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Gather Here Again [private]

Her grandbabies should be asleep, yet here they are, restless as everyone else tonight.

By the time they tiptoe down the central stairs, the creaking giving them away, she’s long lost the sun. The sky is a sweep of black.

The Trick [private]

Behold: William’s father slices his mother in half. He shackles her to the bottom of a water tank. He packs her inside a cannon and lights the fuse.

The Real India

The centerpiece of Lark’s studio is the Cunt Bodhisattva, an eight-foot architectural marvel of sedimentary vermiculite clay, sustainably retrieved from someplace in South Africa, molded in the shape of a woman bent backward in an Ūrdhvadhanurāsana pose, feet planted, legs spread, and vagina on display, stomach arching toward buoyantly upside-down tits and a neutral, choiceless face, palms firm on the ground astride a thicket of load-bearing hair.

VQR Online

The Little Blue Horses

December 3, 2020

Rochelle and her mother lived in a large town that was on its way to becoming a small city. On her way to school, Rochelle often stopped to watch the crews of construction workers erect a new house in the hole where, only a few days before, one of her neighbors’ houses had loomed in sour glory, a car parked on its front lawn, silk flowers sprouting along its foundation like hair plugs. 

The Math of Living

December 3, 2020

I’ve been working for the Chicago Tribune for about a year when it strikes me that I will go home in six months. The ticket has been booked, and I’m ready. My boss has reviewed the JavaScript code and made his updates for the day. The code is in production. 

Polly, Looking

December 3, 2020

Polly’s problem after the accident, really one of her largest problems, was an inability to prune what she saw and what she thought, to stop her brain. She was both too easily distracted and too attentive. When she’d gotten out of the hospital, she’d gone on a looking binge. Ned brought her photography and gardening books, stacks of Sotheby’s catalogues he found at the local Goodwill store, piling them everywhere as a hedge against her glitches in language. Polly spent one unnerving afternoon flat on her back in the yard, watching trees encroach on clouds. There hadn’t been much to do but observe.