Promises

by Hilary Dean

You think Fine Arts is going to be a bird degree and then you have to take classes all through the summer and talk about art until you want to kill yourself and also everyone else.

Lily of the Valley

by Andrea Hansell

I’m famous, and my sister Christine is ordinary. Saying it straight out like that feels strange, but it’s true. We’re identical twins, a fact that fascinates people.

Distance Lessons

by Sally Pla

When he came back from that first trip to India, all she could get out of him was that it was “awesome.” He was never a talker. It used to exasperate her when he was little; she’d want to shake him to get words out.

Tulip Tears

by Deborah Clearman

When lightning strikes the tulip poplar, five hundred years of leaf lifting crashes into splinter wood, and several notables roll over in their graves.

Family

by Cezarija Abartis

Outside the kitchen window, squirrels scattered the seed from the birdfeeder Paula’s dad had set up. The seeds gleamed in the sun like drops of water.

Dragging Raven Lake

by Kevin Couture

The men waited on the shore while Susan, (whose son they searched for), made coffee on the tailgate of a half-ton.

The Imminence of Flight

by Chris Connolly

At the supermarket I see a young mother gently weeping in the cereal aisle. Her baby watches her curiously, possibly stumped by this reversal of roles, or too young to understand.

A Boyfriend History in 10 Flavors

by Laura Golden Bellotti

Our ten-year age difference seemed vast to me, not to him. It was lunch—our daily lunches at the small French restaurant across the street from our office—that bridged the gap.

Guitar Lessons

by Roxanne Lynn Doty

If anybody follows me call 911. I live in apartment 12 but don’t go there if somebody stalks me. I should stay in a public place like Taco Bell or Walgreens.

Down in the Station

by Seth Sawyers

In the station a black woman with thick braids played the cello. I thought she was good, but I don’t know if she really was good, because what do I know about the cello?

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