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Fifty drunk teenagers in a backyard. The girls pair off by height: tall with tall; short with short. The night is balmy, blameless. Jonah Tate, whose backyard it is, makes a ring with white masking tape. Becky Brady stands in her corner, gloves limp at her sides. A boy whispers something in her ear and […]
The man of Small Island is dreaming of a wolf.
From our 2010 Winter Reading issue (#46), Dan Chaon’s To Psychic Underworld. Critter was standing outside the public library with his one-year-old daughter in his arms when he saw a dollar bill on the sidewalk. It came fluttering by, right next to his tennis shoe, carried by the wind along with a leaf. He hesitated […]
My doctor always asked how I would prepare it, the placenta. Powdered and encapsulated for my Yuki—two, three, four or more a day depending on my level of sadness and how much I believed the vitamins and hormones within the tissue would make me whole again. Pan fried and stuffed into dumplings for Toru. A […]
I was at the hibachi restaurant in the dream.
Elliott Holt teaches us our ABC’s.
The Open Bar is thrilled to publish an exclusive short story from Shelly Oria’s debut collection New York 1, Tel Aviv 0. To dive further into Shelly Oria’s world be sure to click over to Fiction Writers Review for an interview between the author and Laura van den Berg. Saturday Saturdays we’d have brunch at Curly’s. […]
From our 2010 Summer issue (#44), Paul Griner’s “Animati.” We were going to surprise him from the closet. He was going to be surprised when we jumped out, there was no doubt about that. He was just a temporary extension of us, and besides, we’d told him we couldn’t come. It was dark, and our […]
The Bishop leaned toward the vanity, tweezers poised, and considered two uncomfortable truths.
The art teacher’s wife left him, and their two sons, for another woman two years ago.
It’s the future. It’s been the future for a while.
I walked halfway across this morning, and it made me feel ordinary. Everyone who crosses the Golden Gate thinks of jumping. Even the kid with his skateboard pissing off the pedestrians imagines their reaction if he’d careen down the cable from the south tower and launch himself toward Fort Point. It always depends on savoring […]
First we filled the holes, each only nine or so millimeters wide. The maintenance staff had tools on hand.
The bakery was hot, stifling, but Melba shivered again. Before morning, it was night, thought Melba, but what kind of night?
The Wild family moved into the house behind ours.
When people ask me something, I’ve a principle: always say yes.
From: Dan & Jan [editor@------mag.org] Sent: 18 June 2014 To: K— J—— [k---@----lit.com] Subject: RE: Bryan Hurt Hi K—, We enjoyed Bryan’s story, but we are looking for something more true, something that explores deeper human emotions. Bryan’s stories do not have as much emotional depth as I think we are looking for. Might he […]
He came back from the war with a little bit of money and the helmet of a man he had killed with a knife in a burnt-out house
The Vagabond Motor Lodge sat across the street from the Fiji Island restaurant, wedged between Johnny’s Auto Parts and a gas station with a flying horse on its neon sign.
It was Tim’s eagerness and boundless spontaneity that got them to set out up the mountain in the midday heat. The Greek landscape, which Eva never cared for, appeared more hostile and parched than ever.
We were the sons and daughters of busy working men and women who couldn’t afford crèches, of half-lost souls, of feckless unemployed folks who had some betting or drinking or TV-watching planned on our schoolless Wednesday afternoons.
Our Lady of the Nile: how proudly the school stands.
hh This story appears in Tales of Two Cities: The Best And Worst Of Times in Today’s New York (edited by John Freeman) gggg The vast white tent had mullioned vinyl windows cut into it as a design feature, so the guests at the outer, less expensive tables could see the snow coming down heavily […]
All birds around here were dead, and we stared, slack-jawed, at their piled carcasses along the road.
But more of the chicks survived than you thought, and dozens upon dozens of them now scurry around the room, shitting everywhere.