Read

“Dark Sun”, “confessing” and “nag, stone”

In Poetry Issue Seven by Frank Heather

An existential fear of unknowing in Heather’s poems is made most explicit in “Dark Sun,” but it is also present in “nag, stone” and “confessing,” irrespective of the irony. Named: “this terror towards time” and “the swirling chaotic mystery of my past.”

Read

“Drowning”, “Forms” and “Odysseus”

In Poetry Issue Seven by Theresa Ryder

The transient nature of life is nowhere more keenly perceived as in Ryder’s poem “Forms.” The irony is obvious: “When I die the world will stop spinning,” and then this: “I will be a form, a shape, a number, a colour, a sound.” A transitory traveller.

Read

My Three Sons

In Short Story Issue Seven by g emil reutter

Their mother is proud and calls them her famous sons on television no less. Except: Billy and Danny are videotaped stripping the renovated church, whereas Jacob absconds with the wad of cash leaving his brothers to pay for the crime.

Read

Deathbed Wedding

In Short Story Issue Seven by Robin Vigfusson

After her mother’s death, Gretchen gets a call from Miguel inviting her to retrieve her mother’s possessions. When she visits, she notices new wallpaper and a Persian rug. But she sees something else—an unexpected insight into her mother’s next life.

Read

The Foxhole in the Front Yard

In Short Story Issue Seven by John Sarmiento

Gen chased insurgents, rode Humvees across Iraq, peeled walls with the .50 caliber machine gun. Once when he got back home he grabbed his pregnant wife Karen to dig a foxhole in the front yard and she wants mangoes in the morning.

Read

A Tale or Two

In Short Story Issue Seven by James Ewen

Around a tiki bar in Ecuador, visitors from Germany, Canada, Texas, and California recount their travelogues, holding forth for hours on end. And then there is the reticent Scotsman who sees a new tale beginning—in the surf’s retreating tide.

Read

Signs

In Short Story Issue Seven by Macy DeBosier

Mark Krainin disappeared ten years ago. Signs went up: Tommy Luna, Dorothy Copewell, Andrea Whitman, Justin Kint, and Edith Maynard. Ash Denton talks to them and everyone thinks he has lost his mind. And then it happens.

Read

Fake Names

In Short Story Issue Seven by Daniel Bartkowiak

Adenocarcinoma lines his lungs; not what Richard wants to hear. He plays the tape of his father on the ledge, in the air, plunging seven floors down. Richard wonders if he himself had “always been falling and only now looked down.”

Read

Moonlight

In Short Story Issue Seven by Mie Astrup Jensen

On a blank page a poetic story is told about the woman who finds her light in the moon amid the darkness and solitude; who opens like a flower; who is timeless and makes your heart beat faster. You want to hold her and never let her go. Who is she?

Read

Motherhood, Ambition

In Essay Issue Seven by Claire Robbins

Robbins didn’t know herself before she was a mother at twenty, but she was determined to know herself as an adult. This is her story about the tension between motherhood and ambition, and how she didn’t allow ambition to lose.

Read

To Love the Graveyard

In Essay Issue Seven by Emily Rae Roberts

What is there about a graveyard to love? Families who visit? Animals that find shelter? “The silence of a thousand talking graves”? Emily Roberts explores those stories behind the stones.

Read

Miss Julie

In Short Story Issue Seven by Joy Manné

This is a tale about Nora’s mother Julie who has dementia and resides in Butterfly Residence. But it is also about the underside of the small town of Long River—a colony founded by women who had escaped brutal husbands.

Read

The Games People Play

In Short Story Issue Seven by Maria Savva

Penny, Elayna, Loulla, Sally—women Lucas juggles to make up for “the dread of humiliation that followed Olivia’s betrayal.” Even after he gets caught, he can always rely on Paris and Delphine, and maybe Debbie too.

Read

Messy

In Novel Excerpts / Novella Issue Seven by Robert Hilles

1989
On a bright, crisp day in early October, he sped up Archie’s recently paved road and stopped inches from the twin-bay garage. He opened the driver’s door of his 1985 Chevy half-ton and swung his bad leg out first and leaned heavily on his cane.
Inside the garage, his brother stood stooped over a V-8 engine. At the sight of Moss, he dropped a piston into a valve cover and wiped his hands on a soiled cloth.
“There’s been a fire. Clara’s burned pretty bad,” Moss said, when Archie was close enough he smelled grease and dirty engine oil.

Read

Ouijust Playin

In Short Story Issue Six by Steven D. Jackson

Coaxed by his roommate to attend a séance where Simon, the special guest, leads seven participants on the Ouija board, the narrator goes through rapid-fire emotions as he and Simon connect in a paranormal drama.

Read

Gifts

In Short Story Issue Six by Mona Houghton

Jacqui teaches AP English at a Catholic school and her curriculum is more radical than Father Glenn likes. She loses her hat—a precious gift from Aunt Gwen—on the day Joseph brilliantly elucidates Thoreau. The hat is gone but Joseph’s eyes are brimming.

Read

“All Things Scarlet”, “From Primrose Hill” and “Untold Miles”

In Poetry Issue Six by Carter Vance

Vance drapes “All Things Scarlet” in allusions—colloquial or personal—and metaphors intersect what is linear. In “From Primrose Hill,” the poet concretizes the poem in landscape imagery: “post-war tenement/brick ways, ” “many-wandered fields.” Metaphor reigns in “Untold Miles” in the first three stanzas but focuses on the “not-quite-lovers in the last.

Read

“The New Adventures Of”, “Opa” and “When”

In Poetry Issue Six by Chaya Bhuvaneswar

Like a page from a memoir in “The New Adventures of,” the poet rejects her father’s rants and repulses an arranged marriage. A similar feat is fulfilled line by poetic line in “Opa,” the poet having found a fire-opal, “no opal omen of/ruin.” And in “When,” the poet pleas for racial justice and names the names, “Book of remembrance, book of tears.”

Read

“The Dead Wall of Silence”, “Pieces” and “Scratching Out Earth”

In Poetry Issue Six by Mark McCreary

In “The Dead Wall of Silence” the poet alludes to a partition against the backdrop of “sheep/and suckled cattle” in atypical dimeter and trimeter feet. In “Pieces,” he is not done with the fracturing: “Actual actions of schisms,” “splintered spectators,” “absolute absence”—just pieces. And in “Scratching Out Earth,” the poet faithfully renders the title in imagistic verse.