My father-in-law-to-be mowed our yard with his tractor, transforming the tangle into a park.
My son sobbed, He killed my favorite blackberry bush.
“But there are more,” I argued. “Look, they’re all over.” He wouldn’t face where I pointed.
I wish I’d said, “It’s painful to lose what you love.”
Lois Rosen’s poetry books are Pigeons (Traprock Books 2004) and Nice and Loud (Tebot Bach 2015). She has taught ESL in Oregon, New York, Ecuador, Colombia, Japan, and Costa Rica. Lois founded the Peregrine Poets of Salem, Oregon, and leads the Trillium Writers and the Institute for Continued Learning Writing Group at Willamette University. She won Willamette Writers’ 2016 Kay Snow First Prize in Fiction.
In the event of:
1. Flood – Assemble food and first aid kit. Be ready to evacuate.
2. Fire – Leave immediately. Once out, call emergency services.
3. Earthquake – Stay indoors. Prepare for cracks to appear in foundations. Do not involve passers-by. Subsidence is inevitable.
4. Marriage – Follow procedure in step 3.
Jo Withers writes micros, flash, and poetry from her home in South Australia. Recent work has appeared in Molotov Cocktail, Ellipsis Zine, Flashback Fiction, Spelk, 24 Unread Messages, and Mythic Picnic.
Stacy and Jake were in a loving relationship. They were committed and decided to marry.
They were also aware of today’s realities. Thus, Jake was not surprised when Stacy suggested they change one word in the traditional wedding vows:
“Do you take Jake… so long as you both shall love?”
Bill Diamond lives in the Rocky Mountains and writes to try and figure it all out.
When I saw the twinkle in his eyes, I was his, forever more.
It took him only nine years to realize he felt the same about me.
Marriage; a son; joys and sorrows.
On our Silver Anniversary, I fall in love again whenever I see that twinkle in his eyes.
Irene is the Firefox Developer Content Manager. She spends her days writing content for web developers and her evenings and weekends writing very short stories.
Rheumy eyes viewed the long orchard.
His treasured trees would outlive her, but deprived of care, they too would die.
He’d picked his trees, and her, for the fruit each would bear. He’d loathed her barrenness.
His acid tongue was silent now. For the first time in years, she smiled.
Christine Nedahl is a retired teacher from the Rhondda Valley, South Wales, now living with her husband in Arboleas in the Almanzora Valley, Spain. She enjoys writing about anything and everything, but flash fiction and poetry are currently favourites. She has been published in a number of anthologies and is a member of Writers Abroad. See more at christinenedahl.wordpress.com.
The honeymoon patch of sunlight grew darker, obscured by the thick tangle of unknowing surrounding us.
I looked up. She hummed silently. The song resonated in her eyes, as if seeing the work already done.
I followed her, also humming, and we worked together, feeling ourselves victors through the pain.
Every day Sasha tries to give his heart to his writing, and every day his cat, Sebald, snatches it up for himself. Find his words and cat pics on Instagram and Facebook at @sashaandsebald.
I woke long before dawn, shards of moonlight breaking through the faded curtains.
The hotel hadn’t changed much.
Now, twenty years later, I could still see him stretched out on the bed, with that mischievous, just-married look in his eyes.
I touched the urn on the nightstand. “Happy anniversary, dear.”
Susan Gale Wickes is from Indiana. In addition to writing poetry and short stories, she enjoys penning aphorisms and epigrams.
Carol had never understood Bob. A prominent attorney, he always crossed his t’s and dotted his i’s, but he couldn’t put down a toilet seat.
She filed a complaint; they settled out of court.
She said she simply wouldn’t stand for it anymore, so he agreed not to.
They’re still married.
Susan Gale Wickes lives in Indiana. This is her first story about a toilet seat.
“Those Browns!” said Mom, after Billy’s first visit. “They’re not smart. Short-lived, too.”
Both were true. But when my leg was in a cast, Billy carried me into the school. He blanketed everyone with kindness—warmth personified.
When the cancer got him, age 50, our children and I cried buckets.
Rita Stevens has been a teacher and newspaper writer in west Michigan. She writes every day—three novels and a stack of short stories so far.
For months the space next to me had been empty. Yet tonight, it was occupied by a stranger. My husband glared at him.
“How could you do this to me?” he whispered.
“Til death do us part,” I replied.
My husband glowered. His ghostly figure slowly disappeared into the darkness.
Patricia Santillan likes climbing up chairs because she is too short to reach the top cupboard. Because self-love is important to her, she loves hugging herself. Her most recent publications can be found in Leaves of Ink and Fairy Talez.