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Editors’ Picks

The Boy with One Eye

If someone calls you insane or dissident or strange, it is just that they are half blind

Once, a boy was asked by his mother, what he wanted to become in his life. He said—a writer. The mother laughed. But seeing the boy’s expressions firm and eyes in flames, she said; “Well, you sure, that is what you want to do? Writers are all insane. They always smoke and drink. They live with many women. They are nasty creatures and governments hunt them.” The boy looked sad. And...Read On

Editor's Pick

Carried Too Long

Been there, done that, dare not go back!

Allowing myself to misplace reality's grip. Dwelling yet again in the past, feeling dismay. Into the bottomless depths of darkness I slip. Why could life not have been a different way? Trying to regain clarity, not where I want to be. Descending to the abyss, luminosity fading fast. Not fearing the dark, but the demons awaiting me. Been here many times, heart stressed, mind aghast. ...Read On

Editor's Pick

Storybook Lovers

So few words, for so much passion ....

My storybook lover is romantic, he would never hurry his sweetheart in a love scene, but tonight I want him to... "Make love to me, darling. In one hundred words or less." "Micro fiction?" "Yes." "Get your skirt off then." I begin slowly undoing the buttons on my... "Just do it, don't describe it." "It has to be sexy." "But you're using all the words up!" "Don't shout at me." ...Read On

Editor's Pick

After the Revenge

After violently avenging the murder of his family, a man questions his own morality.

The question was whether I should kill him very slowly or just slowly. He was sitting on the ground badly injured after his fall. His back was propped up against the base of a large rock. I kept my revolver aimed at his chest. I was standing about ten feet away. “Ya gotta be hubbie, right?” he asked. “Cause ya sure don’t look like no cop or ranger.” “Yes,” I responded. “I’m the husband.” ...Read On

Editor's Pick


Sometimes it take cries in the night to interrupt a long held silence.

Nobody said it would be easy. She just didn’t expect it’d be this hard. The clock ticks the hours, the minutes, the seconds, and with each passing minute of daylight, she sighs deeply and braces for the screams. Her husband’s arrival carries with it simultaneous relief and anguish for she knows he, too, fears the minutes, the hours, the untold time that will pass tonight, and the...Read On

Editor's Pick


It would be a much darker world without choice.

A female has moved into my territory, a healthy young blonde, ripe for breeding and bearing good child. She could be my mate, once I've captured her, subdued her and proved my worth as her man. Sounds easy enough, but this female is small, flighty and quick. One stray sound and she's off like the wind, racing through shadows to seek cover amongst the ruins and rubble. I've no hope of...Read On

Editor's Pick

Lynette's World

The World of Light and Dark

Lynette Baxter was born a beautiful child with light brown hair and blue eyes as most babies are, one of thousands born that same day. Not an unusual birth, except, of course, to her parents who were completely enthralled with her arrival. She was a cute normal baby. If she had stayed that way who knows what would have happened or wouldn't have happened. Lynette advanced normally through...Read On

Editor's Pick

The Fantastic Voyage of Bellingham Sam

Viewed through rose-colored glasses, it turned into the perfect family vacation...

Coffee. What Sam needed was coffee. He was a walking zombie, desperate for caffeine. It was a condition of his own making, he had to admit, since he was the one who'd wanted to drive on their family vacation instead of flying. And so they had spent more than 40 percent of their holiday — two days down and two days back — stuffed into a Hyundai Sonata, a car which seemed roomy enough during...Read On

Editor's Pick

Grand Canyon Homecoming

As I looked out at the views that we passed, something looked vaguely familiar. . .

Vacations were far and few between for this family, so when Daddy had a chance to take one, he jumped at it. I cannot remember the last time we took one. But then again, I am only eleven. I was sitting in the back seat of our old beat up jet black Volvo Station Wagon with my little brother. He was licking his cherry lollipop and his lips were red because he played with it more than sucked it....Read On

Editor's Pick


vacation should be about being together

“The play is the thing!” and there we were. Lights dim. The orchestra being itself. The actors being someone entirely different. All was as it should be. The moment was perfect. A mini-vacation.... the first outing since the funeral. Nearly grown children sitting one on either side of me. The Godspell of Stephen Schwartz provided laughter along with quiet moments. ...Read On

