FICTION 

Animal Farm

There’s been another shooting, and now the birds call for revolution, refusing to fly and walking everywhere, causing traffic jams. Their shit fills the streets instead of decorating rooftops, cars, and people’s heads. Squirrels shut down Brooklyn Bridge in protest. Rats congregate on the White House lawn to plot the best points of entry. We’re tired of being your fucking metaphors, they shriek. Read more at Pidgeonholes

Medusa Gets a Girlfriend

(Wigleaf’s 50 top very short fictions, 2017)

She smells of olives and honey every time she passes me in the temple, her long fingers lightly grazing mine. Like crushing on the cool girl, I’m not allowed to speak to her or even look her in the eye. She calls me servant in public but once, by the river, mouthed lover when she saw me—a virgin acolyte serving a virgin goddess. You play by house rules. Seventh-grade rules, which change depending on who has the best Instagram. When the sea god tells me to hold still and runs his hand through my hair, I obey. His other hand parts my knees and slowly spiderwalks up the length of bare leg until I whisper her name, like a curse, and run. Read more at Sundog Lit

Mereá,

The first thing that retreats before you is its name. Mereá, the city of winding caves. The city underneath the sand.

“She’ll take you, Señor. She’ll take you and make your forget, just like she took your wife,” the abuelo says to him, his face crinkled like old cabbage. He gestures to Gil to withdraw his gaze from the two faint lights in the horizon. “We are in Carnival now,” the old man continues, taking Gil by the arm back to chaos of the city streets. “Venga. See the dancers.” Skeletons shimmy their way around bodies barely covered in bright tops, short skirts, loose shorts. He watches, fascinated by the rhythmic jounce of those bodies thrusting in and out in perfect time to the drummers.

It had been the same scene when his wife disappeared a year ago. Read more at Bourbon Penn 

Collateral Damage

Beatrix Kiddo, aka Black Mamba, attempts to break though the coffin where she’s been left to die. Her captor left her a flashlight before nailing shut the lid, though a flashlight does little good so far underground. But now Beatrix can see the narrow walls, the low roof. She remembers Pai Mei’s warning that one must be able to hit an enemy only three inches awayHer knuckles are already torn and bloody after three tries.

You’re diagnosed with bipolar 2 disorder and put on medication to reroute your brain from the killing machine that it is. You go to therapy, give up alcohol, and exercise daily. Still, your plants wither and die. Read more at Ghost Parachute

My Daughter’s Eyes

Not upturned like a cat’s to bat at the men and women you meet, nor wide and innocent like Eve’s before she bit the apple. No, your gaze is unwavering, brow hovering so close that people ask if you’re angry or sad when you’re not, and I wonder what you’re plotting, whether to set your brother on fire or do the dishes like I asked. They’re not hooded enough that we’ll have to heavily shadow your lids to make your eyes “pop,” neither are they large enough to stare me down when I question all the unsavory choices you’ll make. Some days you wear red just to see if wolves exist. Read more at Sundog Lit 

Charlotte

There could have been a barn that day, with giant haystacks and a pitchfork that somehow always got lost. It could have been a one bedroom apartment in Jersey City. There could have been a baby pig so small the mama pig forgot all about it. Or an old pit bull that pissed on the carpet because it couldn’t make it outside in time. Either way, the dad wanted to kill it. Read more at Flapperhouse