Sirens

Jennifer Furner               Whenever I hear sirens, I think of Sister Liska, the older-than-dirt nun from my childhood parish (may she rest in peace). She’d tell us, “Whenever you hear sirens, say a prayer for whoever is in trouble.” And for a long time, that’s exactly what I did. But then I moved to the […]

When the Organ Player from Schmitt Music Stops You After Your Shift on Holy Saturday to Say You’re Terribly Beautiful

Elizabeth Fletcher               You’re on the second-floor concourse when it happens. It’s one level up from the music store and neighboring one-hour photo place where you stuff Kodak and Fuji film canisters into envelopes and occasionally sell a camera.               True, Schmitt Music employs a bullpen of organists—bland, sweatered men that you and your co-workers […]

Hot Girl Summer For Nerds Who Love Too Hard

Avery Nguyen You don’t know how to hook up with me and I don’t know how to hook up with you. Just look at us: two idiots gazing moon-eyed at each other in the midst of implacable rain, standing in an empty parking lot, both of our mouths working around the same words. You say […]

The During is a Deep, Wide Pit

Lindsey Neely               I knew last night that today would suck but I watched the testimony anyway because you have to know the whole truth and nothing but the truth before you can turn the page of the book you’re reading and begin the last chapter which I pray is titled The Bad Guys Get […]

postpartum rage

Vic Nogay in a vision, i hit her. her giggles go silent, her lights short out, the synapses fold as the twinkle stars drown in the swollen spaces between blood and brain and skull. she wobbles on her knees in a kitchen chair, two grapes half-chewed in her little mouth, and i study the pupils […]

Do You Remember the Secret We Share?

Jaya Wagle Editor’s Note from Sudha Balagopal: This CNF by Jaya Wagle drew me in from the very first sentence. This story of a brief relationship is drenched in memory and sprinkled with a charming honesty. It’s about train journeys, about motels, about a kiss and most importantly about the tenderness of a fledgling liaison. […]

The Devil You Know (TW: Abuse)

Ariel M. Goldenthal Editorial note from Sara Siddiqui: In very few words, Ariel shows us the day-to-day, minute-to-minute struggle of an almost-twelve-year-old girl, her early years split between two houses and two parents, one being domineering and physically abusive. In such an environment, each breath is a strain, each step a burden. I can only […]

A Percussion of Bones

Victoria Buitron Editor’s Note from Janice Leagra: I asked Victoria if she had any pieces to submit because I am drawn to the honesty and tenderness in her work. She writes openly of emotional topics, such as the one featured here today, crafting sentiment without sentimentality.               She tries to hide her fingers’ decline so […]

The Red Dress

Gina Harlow Editorial note from Sara Siddiqui: Sometimes, after the death of a loved one, you might hear things about them from others, things that might cast a sliver of doubt in your mind—whether you really knew the person you are grieving for. With time, you accept it’s impossible to know everything about a person, […]

That Doggie in the Window

Stephanie Austin Editor’s note from Sudha Balagopal: Stephanie Austin’s creative non-fiction is at once poignant and loving. In That Doggie in the Window, Stephanie tells us about her grandmother, Sis, who lived in a group home, a lady with definite opinions and a colorful personality. As is the case with Stephanie’s other work, we come […]

The Ousterbout

E.E. Rhodes The day is spike-sprackled and winter-glorious, the neighbours are primed, and Gran is squawking fit to burst her way out of the prison of the bailiff’s arms. He is new. Worried by the gutterings of the charm-sparse audience.  Every quarter the landlord lickspittles his rent book and sends an ousterbout bailiff after the […]

My Body of Work

Hannah Storm When I was little, my favourite season was autumn. It was when the trees turned the colour of my hair. My dad told me the dancing leaves were celebrating me. My parents never worried about losing me in a crowd, but I hated how my hair made me stand out. Later, it was […]

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Speech and Language Milestones

Kathryn Aldridge-Morris Between 0-6 months babies should coo, begin babbling and mimic sounds                        Heart rate dipping, something about the umbilical cord around your neck twice, a canula’s pumping pitocin into my hand to restart contractions, but all that’s contracting is my calf with a cramp Manuel says he’s seen grown footballers cry with. When you’re […]

When the Scarves Fell

Katie Piper               Grandad sat in the chair he always retired to after Sunday dinner. It had slender, polished arms and his fingers would curl over the ends of them. He was always a little poised, as if he was on the verge of getting up – perhaps the war did that?               Mum and […]