Swimming Upstream

As Mahala walked into the interview, she ran her tongue over her unbrushed teeth and thought shit. Everything had gone wrong from the start. The midnight power outage that reset the clocks and caused her to oversleep, the Google directions to the wrong building, the newly-discovered fact she was wearing mismatched shoes. Close but no […]

Hands Around The Circle

The tea was laid out, the sandwiches made with Arnold’s Brick Oven crustless  bread. Salmon spread from Klein’s, Cracker Barrel cheese and pimento.  Gladys had mentioned Girl Scout cookies, so Ethel had not laid out dessert, though she had plenty of reserves. Hydrox, marshmallow creams, Chips Ahoy. The cars began to arrive around 2, the […]


Tante Sarah was having none of it. To the Via Dolorosa she said “it looks like Spain.” To the Wailing Wall she said “I’ve seen it on the television. I think George Bush kissed it. Feh.” “Was it a bad idea to being her here?” Rachel asked her husband. Moishe shrugged. “She’ll get used to […]

The Lost

“This store like one of those charm bracelets,” she said, “only the chain is broken.” “Uh huh.” He was inspecting a framed set of trout flies, each with its  name neatly inked below it. Yellow Stone Fly. Beetle Bug Fly. She plucked a photograph from a basket marked 2 for 50 cent. A man and a […]


“I’m a pacifist,” he’d told Eddie Arnold, a foot taller and two grades ahead of him. “So that means you won’t fight back if I hit you?” “Violence doesn’t solve anything,” he’d said. “It’s barbaric.” “What did you call me?” said Eddie, who immediately whipped him two hard blows in the face that knocked him […]

To End All Wars

They used to tell me I was building a dream And so I followed the mob When there was earth to plow or guns to bear I was always there right on the job They used to tell me I was building a dream With peace and glory ahead Why should I be standing in […]

Tuesday Maybe?

The skylight blazed hot on her face. She opened her eyes. Pain. Oh God, she thought. Not again. She raised up on her elbows and looked around. She was lying on a butcher block table, pots and implements suspended above her as though dropping randomly from some airborne kitchen. Tamping down a swelling nausea, she sat up […]

Vigil Part Nine

Germaine opened the door and shook his head. “Really?” I said. “Do you know how long my flight was?” “Sorry, Stephen. Even the doctors thought this was the real thing.” “This makes nine false alarms, Gerry. Nine.” “You didn’t have to come.” “Bullshit. I have to be here. We all do. Who does this? What […]

Carry On

Luz stood in the foyer with her eyes closed, breathing the old smells, corn and beans and singed chiles, beer and smoke and sweat. She smiled, remembering how Oscar had kept it a secret while he lined up the loans, how he’d led her in blindfolded. It had been an empty room then, not much […]