Displacement

By Elaine Cary Their mother had driven them out to their grandmother’s for the weekend, a trip usually reserved for Christmas day, but on occasion for a boyfriend crisis, where the only remedy was the wisdom of one’s own mother. Usually, their mother turned to Maggie during such plights. ”Us girls get each other,” She would say, and go on about complexities within relationships that Maggie did not get at all, though she pretended to.…

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I Wrote This Story to Prove My Best Friend Wrong

by Mathew Serback “Everyone is awful.” That’s a powerful statement. Think about all the possible things my best friend could’ve said instead: A specific person was awful; there was an established (or, possibly, unestablished) reason for the person’s awfulness (depending on your perspective), or no one was actually awful (which is still dependent upon your perspective), and we just misrepresent other people’s emotional states as an assumption of guilt instead of an assumption of innocence.…

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Bitter Pill

by Witney Dupree I regurgitate beliefs I was fed as a childand dangle them before the wide-open mind of my son.Not the fried chicken values and potato salad principlesI ate from checkered tablecloths on sunny afternoons.These kernels of untruth were wrapped in cheeseof stuffed inside the sticky center of a marshmallow.I wish my lips would swell shut from the bee stingwords swarming from the hive of my subconscious.Those cyanide phrases I don’t crack a tooth…

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What Doesn’t Belong

by Damon McLaughlin That sunrise there, what used to bethe Collombs’ corrals, another dump,this vague pasture of dawn-stubbleand bulb-of-my-nose, kitchen lightvirga over my flannel’s beige fields,this shirt older, softer than our marriage.Those darknesses of mesquite,our acacia, which weeps overgoldfish, Betta, hamster entombedin a toilet paper tube by little hands,the dogs I took someplace else.The Rincons rising moreslowly than you or I have come to know,Cowhead Saddle sagging like a deadhead horse, moon blind,ringboned, incapable of walking…

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