Gloomy Saturday

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By Tremaine L. Loadholt

She doesn’t know what today will bring. She awakened to a cold, rainy morning. The dust is beginning to settle around her. Her dog barks. She signals a neighbor or the post. Whoever it is, it’s far too early for smiling. Coffee percolates, wafts through the air. She wraps her cold fingers around the base of the mug and gently sips. Rain catches her windows—taps at them hesitantly.

Should she get dressed?

She looks outside, views the slow and steady cars driving by, and thinks to herself, “Get dressed for what?”

            
Tremaine L. Loadholt lives in Southeast U.S. Her work has appeared in several literary journals, anthologies, and print magazines. She has also published three poetry books: Pinwheels and Hula Hoops, Dusting for Fingerprints, and A New Kind of Down.

The Coyote

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By Jim Bates

“It’s a damn coyote,” the man exclaimed, looking out the window of his mansion. He yelled to his wife, “Ellen, call animal control. Hurry!”

Oblivious, the sleek animal trotted on. He knew he’d ranged too far from his den and into the Neighborhoods, but he was hunting for his mate and their pups. The rabbit he’d killed was his reward and he hurried to get home. The smell of humans frightened him. He trotted faster planning to never return.

Ellen ignored her shouting husband. Instead she watched the coyote lope away, envying it’s freedom, wished she could join him .

             
Jim Bates is fascinated by the interaction between humans and the natural world, and he hopes his writing reflects that interest.

Taking the Switch

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By Deanna Salser

It was the quarter that caused the trouble in the first place. It was so shiny, with its small but solid weight, warming in my hand as I held it tightly on the way to church. We conspired to keep it instead of putting it in the collection plate.

Caught, I took the blame and the switch as quietly as I could.

I glanced in as I passed the boy’s room on my way to cry in private, and my brother ran to hug me quickly, pulling away before we were seen, and just like that, my hurts were mended.

           
“I write because I must. There’s nothing in the world quite like being able to entertain with your imagination.” – the writer

A Unique Perspective

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By E. B. Bradley

“I plan of dying before I turn 35,” she said as she balanced on a chair, trying to get her panties from the ceiling fan.

“Why’s that?” I ask, muffled from lying face down on the bed.

“Because nothing good could possibly happen after that,” she answered pulling them back on.

I haven’t seen that girl in years, I hope she’s doing well. Still as beautiful and wild as ever, like a human firework. I hope her plan fails. I’d love to see her ride life with the same vigor at 60 as she did at 19.

           
“I write because words can show the romanticism of everyday life.” – the writer

Dreams of Unspecified Crimes

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By Howie Good

Every morning when I wake up I can detect a lingering scent of blood. No one I have told has been able to explain it. The cops just howl with laughter. And the doctors? They just look puzzled. I think it was Freud who said dreams are the day’s dark residue. In one dream that I sort of remember, I had been sentenced to death by decapitation for an unspecified crime. The next thing I knew I was walking in town very gingerly, trying to keep my head balanced on my neck stump. Most people who saw me weren’t fooled.

           
“I write to keep my head on.” – the writer

Misnomer

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By Barbara Schilling Hurwitz

I screamed. The visceral pain too much to contain as my baby was wrenched from what I had falsely assured her was the safety of my arms. Words were fired at us, words we could not understand, words filled with visible hatred. Fear and unanswered questions consumed me.

Caged with others pained like me, frightened not for ourselves but for our innocent children, I weaved through the stench of the anxious crowd toward an opening in the pen, hoping for a glimpse of my baby.

A guard who spoke my language explained, “She’s been taken to another shelter.”

“Shelter?”

            
Barbara Schilling Hurwitz writes “For the joy of creation, the journey and the delight in watching my characters grow.”