Plummeted through billowing gold and orange smoke while her moon face, far below me, slumbered on. Kneeling over me next morning, her hair drew long curtains around us. The dragon tattoo on her back; I never told her it had woken up. He keeps it in a tobacco tin, takes pinches of it between fingers stubby and stained, calloused from years spent gripping tools. Your father sniffs at time, drawing in through nostrils a long while.
He closes his eyes against the decreasing seconds. He gifts you these moments. Just for you to hear his lungs breathing in and out. Knowing him, for that time. He ran out of time in an ocean rip. His final breath, when I was only eleven, was salt. She writes, reads, and teaches writing. For their anniversary, she bought him a runcible spoon and served them manchego cheese with quince. Then everything will be okay.
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Her debut flash fiction pamphlet is forthcoming from V. We rolled as we fed our babies, rolled between stirs of meatless stew.
We perched on streetcorners and sold our cigarettes to passers-by who never said hello, who looked not at our faces but at our fingers stained tobacco brown. Her great grandparents immigrated to the US from Poland, and lived for a time in the area known as Polish Hill in Pittsburgh.
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Double fatality — the morning after by Fiona Lincoln, New Zealand. A high window is ajar. Warm air sways the net curtain. Edward sits tall on the sill, stripes aligned and paws clean under his thin tail, perfectly curled.
His face is arranged: disdain, tinged with sorrow. Croon his name. Overfill his empty bowl. Mid-morning, Edward breaks his pose. He slips under the curtain, downstairs, and outside. He lies, full stretch, across the hot front path. Fiona Lincoln is a New Zealand writer. She lives and works. She also writes. The janitors blend bleach with water. They spray kitchens, remove perishables from fridges and shelves.
They systematize sugar, salt, hydrogenated fat. Wait until teeth rot and tumors grow and blood turns toxic. They gut schools and drain the Internet of truth. Handle money in exchange for pills. Wait again, scrubbing, scouring, then handle houses in exchange for naught. They declutter streets, parks, beaches. Wipe out resistance.
Collect the crippled and sling them over walls, dump them onto plastic boats. Burn the dead. All finished, the janitors wash their hands and lean back, admiring their dirt-free home. Claire Polders is a cynical optimist seeking balance in contradictions. Born in the Netherlands, she now resides in Paris with her American husband. Her virtual self lives at www.
In Biology, Ms. Simpson paired each one of us with a boy for every microscope, in the name of symmetry. We learned the rules of cell multiplication and its phases, while boys performed their mating dances. On tables covered in fake leather, our bodies learned the feel of the cold loop, arresting proliferations in our wombs. We remembered the cells on the illuminated end of the magnifying glass, frozen mid-mitosis. We chanted our anthem— the rules of division.
Katie tried to forget, but it crept around the edges of her thoughts, like black ink moving through tissue paper. No one had seen her take the money, Katie was sure. Who would believe the accusation of a batty old woman? And the curse? Only words — they have no power. She lives in Christchurch, where she enjoys writing and taking photographs.
See more of both on her website: www. Belinda ate when she was happy, ate when she was sad. To find a lover, Belinda tried dieting. She called the Atkins Diet the Fatkins Diet.
Sue Copsey, Editor in Auckland, New Zealand | Reedsy
That made her friends laugh. She said the Dr Hay Diet made her a little hoarse. They laughed more. And fell roundly in love with Barry, a man generous in every way.
They lived large and died happy. Their pallbearers shed pounds. John Holland is a prize-winning short fiction writer from Gloucestershire in the UK, who likes to take his stories on the road. He also runs the twice-yearly event Stroud Short Stories. Websites www. The river is no longer in flood; the savage roar muted. We take our girl to show her the threat is gone. No need for more nightmares, we say. Vivienne Merrill lives in Lower Hutt. She prefers the sea to the river, which is full of guile: greedy for foolish people.
I thought nothing in life would happen to me if I was not sometimes still. He flicked away the tick, and I wondered how long it would take to turn to dust. I had recently received an email from an old boyfriend who wrote in a friendly way, as if he had not been a bad boyfriend.
Read the story being discussed on Jesse Mulligan’s show on Radio New Zealand on 19 April 2018
The man led me to the sink. I watched the blood swirl down the drain. He touched my calf where the tick had gone in. Just to do it. Delicate vapour strands split from the glowing cigarette tip, coiling upwards. Fog hovers over the packed ashtray on the bedside table. His voice rumbles, mine wheezes out the words. With care the father places his three children on the sofa, legs ram-rod straight.
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