“Best of 2018” stories were selected for their use of unique language, breadth of story in so few words, emotional impact, and the complex and original relationship of the titles to their stories. Congratulations to all of the contributing writers whose work was selected for this special issue. And thank you to every submitter and reader.
Tap Dancers by Clarissa McFairy
Her glass stilettos clink as they tap the tiles of the Trattoria. Tall champagne glasses, toasting each step towards her new prey. Spouse number six.
Clarissa McFairy lives in Cape Town, South Africa. She writes short stories and poetry for anthologies, at home and abroad. Her poem, La Mia Musa was a vox poetica 2012 Best of the Net nominee. Her poetry book, Strange Bedfellows, published in the USA (Red Dashboard LLC Publishing) is available at Amazon.com. Clarissa says she writes as the muse grabs her and whirls her around the dance floor of life.
Breakfast in Red by Tyrean Martinson
She ordered stewed tomatoes.
Her fingers were red, not the nails, but the skin.
I didn’t ask. I just served.
One never questioned the queen.
Tyrean Martinson is a writer, teacher, daydreamer, and believer who lives on the Peninsula in Washington State. She is the author of speculative and non-fiction books, as well as over 100 published short works of poetry and short stories. Find her at: http://tyreanswritingspot.blogspot.com
Moon rays lit long hair
as her breath paused.
One teardrop on soft skin.
“How many minutes ‘til you pass through me again?”
Stella Samuel is an author and editor writing women’s fiction, LGBT fiction, and children’s literature. She lives in Arizona, just about a mile south of the sun where her winter weather Saint Bernards soak up rays at her feet while she writes poolside.
Garage Band by Erin Adams
She shimmies under, hopeful
Three-chord thrum stops, drummer makes a fat joke
She dumps someone’s mom’s lemon squares in her purse,
hits the opener button.
Erin Adams is pursuing her MFA in creative writing at Spalding University. Her brilliant husband, ill-behaved dogs, and talented writer friends are her greatest inspirations.
Two pieces by Tracy Brooks
Beach Bum Blu
Pushed and swirled by currents, exhausted aquamarine ripples wash the coconut onto powdered sand. Travel-weary, it lies there; hot sunlight bubbling spongy flesh. Journey’s end.
Beach Bum Blu
Blue toes. Blue heart.
Pain swells with wave surges.
Her beach. Her baby. No more.
Snatched by the ocean, swept to the mermaids.
Tracy Brooks realized that turning 50 was a slap in the face – mortality didn’t merely appear on her horizon, it became measurable! It was at this point that she reinvented herself and began roaming in a completely new direction. After completing the SA Writers College Magazine Journalism course with distinction in 2012 and with her two fledged sons rather delinquent in their grandchildren-production duties, she began to fill the space in her empty nest with writing. Together with her husband, she travels in southern and East Africa, keen to see and experience everything she can before a Zimmer frame clips her wings. Her interests include the environment, travel, reading, the bush and outdoors, food, wine and gardening and she believes firmly that the joy of writing is better than Botox.