I am clipped diagnoses.
Dead wife? What good is lamenting?
Runaway parent? Think of the hurt you were spared.
But at night, I cry for patients. For a boy who once wore a broad smile, now a fool in an office searching for lost mothers and wives.
I am questions.
Yash Seyedbagheri is a graduate of Colorado State University’s MFA program in fiction. Yash’s work is forthcoming or has been published in WestWard Quarterly, CaféLit, (mac)ro (mic), and Ariel Chart.
He wraps the pillow around is head, diving deep beneath the covers.
The yelling always keeps him awake. Mother checks he is asleep.
His door closes softly, then a loud pop comes from downstairs.
Mother checks on him again. The yelling has finally stopped.
He drifts off to sleep.
Kristyn Mass lives in Iowa with her husband and three cats. She is a professional voice actor and aspiring writer.
Maisy watches with awe as rockets launch in the distance. They rise majestically into the atmosphere, leaving behind trails like shooting stars. The girl makes but one wish: for these mysterious, departing spaceships to revisit our planet soon.
Hours later, continents away, the nuclear missiles begin their return to Earth.
Jeremy C. North is a Melbournian writer of horror, sci-fi, and tragedy. You can catch him in the act at guyawks.tumblr.com.
During the film festival, Jeanie stopped at a cosmetics booth. A computer monitor displayed her lonely, seventy-year-old widow’s face.
She touched a button. A younger image materialized. The computer had painted her face: eyeliner, lashes, lips.
Jeanie sent the photo to a seniors’ dating site. This would be the year.
Teresa Del Mastro lives on the Danforth in Toronto with Angelo, Michael, Rachel and Willow.
Piggies race on sawdust track, bandanas flying: red, blue, yellow, green. Girly squeals for Green. Final turn, Red spins wide, Yellow bashes Blue, and Green squiggles through to claim the checkered flag. Yay, Green! “Free Bacon” coupons for everyone!
Girly adds two and two—and lets out a heart-rending wail.
Jeff Nazzaro writes short fiction and poetry in Southern California. His microfiction has appeared in Dogzplot and Drabblez and is forthcoming in Blink-Ink.
We drank whiskey like sorrow were rare.
Dead’s dead, I muttered, bottle gone dry.
Hog stepped into the firelight, Colt drawn.
Wasn’t us, Billy blurted.
Hog shot him.
Wasn’t us my foot, I said, and drew.
I hadn’t a chance.
I knew it.
Hog knew it.
God hadn’t a clue.
Originally from the Midwest U.S., Justin Bendell lives and teaches in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he edits the Manzano Mountain Review, co-hosts Point Blank—a podcast about noir, hardboiled, and detective fiction—and records music under various monikers including fuguers cove and Euthanized Horse. His stories and poems have appeared in Meridian, 3:AM Magazine, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Thuglit, Washington Square Review, and more. He loves the desert. See more at justinbendell.com.