fiction.

 

 

- april 2018 -
"all of us animals"
longleaf review

 We’re freshmen—fourteen, fifteen. Two weeks living away from our mothers and we think we’re women now.  Our new school’s all slate-roofed, dust-scented brick buildings, white paint layered thick on wood window trim. Poplars and oaks planted in rows, kudzu-gobbled maintenance building out back. Generations of girls have learned here—first few batches true belles for sure, all hoop skirts and ringlets, corsets and parasols.

We’re freshmen—fourteen, fifteen. Two weeks living away from our mothers and we think we’re women now.

Our new school’s all slate-roofed, dust-scented brick buildings, white paint layered thick on wood window trim. Poplars and oaks planted in rows, kudzu-gobbled maintenance building out back. Generations of girls have learned here—first few batches true belles for sure, all hoop skirts and ringlets, corsets and parasols.

 

- june 2017 -
"slather"
cheap pop

  [Nomination: Pushcart Prize] [Nomination: Best Small Fictions]   Billie bought her first tube of eye cream at twenty-two. Too young? Well, maybe. But when your botoxed, microdermabraded, laser-resurfaced mother slips you that slow scrutinizing look of hers, lets it slide down the length of her poreless nose, tries to squint but can’t and finally says,  Ooh honey you might wanna start using a good eye cream —how do you stop the subsequent spiral? 

[Nomination: Pushcart Prize]
[Nomination: Best Small Fictions]

Billie bought her first tube of eye cream at twenty-two. Too young? Well, maybe. But when your botoxed, microdermabraded, laser-resurfaced mother slips you that slow scrutinizing look of hers, lets it slide down the length of her poreless nose, tries to squint but can’t and finally says, Ooh honey you might wanna start using a good eye cream—how do you stop the subsequent spiral? 

 

- june 2017 -
"serpentine"
still: the journal

  [Nomination: Best of the Net]   I’m getting worked up again feeling that snaky rustle in my ears that electricity down in the roots of my teeth and the jangling rhythm of my poor old heart so I press my palms together like a prayer braid my fingers press until my arms shake and quiver and Susan’s saying something but I can’t hear her over the roar of that serpent crashing through brown dried leaves and pine straw just writhing around and raring back fangs dripping. . .

[Nomination: Best of the Net]

I’m getting worked up again feeling that snaky rustle in my ears that electricity down in the roots of my teeth and the jangling rhythm of my poor old heart so I press my palms together like a prayer braid my fingers press until my arms shake and quiver and Susan’s saying something but I can’t hear her over the roar of that serpent crashing through brown dried leaves and pine straw just writhing around and raring back fangs dripping. . .

 

- june 2017 -
"nightmares"
crack the spine

  [Included in Anthology:   Crack the Spine XVI  ]   The mares arrive slowly at first, starting with a mother and her wobble-legged filly, both the color of old pennies at the bottom of a purse. Then the scrawny buckskin quarter horse, the limping bay Warmblood, the shaggy white Shetland pony so starved her hide drapes over angular hips like angora on a coat hanger.

[Included in Anthology: Crack the Spine XVI]

The mares arrive slowly at first, starting with a mother and her wobble-legged filly, both the color of old pennies at the bottom of a purse. Then the scrawny buckskin quarter horse, the limping bay Warmblood, the shaggy white Shetland pony so starved her hide drapes over angular hips like angora on a coat hanger.

 

- september 2016 -
"the garage"
apt magazine

 Bunch of boys, bunch of dark-haired boys running around summers shirtless and shoeless on the asphalt driveway hopping on and off bikes and Big Wheels, grey dust pressed always into the swirled prints of their little feet. You can see the color when they run. The mom probably does scrub them down every night but it doesn’t budge, that ground-in asphalt grime.

Bunch of boys, bunch of dark-haired boys running around summers shirtless and shoeless on the asphalt driveway hopping on and off bikes and Big Wheels, grey dust pressed always into the swirled prints of their little feet. You can see the color when they run. The mom probably does scrub them down every night but it doesn’t budge, that ground-in asphalt grime.

 

- july 2014 -
"sakura"
nc literary review (print)

  [Nomination: Pushcart Prize] [Honorable Mention:  2013 Doris Betts Fiction Prize ]   These days Kuromon market is where I go to retreat. I ride the subway and I step into the light at the Nipponbashi station. I linger at the vegetable stands, my fingertips tracing the contours of white daikon, bright slick eggplants, lumpy kabocha squash with their secret orange insides, brilliant red tomatoes in blue bowls. 

[Nomination: Pushcart Prize]
[Honorable Mention: 2013 Doris Betts Fiction Prize]

These days Kuromon market is where I go to retreat. I ride the subway and I step into the light at the Nipponbashi station. I linger at the vegetable stands, my fingertips tracing the contours of white daikon, bright slick eggplants, lumpy kabocha squash with their secret orange insides, brilliant red tomatoes in blue bowls.