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raspy voices scratch against peeling-wallpaper walls as the living room record player croons an old French song about love, of course, and I think that maybe love is a teddy bear that's missing an eye or a yellow bowl filled to the brim with bright red fruit--
only I'm(more)
My dad's mom died of ovarian cancer when I was five years old. Actually, that's not exactly true. She died of the flu, which normally doesn't kill anyone, but it killed her because of how weak she had become from ovarian cancer. So, I guess the cancer killed her,(more)
It was a gloomy Sunday, and Charles stood trembling in the attic of his childhood home.  
He had not been back since his younger brother's death twenty-seven years ago. In fact, Charles had not been back in the state since then. He did not say goodbye to his mother(more)
I read an article today about how the Bolshoi Ballet plants people in the audience to start the applause at all the right times. It got me thinking, and I started to wonder who has been planted in my life to clap at the appropriate moments. I wonder if(more)
the
I worked at a local nursing home a few years ago. I was a volunteer, so all I had to do was socialize with residents for about an hour every other day. Many of the people I met have since become very vague memories, but one man stands out(more)
"On behalf of this aircraft's crew and Southwest Airlines, I'd like to welcome you to San Francisco. Enjoy your stay, and we hope you choose to fly with us again in the future!"
The stewardess's chipper voice made Henry feel slightly nauseous. He turned on his cell phone and(more)
I like when one of your arms wraps around my waist and the other reaches for my hand and our fingers intertwine as our connected arms bend upwards at the elbows and you start to rock me from side to side and we dance. Subtle. No music. No beat.(more)
I decided to spend a few weeks in California last summer because I had saved up enough money and boredom to do so. I crashed at a friend's apartment in Berkeley and intended to spend my three days in Northern California exploring San Francisco's many districts. I was not(more)
I sighed when I noticed that the movers had put my piano in the wrong room. It was the big empty room with hardwood floors and white, cold walls. I had wanted to leave this room empty, though I wasn’t quite sure why.
But I am too small to(more)
I spent my first summer out of college living in a small apartment with some friends. Our schedules rarely allowed for us to cook and eat together, but when we did, it was quite the spectacle. Our tiny kitchen could fit no more than one person at a time,(more)
I had heard of you like one hears of a disease
thinking it’ll never hit me
but it’s so stupefying
and what if it did?

You crept up on me so slyly (more)
On the day of the trip, Mama was awake an hour before everyone else, naturally. She was in the kitchen as I walked in, rubbing my eyes sleepily, wearing nothing but my underwear because the previous night had been an unbearably hot one. She was making sandwiches for everyone,(more)
My family spent every summer at our little cottage in the Russian countryside. We stayed in the Malakhovka from the beginning of June until the last day of August. The nights were warm and alive with buzzing insects and the occasional howl of our neighbor's dog. We always brought(more)
I check the time on the microwave. It's 11:32am. I'm running two minutes late. I'll just have to walk more quickly, I guess. I have had a fear of being late for years now, perhaps a result of cruel, shaming stares from tall, bony ballet teachers who would not(more)
It is Sunday, and I am volunteering at the local soup kitchen. I meet many sad, sick people there. One is Annette, whose black skin sags sadly on her face. There are wrinkles around her lips, and she reeks of cigarettes. "I used to sing, you know! I was(more)