Editor's Pick

He Had Blue Eyes

That summer, it was too hot. We didn’t have a thermometer, and even if we had, the little red lines and numbers wouldn’t have meant much to me. But I knew that it wasn’t normal. It couldn’t be. By the time the church clock struck ten it was already too stifling to venture outside. The sun had swelled to an angry pulsing ball of fire which I had come to regard as evil, lancing my eyes with...Read On

Editor's Pick


She spent all evening carefully sorting out the pieces. Border pieces went in one pile, sky blue in another, darker pieces in a third. Afterwards, content with her progress, she crawled into bed, clutching Rabbit, her one remainder of childhood, to her chest, and drifted off into an uneasy sleep. In the other room, the jigsaw shifted, pieces inching slowly from one pile to the...Read On

Editor's Pick

No More Games

Vinny hates playing games, but Alice keeps trying anyways.

“Let’s play!” she says to me, tugging at my hand. I shake my head, planting my feet firmly and yanking my arm free from her slim fingers. Alice frowns at me, before shrugging and running towards the large playground. Alice always asks me to play with her, but I never go; instead, I go sit next to the large brick wall with my book. I don’t read though, just pretend to. Instead, I watch...Read On

Editor's Pick

True Inheritance

A tale of family, and of finding one's Truth.

I can't let myself think about him. The sun is shining down on my pale back for the first time in days. A black butterfly with white spots is dancing around in the light breeze delighting in the day and inviting me to join in. But he comes to me unbidden. His face. His walk. His presence. His. Him. Breath in. Breath out. He is my past. Any chance of a future with him is gone. Chloe...Read On

Editor's Pick

Of War and Peace and Mary Beth

Tired of war, he wanted life, peace, and Mary Beth

The smiling, long legged brunette in the photo leaned against the door of a familiar car. One hand held a set of keys against her freckled cheek while the other seemed to toy with the unfastened snapof impossibly skimpy white shorts. In between, an unbuttoned olive-drab, US Army fatigue shirt was spread just wide enough to give a teasing peek at the swell of her firm young breasts. The...Read On

Editor's Pick

Larry’s Second Chance

A near death experience and a sarcastic show-biz bumblebee give a man a second chance at life.

“You’re asking me how it’s going?” I said incredulously. “How can you ask me that? I’m paralyzed and I’m dying, for god’s sake!” “Well you don’t have to be sarcastic!” came the response. “And besides, you’re not dead…..yet. By the way, my name is Waldo. Nice to meet you.” Waldo flew over my head singing ‘Getting to know you…..getting to know all about you…..’ I learned later that he...Read On

Audio version available
Editor's Pick

First Run of the Day

The first downhill run of the day would stay with Amanda forever.

First Run of the Day Amanda started to move forward on her skis. She crested the brow of the slope, feeling a rush of excitement and power flow through her as she gained confidence and speed. The run was difficult, steep, dangerous and hers, only hers. Soon she was accelerating, flying along, the world a blur around her. It felt as though she were being lifted in the air, literally...Read On

Editor's Pick

Ride Across The River

One man rights a wrong with a wrong - or does he?

Ride Across the River I heard her start to cry as soon as the door closed behind me. It didn’t make me feel any better. Maybe I didn’t know what all this was doing to her? What I did know was that whilst I was waiting in the middle of Tiger Bay for Eddie, Mary-Anne was crying behind the closed door. Nevertheless, she had to understand that this was the only way for me, I knew nothing...Read On

Editor's Pick

Silent Screams

There is no one I can talk to About the pain I’ve buried deep inside, No one who would understand. So I have summoned all my courage To sustain me as I bare my soul to you today. I did everything I was taught to do. I never spoke to strangers, I stayed indoors when it got dark. I never rode the train alone, Nor ventured into the park at night.   But no one warned me about you. They...Read On

Audio version available
Editor's Pick

Better Than You

It's inevitable, it seems, to encounter someone like this along life's journey...

