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Rachel looked at the customer's ID. The girl was buying the sort of liquor that attracted minors: sweet as soda and the colour of Crayolas. It raised suspicion.

The girl was very clear-eyed and pretty, in a pain-in-the-ass kind of way. Born 1999. People from every year of(more)
Ruth could open her eyes at almost anytime of day or night and not remember where she was. The consistent thing was her bed. It was a familiar rumpled den that smelled like her. But beyond that, the world was an ocean she was unmoored in. The easy forgetfulness(more)
Jesus Christ, mom would say, but it would sound like swear words, not a prayer. Jesus Christ. Being late for church made her swear horribly, because in church we were all lined up in rows, like roll call, and social failings were on display each week. Bad clothes, tardiness,(more)
On holidays Mo sees her brother and his wife for the meal. They are all getting old now but this custom remains. The wife, who never forgets a slight, still hates Mo from early days.

Things are always the same. Their house always too lavish, and Mo always(more)
Coming away from her most recent visit with fresh tears in the corners of her eyes, my grandma always had a delusional way of explaining why my cousin Leila was the way she was. "Overindulged," "an only child," "doesn't know how to share herself," "shy."  
Breaking the 4th wall to say:

there's a fine batch of writers here on TT. I hope you all are saving on your own computers your "300 words or less", if you value these dispatches.
I wanted a bass guitar when I was 13, 14. I had dreams that just owning an instrument would be my way out. I would immediately make punk friends, they would identify with my shitty poetry, we would smash shit on stage, get paid. We would live together &(more)
I sometimes get itchy to be elsewhere, anywhere.

But I hate to travel. If I even leave my house for too long I have a panic attack. When I am leaving for work, I make it to the end of the driveway before I have to go bac(more)
I'm good to my mom, I take her to dinner. Two-three times a year. She likes Chinese. We have a place we go.      

OK, it's slightly less sometimes, being honest. Time flies, et cetera. And she's old. Ma or not, she doesn't have much going on. Cries, say(more)
Things always looked worse in the mornings. The unlovely light of winter mornings, the ruralness outside with no assurance of other life made the overnight snowfall look harsher. Yet the radio rarely declared a snow day despite the thick inches silencing the world further.

Our dad kept th(more)
Community hall nights, when cribbage takes place, and liquor made from potato peelings can be purchased. Hunters lay out inedible body parts on the table. The bony bits. Later they will be burned. It is a fortnightly bonfire intended to float grief & responsibility away. The old way of(more)
There are many places you can't see when you are a child. These are the places where dark dreams spin themselves like nets. Under the bed, in the closet, in the dark. You only know with certainty the 4 cold inches in front of your nose. It is not(more)
They talk about planting seeds for the future. They mean ambition and planning ahead. Some people don't have the dirt for seeds. You can't plan ahead when your fridge is empty, your stomach a hollow block. Or when you know not just your mom's payday, but that it's already(more)
After the truth came out she was recast in a new light. She didn't feel like she fit in the world anymore - the stream of everyday life didn't sweep her along. She didn't float, she sank. She couldn't breathe. Her own conscience strangled her; time sat like a(more)
I will take suggestions on how to be happy
And how to live

Normally, like any woman will:

A life clustered with pleasures and meaning - (more)