She should have known at the casting call, should have taken her son and walked out. Instead, she’d signed the contract. The lure of money was too powerful, and she’d been desperate. A prank show, they said, like Candid Camera. Her son would be among other children at the museum, all in uniform. On cue they would begin […]

Life After Uber

I heard Jazad come in around 4:30, a full hour before usual. I got out of bed and found him sitting in our tiny kitchen, head in his hands. In the stark glare of the hanging lamp his hair was almost pure white. “I can’t do it, Fatima.” His voice was almost a whisper. “Three of us […]

Mary’s Mountain

Mary tightened the last screw on the wall joist and set down the screwdriver. She was done. She stepped outside the tiny cabin and sat on a rock. She rolled herself a cigarette and smoked and gazed over the valley at Baboquivari, whom the Yaqui called the Navel of the Universe. The valley was all […]


Janie, hand in hand with Chloe. In my memory, I can’t see their faces because they’re walking away, but I know they’re happy. It’s early June, the morning air fresh with  last night’s rain and the miles of fresh farmland in every direction. My girls are so excited they start to skip down the midway. […]

Mr Nervous

Our first winter on the farm, Ellie kept seeing him. We thought she had an overactive imagination spurred by too much television, but Ellie was insistent that Mr. Nervous was real. We would hear her talking to him, open the door. “He just left,” she’d say. Odd things began to happen. Lights coming on in […]

Cast Adrift

They said it was the law that turned him out of the house. They lied, saying he could have stayed if it was up to them. They didn’t exactly blame him for her death. They just didn’t want him around as a reminder of her decline. He blamed himself, of course. For a while he […]


“Like a drink?” Without waiting for me to answer she handed me a beading glass. I took a sip. “The good stuff. And in the wedding glassware, no less.” “I thought you deserved something special after the day you had.” She gentled the back of my neck like I was a skittish horse. “My man.” […]

Superman, Jr.

“Your coffee is getting cold.” “Thanks.” He picked it up,  sipped it. “I had the strangest dream. I was Superman’s son. They named me Superman, Jr. and made me dress in the red and blue suit. I had to wear it to school. The cape was always in the way.” She started laughing. “That is […]