relief.
She forces herself to stop thinking about her past pain, her ex-husband and, with a pang, her ex-dog.
Jean lives in a village near Bath in the UK. She has an ex-husband and an ex-dog.
Ready to write, with research, outline and tea, she grimaced after a sip. “No sugar!”
Darker, a breeze ruffled papers and grey horses galloped across the sun.
Flocks of argumentative birds settled like a blanket; the scent of rain lured them.
As drops fell, all was gathered, again without yield.
Susan Cornford is a retired public servant, living in Perth, Western Australia. To date, she has (co)won only one competition but has been short-listed or made finalist for numerous others. She has pieces published or forthcoming in 50-Word Stories, Antipodean Science Fiction, Ghost Parachute, Speculative 66, Subtle Fiction, Switchblade, The Fable Online, The Gambler and The Vignette Review. She now considers herself an emerging flash writer.