Posts tagged “fiction”

  1. Ex-brother When I was ten years old, I found out that my dad was not my dad. My real dad was some guy I’d never met, a bricklayer from Mull who’d met my mum in a nightclub in town one Easter weekend. That was enough, the dad thing, but it turned out that he also had another kid. Rosabeth. Born two years before me. She lived with her dad, who was also my…

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  2. Last night my friend Mary masturbated in the church sanctuary where all of us girls were supposed to be sleeping. I think I am the only one who heard the crinkle of her Barbie-brand sleeping bag and the squelch of her fingers, kneading between her legs. Later, after I thought she was finished, she started moaning loudly. I think everyone heard, but when I rolled over to her sleeping bag, she was asleep. I clutched…

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  3. Things started out well enough. The tin of butter cookies was graciously received, as was the punch bowl of lemonade—refreshments that wouldn’t tint the tongue, or the hands. The church basement was warm, not the dank dungeon some had feared, and was plastered with kids’ coloring sheets of lambs and foot-washing. Some members were heartened to see one picture of Jesus’ calves and ankles filled in with Vivid Tangerine crayon. The meeting was called to…

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  4. Vanessa Willoughby's previous work for The Toast can be found here.

    I trusted her because she had big eyes that sparked up like little bugs convulsing in bright claps of electricity. She smelled like rosewater. Before our interview, she’d sloppily applied the finishing notes of her makeup in her rented car, a basic sedan on loan until the autobody shop completed the repairs to the passenger side of her Volvo. She’d forgotten

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  5. Previously by Kendra Fortmeyer: Mermaids at the End of the Universe.  What you do not know is this: in the final hours of the doomed city of Pompeii, the gods came down from the smoke-choked skies and said, Okay. We found you a place. The village elders raised their faces from their hands. Yes, anywhere, please! they cried. They had tried everything. The construction of moats, the last-minute sacrifice of a lamb who didn’t…

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  6. The cousin’s freckled arms reach out to the visitor. The cousin says she recognized her instantly from old family photos. There is glee and awkwardness, memories of what cannot possibly be remembered: playing as cherubs in the park across the street from their grandmother’s house, catfish caught with hand-held lines in the river behind the house.

    They fill in what cannot be talked about. It’s been fine, yes, except

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  7. He earned his first star (gold) for designing and hanging up his sticker chart. That evening he earned another star (gold) for watching a movie with his children without complaining about it. Later that evening he earned another star (gold) for getting his children in bed without complaining about it. And later that evening he earned a star (red) for an undisclosed reason.   The next morning he earned a star (gold) for getting his…

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  8. So we sent our kids to the bilingual school. It was Mrs. Eagle’s idea. She’d found it on her morning walk. Turned down Milwood Ave. instead of cutting across Crescent Ct., looked up from her steaming cup of Starbucks, and there it was, a school inside a tall blue fence. On the fence were bright paintings of charming and childish things: airplanes, flowers, tigers. “L’école bilingue,” read the sign above the doorway. “English and French.”…

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  9. Ignore for a moment that two years out of grad school I’m old enough to buy my own bed and shouldn’t ask my father to chip in on a mattress so that he shows up with my mother, who looks like she’s stepped out of a photograph, and she tries to charm the salesman, something she was never good at, but it somehow works this time and he takes off 20 percent. Ignore for a…

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  10. The first thing to understand is that we are very beautiful. Deploy your imagery of choice. Reach for gemstones, for edibles: crystal skin, laughing emerald eyes, hair like gently burnished gold. Peaches and cream. The blush of sunrise staining fresh water. You may mix metaphors. You will be forgiven. The second thing to understand is that it means nothing. It means nothing because we have been beautiful for years. And years. Think of the highest…

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  11. Sal and Crim have been having the same argument about noses since the day she got hers removed. Her parents took her to a cheap place. They went in through the side and Crim didn’t understand at the time, but she realizes now that they didn’t want anyone to see them going in. She wonders if her parents thought this cheap job would fool everyone when it’s so easy to look at someone’s face and…

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  12. The corn is being sown by metal teeth and pigs and sheep are being fed by automated hands and cows are being suckled on by vacuum tubes connected to their teats.  A truck is driving past a window, and it shakes, and so does Vera.  It makes more sense to shake when everything is shaking.  Vera mumbles curses.  Hannah bangs her head.  Vincent is kicking air and crying for his mommy.  The cows and

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  13. Most of the prostitutas were French: pale, painted girls who could speak fifty words of Portuguese between them. One of them was a native: an índia who couldn’t have been older than seventeen or taller than five feet. Everyone called her ‘Índia’, just like everyone called the fat girl ‘Gordinha’ and the most beautiful one ‘Bonita’. In turn, most of the girls called Felipe Cabral ‘Doutor’, because he had been to medical school, though he…

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  14. You do not know that I have written him something inappropriate. He does not know it either. This is how I cross the line from friendship into foreplay: chronic limp. A text that reads “I have written you something inappropriate” that once read “Pants: Y/N?”

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  15. 99 Jerico Loop   Elsie Davis and Nathan are making out in the back of Nathan’s truck and the curved metal of the truck bed is digging into Elsie Davis’s back. She gets on top of him and he reaches up, grabs her breasts, her rounded stomach fat, wriggles up face as if smelling something bad, says, “Your titties are too saggy, there’s nothing to them,” pushes her off. Embarrassed, she gathers herself, making the…

    4 comments