Tag Archives: Fall 2015 (#7)

“Me” – Poetry by Adam Tedesco & Juliet Cook

By Sebastian Ritter (Rise0011) (Own work) [CC BY-SA 2.5], via Wikimedia Commons
Photo by Sebastian Ritter (Rise0011) (Own work) [CC BY-SA 2.5], via Wikimedia Commons

“Me” is one of two beautiful dark twisted poems in our Fall 2015 issue that were co-written by Adam Tedesco & Juliet Cook

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1.

MY DIRTY HAIRBALLS
and feline creatures
doused in cheap champagne

After the party
the after party
was down in the canyon
of flattened emotion
of all the acts of disassociation
holed up in this trailer
doused in solvent

I try to stay quiet
as I strike the match
as if that will cover up
the triumph of our will

2.

Nobody can reach down
in this mess
Nobody can fix it

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IMGP3324ADAM TEDESCO has worked as a shipbuilder, a meditation instructor, and cultural critic for the now disbanded Maoist Internationalist Movement. He conducts the ConversexInverse interview series and analyzes dreams for the online literary journal Drunk In A Midnight Choir. His recent work has appeared or is forthcoming inSimilar:Peaks::, pioneertown, FunhouseCosmonauts Avenue, and elsewhere.

IMG_1359 - Copy (2)JULIET  COOK is a grotesque glitter witch medusa hybrid brimming with black, grey, silver, purple, & red explosions. Her poetry has appeared in Ghost Proposal, H_NGM_N, ILK, and Menacing Hedge. She is the author of more than 13 poetry chapbooks, including POISONOUS BEAUTYSKULL LOLLIPOP (Grey Book Press, 2013), RED DEMOLITION (Shirt Pocket Press, 2014) and a collaboration with Robert Cole, MUTANT NEURON CODEX SWARM (Hyacinth Girl Press, 2015). A collaborative chapbook with j/j hastain, Dive Back Down, is forthcoming from Dancing Girl Press. Her first full-length poetry book was Horrific Confection (BlazeVOX, 2008). Her second, Malformed Confetti, is forthcoming from Crisis Chronicles Press.www.JulietCook.weebly.com.

“Pharoah Sanders in the Cleaning Lady’s Bedroom” – Poetry by Manisha Anjali

Flamingos in Flight - Arman Manookian, 1931
Flamingos in Flight – Arman Manookian, 1931

From our Fall 2015 issueManisha Anjali‘s poem “Pharoah Sanders in the Cleaning Lady’s Bedroom” is as jazzy & intoxicating as the musician it’s named after.

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I WAS BEAUTIFUL IN 1999
my flamingo legs flamingo’d you
moon me/ moon you/ moon two.
the stars saw/ the larks saw
Pharoah by Pharoah Sanders on repeat.
this cleaning lady flamingo’d to spaceland
in spaceland you are lost daddy
my flamingo legs don’t dance on their own
they wait for saxophones/ daddy two-times
they wait for the messiah/ the dreammaker
moon cool/ moon blue/ mmmmm
I flamingo’d you high/flamingo’d you wild
in the Village of Pharoahs in 1999
I flamingo’d you off you wino/ you old boy/
you black darling/ you old star
on Karangahape Rd hitchhiking to spaceland
with a suitcase full of larks & gin.
I flamingo’d to spaceland daddy two-times with
Pharoah by Pharoah Sanders on repeat.
in my blood room my moon shone through/
moon/watch me be a bright pink bird
true I could still flamingo you
moon me/ moon true/ mmmmm
I was beautiful in 1999

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manisha_anjali_2MANISHA ANJALI is a poet who lives in Melbourne, Australia. She grew up in Fiji and New Zealand. Manisha has been published in Blackmail Press, Mascara Literary Review,Seizure, Faint Magazine and The Adventure Handbook. She was awarded a Hot Desk Fellowship by The Wheeler Centre in 2013. www.manishaanjali.com.

“The World Smells of Boogers” – Poetry by B. Diehl

Goldau - William Turner, 1841
Goldau – William Turner, 1841

Oddball humor & profound pathos collide in B. Diehl ‘s poem “The World Smells of Boogers,” one of many flappy lits featured in our Fall 2015 issue.

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I WATCHED THE SKY SWELLING
like a pus-filled boil.

And you ate your way to the core
of the apple of my eye
only to find a fat, ugly worm.

