“...and upwards of 10,000 have died in a Goliath attack in Chicago. Exact numbers will be posted soon, as--” The newscaster put her hand to her ear. “This just in! Famous star, Jordan Culler, was recently convicted of peddling drugs across the border, and…”
now that he was crisply re-figured at a bus stop on the same gravel shoulder, now that he had earned the insignia, wore the uniform of red and gold, a gold peaked cap over still tangled hair, now that he was raised
She holds up plastic-wrapped wax lips, like the priest with communion, and places them in your bag. “To make you beautiful,” she says. You race home, fish the lips out from the boxes of Good & Plenty, rolls of Smarties, bags of Kisses, and rush to the bathroom.
I had been staring into the spiraling black hole of my drink, thinking about plunging inward, being torn apart by some unfathomable, gravitational blender, scattering my molecules like countless coffee grinds sprinkled into a mid-flush toilet.
On the way to school she took her usual long route to avoid the six girls who called her Fat Flo, Foul Flo and Slow Flo. But inside the classroom there was no avoiding the teacher who called her stupid when she couldn’t answer a question and numbskull when she gave the wrong answer.
His love of animals paradoxically started when he trained the revolver on the body of the dragonfly three or four feet away. His houseparent took him out and identified the target. He lowered the barrel of the weapon and aimed at the dragonfly’s glittery body perched motionless on the dried stalk.
I thought I would accompany my own body to the U.S. But after a couple of days, I found out I wasn’t going back. My family had instructed that I be cremated and disposed of in Australia. What? No big funeral? No family gathered all around.
As an individual with a connection, albeit tenuous, with the recent events in Athens, I have been asked to contribute my thoughts regarding the planning and construction of a parking facility within that city’s august citadel, as well as the subsequent collapse of the citadel itself.
“Karen? What are you doing? It’s 2 AM.” She hadn’t heard Frank come in, but by instinct had switched windows when he spoke. She stared at the spreadsheet on her screen. “Big project at work. I told you.”
Less than a second later the answer swooped down, a giant rust-colored hawk that snatched and carried off the hapless pigeon in a hallucinatory flash. But the moment was real, attested to by a few drifting feathers and talon marks in the crusted snow. You tried not to see it as an omen.
I’ve been ditched by more lovers now from more places than I can possibly remember. That song rings true: Aruba, Jamaica---ooh, why did you leave me---Bermuda, Bahama, come on pretty mama, Key Largo, Montego, and now Costa Rica.
Frank turned on the outside light and he and Jolene stepped out onto their patio and gazed at the crater. Jolene saw a future swimming pool; Frank saw Rusty swimming in the air, and he thought about his flying dream coming true.
Sometimes, her voices take over. Hip-bump her right out of the frame. Sometimes she’s aware of what’s going on when they’re out, and sometimes she’s got no idea it’s even happened until she’s back. There’s no rhyme or reason, really.
“Everybody has to stand up before it’s too late. Before they put a chip in everyone’s head. The CIA is behind Netflix, I guarantee it. Me and some other guys are on our way to the State House. I got something in my truck that will make them listen a little harder.”
Sinking into his sheets for a binge of nostalgia, his favorite drug, he indulges in a vivid montage; closing his eyes and pulling the comforter over his head, he thinks about his most memorable birthdays, back when he had hair and mornings weren’t physically painful.
One sloppy kiss melded into another as they passed me around like holy communion. Finally, Nick’s turn. A sudden freefall in my chest, like I forgot my homework. I pushed back my bangs and put on Dr. Pepper lip gloss.
We decided that this was becoming a problem and went to our local precinct to file a complaint. The sympathetic desk Sergeant informed us that since Donnigan had made no overt threats and we had no evidence that he was making the phone calls, there was nothing the police could do.
"Lizzie your life is too important to waste. I have spoken to John and he agrees that to give meaning to his sacrifice, we must continue the struggle in the Lord's name. Besides, the Queen has agreed to spare you if you stand on the scaffold by Saint Paul's Cross and confess that you did not realize the severity of what you were doing, that you were tricked."
Alfred and Eva’s charming summer cottage in Washington State burnt down one day, a small casualty among a wave of destruction as forest fires purged the western United States, leaving vast swaths of wasteland.
The pharmacy tech rattled loud on his unseen keyboard for a minute or so, and then stopped abruptly. He reached the paper back across the high counter, holding it down for Jason to take. His voice was a dry baritone, “I can’t refill this,” he said, matter of fact.
Chair Peterson seems careful to hedge his claims when speaking to you, making it clear, but also vague, and hence ambiguous that as an adjunct, your renewal as an instructor depends very much on whether or not your students do well [read: finish the course with an A].
Bacteria live and die quickly, and Al and Pressley scatter shot their way through recombinant genetic radiation experiments, trying to get the critters to survive long enough on a diet of polyurethane to reproduce.
Gazing through the glass I realised that what I had taken for gravel was in fact a mass of broken teeth, the silvery objects pieces of amalgam, fragments of old fillings half-buried among the shards of tooth enamel.
There is a strangeness to it, and I feel an utter distaste, the way the undergarments rustle and swish. Above the dresser is a mirror. I put on the hat and cover my short hair but leave a fringe that falls over my forehead. The mustache, I peel off and put in my pocket.
“I think about Dottie and Mara and Timmy all the time, even dreaming. It’s only when I can get pretty loaded, I forget. Dottie and Timmy have passed and Mara – she won’t have anything to do with me. I don’t think she even knows where I am. I don’t think she cares much.”
Since I’d always eschewed social media and had given no hint of my intentions to anyone, I knew there’d be puzzlement about my purpose. Had I come from some twisted ideology? A grudge against the club? People would look for a rationale that, however demented they’d deem it, was comprehensible to them.
A familiar woman dressed in black ran toward her car. When she was a few feet away, she leapt with a flying kick. Her Birkenstocks penetrated the rear window and collided with the assailant’s jaw, spinning his head like a demonic merry-go-round in a Stephen King novel.
Welcome to this special early edition of AM, which centres on the disappearance of the Prime Minister. He and his Agriculture Minister and his two security men failed to arrive at their destination of Murrayton after leaving Tambalong by car late last night.
I cleaned up the baby as best I could and wrapped him in clean pillowcases. I had often heard stories of abandoned babies left in the mosque where God would protect them until a good Muslim family would find and adopt them. And so I headed for the mosque and left the child just inside the entrance.
I know the sound is a gunshot because I have always been afraid of dying this way. I am in a classroom with my favorite English teacher and the rest of my class when I am shot in the back. I fall out of my chair and experience the worst fear I have ever felt in my life and then I am shot in the head.
Lloyd lay flat on his back, moaning, his arms and legs splayed. Blood trickled down one side of his face, his crazy eye open and jerking wildly as if he were scanning the night sky. He gurgled and blood bubbled up out of his mouth.
The odd fact is, The Fruit With No Stone doesn’t tell Alabama anything. The words can’t settle. Well, not at first. They don’t coalesce into meaningful ideas or musical poetry. They tease and tickle like the delicate paws of a tiny fox moving things around inside him.
“Englishman. Jamaican man. What’s the fucking difference? He is what he is. You’ve seen him, I’ve seen him. Bottom line—he just sounds weird. Uppity, better than the rest of us with that whatever-the-hell-it-is accent.”
He picked a pine tree because of how strong they are and how tall they can get. But the cholos didn’t like any of that. They would tell each other that it was corny and stupid, but really they felt threatened by the symbolism. Nothing good should be here, they would think, fuck life, fuck lames, fuck this tree.