Before The Coroner Was Called

I take my coffee out onto the front porch to watch the neighborhood go about its morning. I don’t know my neighbors’ names, but I know their weekday routine. The red Volvo full of kids, the bike commuter with the metal clips on his trouser-legs, the old woman across the street feeding the swarm of […]

A Dismal Sheen

He led me blindfolded onto the quay. “I know you bought a boat, Seth.” “Humor me,” he said. We walked across the dock, the boards tilting and bouncing. “Ok. You can take it off now.” He stood on the bow of a gleaming sailboat, grinning all over his face like the boy I’d married. “Ta-da!” […]

Plan B

He got out of the car and decided to leave his box of office belongings in the back seat until he told her.  He hadn’t discussed it with her. This hadn’t been planned. One day, maybe, but not yet. Working for Dynacom had been a soul-sucking experience he had come to loathe more with every […]

The Vacation is Ruined

Mark’s checked off just two items on his list before Marci commences meltdown. As always, he pretends to sympathize while secretly resenting Meg. She takes after you, his sullen mantra. Meg is busy running through her own list. They’d slept the night before with the lights on. They’d FedExed Marci’s special food box directly to the hotel. […]

Distraction

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 […]

Away

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. […]