by Ashlie Allen
She cries when I don’t touch her. I know I make her sad, but I’m depressed too. I throw my trench coat over the chair when I get home, grab a bottle of Merlot and snicker. Tears leak down my face when she comes to kiss my neck. “Why are you so enticing?” I wine. “Please admire me. I have bad anxiety tonight.” “I do too.” I bite her lip, taste some blood, which make my eyes protrude. I know I’m a selfish beast and will push her away. I’ll come home tomorrow night and offer the same disappointment.
by Amy Bartley
We’d always done it thatta way. Bruised our knuckles on the glass washboards. Scraped our skin on the metal ‘n’s. On that particular Saturday, me ‘n Sis were washin’ ‘n beatin’ up our hands when Momma yelled.
“Girls! Come in!”
We ran. There in her hands she had it open. The Harper’s Bazaar. Her finger pointin’, tappin’ on a full page, full color ad. “Look,” she said.
It was huge, a big square machine that automatic like magic does the washin’. Momma did a scoff then said, “Who in the world could afford a contraption like that?”
by Lara Lewis
“More.” He spoke with a smooth voice, his young hand holding forth the empty glass. Hands of bone tilted a pitcher of sand forward and poured.
He watched it spill down, and as it seeped into his glass his hands shriveled, and his throat tightened. It dripped down the thin hole in the stem and he watched it, letting it slip to the floor below.
The last grain of sand hit the floor, and he turned the hourglass over.
“More,” he said, and the hands poured.
by Stephen D. Gibson
Her shoes sounded like claps against the bank’s granite floor, like gunshots. She was there to argue. I sat in the lobby while she quietly displayed page after page to the collections officer. They were people you could speak with then. I didn’t know it, but she argued for me, my safety and shelter. The bank actually had made an error. And the man had to admit it, though he couldn’t explain. Young, I thought the shoes proud: “look at me” they said. Old, I think they claimed space, claimed it with sound. She was the author of that noise.