by Melissa Jornd
The man next to me seems nice. He’s quiet, which calms me. Although the staring unnerves me–should I be doing something?
I glance at my tablemates: the nice man, temples graying. Two young adults, clearly siblings. One toddler, all chubby cheeks and drool.
“Hello,” I venture. They smile back.
A sandwich, veggies, and pudding land in front of me. I hate pudding.
The man reaches over, using sleight-of-hand to replace it with a daisy.
And I remember.
I grasp my husband’s hand, desperate not to forget again.
“My Daisy,” he murmurs.
“I love you,” I reply, while I still can.
by Lester L Weil
Although he lives here, the pictures on the refrigerator are hers. Figurines atop the cabinets—hers. Paintings on the wall—hers. Knickknacks on the shelves—hers. Plants that he diligently waters—hers. It has been years—her ashes long scattered—but everything here is still hers. And as he wanders through the house, the mirrors reflect him—still hers.
by G.J. Williams
Details pertaining to fabrics twilled or corded leave her cold. So, too, tales of glossy silkstuffs trailing parquet floors. She knows how she cuts it as she goes. Too tall for her own good; bareheaded to a fault. A figure boding ill among the hedgerows; so local she’s a silhouette. If only she. But then again. There but for the grace of. It’s said her eyes up close are bloodshot pools. That monster word: loneliness.
Elixir for Unrequited Nostalgia
by Katherine DiBella Seluja
Start with childhood trauma. Your father throwing you out will do. Mix in your schizophrenic brother, evening locked ward visits. Add a fistful of teenage pregnancy. Let it simmer for thirty-five years. Spread it thickly over 2000 miles. Lace it with your mother tripping on the dog and falling down the cellar stairs. The doctor said, the first forty-eight hours will tell. Run up and down those stairs seven times. If you can, make it ten. Watch strangers walk out of your house, back their car down the drive. Resist the urge to tell them, this was my childhood home.