Nonfiction

euthanasia (megan finkel)

After my kitten went, I read as much about what killed her as possible. The person who came to speak to me in the purgatory room beforehand told me I could purchase drugs off the black market if I was desperate to keep her alive for a little more, and for a split second I […]

Sober Living (David P. Barker)

“You know the rules, brother.” Marion regarded me again. I looked up at him and knew he wanted to curse me out. I was a nine-year-old boy sitting watch at the front desk of an inpatient drug and alcohol addiction treatment center. The only child in an otherwise adult-only facility and he was a grown […]

Childbearing Age (Emily Polson)

One of my best friends from college is writing poems about infertility. Another friend tells me that she’s worried if she starts studying for the LSAT now, she’ll be past peak childbearing age by the time she’s established enough in her career change to take maternity leave. A valid fear, I guess, because my pregnant […]

Wild Berries (Josh Olsen)

While walking my dog to the “good pooping grass,” as my partner and I call it, adjacent to the Plymouth Cultural Center parking lot, I passed an old man smoking a cigarette and picking wild berries. He dropped each berry in a five-gallon bucket nestled in the basket of a shopping cart he kept hidden […]

Ketchup (Katy Naylor)

My relationship with ketchup, like most of my relationships these days, is complicated.  Once a week, when I was very little, my mum and I would go to an off-brand burger bar in the centre of town. The patties were floppy and the fries suspiciously hollow, but it was cheap, and we made a party […]

On This Day (Jessica Dawn)

“Celebrate your years of friendship,” Facebook tells you, shows you the slideshow it made with photos of your dead dad. “Remember the good times,” it says, the same thing it said about the friend from high school you muted because they kept sharing videos about essential oils curing cancer, about your coworker from two jobs […]

Principles of Lust (Melissa Llanes Brownlee)

He drives through the cobalt night, the stars glaring down as they fly across the sky, the glow from his dashboard a pale mimic. A mix of Gregorian chanting, synth beats and sexy French singing bleed pink from his speakers. He parks on a dark mountain, hiding you both, but the repeating music is an […]

Brotherly Love (Jennifer Shneiderman)

The storm came into Philadelphia fast and strong. Grounded planes hung their heads and bedded down for the night. A line of 30 people formed at the customer service counter within seconds. After a while, some teenagers produced fiddles from black cases and the people in line bobbed their heads to “Blackberry Blossom”. I didn’t […]

Hey you little pencil slut (Lizette Roman-Johnston)

*** Lizette Roman-Johnston is about to earn her MFA in creative nonfiction from Saint Mary’s College of California. She resides in Berkeley, CA with her cat Stompy. Lizette has been published in the Sad Girl Review, the Daily Drunk Magazine, and the Oakland Arts Review. You can follow her on Twitter @zettercakes. *** image: Lindsay […]

Willpower (Jamie Etheridge)

When I was three or four years old I used to hold my breath until I would pass out. I don’t remember these incidents so much as the stories my mom tells me later about how they happened. I’d get upset about something: being told no, the injustices of bathtime, a lost binky that can’t […]

We Dreamed the Universe as Well as the Rain (Aisling Walsh)

Accept or reject: the matter was always in your hands. You could have said no from the first day I arrived on your terrace. The sun was beginning to set behind the neighbour’s mango tree, the sanates were screeching their evening chorus and exasperated rush hour horns blared from the periferico. You were half-sitting, half-leaning, […]

Little House on the Freeway (Christian McDonald)

Tonight I read an article about a man who bought one of those prefabricated houses–the kind that fly down highways on the beds of big semis, trailer-park-bound, with WIDE LOAD plastered across their rear ends. The details of the story are unclear, but the end result is that the man got his house stuck on […]

Bran Flake Dan (Suzanne Richardson)

We called him Bran Flake, but his name was Dan. Maybe because everything he wore was kind of wheat-colored, or that 1970’s shade of light M&M brown. Those tortoise shell rimmed glasses. It was the 2000’s but he had a 90’s hangover. The polyester bell bottoms and ringer t-shirts with old company logos. He gave […]

The Dust of Stars (Andrew Bertaina)

This morning, I am trying to order my feelings, but they keep frolicking round like dust motes exposed by sunlight coming in through the window. The motes tumble, pell mell, subject to invisible breezes, dancing like circus fleas, a jumble of kittenish fever. Such are my feelings, which, like dust are silly and free, subject […]

I’m not staying to witness (Marilyn Duarte)

you pour the Ralph Lauren Polo Cologne gift set I gave you for your birthday down the bathroom sink in your basement apartment, while I inhale the combined scents of leather mixed with wood, and sage laced with spicy basil from the Eau de Toilettes’ medley dribbling down the drain and into the rusty pipes, […]

It’s A Small Town (Kevin Bonfield)

Alcohol leaks from me. A hangover like breaking rocks in prison. Not that I’d know. Daylight is punishing me. Every few strides I pause to squint. An attempt to ration my eyes’ exposure. Fingers inside my head are trying to push my eyeballs out. The more I’d showered, the drier my skin had felt. Recollection […]

Broken Kaleidoscope (Mason Parker)

On Monday, somewhere in the vast space between my moments of focus, a stargazer bloomed from the green shoots of an amaryllis—it’s blossom came two months later than expected. I placed the plant on the red-brick wall around the porch and tended to it faithfully. On Friday, the stargazer died. The week felt endless. I […]

Suspension (Shelley Johansson)

We spend the day touring the Great Wall and Tiananmen Square, where a McDonald’s crouches within sight of Mao’s mausoleum. Back at the hotel my husband and I float in the hot tub but it’s tepid at best. Giggling like teenagers, we run up to our floor. My mother appears, ashen-faced, and pulls us into […]

Academia: The Board Game (Cecilia Kennedy)

Neatly sectioned off, precise squares line up before you, each one holding promise in cool, mint green. All of the pretty tokens are yours to choose, in silver—any one. And the rules are constant, blocked off in dark, straight lines. They never change: Move back at least two spaces to start grad school. Land on […]

One Day, Disaster (Will McMillan)

Likely, the finch built its nest in the sprawling depths of a hemlock. Or spruce. Both are overly abundant in Oregon. Probably, the bird’s day began long before sunrise, scouring nearby shrubs and grasses for seeds, taking wing that late June afternoon, slicing through warm, coastal updrafts, then gliding its way over the narrow road […]

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