With cobwebbed lungs, I lifted my soul
from beneath the lilac bush,
wiped the crust from my yellowing eyes,

and we watched the sky swelling
like a pus-filled boil.

You swallowed me whole ­­––
spat out the flaws
like watermelon seeds,

but I see them now, starting to sprout
within the footprints of Christ ––

as the sky swells on
like a pus-filled boil.

Because it’s springtime again ­­––

so water my pain
and I’ll watch it bloom into a rose.

Play my spinal chord all day like an E minor ­­––

as the sky swells on
like a pus-filled boil.

You are a glacier in the middle of Egypt.
You are a genuine smile at a funeral,
the ticking of a rusty-handed clock,
the wrinkle on my cheek,
the hoarse voice, waking me
in the middle of a daydream:

“If you ever find happiness,
cut off its legs.”

But as the sky swells on
like a pus-filled boil,

my purpose is beckoning.
My purpose is a lighthouse
outside the storm,
gleaming brighter
with every last second.

So I’m heading west,
against the wind,
shunning the sky,

while tearing off the Band-Aid
at lightning-speed.

{ X }

Screen Shot 2015-08-29 at 12.20.51 PMB. DIEHL is a poet, quasi-recluse, and cat enthusiast from Phillipsburg, NJ. His poetry has been featured in Lehigh Valley Vanguard, Poydras Review, Torrid Literature Journal, Cartagena Journal, Foliate Oak Literary Magazine, Synchronized Chaos, and more. When he is not writing, you can usually find him at home, hanging out with his cats and/or feeding his social media addiction.

“Posing for Tarkins” – Fiction by Joel Enos & Angela Enos

In Realms of Fancy - John William Godward, 1911
In Realms of Fancy – John William Godward, 1911

A naive young model gets caught in a reckless artist’s dangerous game in Joel Enos & Angela Enos‘ elegantly menacing story “Posing for Tarkins,” one of many flappy lits you can read in our Fall 2015 issue.

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THE LADY QUARANTAINE BLAMED HER MOOD’S SUDDEN SWING toward nostalgic melancholy on Stella. It was always Stella’s fault. It always had been.

“Scandalous!” Stella Potter laughed her horse’s neigh across the dinner table, prompting a look of shame from Philip, her long-suffering husband, and a chortle from another slightly intoxicated dinner guest, Carlotta Dunn.

“Who? Winifred Bunton?” This from Oscar Culmel, a dashing Spaniard and an artist in his own right, but only when his philandering allowed him time. “How do you mean?”

“No, no,” Ms. Potter took another large sip of wine. “Winifred is a class act. But that other artist back in the colony, the one who wanted to be Winifred but didn’t have half her talent…you know…Tarrrrrkinnnnnssss…” Another neigh. “Elaine, remember Tarkins? You knew him, didn’t you?”

The hostess of the evening, the Lady Elaine Quarantaine, smiled sadly at her unintentionally amusing friend. “Tarkins?” she said thoughtfully. “No, I don’t think I did know him.”

But in truth, Lady Quarantaine most definitely knew Tarkins. She had killed him.

Elaine was not yet the Lady Quarantaine back then. She didn’t even go by Elaine. Of all the guests at this dinner that she’d prepared to celebrate her husband’s most recent art acquisition, only Stella knew that for a brief year, back in that faraway colony so awfully many years ago, the Lady Elaine had been much better known as the highly sought-after artist’s model, Durissa.

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The young Elaine and her family were in the colony because her father, though not as fortunate in business as some, had been entrepreneurial enough to know that the small ports and towns on the far reaches of the Empire were full of potential. He had a young wife, two small children, and an older daughter from his first marriage to Elaine’s mother. It was Elaine who would rechristen herself as the more glamorous-sounding “Durissa” and launch herself among the artists and thinkers of the expatriate community, all seeking their fortune in a rough but seductive land.

Durissa was the name of a port Elaine had never been to, but had found on a map. It made her feel as though she belonged with the self-invented artists she was cautiously mingling with, far more so than plain old Elaine ever could. The assumed name also bore the advantage of preventing her father from learning what his dear eldest daughter was up to; modeling for artists was not something a woman of her station did without permanent social repercussions. Of course, it was actually quite demure compared to what the other girls were doing and not at all, as her friend Stella would hiss in mock shock, “Scandalous!”

