From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

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Fiction

Flash Fiction

Mirage-Stories

Dear Jojober, I hope this finds you well, old friend. I write to you from the deserts of Akosa, from a place so dry and far inland that the natives simply laugh at my tales of the sea. They call them eb’yore. Mirage-stories. I am the silly man who speaks in riddles, whose memories are dreams. Ha! If they only knew how true my stories are. If they only knew what kind of man I used to be.

Fiction

Drowned Best Friend

The clatter of rain against the window draws Lesley close. “Hey,” she hisses from across the kitchen. She calls me by my old name and I don’t even flinch. It’s morning, and I’m trying to get breakfast done before Mom comes down, because a perfectly fried egg makes her more likely to say yes to what I’m about to ask. The light was coming through the windows over the sink all yellow and golden, but the storm blew in fast, and now there’s electricity prickling in the air and everything smells damp. I left the window open, hoping she’d show, despite the water pushing through the screen into Mom’s flowerboxes above the sink.

Flash Fiction

How to Make Love to a Ciguapa

1. Wake at dawn. 2. La ciguapa finds you, but you must first pay her homage. Lore dictates she is tucked in the lush mountains of the Dominican Republic. Try the countryside of Constanza, away from the business of the valley below. Follow the crushed line of cliffs set against the horizon.

Fiction

Beginnings

In the beginning, June and Nat are best friends. June is not yet a swarm of honeybees and Nat is not yet a cloud of horseflies, and the king hasn’t yet decided that separating them into parts like this—June’s left pinky finger one bee, her left ring finger another—is the only surefire way to strip them of what they really are. Which, at least in the beginning, is best friends, living together on the outskirts of town, sharing a dresser full of secondhand band tees, squeezing lemon juice onto one another’s hair in the summer, then sitting together on the blacktop to wait.

Flash Fiction

Practical Childcare Considerations for Knights Errant

We were at the mouth of the cave, peering into the darkness that glimmered faintly with the gold of the dragon’s hoard, when my phone buzzed. I pulled it out of my leather satchel just far enough to see that it was, in fact, the daycare. My heart sank.

Fiction

How to Make a Man Love You

Zayyan meets Cecilia on the first day of freshman year. He does not believe in love at first sight, but he does believe in the scientific method, and what is this moment if not empirical evidence of the former? She is like no one he has met before. Black hair pulled into a messy bun, bare arms laden with books, brown eyes ardent as a summer storm.

Flash Fiction

isio

it is a windless evening in april/ & night drinks my exhalations /in my palms are corpses of fireflies as i sprawl/ here, my aching back reclined /on the breast/ of a half-timbered wall/ above me, the glorious reincarnations of fireflies /mostly with autopsy reports/ “a child’s curiosity” / to steal into a child’s body/ is to be granted magic/ to breathe in wonder/ it is to want eyes /that mirror gods too perfectly, they flutter by, in bodies of/ butterflies calling you by your poison /beyond the cliff

Fiction

The Dybbuk Ward

I am not an illness. I’m a soul with a goal. Everyone on this floor is here for intrusive thoughts, ideations, risk of harm to themselves or others. What society used to call possession, they now call neurotransmitter imbalance or schizophrenia or obsessive compulsion.

Flash Fiction

Collecting Ynes

Ynes doesn’t remember the marigold, but she has a recurring dream in which she accidentally swallows an entire tangerine. She grows very warm and realizes it was not a tangerine at all but a small sun. She knows if she tells her mother what she swallowed, there will be a panic. So instead, she keeps her mouth shut. The sun sits warm in her belly and shines tendrils of light down her arms and legs. When rays escape her fingertips, she puts on mittens.

Fiction

Christopher Mills, Return to Sender

This is the dead thing becoming the body. This is the dead thing opening the body’s eyes. This is the dead thing rising from the grave. This is the dead thing saying “What the hell—I didn’t ask to be summoned. I was having a great time being dead and dreaming about nothing.”