Hello, I'm new here. I am better than you. I'm smarter and kindlier — Cleverer too! You're stupid - you're snooty - You're unworthy of my precious time. As for me, it's plain to see: I'm magnificent and sublime! While I am Secretariat, Or perhaps Seattle Slew, The rest of you, a sorry lot, Are destined to become glue. This may seem rather blunt, But that's just how I am. If...Read On

The Celebration of sound

The gig

Music-lovers stand jam-packed in the arena Surrounded by my musical family of all creeds, races, and ages Differences discarded like last season’s fashions Jubilation spills forth in grins matched like handbags to shimmering eyes Airborne snippets of snatched conversation propagate like viruses ‘Did you hear?’ ‘First time in years…’ ‘Oh My God!’ ‘Thought they split up…’ Grows into...Read On

Editor's Pick

The Birthday Party

An aging woman throws a birthday party for her husband...

She did this every year, so the call came as no surprise. In fact, I had been expecting it for the last few days. The only surprise was that it took so long. I was sitting with my wife having our coffee after dinner when the phone rang. As I got up to answer, my wife gave me a knowing glance but did not say a word. It was as if we both knew instinctively. “Hello.” I started into the phone,...Read On

Editor's Pick

Chasing butterflies

I always have this feeling that I’m chasing something. Something that makes me happy, maybe even makes me complete. Something beautiful like a butterfly that sits on a daisy when I walk through a deserted corner of the park on a sunny afternoon in spring. The butterfly sits peacefully surrounded by the white petals. I stand still and look at it. It looks so beautiful that it makes me smile and...Read On

Editor's Pick


The horrors and rewards of child minding.

If I do fail my exams I could get a job in a nursery looking after little kids, I'd like that and it's one of the few things I'm good at. My neighborhood child minding services are in demand, and now I'm receiving requests from mothers I haven't even met. You can't beat word of mouth as a recommendation and it's by far the best form of advertising. Mind you, it's definitely toddlers I prefer...Read On

Editor's Pick

Sonnet for The Silent City

An evocation of summer.

  The noon-time silence is complete, As sleepy felines laze replete On antique terracotta tiles And in doorways of many styles. Warmly the polished granites glow, Gone is the human ebb and flow, Only the shadows, dark and deep, Across the city slowly creep. Breezes languish, the leaves are still; Here is imposed a mighty will That lulls the empty streets...Read On

Audio version available
Editor's Pick

The Raft

Memories of summer can last forever

"I can't!" My voice, high and strident, carries out across the water. "Sure you can; come on, try." My sister's voice, low and calm, comes to me clearly. "No, I can't." "But you did last year." Last year. Perhaps. But this is now, and I know I cannot do it. I don't answer her. "Come on, just try." Still no answer. "Do you want me to come and get you?" My teeth are chattering together...Read On

Editor's Pick

Neon Sign

A bit dark...I know, I know...it is in part the precursor to Elizabeth Duncan...

I guess I really can’t blame them. How could they be expected to know the truth, When all they see is some well-rehearsed smile, That I have been putting on in the morning, Like a clean shirt. I think I have it down to a science, I’ve been doing it for so long. I’ve polished my act to where I almost fool myself sometimes, Yet at times the sadness slips through to the world. My mother asked me...Read On

Editor's Pick

We had a fight today

Abuse - I never know what to put in these

You hit me again today It was over an unwashed plate It stung and my face throbbed My teeth hurt where they had chattered hard together I said nothing and went to my room to cry You grabbed me by my hair today And pulled me around the room Because you had a bad day Vicious in your malice You took your anger out on me You whipped me with your belt today Slashing and thrashing until I...Read On

Editor's Pick


A lullaby is sung to a baby. As the child grows he begins to appreciate its meaning and power.

The click of the light switch focussed his attention and he bobbed back to the surface of consciousness. Soft, retreating footfalls. A whispered kiss. The baby opened his eyes. A gentle glow illuminated the room to his left and his gaze, seeking comfort, was naturally drawn there. He was warm, full, content, sleepy, and yet still expected something more. The familiar beaming face...Read On

Audio version available
Editor's Pick

We Shall Never Forget (9-11 Tribute)

Recalling the better aspects of humanity on that day...the heroes...

Let the world always remember, That fateful day in September, And the ones who answered duty's call, Should be remembered by us all. Who left the comfort of their home, To face perils as yet unknown, An embodiment of goodness on a day, When men's hearts had gone astray. Sons and daughters like me and you, Who never questioned what they had to do, Who by example, were a source of hope,...Read On