Stella, being a few years older and having already discovered suitors, kept a small flat of her own under the pretense of taking respectable art classes, as well as dictation, near city hall. Durissa, under the guise of doing the same, was using Stella’s new living quarters as a home base for her “Scandalous!” new life.

One night at a private exhibit, Durissa was feeling quite lost in the shadow of Stella, who had, as usual, been very loud while wearing a daring new gown. Durissa arrived at Stella’s flat earlier that day in her third-best party dress, because her friend had assured her that while true bohemians should never be the best dressed at a party, they must always the most interestingly dressed. The second part of the maxim was fulfilled by a bright red shawl of Stella’s own that she wrapped around Durissa’s shoulders as she admonished her for her lack of creativity.

“It’ll cover how hopelessly bourgeois your dress is and create a sense of mystery,” Stella assured her. “If you want to be someone’s muse, you’ve got to look like you know things they don’t and then make them desperately want to find out. It’s easy, really.”

Durissa nodded, allowed herself to be anointed with Stella’s pungent perfume, and felt almost transformed.

The transformation lasted until an hour into the party, when Stella and her “Scandalous!” dress had disappeared onto the balcony with a stranger. Once alone, she felt more like Elaine than Durissa. She fumbled with the shawl, attempting to remove it.

“No, don’t move an inch! Stay perfectly still.” A sharp voice cut through the hum of conversation around her, startling Durissa into the desired stillness.

A man stepped out of the crowd of black tuxedoes and grabbed Durissa firmly by the chin, turning her face in profile. “There. I had to see it. I never trust a woman without a strong profile,” he said, releasing his grip on her face. She could see him now, a man of middling height and looks that would be unremarkable without a personality that obviously was not lacking in certain panache. The brocade waistcoat, the impractical rings, the precision of his hair’s unkemptness: This man was certainly a bohemian. Stella’s absurd red shawl had worked.

“Forgive me, I was so taken with your profile that I forgot my manners. I’m Tarkins, artist. And you have a magnificent profile. Just the sort I’ve been looking for.”

“My name is Durissa.”

It was the first time she’d said it aloud to a stranger. With the artist Tarkins as witness, it became true.

Continue reading “Posing for Tarkins” – Fiction by Joel Enos & Angela Enos

“Liftoff” – Poetry by Laurin DeChae

Illustration from Mary Crary's "Daughters of the Stars" - Edmund Dulac, 1939
Illustration from Mary Crary’s “Daughters of the Stars” – Edmund Dulac, 1939

Take to the heavens with “Liftoff,” one of two awesomely extra-terrestrial poems by Laurin DeChae in our very cosmic Fall 2015 issue.

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THREE, TWO ONE. hop on board my bottle rocket. we’re taking off.
haven’t we landed on the moon? i saw it with my own
moon eyes. right through the television screen. one small step
means beam me up,  set me free. if you love something, if you love something.
but we’re all thumbs. we fumble and drop with nowhere to hitch.
to the moon, to mars, it doesn’t matter.
rev the engines, let’s go be alien somewhere up, up and away
sending smoke signals to the stars wailing past. you’re all just voices
in my head. look inside my metal cap.
maybe you’re the sick one, maybe i’m.
maybe i’m inkjet, maybe i’m rocket fuel. stardust.
on a scale of one to floating, is this a magic carpet ride
or helium? we’re all just spacing out and i’ll have what he’s having.
we’ll change our cosmic address, elope, become living time capsule,
a sanctuary in the nucleus of a trilobite. to know thyself is to blink
in fractals for eons and eons. the horizon is nothing more than an illusion
and so are we. we can’t even make food out of sunlight. ours has always been a story
of survival. a psychedelic spectra caterwauling.  far and away i hear the creak
of a door opening. it is the destiny of the stars to collapse.
we’ve always turned to the sky for answers, excreting
the tiniest tentacle into the outreaches, the out-of-bounds,
hoping something will stick to us like flypaper. and we’ll reel
it in, dissect and devour—for scientific purposes.
what’s our trajectory? don’t let this be an arc.
i can’t come right back down. earth is calling.
but i’m with the satellites now. no signal out here.
they tell me it’s inescapable. that i’m bouncing
off walls. so tell me, are you coming with me?

