PornMe2 by David Leo Rice

Before reading this sequel, it is highly recommended that you confer with the first installment of David Leo Rice’s all too prescient work, PornMe. The below work also appears in the print version of The Opiate, specifically Vol. 14. Poor Gribby’s on his last legs, so to speak, dying in the bathtub with the other Gribby standing over him, filming it all on his phone, uploading … Continue reading PornMe2 by David Leo Rice

Predators and Reapers by Matt Jones

1. The day stuck out for me because I discovered a sasquatch underneath the barracks. I investigated closely: this was not a military-issued sasquatch. He had wormed his way beneath the shower room, and was curled in the opposite corner from where the floor got soggy and sagged. As I shone the flashlight up and down his hulking body, dozens of greasy frogs hopped away … Continue reading Predators and Reapers by Matt Jones

“I’m Not Just Doing It For the Likes”: Does Writing Mean Anything If No One Sees It?

I once had an “s/o” who used to criticize me for, among other things, constantly feeling the need to publish my work (belittled to that still demeaning term, “blogging”) ad nauseum on all social media outlets. He would taunt and lord his superiority over me, remarking of his own writing, “I’m not just doing it for the likes,” as though to emphasize precisely how frivolous … Continue reading “I’m Not Just Doing It For the Likes”: Does Writing Mean Anything If No One Sees It?

A Permanent Cure for Sadness by Giovanna Pompele

Think red. Make it a balloon so big its red is deeper than a fresh running wound. A rich hemoglobic red. A red so deep and full Mondrian cries. Miró cries a little too. You have a red so red Mondrian, Miró and all the red specialists in the history of red are in tears. You don’t enjoy other people’s tears, of course not. You … Continue reading A Permanent Cure for Sadness by Giovanna Pompele

The Dead Mall: A Story for Roy Moore by David Leo Rice

I was as surprised as anyone when Marianne Martindale, our most famous and best-loved prosecutor, the only real somebody from our town full of nobodies, announced she was running for mayor. She was just the kind of candidate we needed, after the run of dweebs and bozos we’ve had as long as I’ve been living here, which is since the late 70s, when, come to … Continue reading The Dead Mall: A Story for Roy Moore by David Leo Rice

Kafka and Campari by Christoffer Felix Wahlberg

If nothing happens, it is not a story… x I pour myself a glass of Campari and consider taking ice from the freezer, but don’t. Campari with ice is for good moments. Warm, bitter Campari is for moments like these, when you lost something important. I need a better distraction. x You left me over soup. Not because of it, but during it. While I … Continue reading Kafka and Campari by Christoffer Felix Wahlberg

Revolutionary Road: Sometimes the Creepiest Books Are About Domesticity

In honor of Friday the 13th, that most holy of October holidays–perhaps even more so than Halloween–it’s only fitting to explore a “creepy read.” However, as far as The Opiate‘s definition of creepy is concerned, there can be no more terrifying novel than Richard Yates’ Revolutionary Road. Released in 1961, when it also won the National Book Award (pre-when women were dominating the list of … Continue reading Revolutionary Road: Sometimes the Creepiest Books Are About Domesticity

At Least the National Book Award Panel Doesn’t Think Women Are Useless

It’s been a bad week for women (want to pay for your own birth control, anyone?). Shit, a bad year. Surely you must know why. But one thing women can take comfort in this week is that the National Book Award panel of judges has seen fit to recognize female writers very noticeably on their list of finalists this year. Though we’ve always known the … Continue reading At Least the National Book Award Panel Doesn’t Think Women Are Useless