Wit’s End

“Out of the depths, I have cried.“ Psalm 130 By Charlotte M. Porter On the Inside, Moon pulls without water. Head batteries go dead, and time stalls. Angie strikes the match inside her brain. Shield the flame, she tells herself, capture the gleam. Watch wind stir sea oats by the bay. Let the seagulls wail and the … Continue reading Wit’s End

Pat Tillman’s Ghost

By Laurel Doud My husband left me for Pat Tillman’s mother. You know Pat Tillman; he of the long blonde hair flowing out from underneath his football helmet before it became de rigueur. The one who famously walked away from a multimillion-dollar NFL career to fight the bad guys after 9/11. The one who was … Continue reading Pat Tillman’s Ghost

Learning How to Breathe

“There is a way of breathing that’s a shame and a suffocation and there’s another way of expiring, a love breath that lets you open to infinity.“ – Rumi By Barbara Janoff When he was 70, about the age I am now, my father taught me how to harness the power of breath. He had been … Continue reading Learning How to Breathe


By Ross West My beloved, crazy, generous, funny, bawdy, loopy, glamorous, tragic Aunt Ruth died and was buried at a Vancouver cemetery in a downpour. Most of the gathered mourners huddled beneath a canopy erected for the graveside service. I was among the two-dozen or so who didn’t fit under the shelter and stood nearby … Continue reading Procession

Pine Box Derby

By Jackie Davis Martin The three were isolated in the din of the all-purpose room where chairs slammed, a microphone screeched, and little boys chattered and called out, wild with excitement. It was the evening of the Cub Scout Pine Box Derby. Robbie, Leanna’s eight-year-old son, stood alone the foot of the racing track, gliding … Continue reading Pine Box Derby

Microwave Blues

By Doug M. Dawson Percy Rainbow felt he’d seen a lot in his nearly seventy years, though he really hadn’t. He started life in the deep south, migrated up to Baltimore to work in its factories in the late 1950s then made his way to New York. He had an older cousin named Ellwood who … Continue reading Microwave Blues

Into the Void

By Ken Malatesta “Galveston” is in my head. An odd byproduct of summer, COVID19, my father’s death, and sublimating grief into a series of home improvement projects. I don’t remember what “normal” feels like. I don’t imagine most people do. Is existing ever normal? Normally, during the first four weeks of summer, I drop my sons … Continue reading Into the Void

The Widow

By C.L. Baptiste Rosa, the widow of Andrés Romero, did not wear black to her husband’s funeral. Instead, she wore a bright red, skintight vinyl zip-up dress, bright red lipstick, and red faux-leather stiletto heels. Her mother-in-law gaped in undisguised outrage from behind her black lace veil, and even her own mother tried to usher … Continue reading The Widow

The Tall Man

By Louise Wilford Beckett knew he was being followed as soon as he stepped out of the bookies. It was an instinct you developed after a lifetime in the business – someone in your peripheral vision, standing too still or pausing too often, or the pale flash of a face turned in your direction.   The … Continue reading The Tall Man


By Amita Basu All day, I’ve struggled not to remember the day, but my cramp has been building, and I sit clutching my belly. I confront my dinner, seeking the culprit: another thing to eliminate. My coffee’s decaf. (Decaf is safest after heart surgery, so I’m hoping it’ll help prevent heart surgery.) No dairy. (When I was five, I … Continue reading Re:Birth

To Become the Whole Him

By Melanie Chartoff “I always knew I wasn’t normal,” Hank thought to himself, eyes folded into his chubby baby fat face in the mirror on the visor. Even at twenty-six, he looked like a fat baby, hardly any beard yet. He never felt grown up. Maybe because he stayed back a couple times. “Hey, wake … Continue reading To Become the Whole Him

The Beautiful House

By C.L. Baptiste I wanted to be in a cave that night, so I slept in the basement. I wanted the simplicity of sleeping alone as if the absence of her warm body beside me could liberate me from the troubles in my heart. We had a fight, a big one. And for once, I … Continue reading The Beautiful House


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