From where the birch takes the sun
Peter Maier waits in his back yard. He paces the patchy lawn, from where the birch takes the sun; from where he sits in summer to read. Or in the crook of the linden, further back, behind the vegetables. He follows the brick path, and remembers every time he’s helped his father turn the soil, plant the carrots, the potatoes. Just like this, wandering, unsure where to stand, where to go, what to think about what his mother calls the ending. He can hear the artillery a few kilometres away. They’ve been warned – later today, or tomorrow.Continue reading “From where the birch takes the sun — A short story by Stephen Orr”
When my grandfather asked me to buy cigarettes at a local convenience store in front of our house one Saturday afternoon, I remembered what Teacher Gladys taught us in school that week.
She said cigarette smoking is bad – for the health and for the environment. I was eight when I couldn’t weigh which was worse. I didn’t want anything bad happening to my family, most especially to my grandparents.Continue reading “Rare Treats, a Flash Fiction by Angelo Lorenzo”
The Doll and Me
I hate the doll, its plumpy head,
its brunette swirls, its itsy cheeks,
its pout, its lashes, the uptight clothes,
marrowless arms, nerveless teeth,
its squeaking, the mess
it makes on the floor.
I want to detach the twee wee feet
and hammer it to the fence, drown it,
skewer it to the door, to say ‘this is what
has become of us’. Even naked
it makes me angry and afraid.
Attesting To Your Mother’s Hypocrisy
Demons invoked in the house by
sneezing — we’d call the electrician.
He’d know the psalms to be sung for it,
and the white costumes to wear.
Floating in white across the fields
of morning glories and corn, swinging
an incense burning, and a keg full
of salt water.
No (New) Man’s Land
a life in fluid drawn,
scar tissue, muscle yielding.
New man by
needle-born in flush
of mid-life puberty,
years of life.
Burying facts that
fail to fit.
it’s dark inside
which suits me
it hides my imperfections
the guilt upon my skin
the dread in my eyes
as they size me up
You enter her through a tall, narrow doorway. This is impossible without an invitation. A hallway decorated
with red wallpaper welcomes you. In darker red: stems, leaves, stamens, petals. Voluptuous, monstrous
roses. You can hear a soprano singing upstairs. Once inside, you are free to roam at will.
sudden the homecoming
coyotes have learned to build traps
made of endings from the center of the earth
dressed as wolves they give them
to their loves who live in houses
with pink curtains and weather
dictionaries and streaming services
Trump Tweeting About the Rain on his Parade
That boring storm is a has-been, a Zero.
It didn’t even register on the Richter scale.
Total harassment, if you ask me.
When was the last time it rained
Like that in July? Fake news,
Fake media!! Totally fake!
Besides, it’s not even my type of storm.
The rain was set up by Crooked Hillary.
It must have dementia like Old Joe.
It’s one of the dumbest, most disloyal
Storms ever. Total Loser!
No Collusion!! Traitor!
Its All Greek to me
For B. D. M.
“The embrace of men”
and you pirouette
behind the cash register
a new found bond at work
Elephant Slide in the Exclusion Zone
After David McMillan’s photograph, Pripyat, Ukraine, October 2002.
can sometimes mean to think
of them as a child: a wisped head
turned in a wheaten basket. Soft fists.
A bumblebee in a foxglove flower.