By Ellen Estilai
It was my need to belong that drove me to learn Persian. I prided myself on my command of the idiom. The secret to my steep learning curve was pretending. Make-believe was my major strategy. I was not content to merely memorize verb conjugations and the uses of the subjunctive. My tactic early on was to convince myself that I was Iranian. Even before I had the vocabulary, I had mastered the cadence of a Persian sentence. I
By Alexis Rhone Fancher
His walls are an altar to our May/December tryst, framed nude drawings of a teenaged me. Back when my body was flawless, his hand, steady, his lust so palpable, sparks flew off the paper.
We met at Christmas. I had been dumped by my first love. He welcomed me into his lair.
Now, in his ramshackle cabin near Santa Cruz,
By Cynthia Stock
he night I escaped the sinewy charms of Don Baker, I ran down the rocky dirt road from the drive-in, dodged behind garbage cans, and sidled into the recessed doorways of a strip mall to avoid being seen when Don drove by in his VW van. I walked home from that very scary date and swore to myself “Never again.”
A sophomore at Arizona State University, I thought I knew everything about college, men, and, oh yes, life.
By Alie Wiegersma Smaalders
“It’s twenty-one minutes before the hour.”
The radio announcer’s voice is cheerful, but the words sound ominous. Before the hour of what. Death? I shudder.
It’s early morning when I hear this on the radio and my sleepy mind panics as I’m trying to think of everything I ought to do before I die.
By Jane-Rebecca Cannarella
The cinnamon freckles that are dusted on my body are identical to the ones on the bodies of my sometimes former, sometimes current, nighttime, kind-of-friends. [I wouldn’t go as far as to call the speckled procession, ‘lovers’]. When our bodies combined, the specks were capable of soaking up twice the amount of vitamin D — especially in dark rooms.
Ephelides awoke in the sunshine. But stormy weather would wash away the little stains,