This week’s artwork is “Best Seat in the House” by W. Jack Savage
Up Here Broken Down
by Matt O’Connor
He is smiling as he helps me inspect the Yamaha’s motor. “Bad bike,” he says. It’s the first English I’ve heard in days. There are not many other travelers in the mountains. A child walks past. From her fist, two puppies dangle lifelessly by their tails. We get the motor working again. The man is still shaking his head. The villagers have gathered around something I can’t see. I thank him again and set off towards the valley, where the air is quick and heavy. In the distance a pig screams as its feet are bound. The blade is ready.
Total Failure Lucky Duck
by Eldon Craig Reishus
Donald pretended that his life was a total failure because he was concerned about nothing besides authoring A Lucky Duck, his autobiography. But Donald truly was a lucky duck, for he never suffered any block as he wrote by flashlight beneath the covers. Donald scripted his rich sex life like he was moving forwards on his autobiography by writing backwards from the bankrupt ending. His sex script partner was the rhythmic method actress Jillian Jenkins. Her role was to make our lucky duck feel like a total failure by bringing home real men to take care of his bills.
by Ashlie Allen
His features burned last night while he was smoking cigars. I was sitting on the couch, bored, sad, imagining what was happening in space. The smoke gathered around his jaws until his entire countenance was covered. I briefly closed my eyes, having drank too much gin. I heard him scream, which frightened me, and when I ran to calm him, I saw a flat surface where his eyes, nose and brows once rested. Only a tiny portion of his lips remained, and I kissed it to silence his terror.
by Shih-Li Kow
We were on the move again, hunting rain clouds. We have been too slow and for days, we saw nothing but patches of dried mud left by others. But today, we found a baby cloud snagged on trees in an abandoned valley. We put out our buckets and we killed it. Mother was the most savage, as always. When it bled, we stood in its rain and opened our mouths to feed. Although we were told to hide our bodily pleasures, I could not stop my spasms. After the endless thirst, every drop of water was the purest drug.
A Picture of Grief
by Joelle A. Chasse
On the front lawn, the owl was preening its dead mate. Its beak combed through the feathers as carefully as you’d adjust someone’s buttons. Funeral rituals in animal form. “Look,” I told my five-year-old son. “Look at that, poor thing. She must have loved him.” His grandma recently died—what a perfect opportunity to show him, it’s okay, animals grieve too. He looked up at me with watery eyes. “Why’s she eating him?” he asked, and suddenly, perspective mattered.