Murray Bill

Murray Bill was often seen dragging his trusty mower up and down Dogwood Drive. His flabby arms stayed sunburned and slick with sweat, hanging out of a vulgar Big Johnson sleeveless t-shirt, his gas can tilting, jostling on the trusty Murray push mower he’d kept running like a top for fifteen years. Mrs. Olive paid... Continue Reading →

Valentines

I found Mom at the sink, head bowed, shoulders drooped, water running. My unassembled Valentines scattered across the counter. I tried to slip away, but she turned. “Oh, Josh.” She wiped, sniffled, recovered. "Sorry, I lost track of time.” We lost track a lot since Dad died. His birthday. Christmas. Anniversaries. The calendar had endless... Continue Reading →

Toothache

Linwood Wilmer was known affectionately as “Toothache” to those who frequently crossed the Jamesway Bridge. He could usually be found near the billboard, a palm to his jaw, wincing as he hobbled, searching for aluminum cans or whatever else anyone may have pitched from their window. Sometimes he’d fix up a scarf, tying it up... Continue Reading →

Intermission

I’d held it together under the cover of darkness, but caught in the lights in the lobby, lost in the shuffle of handshakes and laughter and blazers and cocktail dresses, I had no choice but to hide, almost literally, tucking myself behind the steps, under a vibrant green EXIT sign, clutching a bottle of beer... Continue Reading →

Me vs. Everything – Random Chapter

It’s funny what miles of push mowing will do to your thoughts. Where I'm the star of my daydreams, ripping off my warm-ups, running layup drills, a sea of Woodberry maroon and silver in the stands as I crack the starting lineup, maybe getting all-conference a few years down the road. I'm the talk of... Continue Reading →

Waltz

They were dancing when the winds picked up, carrying ash and char from the hills. The gusts sifted through their hair, fluttered their shirts, and knocked them back with a howl before chasing them into the house. They collapsed onto the sagging kitchen floor in a whirl of laughter. They caught their breaths as the... Continue Reading →

It’s A Wonderful Life…

“There are two kinds of people in this world,” Kurt slurred, pausing to take another artless swig. “Those who like Wonderful Christmastime, and those who would rather gargle Pop Rocks with Drano.” “Liquid Drano? Or Max Gel,” I said, trying to throw my friend off his game. But hammered as he was, Kurt was right.... Continue Reading →

Any Friday Night – 1987

I read the question again. “Who married Charles Lindbergh?” Melissa, my always cranky sister, grabbed a handful of popcorn and shrugged. “Who cares?” My stepmother took a breath. A small sip of wine. I sat at the table, staring at the orange squares on the board—the sports squares—hoping for something I was capable of answering.... Continue Reading →

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