My heart pounding in my chest, I watched as you lay on the white linen, still and silent. The fan’s breeze fluttered your hair and eyelashes. You looked cool, reposed, as though sleeping. I squeezed your hand and whispered for you to open your eyes, once more.
But you didn’t.
Melanie Cranenburgh lives in Western Australia and rescues wildlife in her spare time.
I used to collect mermaid scales at the beach with my brother. They were aluminium soda can tabs, but whatever—we knew they were really mythical, wish-granting scales. We used them for snow days until my brother caught pneumonia.
I stacked hundreds on his grave.
Even then, it wasn’t enough.
Like most kids , E.O. just used shooting stars to wish for snow days. During meteor showers, about 90% of the wishes in the region were likely made for snow, with the remaining 10% being divided between money, sports cars, and those hoping that their sadistic bosses would drop dead inexplicably.
Mikolo woke up tired. His hair felt heavy and his throat burnt. A masked man came into the room and gave him some water.
The man left and locked the door. Mikolo did his business in the corner. He could hear unbearable screaming from down the hall.
He was next.
Dan Shushko is a Ukrainian writer from Lviv.
We had so many wonderful plans for the future, and now he and they are gone.
People say, “Move on. The past is gone; you have your future.”
My future was supposed to be with him.
The future is in one second.
The future is now.
I am scared.
Susan is a Curriculum Developer at a mortgage company. She is widowed with two grown daughters and two stepsons, and four awesome grandchildren, two boys and two girls.
The first word I understood was “tired.” Always etched on mom’s face; she spoke in sighs. Dad’s language was disappointment. My brothers and I were taught it was us against the world, and our home constantly reminded us that we’d never know any different.
With hungry hearts, we grew silent.
Munira Sayyid has two siblings. Only one of which is a brother. Her parents think she talks too much sometimes.
Every night on a crag a half-day’s climb above the foothills, a crooked little man dances by a campfire, whispering “Guess my name,” and the echo carries across fields and valleys, streaming into the dreams of children, who grow to believe they’ll someday be able to spin straw into gold.
Over the years Bob Thurber’s work has received a long list of awards and prizes. His most recent book is a collection of brief stories titled “Nothing But Trouble.” His first novel, “Paperboy: A Dysfunctional Novel,” was recently rereleased. Visit BobThurber.net.
A breeze scuttles through the jostling limbs of the coppiced chestnuts, and they clatter like masts in a marina.
In my imagination, when the hill is stripped bare, these trees will be crafted into green-winged ships, thrusting proudly towards the broad horizon.
In reality, I know they’ll become fence posts.
Tamsin keeps finding herself writing about trees – but then, literally, we can’t live without them.
The day before my sixth birthday I sat on mother’s knee and stared into her crystal ball. She’d flinched at shadows that screamed and slammed doors, clutched my arm so hard her nails broke the skin. Among whirling smoke she saw broken skies, suffering, the End…
I only saw you.
Guy was once declared dead by a fortune-telling fish he found in a Christmas cracker. This is his eighteenth 50-word story.
She appreciated, more than ever, the smell of her coffee and the sunlight reflecting off her back porch. The weather was unfairly perfect. Soon enough, the kids would know. But, for now, she let her smile hide the hopeless, sinking feeling welling up in her gut.
The cancer was back.
Myron Tetreault is a Calgary-based businessman, athlete and author.
Stephen Felix meets his Savior, her with long black tresses and long black dresses, and she deceives as Saviors often do, yet Stephen Felix fawns and trots and gloats at her side. This behavior is common among those in Stephen Felix’s unfortunate home, where they all die, eventually, even Saviors.
Atwater is a Minnesota/Manhattan abstract painter and literary fiction writer with stories forthcoming in Jellyfish Review, Heavy Feather Review and published in PANK, Vestal Review and others. See more at ajatwater.com