No Problem by David Breitkopf

What? The beer can on the bookcase? There’s a funny story behind that beer can. Well, maybe not that funny. Someone gave it to me when I lived in Rego Park, Queens, on the same street where Kitty Genovese was murdered. That was the first one where neighbors just listened and watched. I always meant … Read more

Muscle Memory by Rosie Forrest

The folding chairs perch on the rocky bank. We’ve wedged the rubbered feet into damp crags, and we hope they stay put. There are three of us here as the tide comes in, and we grip cans of warm PBR tight enough to dent them. We are lonely. We have all been dumped. The youngest … Read more

The Encroacher by Kayti Doolittle

could see Cera wrestling through her unstructured paisley fabric purse. She didn’t notice me; my gaze was hidden behind my sunglasses and a US Weekly. I was like a mother looking casually through my daughter’s diary, except I wasn’t her mother; I was her sister. I thought Cera appeared more like an ornamental paper bird … Read more

Hey, Soul by Lou Gaglia

If you’re anything like me, then maybe you’ll be caught off guard when my time comes, and you’ll forget to escape my body, thinking, Well, maybe I oughta stay with him and see if he comes around. And by then it could be too late—you trapped within my useless remains like a dolt. I hope … Read more

Irreparable by Laura Hoel

The hand materialized out of the darkness as if floating…connected to nothing. It clamped down over her lips, the sound of her scream engulfed between the crevasses of his fingerprints. The taste of pennies filled her mouth. She reached behind her head, flailing her arms trying to escape his grasp. The hand shoved her down … Read more

Every Day Is Not A Sunday by Sana Rafi

Nothing happens to me. Gods have forgotten me. People don’t notice me. My name is Baarish which means rain in Urdu. I am twenty-seven years old. People say I am passing through my golden years. But since my older brother’s death, life has been as dry as truth. I want manipulation. I want kneading…

Fireworks by Bill Elenbark

Explosions in the sky bursting with the sound and all these echoing vibrations rattling through the field around me – me and Nick, side by side in the wet tall grass with the heat and the bugs and the perspiration, on vacation, our summer vacation, Nick at my side eyeing explosions in the sky,…

Getting By

Dan Coxon             For the first week the wallet sat next to the phone. David would eye it cautiously as he left for work each morning, as if he expected it to burst into flames, or come to life and flap clumsily across the room. All it did was slowly gather a thin film of … Read more

The Wolf’s Story

Kacee Belcher                After the wolf cub slipped from his mother into the den with his brothers and sisters, he hunched down in terror as he lay on the cold ground, his legs not yet working. His eyes, still closed, felt heavy with the placental fluid that had mixed with the dirt that surrounded the … Read more

Hit and Stay

Mathieu Cailler            Penn continued to drive through the night. Snow and gales of wind assailed his SUV as he barreled towards home, his foot steady on the gas, his mitts positioned firmly at ten and two. Heat billowed from the vents on the dashboard and moved loose strands of hair … Read more

Saturday Nights in Seoul by Alexis Stratton

  “Do you have a boyfriend?” It was one of the first questions my students asked me when I stood in front of their class on the opening day of the school year. Thirty-some heads of dark hair, thirty-some dark eyes, thirty-some blue-and-white uniforms, thirty-some giggling girls. “It's okay,” I said, calming down their laughter. “No, no … Read more

Granite by Zdravka Evtimova

Shon didn’t have enough money. All his friends had forgotten him. He couldn’t pay his sex tax and that meant that he could no longer be a man. He’d be processed into a stone, and he knew he’d be deaf and blind dust. Each particle of the dust he would turn into would be listening … Read more

Miles Davis in Blacksburg by Kyle Bradstreet

Their cell phones were still ringing. They were the EMT’s first words when hesitantly and anonymously telling his story to the local reporter. Working inside the hall he had been assigned a wet body, a hole where a breast should’ve been, and closed the victim’s still horrified eyes—a terrifying sight which had caused him to … Read more

New Year’s Eve 1980 by Raanan Geberer

"Have you heard the story of Gunny Joe? Who lived way down by the Kokomo? Aaaah, Gunny Joe!” Rob Rothstein bellowed the nonsensical rhyme at the top of his lungs, right in the middle of the sleazy donut place at 23rd Street and Eighth Avenue in Manhattan that he had entered to get away from … Read more

The Lonely Life of a Federal Marshall by Paul Esposito

  “Penn Station” “Gotcha” The passenger looked up to the second story of the brownstone building and pressed his window switch.  As the tinted window lowered, his wife could be seen through the sun’s glare off the window of their second floor apartment.  She held their daughter in front of her as she stood in … Read more

Things That Shaped Him Thus by Jennifer Greidus

                I. Hess Esser   Lunch with Lucas Milas was, possibly, one of the worst ideas Hess had in a decade. The man said three sentences in an hour. And he ate a chicken breast. Nothing else. Hess could not even talk him into an illicit beer. And he … Read more

There Is No Other by Michelle Lauren Kay

            Today Claudette is wearing her pale blue suit with the power shoulders and extermination strength Happy in her quest to win the scent war with Red Jeans Ronnie down the hall. “Did you watch Obama last night on The Celebrity Apprentice?” She looms over my desk, having just greeted me with a few morning … Read more

Janan by Carole Standish Mora

She watched the end of her toes shuffle and appear alternately from under her long hijab. Everything looked blue from behind her veil.  She held the blue in her mind and gathered it, pouring it down to her heart, beating hard, a bird caught in a trap.  The dry heat of the desert, heavy, penetrating, … Read more

River of the Dead by Betsy Russell

It happens faster than I can think: shadow, form of man, thrust of arm—             My hand understands; flies to my chest while my mind straggles behind, stupidly stringing bits of fact, bone handle standing from my blouse, liquid warm against my fingers, purse vanished as if it never was.             Understanding comes as the … Read more

Security in the Heartland by Jeff Esterholm

In 1970 he looked younger than his years. Rather than the age he actually was, twenty, he looked thirteen and acne-free. The mustache he would try to grow over and over again always came in weedy, the individual hairs sparse, and he would end up mowing the patch of near nothing down with a borrowed … Read more

Summer Park by Nina Frick

Nate watched Molly with fascination. She held a purple can with her left hand, and lifted clumps of blond curls to be sprayed with her right. She moved in quick jerky motions. As she sprayed, she instructed Nate on the correct way to do hair. “You have to move the can fast, see, if you … Read more

Horseville by Lia

They had to buzz him in. From the hallway outside he could wave to the nurses’ station through a little window criss-crossed with metal thread. Amelia was watching TV in the middle of a blank-looking group of teenagers. It was easy to pick her out because her hair was the color of a candy-corn stripe, … Read more

Broken (…and Sappho wept for them) by Leslexia

You burn me, she thought, as her lover kissed her lips and then bit her tongue. She’d recently read Stephen Thomas Chang’s “The Tao of Sexology”; had found a weathered copy of it in the used book room at the Bodhi Tree. According to that volume, the tongue symbolized the heart. She offered hers to … Read more