The Victrola

This story was originally published in the 7th Annual Writer’s Digest Short Short Story Competition Collection Sunlight filtered through a broken window, barely conquering the dust filled air to land on what was left of the Victrola. Kayla hesitated, just a moment, thinking she could escape before the dust anchored her to the rest of the ruins in the room. Her feet moved forward as her mind considered the possibilities. Her chest and her resolve tightened as she passed quickly through the light without noticing its warmth on her skin. She remembered the room as it had once been – …

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Climate changes

I used to love the rain before I came here. Rain used to mean relief from the heat. It used to mean much needed water was finally here. Rain used to mean life. I woke this morning to the sounds of rain gathering in the gutters and flowing into the yard. In my half-waked state I smiled and remembered a time when I would have lept from the bed to watch this precious gift fall from the sky. I did not leap from the bed.

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The Thief’s Garden

“A good deep well is worth killing over.” He heard those words going through his head as he looked down at the lifeless body of his neighbor’s neighbor. The blood was still fresh from the wound and the eyes had only just begun to look unconscious.

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Those Damned Eyes (inspired by Thisbe, 1900)

  Those damned eyes: always changing, always inigmatic, always so damned…feminine. I often wondered if she even knew what a puzzle she was to me. What am I talking about? Of course she did. How could she not? I was always staring at her as if she were a photograph on a wall waiting for me to come along and bring her back to life by figuring her out. Yes, I am egotistical that way. All of us are in our own way and this is my way. All puzzles are here for me to figure out and I am …

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The Chansonnier

He walked casually down the road, happy to have a moment to himself and the shade of the trees to cool his spirit. The party had been long, and though he was sure that all of the attendees thought themselves unique and special snowflakes, they acted exactly the same as all the other rich, white faces he’d encountered since his arrival in Paris, dull and entitled. It had been a last minute gig picked up as a favor to a friend. François had called him just a couple of hours before the party started with a nasty cough and desperation …

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Emily’s Evolution

A woman’s heart is not really such a terribly difficult thing to understand. The key is to simply remember that no matter the circumstance, her heart is always in conflict and once her heart is in conflict, her mind starts trying to make sense of it. She must, with every minute decision in her life, weigh the impacts on herself, her loved ones, the community in which she lives and so on outward until she knows the universe will not suffer more greatly than any satisfaction she may derive from the action she is about to take. This internal processes …

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Ce n’est pas facile d’essayer

My mind woke to the now familiar sounds of arctic winds whirling around the home in which I lived. Even before I opened my eyes I could see the blinding white extending further than my eyes could comprehend.  The desolate beauty of it never ceased to stir my soul and to dull it. I thought about pulling the covers over my head and letting the day pass without me. I thought about it, but ultimately gave into the wind. The house was quiet. Everyone left hours ago. Going to jobs they hate, classes that mean nothing to them. Going to …

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A Snapshot of a Different Kind

A little girl sat all alone on her back steps. Her tiny hands cupped her dirty face. Her stringy blond hair flew wildly about her face as the soft October breeze danced around her. Her big blue eyes looked down to the ground, but from her expression, one could only assume that she was staring through the earth into a world only she could know. It was difficult to tell if the girl was sad or just contemplative. She kicked one of her beaten old tennis shoes into the yard and rolled one pant leg up to her knee, then …

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Artistic Discoveries

The walk home was short. He was so lost in thought he couldn’t remember exactly how he’d arrived at his apartment complex. His feelings were overwhelming. He needed to grasp what was happening. Did Lillian Walker really offer to help him find his father? Could this be true? He had hesitated so long to contact Ms. Walker. Celebrity status aside, what he needed to get from her should not have been easily obtained information. Her break up with Jackson had been very public; his fault, not hers. Kevin knew that she preferred to keep her private life to herself. So …

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A Day Like Any Other

Today is a day like any other day, yet unlike any other day because today is today and not yesterday. It was this kind of thinking that kept him from moving forward in his life, but he was so wrapped up in these kinds of thoughts, wondering through their intricacies, finding depths unseen by others, that he had, at least thus far, only found a nominal margin of success.  That is to say, he did not lack for human comfort.  He did not wonder from where his next meal would come.  Yet he did not take extravagant trips or buy …

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