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Where Boys Play Baseball

Issue 47 by Thomas Weedman

All the cars are gone except for two. Fearing he’s been left behind or got the day wrong, the leggy Catholic-school boy with blue eyes and string-cheese hair limps up to the dirt lot in tattered Chuck Taylors and a sweaty panic. It’s Wednesday, August 13, 1975, and a hundred degrees.

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Unpacking Mother

Issue 47 by Margaret Sayers

Brigitte could not remember a time before the suitcase flanked the front door on the right, opposite the coat closet to the left. Just like the faded floral wallpaper, the yellowed silhouettes of the stair-step Schmidt sisters, and the frosted glass sconces in the foyer, no one even seemed to notice the weathered hard-shell Samsonite anymore.

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Living Memories

Issue 47 by Jamila Minnicks Gleason

“Start that over, Tiny Bit,” says Grandmama as she waves an unsnapped green bean at my laptop. “And turn it up for me.”
My finger is still hovering over the touchpad when a wave of crisp, staccato horns crests and crashes from the speakers, receding into violins cascading
down,
down,
into a churning drumroll before that voice smooths the way and invites us to meander a piece down a lazy river.

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Good With Birds

Issue 47 by E. Farrell

When we were young, my brother Jim once tried to mail a pigeon – a live pigeon, friends – to his girlfriend. There it is. A week or two before school resumed for what was to be his junior year, he had captured it under a laundry basket in an alley behind our house near where the garbage cans dwelt at the rear of the garage. Over much pecking and scratching, Jim had managed to band a love note around one of its legs

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The Book of Dragonflies and Nana-Wai’s Garden

Issue 47 by Alpheus Williams

The fat gibbous moon is hours away from dropping beneath the curved horizon. Under that fat moon Nana-Wai glides through her garden, ghostlike. She’s old and there’s not as much of her as there was when she was younger. Her cotton shift, thinned with age and wear, like gossamer wafts in the breeze. It’s as if she is floating. Stiff bones and muscles find grace.

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A Doctor in the House

Issue 47 by Jean Ende

My mother tucked the phone receiver between her shoulder and her ear, lit a cigarette and simultaneously dialed Aunt Rachel’s number.
I left home several years ago, but I’ve overheard enough of these phone calls to be able to recount this conversation. While they lived only two blocks apart and neither of them worked outside the home, my mother and my Aunt Rachel found enough drama in their lives to need to speak to each other every day.

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Ritual for a New Chief

Issue 46 by Miranda McPhee

Eight men stood in a loose group on the edge of the Nubava atoll swinging wide their arms and slapping their leathery brown torsos in the cool air as they waited for the first glimmer of the sun. Thirty feet out, a horseshoe of small boats bobbed up and down, weighted fishing nets strung down between them to create a barrier against the open sea.

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Tête-à-Tête

Issue 46 by Stan Werlin

Debra is at the cemetery again reading to Martin’s dead wife. She reads the kinds of literature Martin says Annika enjoyed before the brain tumor: children’s books, the poetry of Robert Frost and James Dickey, novels of psychological suspense. Her startling enunciation, musical and evocative, lifts the words into the air where they linger like butterflies hovering in mid-flight, her rich, clear soprano a storyteller’s gift.

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The Hay is in the Barn

Issue 46 by William Cass

I’m sixty-two years old. Like most my age, I suppose, there are a number of things I regret. For some reason, one occupies a particular place for me. It’s not the most significant or memorable in my life, or even very notable in and of itself. But, when I think of it, something different falls in me, something irretrievable.

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My Trieste

Issue 46 by Pamela Hartmann

When I woke up, I knew it was an emergency room. This was back in 1958, and it looked like scenes in Young Dr. Kildare on Million Dollar Movie.
“Take it easy, Kiddo,” I heard my father say, as I tried to sit up. He was hunched on a stool next to my bed, with an unlit cigarette clenched in the corner of his mouth.

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The Last of the Dinosaurs

Issue 46 by Anna Persky

Jay Rowland died on May 5, 2020. His name was listed between Olga Masterson and Stefan Stuart in a Herald News story entitled, “Area Nursing Homes Ravaged by Coronavirus.”

Jay’s nickname was “Dog Ears.”

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Ether

Issue 46 by T.D. Calvin

December 1990
She heard Ruth lock the front door behind them. In the hall Fiona caught the smell of varnish, a hint of juniper and that human odour of someone else’s home. It felt like warmth was barred from leaving, winter kept outside and the rest of her evening secure in the heat of those rooms. She set her bag down and Ruth helped her out of her coat without offering – her friend never waited for permission to be considerate.

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Marrying Up

Issue 44 by Nicole Jeffords

Frances first saw Jack in the winter of 1947 at a debutante party. He was with a blond-haired girl whom Frances later found out was his cousin, and who left him alone for most of the evening.

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Follow Me

Issue 44 by Brian Schulz

At first Lindsay thought the beat-up F150 and overloaded U-Haul trailer parked in front of her brother’s building belonged to Northeastern students moving out, but then she recognized the old oak drop-leaf table wedged precariously on the back.

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In Simple Terms

Issue 44 by Mark Mrozinski

Viola.
She sits still in the café, thinking about his words. How can he do this to her, to them? She watches Jeff’s eyes looking for a tear—something, but there is nothing, not a clue his heart is suffering. She thought he loved her.

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A Journey Together

Issue 44 by Hasan Abdulla

Roland Harris felt as though the wind was piercing through his grey woollen overcoat, one April day, when the sky was overcast with clouds that seemed to threaten to pour down rain onto Kings Cross Station and its surroundings.

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The Path to Enlightenment and the Crazy Yogi

Issue 44 by Kabir Mansata

The city of Calcutta lights up in the month of December, especially for the bourgeois families. There is a social event every evening and bars and country clubs are filled with patrons eating and drinking copiously, dancing till dawn, and overall having a gala time.

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When He Was One

Issue 44 by Kathleen Siddell

Shortly after the funeral, (whether it was days or weeks, she couldn’t say), Helen found a small jar containing six dead yellow jackets at the foot of Harry’s unmade bed. When she asked, Harry told her, “Bees can see faces…”

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