Graft

1 She rested comfortably after the surgery. Lifting her swollen, bandaged hand, she stared at it. She only had enough to pay for one graft, but it was a start. Beneath the tight gauze, the shoots pushed up from flesh. Twiny, barren branches that will one day bear fruit. 2 Mother promised to never let […]

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Into the Night, Into the Forest

The twigs snap and crackle in the fire and the pines moan. I hug myself and huddle close to the flames. I dread the night. The night holds secrets I fear.  I can see the trees now in the darkness, tall figures with branches looming against the gray sky. They look barren and foreboding. They […]

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Reverie

From Adam’s rib she came and out of the snake’s mouth she went. She has no regrets, not really, except that she hates the periods and misses her garden. On days when she is feeling less than herself, she remembers those long afternoons alone under the apple tree where she’d daydream while cool breezes blew […]

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Hush

We didn’t say nothing when we got on the bus. Just took our seats near the back and kept our mouths shut like Mama told us to. We didn’t know where they was taking us, but they never tell us nothing. Minny and them got took six months ago. Don’t nobody know where they went. […]

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Preacher and Me

We fled in the stolen truck, scattering dirt past the flat yellow onion field like an omen of death. We were desperate, hungry, in love.  We had $3.50 in change. What we gonna do now, Preacher? He stared at the road, dead-eyed like a shark.  The mountains in the distance turned blue and purple in […]

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Motherhood

“I’m telling you, he’s trying to kill me,” I cried. “Don’t be paranoid,” the nurse said, putting him back in my arms.  But I knew better––the bites on my nipples, the two sharp incisors that drew blood. The baby smiled up at me, eyes malevolent and full of hunger. 

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In the Shadows

The banging was coming from the attic. LaVonne climbed inside, hand shaking as she gripped the flashlight. She aimed the light over the cluttered junk, tossing shadows this way and that, her heart racing. Bang! The wind slammed the shutters. LaVonne laughed.  Something growled in the shadows.

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