Artful Dodger by Jennifer Falkner
The shoes are Manolos and the scarf is Hermes. But the purse–Balenciaga—carries almost no cash. And the credit cards are too easily traced.
Jennifer Falkner’s work has appeared in The First Line, Paragon Journal and Flashquake. Last year, she received the Reader’s Choice Award for a story appearing in Fiction Fix. Links to these and other published stories can be found at jenniferfalkner.blogspot.ca
Secret Story by Pamela Hill
She runs barefoot through sand and giggles and chases tumbleweed as it dances toward the dunes. Then the wind shifts, and the tumbleweed chases her.
Pamela Hill loves to write.
Skirting the Issue by Danielle Fouquette
“We should talk.”
For him it became the roots, twisting over rocks toward the bank.
For her, the trunk, leaning recklessly over the current.
Danielle Fouquette has been preparing to be a writer all her life.
Two pieces by Monica Crumback
It was just a shirt
on a hanger
at a charity store.
But when she wears it
off her shoulder,
it becomes so much more.
Not mint green, lime.
Like a splash in your beer
or the zest of life
sunk deep in a decadent
key lime pie.
Monica Crumback’s essays and poetry have been published in numerous print and online publications, including Brain,Child: The Magazine for Thinking Mothers, Skirt Magazine, and Vox Poetica.
Otherwise Engaged by Joanna Owen
You’re in white silk taffeta. He’s in a rented tux. I wear a bridesmaid gown and wish you’d slip the ring on my finger instead.
Joanna Owen is a full-time nurse and part-time writer living on the coast of southwest Florida.
Lincoln Park After Dark by Alina Pleskova
I paused after we passed each other, just in case. Checked my pulse and found it steady, signaling too slight a danger to bother. Yawn.
Alina Pleskova lives in Philadelphia by way of Moscow (she doesn’t have an accent, but is happy to humor you with a pretty decent imitation upon request.) She is the Poetry Editor for Apiary Magazine, & can usually be found frantically running across the city in stilettos, determined to dispel the commonly-held belief that poets are never on time. No such luck yet..
Three pieces by Lisa Nielsen
You are just an outline, a deliberate rough draft, but you mirror my discontent so I will tiptoe, like an acrobat on your chalky silhouette
You, adrift in a car I don’t know/ me, behind the door/ playing safe with an elusive faith/ lighting a candle to follow your shadow
I wish I had the audacity to shimmer in a train of stars, but I can’t fight the tenacious debris of rocks and broken glass.
Lisa Nielsen is a single mom living in Staten Island, using poetry to dodge laundry and yard work.
Bring Me the Moon by Rachel Alday
“Be wary, letting a literal-minded woman fall in love with you,” the lunar emperor said. “‘Beyond the fields we know’ is closer than it was.”
Rachel Alday is a cook who lives down in the hurricane state.
Six pieces by Jessica Tsuzuki
They were her favorite jeans—tight on the curves but loose past the knee, leaving just enough space for the hunting knife in her boot.
San Francisco Sparkle
The vampire pop queen sanguine in all aspects beseeches the crowd . Love me,mortals. Through red eyes that hint of gold, she leaves us mesmerized.
Blinding chunks of funky glitter cling to her frail form. “Nothing can outshine my discoball headlights.” With heavily accented alienation, tonight she owns the world.
Animal, vegetable, or mineral? None. Pure hard metal with a candy coated shell. She’ll give you her number, and hack your accounts in your sleep.
Yellow It’s Me
A bright morning howdy form your obnoxious neighbor, Jane. Sunflower petals scatter down the hall after her, showing where she’s going; knowing where she’s been.
Pirated on a private IP, I find myself solemnly hacked, staring at the once idle screen, now dancing to the beat of distant digit drumming.
Jessica Tsuzuki has amazing adventures, mostly in her head.
Love Me Tender byDan Hart
After school, I douse my nails with polish remover and rip the rainbow freedom rings from my neck.
At home, I must not be me.
Dan is an engineer working, reading, and hiking in Silicon Valley, where he is happy to be himself.