Romantic Dinner by Chris Burke

I cleaned your cat’s puke again today,the beige chunks fused into our matwhile she gobbled down the rest. Remember when that made me  retch? To eat one’s molten sick.The way her body pumped it outlike the devil’s song, all heave and ho from gut to throat to floor. One time, my shoe. A fur machinefor summoning Beelzebub. Better out than in? “Better in than out.” For you, it was … Continue reading Romantic Dinner by Chris Burke

An Elderly Lady Is Up to No Good (Nor Should She Be): You’ll Think Twice About Your Write-Off of Old Women After Reading Helene Tursten’s Tale of Intrigue

Preconceived notions are, of course, the unfortunate backbone that makes this world go hastily ‘round. It’s what saves us all time and effort when it comes to actually scratching beneath the surface of things. While a bittersweet reality of life, stereotyping is a lazy human phenomenon that works to eighty-something Maud’s advantage. For she is the eponymous “elderly lady” in Helene Tursten’s An Elderly Lady … Continue reading An Elderly Lady Is Up to No Good (Nor Should She Be): You’ll Think Twice About Your Write-Off of Old Women After Reading Helene Tursten’s Tale of Intrigue

Choke Talk by Mary Shanley

Frankie smokes on the flyoutside the Duane Reade store,where she works as a cashier.Every break and lunch hour,Frankie pulls on a Camelnon-filter; her head lowered,as if shame accompaniedevery inhale. I tried to figure Frankie’s age.with her slight black figureand defeat etched into the lines on her face, Frankie looks older than language. When I stop for a quick, “Hello,”Frankie attempts to speak. Shebarely has enough oxygen to … Continue reading Choke Talk by Mary Shanley

Aisne-Marne American Cemetery/Cimetière Américain, Belleau, France by Michael Catherwood

For P.J. Catherwood, MIA, July 21, 1918 A universe sinks into the hills,a vacuum of sunlight spreads like hair.Words form in mouths and suspendin mist. Trees shiver beyond the stonewalls where empty worlds are loud as thunder.            What years these,a decade ending with a paper savior ablaze? The sky’s flak crawls like clouds across the countryside.A rain falls and dry earth swallows the dimples left there. Continue reading Aisne-Marne American Cemetery/Cimetière Américain, Belleau, France by Michael Catherwood