{ X }

DeChae_HeadshotLAURIN DeCHAE is an M.F.A. candidate for poetry at the University of New Orleans, where she acts as the associate editor for Bayou Magazine. She is active in the fields of education and composition, assisting in programs such as the Greater New Orleans Writing Project, Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, and the Tennessee Williams Literary Festival. Her work appears or is forthcoming in Harpur Palate, Cleaver Magazine, burntdistrict, S/WORD, and Rose Red Review.

“an inventory of instruction manuals” – poetry by Joyce Chong

Bernafas (Breathe) - Nyoman Masriadi, 2004
Bernafas (Breathe) – Nyoman Masriadi, 2004

Oh, how we wish we could actually read the titles listed in “an inventory of instruction manuals,” one of two exquisite poems by Joyce Chong in our Fall 2015 issue.

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“HOW TO DISASSEMBLE ROBOTICS” “how to reassemble robots” “how to dissect the human condition” “how to extract meaning out of the inherently meaningless” “how to exacerbate the mundane” “how to be inanimate” “how to splice” “how to emerge whilst sinking” “how to build a shipwreck” “how to money launder” “how to tear apart” “how to reassemble the torn pages of an instruction manual” “how to wind up time like a toy” “how to spill” “how to endure melancholy” “how to breathe” “how to breathe” “how to breathe” “how to spill, convincingly”.

{ X }

ndsbrt500JOYCE CHONG lives in Ontario, Canada where she writes fiction, poetry, and other types of lies surrounded by farm land and wine country. Her work has appeared in Cool Skull Press’ Goddessmode anthology, (parenthetical), and untethered magazine, with work forthcoming in Noble Gas Qtrly and Liminality. You can find her online at joycechong.ca, or you can follow her mundane (and occasionally excessive) tweeting at @JoyceEmilyC.

“Ewart” – Fiction by Michael Díaz Feito

In the jungle, Florida - Winslow Homer, 1904
In the jungle, Florida – Winslow Homer, 1904

“Ewart” is a spectacularly swampy slab of Southern Gothic by Michael Díaz Feito from our Fall 2015 issue.

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ān æfter eallum …

Beowulf

IT IS WRITTEN THAT A RIPPLING SPHERE OF MOSQUITOES often rose from that yellow sedge spot where N. Ewart Nance put up his cabin. A unique species, when underfed the wiry girls were themselves a glowing yellow. They purpled when glutted. Shifting in their spherical swarm, they swapped hues, off and on. They shed generations too. Unlike the average others, these mosquitoes led no three-day luxury life but had only the one. Up, then down. Their throng’s heart dropped out dead by each morning. Then the young and yellow leapt from the still sedge-water, rearing up like one open mouth.

Sustain—this ever-adolescent species kept a lumpy shade cast over the sedge. A point of origin, south of the Miami River.

{ X }

Ewart never named his homestead. Although he did consider himself that spot’s first inhabitant, he never christened it. He would not care for those who had, would, or will. That spot of yellow sedge has had many names: one in the Tequestas’ tongue, then Meados del Fraile, Coño de la Coja (briefly), Clarke’s Kill, Ooki-lakni, Panther’s Breath, Okeelacknee, Telegrams, Monmouth, and (after draining and ingesting it) Miami. Before the end of the nineteenth century, South Florida’s place names were transient like human life. This is meant in a literal sense. Names went into graves with namers and kin, swallowed all in perennial union by bog muck and waters. These swamps boil and lack phosphorus, so they do not preserve pristine skin-bags—no moaning faces visible, beatified. In and around sinkholes, you’ll only dig up brushfire ashes and teeth, peat-packed. Teeth irreverently strewn like Onan’s seed. But the water is clean.

That yellow sedge spot was mapped once in 1896 as Monmouth. In a local accent, Moan-mouth. That town was built, burned, rebuilt, burned in roughly the same spot. A prominent hotelkeeper named it for his favorite fruit pudding, and that was meant to evoke the tropics for tourists. Monmouth slouched by Biscayne Bay.

{ X }

Ewart, at age thirty, hides beside his mother on a backless pew in the Cumberlands. A sturdy woman. She grips his shoulder. A chafing of linsey-woolsey and calico—other shoulders settle close by them on the pews. Ewart feels smothered. He hunches his shoulders and tenses his arm, to signal that she grip tighter. She does. All these parishioners sweat from slogging through frost, so they stick together at the shoulders, fixed by foggy breaths and stamped-up ashes.

