Flower Song

Neighbors noticed the band teacher’s yard sprout unconventional planters over the first month of her retirement: chrysanthemums ejecting from half-buried tubas, sunflowers booming from kettle drum frames tarnished green. It was Mr. Johnson who suggested putting her talent to good use. Soon, every yard played a flower song.

Meat Wads

The alligator perched on a pile of magazines and the roof of Ava’s Barbie car, two of many islands in our basement. We discussed building a ramp to the broken window, but it was Ava who wadded up ground beef, lured the thing upstairs, and out the door.

the phone in the other

the phone in the other room rings once and refuses to carry your voice the phone in the other- world rings and rings without disturbing a soul   Fresh ink. This is my subversion of "thoughts & prayers." Constructive criticism welcome.

Health Nut

My friend Ron walks into his kitchen, hooks the tip of his sneaker under the bottom drawer next to the fridge, and flicks it open.“Dude, have some,” Ron says.Inside the drawer, I see Chips Ahoy cookies, moon pies, and those Little Debbie wafer bars that I used to beg for in the grocery store but …

An Alien Land

Inside the small spaceship, the commander barks at his army. “Cover the perimeter. We wait until first encounter to attack.” Morning in Wichita continues. Light from the basketball-sized hole in the Atkinsons' dining room wall drifts across the broad pine table, where diagonal burns mark the path of the crash. Photo by Frans Van Heerden …

Take Root

The field lies like a still lake, an opaque film of silver or green—water or soil, apathy or memory—obscuring the mayhem underneath A tenebrous home once floated here. Inside: chrysalis, pupa, larvae, whatever I left those costumes in closets to mold over years ago. But, then again, my home was never on the ground.    …