To a Friend Whose Operation Has Been Postponed

Open the rusty screen door Follow my voice through the center of the forest with no trees Float atop the escaping river like a weekday problem on a Saturday afternoon Watch the cardinals glide above this mess of a city, careless, self-absorbed, The drivers in their compact cars, too, accelerating behind you to dates and …

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Prehensile

Summary: At a time when most humans have developed prehensile tails, a woman returns home from a trip to find distinct changes in her loafer of a son.     Bart didn't hear me come into the apartment. He remained hunched over his laptop, headphones corking his ears. The brusque taxi driver plopped my enormous …

The Art of Distraction

“SO IS THIS WHAT YOU DO HERE—make Rube Goldberg machines?” Jacob said, after I’d spread string, scissors, plastic cups, and a few small peg boards across the breakroom counter. He was sitting at the table eating a sandwich and fries from a styrofoam box. I watched as his paisley tie dipped into ketchup. That's how new he …

Searchlights

The War was over, but we didn't know it yet. We threw bio-grenades into schools, blasted blindly into sick bays, screaming, panting, until word came through the ansible, but we are not posthuman. We return home with the rage still in our throats, our eyes searchlights.  

The Luxury of Time

Margaret groped crusty tissues, two prescription bottles and a Katherine Porter novel to find her tortoiseshell frames. She knew the time of day only by the color of her bedroom; the angle of the sun hit different parts of the color-blocked curtains at different times of day. Orange meant early morning. Candace would need feeding and William …

The Bedweaver

Last week you came into my shop and told me you'd bought a fine new bed, and we agreed on a day and a time. That night I added up the sum total of our conversations, and determined that our last conversation held more words than you'd ever given me before. I slept tight in my chair with that fact over top of …

Vagabond

The day I moved into the hollow of a giant redwood the crowberry eyes of a family of martens appraised my ragged chin, my desperate need for shelter, and rightly deemed me harmless. They knew the city does not shelter those that need it most. I unpacked my life, slept below the red wood sky as constellations …

The Aerialists

It's easy to idolize the women floating above you. The footlights set their sequins on fire; the music spins them between gasps and cables. You appreciate the simplicity, the reliance on ribbons, the swinging on silks. Their work is to be upside down, arms extended, hanging by an ankle to please strangers, and you blush to …