The church itself is only a gray box. Its ceiling runs low, low enough that most men reach up and rest their hats on the crossbeams. Another pew of broad-brimmed hats. Most men spit chaws on the floorboards. These form one sticky pool.

Ewart does not doff his hat. His head sits huge on a short body, and the hat tightly hugs just its upper slopes. To hide his face—miniscule features meekly clustered at the flat, chalky center—Ewart bends the brim. Somebody flicks the back of the brim. And again. An opening hymn is chanted. His mother chants loudest, nasally, and Ewart says, She whinnies only to outdo the others’ holiness.

This hymn dies down.

Most men spit chaws again.

Somebody flicks Ewart’s nape.

The preacher speaks at the pulpit:

On this most airish day, ladies and gentlemen, we are swept together like strands of twine today. A single thread tied in blessed God’s big hand. We are not separate ones. He has entwined us into a strong rope stained with the Blood. He has knotted us. Now, hear me. We came from somewhere far from Him, that is, sin. And nay, do not turn ye back like Lot’s wife! For there behind ye is surely Satan. The Lord our God tugs our rope safely through fiery flames, us upon whose bodies the fire had no power, nor was an hair of their head singed, neither were their coats changed, nor the smell of fire had passed on them. He tugs us over yonder, poor mourners, toward Him, toward Salvation! Knotting us together, tighter and tighter, as we turn unto Him. Verily, I say, He is fitting a single sacred garment of us, Salvation, for to leave our lone bodies behind!

His mother Winifred nods along with the sermon’s words. Her lipless mouth is only grayer cracks in the skin by the teeth.

Ewart tugs his arm from her grip. He does not want to leave his lone body. As he plucks his patchy beard’s bristles, the preacher reads a psalm.

Past the pulpit is one window. A redbud tree presses its panes. Six panes bloodied by the wintery buds like a picture of fire, and branches also gnash the panes.

Watching the preacher, his mother pushes her knuckles into his shoulder. Her wiry fingers wrap his arm again. A small fear simmers Ewart’s loins. He snaps together his knees to hide the hard horn. The preacher’s voice rising, most men weep. Somebody knocks Ewart’s hat and it flies into the pool of spit chaws. Continue reading “Ewart” – Fiction by Michael Díaz Feito

“Mother to Chick” – Fiction by Rebecca Ann Jordan

Young girl eating a bird (The pleasure) - Rene Magritte, 1927
Young girl eating a bird (The pleasure) – Rene Magritte, 1927

Earlier this year, we asked Rebecca Ann Jordan if she could write us a flash fiction inspired by Rene Magritte’s painting “Young girl eating a bird.” The result is the enchantingly eccentric & superbly disturbing “Mother to Chick,” one of many flappy lits you can read in our Fall 2015 issue.

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IN THOSE DAYS, WOMEN WEREN’T PERMITTED TO FLY. It would have been unseemly, like wearing pants then, or wearing skirts now.

I was born with feathers tucked between my teeth. I bet they don’t tell it that way. Screams of horror at being thrust into a cold world turned to giggles, feathers tickling the mouth’s roof. They who grasped my ankles and spun me around, who made me lust for vertigo, also made me vomit out the feathers.

It was already too late for me. I’d been hooked on flight.

The birds, they listen to me in the way that dogs or horses listen to men but not women. I’ve never seen a man could charm a finch down from an apple tree. (Disregard tall tales, always shinier in hindsight anyway.)

I, avian hoarder, began to accumulate them young. A hummingbird perched on my ear, woodpecker on shoulder, quail hurrying along in my perfumed wake. Now they hover, churning flurry, behind me—a mile-long veil of feathers and cacophonic chirps. All want attention.

All prove their value with flight.

My little dog chases the ground-dwellers until they’re forced to light upon my skin, digging in little claws.

