231 August, 2016

local_library Poetry

map Macro-Fiction

Modern Love

Issue No. 231 ~ August, 2016

The slacks and sweater had to go. They made this woman in her young thirties look like a ’50s beatnik. She smiled mysteriously under her large nose. Her eyelids and eyebrows hung down at the corners, as though the laws of gravity were battling the forces of her inner enlightenment. Her otherwise even, white teeth had a distracting gap in front. But in spite of this grab-bag mixture of features, the entire package bubbled over, displaying a fusion of excitement and vivacity. Our attraction was magnetic.

The Relief

Issue No. 231 ~ August, 2016

We never went to doctors, no matter how much pain infected Mother. She hated them, feared they expedited the death of Pripyat’s abandoned people. She told me they wanted us dead. If we roamed by ourselves, they would kill us because we were contaminated. In public I was forbidden to say from where we came.

Friday Night Fights

Issue No. 231 ~ August, 2016

Harry cupped the back of her head to draw her to him, but she pulled away. Three boys were enough. She infuriated him by saying that once, but it was how she forced him to get a downpayment from his mother for the tract house in which they now lived, just across the highway from Trenton.

The Silent Letter

Issue No. 231 ~ August, 2016

I squirmed in my chair, already halfway out of it by the time she got to me. With both arms extended, I accepted the first English language book I’d ever held. Taking delicate steps, as if I were cradling a porcelain baby doll, I tiptoed back to my desk. I set the book down carefully and opened the cover to an illustration of a light-haired, blue-eyed family with three children, Dick, Jane, and little Sally. They looked nothing like any family in my Brooklyn neighborhood. More like the ones that smiled down on us from the sun-dazzled billboards we passed on trips up to the Catskill Mountains.