Archive for the ‘Fiction’ Category

Akhun

In Fiction on September 30, 2013 at 9:41 pm

English: Maarat an-Numan, Syria, main street D...

Akhun

By early March we had left Aleppo and were making our way south toward Qusayr, where we had heard Hezbollah fighters were crossing the border from Lebanon. Pha’ris had somehow convinced a commander in the FSA to take us—that my reporting would glorify their cause—even though I told him he shouldn’t have said that.

“You worry too much,” he told me, that day near Rastan. The shelling was thunderous in the distance, and the sky was black with smoke.

“I’m a realist,” I said.

“You’re afraid.”

We were packed into our four-by-four with six rebels. Another truck, winding its way through the burnt-out cars ahead of us, held six more. There had been a third in our convoy just a week earlier, but they’d tripped an IED by Maarat al-Numan, and we’d spent the greater part of a day collecting body parts for burial. Hell yes I was afraid. Read the rest of this entry »

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Man and Beast

In Fiction on September 23, 2013 at 11:59 pm

ChurchScene

Man and Beast

Pietro knelt in the half-light, clutching the rosary to his chest, mumbling his prayers. Faith was the only balm for a soul as ragged and ruined as his. He had been six years at the monastery, and still the wounds had not healed.

“How did you find me?” he asked at last. The girl swept into the room and sat on the edge of his cot.

“How many dwarves do you imagine there are in Florence?” She laughed. “When I couldn’t find you in any of the whorehouses or alehouses, I started searching the churches.”

Pietro sighed. He had finally begun to feel better. He’d finally begun to pass the nights without dreaming of Giovanni’s mangled smile—without waking to find his chamber echoing with his own mad laughter. He turned. Read the rest of this entry »

Through Time

In Fiction on September 20, 2013 at 1:55 pm

time

Through Time

through

time

history

repeats

itself:

war

and

conquest

rise

and

fall Read the rest of this entry »

At the Game

In Fiction on September 17, 2013 at 8:55 pm

SummerSky

At the Game

There is a dream I have in summer, when the sun is hot and flashing white in my gossamer curtains. It is a dream known well by men of my age, but wholly unfamiliar to those still enjoying life. I don’t know that I should tell you…

A boat sits in open water, the oars resting, the waves lapping at the sides. I sit in the stern, but I do not row. Instead I stand and stretch and peer toward land, finding only the dark blue rim of the watery horizon, a stripe of color, and an endless ocean.

When I fall, as I always fall, I sink slowly through blue-green warmth, then down into crushing, icy murk. As all goes black, I awake. Read the rest of this entry »

The Tether

In Fiction on September 6, 2013 at 10:59 am

rope

The Tether

I wore a crown

yet bore a tether

made of blood and flesh,

and though I’m grown,

by flesh and blood

we’re tethered nonetheless.

The choir loft

resounds, triumphant.

Untethered, now you rest. Read the rest of this entry »

Marceau

In Fiction on September 4, 2013 at 11:13 pm

Wall Assortment, by Rochelle

Marceau

 His body makes angles

obtuse and acute

suggesting walls here

and doors there.

He pinches at fireflies that give off no light

and chases them

down

flattened

stairs. Read the rest of this entry »

She Spends Her Life In Dying

In Fiction on September 2, 2013 at 8:25 pm

arena

She Spends Her Life In Dying

The room was ringed in shadow, the faces of the other spectators little more than grey shapes beyond the brightness of the sand-strewn arena. Argen pulled on his cigarette and opened his mouth, letting the smoke escape in a languid drift. He leaned over and whispered in Damian’s ear.

“You’ve never seen anything like this, I promise you. I come most every night, myself.”

Damian said nothing. At the far right of the arena, a curtain stirred, and the next instant a tall woman in a shimmering white gown strode through, followed by three men clad in black. Argen dropped his cigarette on the floor and stomped it.

“Ah! Jesha is very good,” he whispered eagerly. “You’re in for a treat.” Read the rest of this entry »

The First Strike

In Fiction on August 27, 2013 at 9:16 am

BowlingBall

The First Strike

Fourteen years old and full of swagger, his whitewashed jeans evincing a unique brand of skinny virility, Toby Fischer thumbed at the scoreboard and smiled.

“That’s a turkey, gentlemen. Bear witness to my glory.”

The Eider twins, Gary and Evan, were beside themselves. They hollered as Toby did a spin in his two-toned shoes—a god among boys among men. It was closing time at Button’s Bowling, and the best Saturday night of Toby’s young life.

But a sudden scream pierced the jubilation—thin and high and desperate—and Toby held up his hand for silence.

“I think it came from the private lanes,” Evan offered.

“Let’s go look,” Toby said. Read the rest of this entry »

A Marked Man

In Fiction on August 19, 2013 at 10:59 pm

fire embers

A Marked Man

Jess scratched his mouth. The thing itched sometimes, especially where his beard grew, where the flesh had turned liquid and healed smooth like a gentle river. The boy watched him over the fire.

“Ask your question, kid,” Jess growled. The boy trembled.

“Well, I’s just wondering what ya did,” he said, “to earn a mark like that.”

Jess sighed. People were always asking about the damn brand—if they were dumb enough to ask, at least. Elsewise they just stared. The scars made an X from Jess’ cheeks to his chin, crossing his mouth in the middle.

“I killed some kids,” he said. “The oldest, about your age. The youngest barely crawling.” Read the rest of this entry »

Slice of Life

In Fiction on August 16, 2013 at 6:05 pm

photoslice

Slice of Life

I am in

a rut

a rage

recovery

Over-

whelmed

analyzing

joyed

And my

teeth chatter

bones ache

Read the rest of this entry »