I made my own attempt in all the usual ways, plus:

  • Lifting molted feathers, fallen in a flurry from my train. First glued, then soldered to my skin, shoved into holey pores. I thought then to skip the easily-melted wax; I’m not incapable of learning from the past
  • Weaving a net the larger birds could burrow up inside, press against the roof, and me with fingers twined in the ends, they my balloon, I their weight. (Here, you can still see the rope burn that redly elongates my lines of head/lines of heart)
  • Making a machine. Perhaps the magic wasn’t in the birds; selfish to keep it to themselves. I made it from branches and leaves; gingham and lace from my dress I tore to pieces; strings and papa’s gears and rubber bands. Rubber bands propelled the gears that tugged the strings that pulled the branches and gingham and lace, all strapped between my shoulder blades. Up and down, went my fake branch / gingham wings, up and down and up and down and up and down. I almost felt myself getting lighter on the upswing, but down always counteracted

Continue reading “Mother to Chick” – Fiction by Rebecca Ann Jordan

An Excerpt from Nothing Granted – Poetry by Anna Meister

Two Girls in the Flower Garden - Le Pho, circa 1955
Two Girls in the Flower Garden – Le Pho, circa 1955

Our Fall 2015 issue features three outstanding poems by Anna Meister, from her series titled Nothing Granted. We’ve posted one of these poems below, and if you’d like to read the rest, you can purchase the issue in print for $6 or as a good old-fashioned PDF for $3.

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REMEMBER WHEN I’D ALLOW HER TO TALK ABOUT PUSSY.
Expected flush, the natural heat of power. She runs
over my feelings with great sweetness, eyes
intent on me. She used to say You can be
whoever you want, but is tired of me now
that I look at her more. I show up & leave
as myself. Continue past the moment, say I am
thirsty. Pick a million tiny pieces up. We like loss
to ground us, learn to love people quietly.

Outside, flowers like lemons & not
the other way around. I remember her
mouth never closing. When I speak to the sun,
I’m dressed before we hang up. I speak over the light
while she wails & knocks. I exhale
loss, a pretty girl sleeping. If my love expires,
I’ll renew it for the weekend. If I fucked her less I would
be aggressively lonely. Outside, each flower makes
a face. Each looks, she says, the same.

Stopping for gas late, an angel kissed me.
I like how summer bent. We like loss to come,
like to feel it quiet. What a luxury to be without
hands. Whatever I got is enough
to drive back. The silver, long unraveled
eye, the motherfucker rinsing
another fork. We’re clean as the chicken,
but not that inspiring, just
bones in the water when they simmer.

{ X }

anna_meisterANNA MEISTER is an MFA candidate in Poetry at New York University, where she serves as a Goldwater Writing Fellow. A Pushcart Prize & Best of the Net nominee, her poems are forthcoming in Powder Keg, Whiskey Island, Barrelhouse, The Mackinac, & elsewhere. Anna is a 2015 Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts Fellow. She lives & works in Brooklyn.

“Earth Comes Down” – Fiction by Maria Pinto

Yemaya - artist unknown
Yemaya – artist unknown

“Earth Comes Down” is Maria Pinto‘s bluesy slipstream short story about a mysterious woman who appears following a powerful storm. It’s just one of many cosmically flappy lits in our Fall 2015 issue, now available in print ($6) & PDF ($3). 

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SHE WAS FOUND ON THE WOODED SIDE OF THE HIGHWAY by two paramedics on their way back to dispatch. The eye of mega-storm Yemaya had lately passed over us. Though the rain had stopped, the sky still roiled grey and white like restless marble. Downed trees and branches hindered evacuation travel, so the highway was otherwise bare, and there she was beside it, pacific and strange in the mud. Though the medics initially feared she might be pinned there by flotsam from the woods, this was not the case. She was a sight. Her skin glistened with some sort of arctic-blue ooze. Twigs and leaves stuck to it. She wore a thin blue, brown, and green shift and no underthings. Not enough for the way the winds still huffed. Her mouth opened and shut like that of a beached fish, though she made no sound. She was maybe biracial, her hair wavy and matted in places.

Wilson, who is now under investigation for the woman’s disappearance, sat in the back of the ambulance while Reece drove. Wilson claimed that during the long ride to the hospital, even though she had not made the slightest noise before they strapped her to the bed, the woman stared up at the ceiling, babbling like a child. A coo here, a gurgle there. She was breathtaking, according to the report Wilson gave. It was superfluous information, to be sure, but it had been included anyhow. She was “so damned gorgeous we could barely look at her; so gorgeous it was easy to imagine that a man or group of men had taken what he or they wanted and left her for dead on the side of the road.” It was too easy to imagine this and too easy to imagine it again. Like a nightmare fantasy you close your eyes and savor. The report said that at least the paramedics had had the grace to look sheepish as they rhapsodized upon the beauty and violability of her form. They could not help themselves. Men will be men. Continue reading “Earth Comes Down” – Fiction by Maria Pinto