Issue #33
Unwritten by Shaun Levin

My creations fit into my mouth to be birthed out of it, the way all forms of life come into the world, melting like chocolate, hard as earth. Moving between soft and solid, hardening like boiled sugar in water.

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The End by Shaun Levin

We have nothing left to say but neither of us wants to get up. Tell me a joke, I say. You say you’re bad at jokes, you never remember them, especially not in English.

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Farmland by Elizabeth Conway

Above-ground the turquoise pool is the only color for miles. A stain on the landscape, it is obvious it doesn’t belong. It belongs. To a fourteen-year-old girl born with a heart condition.

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Gallows Pole by Kathy Hoyle

In the dead of summer, while the whiptails hide in sagebrush shadows, and everything blisters in the amber heat and there ain’t nothin but buzzards hummin for miles around, a hanged man dances on a gallows pole.

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Gentian Violet by Liz Rosen

While I held our daughter’s bleeding index finger high over the kitchen sink, I knew that somewhere on the highway, you were driving to work, listening for word of catastrophes on NPR or unironically singing the words of an 80’s song made-over by a country boy.

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You, Visitor by Jane O’Sullivan

You don’t like her much, not that you can tell her that. Slugging along behind you, hands in pockets. Sullen as a fish despite the fucking dawn rising over the city, the glory of it.

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The Storyteller of Aleppo by Donna Obeid

In the barren cold camp, you wear a dusty cape and top hat, wave my cane as if it were a wand and tell me your dream-stories, one after the next, your words spun and tossed like tethers into the air.

Morse Code by Elizabeth Cabrera

The old man fell asleep in his car, his nostrils pressed softly against the steering wheel, but the car kept going, because the old man’s foot was not asleep, was still pressing down hard, and later they would say, it’s not really his fault, he’s such an old man.

Get Your Authentic Stardust Here by JP Relph

The night the sky cracked, I was sprawled on the hood of my car beside that good-for-nothing boy, naming constellations, ignoring his fingers on my neck.

Bog Iron by Shane Larkin

We make stops on the way to our bog plot to look at the little skeletons. Dad tells me about them. Curlews and skylarks in dancing poses. Tiny skulls.

Electric Storm by Kathryn Aldridge-Morris

It’s been twenty minutes since the first bolt of lightning ripped a scar through the purple night sky. Since my mother said to swim in the rain ― it’s fun. Since her boyfriend Colin said he’d join us― to check we’re ok.