Nighttime at Tree Level

[fiction] It’s getting dark and my arms are crawling with goosebumps. My butt is pretty much asleep at this point too, which makes it nearly impossible to get comfortable in this here stupid tree. The branch I’m on is like Mom’s eggshell mattress topper only the eggshells are more like little rocks. Like sitting on […]

The Scent of Laila Thorinson

I want them and there is no turning back. I won’t leave without them. I make sure no one is around before selecting the red one. I ease my hand into my pocket and finger the pen until it drops through a hole that feeds into the lining of my coat. Green, blue, gold, and purple follow. I consider taking the orange but I can’t decide. I stop. I walk calmly to the sketchbook section and pretend to browse. …

Birthday Party

[fiction] The gravel churns under the wheels of the boxed-up Peugeot, the sound falling behind them into a quiet that exists where cities do not. Abbey checks her hair with her fingers. She’s learned how to turn it in a twist and secure it behind her head, letting chunks fall from the barrette and tickle […]

Creeping Jenny

[fiction] To the person who took my GOLDEN CREEPING JENNY PLANT at 2:13 a.m., I saw you on our lawn! That plant was a memory of my mother. I can’t bring her back but you can bring back my plant. We’ll leave the windows unwatched tonight so you can return it without shame. DO THE […]

Househeld

[fiction] All the food is kept in the house kitchen. Yon and I, like all the kids but Symboline, aren’t allowed to go there. Symboline, the oldest of us all, brings out bread for children who’ve been nicest to her and flicks crumbs at the others. After she saw our first kiss the other week, […]

Car 393

[fiction] Part I Elsie Wood, Stenographer, Age 19 Late The sun’s long gone when I pull on my woolen coat, set my hat on my head, dash outside for the trolley, late, and I can only hope I haven’t missed the car that will get me to Washington Street on time to get the next […]