Blonde

“When did you go bald?” Only Clarice would ask such a forthright question. “Leave her alone,” Jake drains his beer. Only he would dare contradict his sister. The clock hands have gone from late at night to early in the morning. Jake’s bar is empty of customers. The...

Thorns In My Throat

“You worship idols! Ooh, you’re going to hell!” I was so young when they took my tongue away. They needed no scalpel to silence me, only the sharp edge of their judgment. The worst part was, I let them. — “Where are you from? No, where are you really from?” We’ve all...

The Mountain

They had been climbing all afternoon. First it was a game of hide-and-seek in the underbrush and over rocky outcrops. But by accident or design their game had taken them higher up the slope until the roof of the guest house was lost among the trees below, and the...

Binaries

Year 1: I come into the world wet and squalling and ordinary, born of heterosexual bio-parents. Year 2: A flat photo shows me on my first birthday with a shock of red hair, wide green eyes, and an expression of distaste at the sticky white frosting on my fingers. My...

Five Lessons in the Fattening Room

1. Some say that Mistress Ata Madidi is not of man, but birthed from the brackish waters of the Ebedi Ocean. They say she is divine, called into being by the need of one desperate woman to tame man and claim a free life. Like the ocean, the beloved Mistress is a...

Excerpts: Hammer in the Dark

The human female, Narita, turned back to Jequith after the door slid shut. “I’m so sorry.” “You did not have to turn away your friend, just because we are here.” Jequith said the words politeness demanded, but it was intensely grateful...

Hide

Mu sits on the edge of the bed in the Midtown apartment, looking out the window. In front of him, on the windowsill, there is the yellow pill and a glass of water. He feels helpless, robbed of free will. Whether he takes the pill or not, his actions feel...

The Tailings by Brian Daniel Green

Podcast: Read by Florita Gunasekara Vagovidopito squatted in his hovel at the center of the Sun. A place so cold, the Sun’s heat only managed a single drip down the blackened icicle hanging from his pointy warty nose. Hunched over, he carved every new soul and blew...

Datsue-Ba by Eliza Chan

Illustration by Kieran Walsh We must not have heard her knock. The rice paper door slid open and an elderly woman in a yukata bowed low at the entrance. ‘Excuse my intrusion, I’ve brought your evening meal,’ the attendant said, raising her head and looking briefly at...

Champollion’s Foot by Haris A. Durrani

I died as a mineral and became a plant, I died as plant and rose to animal, I died as animal and I was Man. Why should I fear? When was I less by dying? — Rumi Being deprived of a dream is much more cruel than simply being shot and dismissed. — George Saliba  ...