by Ken Poyner
He has been told of the potential danger in buying antiques. No one warned him when he was just buying old furniture; but antiques, being more expensive, had their own exaggerations. Sometimes, previous owners do not want to give up their possessions, attach their ghosts to challenge anyone who might repurpose the piece. There could be multiple ghosts in the construction, contending no matter who currently owns the piece. How could he know before purchase? Quibble moves each recent acquisition into his mother’s home, waits a week, calls to see if she is sleeping well and without newly minted nightmares.
There Is A Light, But It Will Go Out In Flames
St. Andrews, 2001, winter’s night céilidh: she blazed a furnace burning peat from Scotland’s earth. Bright hair swirled, tinged hottest fire, point-and-click camera flash, faceless smiling, bright eyes, she singed the ballroom with American heat. Sheathed in a body-hugging, glowing-orange gown, train scooped up in her fist, she danced out heartbreak. Peeling her body from sweetest sweat and joyful dress, she disembarked from that fragrant train. For one night, ticket punched, her porcelain shoulders gleamed against film’s negative dark, sharp-edged bones long buried under now middle-aged still-pale softness, aching feet. Then—a torch, a neon sign: Do Not Touch.
Tea for Two
by Pamela S. Kelso
Enid sat on sagging steps of a bedraggled farmhouse. Her hair pin- curled and wrapped in a chiffon scarf. She painted her lips with an old Tangee lipstick bought at Woolworth’s in 1960.
Enid and Edna shared that lipstick. They wore it on special occasions. They turned 100 today.
Ezekiel, their mailman, would arrive at the same time as always, he would check. He’d tell the others.
Dressed in her calico dress that matched Enid’s, Edna was on the broken bed in their ramshackle room off the kitchen.
Enid quickly drank from Edna’s teacup and joined her twin.