The Ekphrastic Review
The Painter is not Courageous
(Madame X, by John Singer Sargent)
I am the painting. I know what I will be before the artist lifts his brush. He thinks it’s the other way around.
The Poet and the Mortician
The mortician draws the sheet down. His unblemished skin—cold and alabaster—reflects a hunger. She must remain composed. The funeral director and his assistant are watching closely to gauge her ability. It’ll reveal itself in her face.
“Can you make him as he was in life?” [more…]
Light & Dark Magazine
Pray For Rain
(This piece was first runner up in their Fiction Contest)
She hears at her ragged blue shirt and lets the airless steam from strangers dampen her chest, her back, her thighs. The white tent trembles in the Wyoming haze and the collective heat of thirsty bodies vibrate with the redemptive pleas of desolation.
Leshko’s: Cold Pierogies, Warm Beer, Wish You Were Here
In a small, dilapidated kitchen, Harry – the lone cook – wrestles with the challenge of non-stop food preparation. Beefy with years of drink and remorse and beset by missed opportunities, he believes he’s destined for greater things. If only he could get out of here.
The “Jesus Loves Me” Pawn Shop Stories
The pearls had already seen much catastrophe. They were happy in the Jesus Loves Me pawn shop, reclining on navy velvet. Serene. No pressure to perform. Their previous owner navigated her life rather tragically.
The Parliament Literary Journal “MANIA Issue”
God Grooms Assholes
The Quandary of Breath
He’s been told breath is the key since it comes from his gut but now, its shallow reserves only make him weak. I breathe for both of us and squander the silence I need to bed his chaos. He is Odysseus, lured to cryptic shores by his inner lyre promising both respite and extinction.
Madville Publishing “Runaway Anthology”
Iris with Mermaids
“The mermaids watch over Iris and me.” It’s one of the only coherent sentences in the entire journal. My mother’s fragmented notes appear before me even when I close her journal and shove it to the back of my closet. The journal is a talisman I believe, something I can’t discard for fear of the consequences.
That was the first time I told my mother I wished she would die. Fists clenched, teeth gritted, I braced for the retaliation. It didn’t come. She lifted her head and stared at the wall. Beautiful, huge yellow and white daises spread out over an inky background…
The Tyranny of Patriotism
“God bless America” long ago entered the American political lexicon as an indispensable slogan. It portends hope—the idea that everyone has a fair chance to achieve success and solvency in a nation that is “blessed.” But as millions of Americans are aware, this is a myth.
*Now defunct quarterly print magazine that covered human rights, politics, and conflict.
The Fabulist Words & Art
““People are being used up. A little bit here, a little bit there — not enough to disable you, but enough to eat away at you….I never believed it could be this easy to annihilate people’s fortitude,
to strip them of their consciousness. Evidently, it’s quite simple.
“Open 24 Hours” is the only promise they need.”