Kate E. Lore, Lydia

Lydia
Kate E. Lore

Lydia stands, dangerously close, next to the rapidly moving parts of the machine. It is so loud in her ear she can feel it in her skull. Her hair is gently shaking from the vibrations. Her eardrums hurt. They throb to the sound. Her eyes jiggle in their sockets. So she closes them.

The machine is at the center of the factory. It’s hidden behind the lines of smaller machines, and large storage bins, and a conveyer belt that cuts the room in half. Pallets are driven past. They are held up in the air, ten feet up off the ground, by a guy driving a forklift. On the ground, yellow lines are drawn in geometric shapes, splitting the entire warehouse into smaller pieces that fit perfectly together like a puzzle. These lines are here to keep the workers from leaving Continue reading “Kate E. Lore, Lydia”

Joe Baumann, Spring•Summer 2017

Miners
Joe Baumann

They set you down in an old dentist’s chair, yellow stuffing clumping around the strips of duct tape that catch on the holes in your jeans. Then they apply blue jelly, cold and clammy, to your temples, massaging it against your skin with two fingers each.  Your hair has already been buzzed short so the gloppy mess won’t muss into anything. It is, apparently, impossible to wash out. While they fiddle with their instruments—just out of your periphery, but you can hear something whirring that fills your mouth with a metallic taste, saliva bunching behind your wisdom Continue reading “Joe Baumann, Spring•Summer 2017”

Philip Athans, Spring•Summer 2017

Just Exactly Like
Philip Athans

“What’s this?” she said after she’d crossed right in front of him.

He didn’t really think she wanted to know the name of the movie she’d momentarily interrupted but still he said, “The Vampire Bat.”

There was, of course, no reaction, just the sound of her opening a cabinet in the kitchen then the refrigerator. Continue reading “Philip Athans, Spring•Summer 2017”

Jacob William Cox, Summer 2016

Generations
Jacob William Cox

She sat down in the shade and giggled. Oh, they were such silly people! So silly they made you giggle, and want nothing more than to run away through the first hot day of spring. Find a nice spot in the shade of a towering sycamore, and hide.

Sunlight filtered through the young leaves, mottling the roots and ground. The young girl smelled dirt. Earth. And she liked that smell, a rich living smell; the idea of bugs and worms. She dug her fingers in the dirt, moist after the rain which had fallen in the night. The pale blossoms on the trees, blown away in the winds, floated in ones and twos on the surface of the lake. Bending around the tree, hiding from nothing, she could see all this, the pond, the petals, and a mother duck with a few ducklings trailing.

She got up and walked over, dragged her dirty hands over her dress and stood watching. Continue reading “Jacob William Cox, Summer 2016”

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