A Quick Snack Before…


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They glance at each other from across the parking lot, and both giggle.

He crosses to her and southern drawls something about the damnedest experiences and being with her.

He looks her up and down with bedroom eyes  and holds the door for her.

She thinks how she will have more fun undressing him than undressing her husband.

She smiles broader and goes inside the restaurant.

Speaking Tongues by Guest Blogger Nate Maxson


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I would like to wear a white suit, that heavenly bellboy uniform of sweating snakehandlers

On special occasions

For when I perform that rarest of theological maneuvers: the reverse exorcism

When I steal the Evangelicals’ shtick/ oh baby

When I let the spirit enter you (let us pray)

We will have to see (look at me, playing the skulking other/ how debonair)

If you continue to say

That America

Is a religion of peace.

Nate Maxson is a writer and performance artist from Albuquerque, New Mexico.


My Godiva Moment


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Someone is finally interested enough in my work to interview me! God, I hope I don’t sound like an ass!

She walks in with her “I support PBS” tote bag on her right shoulder and a smug smile.

I would be totally smug if I won a Pulitzer like her. Ack, she’s my idol!!!

“So, let’s get started…” she says all grins and pomp.

“What were you thinking when you did the Charlottesville Naked Lady karaoke Youtube pieces?”

Uh-oh. I mutter something off the cuff about women in advertising, the beautiful but ugly, and pop culture.

I don’t think she bought it.

The rest of the interview sucks.

I think about setting fire to her tote.


On Being Golden


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“When Gregor Samsa woke up one morning from unsettling dreams, he found himself changed in his bed…” The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka

“Why is it so hot this morning?” I ponder as I slowly wake from oddly lucid dreams of chewing rawhide and hunting flying squirrels.

I fall out of my bed onto the gray floor’s hard ceramic tiles.

“What is going on? Why can’t I straighten? Am I going blind? And, what is that smell?”

I crawl to my cherry Coaster Louis Philippe dresser and slowly paw my way to its top and use it to balance.

“What the-”

I stare at what must be me in the beveled mirror with abject horror!

In the place of me, a middle aged, overweight, dental hygienist, a golden retriever pants!

“But, my husband is allergic to dogs!” I bark.

“Oh no, did I just bark?!”

I frantically scurry around the room trying to understand what has happened and resist my gut urges to simultaneously chase my tail and fetch a ball.

“Oh no, I have a tail!”

I faint.

I wake to the easy midday sunlight, sprawled on my favorite rug scrap on the back porch.

“What an odd dream!” I smile and yawn, “I think I was a middle aged, overweight dental hygienist. Who wants to think about getting old, ice cream and teeth all day when I can think about running in spring green fields and autumn brown swamps, sucking on onion grass, and playing with my pups?”

Surrounded by my young, yipping and nipping fuzz puffs, I chase my tail gleefully spying a red ball needing fetching.


When I was a child, I wanted to be a writer. I still want to be one now. How far am I from my course? You tell me. :)

photo wallemon.com

Wednesday Morning


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Her car radio once again reminds her that 29 is closed in Madison County both ways due to a police stand off.

“Who do I know in Madison?” she ponders as she puts the straw of her morning Diet Coke to her lips.

“Oh yeah, Amanda. She is such a fabulous busy body. She’ll know what’s going on. I should call her anyway. Haven’t talked to her in ages.


“He’s got five hostages in there.”


Hostage One, being told not to move, ignores her cell phone’s constant ringing. She wishes she could turn it off. The constant tinny refrain of Sonny and Cher’s “Hey I Got You Babe” is beginning to unnerve her. She hopes it’s not upsetting him.


“Weird. She’s not answering. I’ll just text her.”

She never sees the semi.


Tales of a Teenage Low Life


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I sneak out a lot. Sometimes, I leave to meet the guy who only sees me in secret. Most of the time, I stretch out on the grass behind the clubhouse next door and look at the moon. I’ve heard wishes made on the moon come true. I’ve also heard that there is no dark side to the moon. I wish this was true about life. I wish very hard on the moon. My moon wishes don’t come true. Still, I find myself out at midnight staring at it— waxing, waning, full.


I wish he would touch my face when he kisses me. I dream that he gently strokes my cheek and traces my lips. Now, he mainly pulls my hair at the nape of my neck or touches my breasts. I don’t think kindness or intimacy cross his mind in our embraces.

I kiss him with eyes half closed waiting for him to see me.


My mother found my secret  journal. I forgot to hide it yesterday.

She threw it at me and said, “I don’t know what this is but destroy it before your father sees it.”

I begin to cry and cradle the black speckled notebook in my arms like a baby. These were commentaries about my life and feelings I had hoped to share with my future daughter.

Now, it’s something about which to be ashamed?


photo secureteen.com

My Heroines Have Brown Eyes


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The vase was nervous about all the fighting.

“Will I be thrown in a fit or filled with blooms of apology tomorrow?” she wondered.

“Or will I be knocked off the table as he lurches drunkenly close to its edge?”

“Will they practice kintsugi on my broken sides and heart?”

He leaves spitting angry diatribes about the cost of things…about the cost of a woman he never loved.

The unloved woman sweeps through the house picking up the pieces her mama gave her… the sterling silver brush set, the mother of pearl brooch, the empty vase.

The unloved woman burdened by the lightness of her most prized possessions leaves and does not return.

The vase was nervous about the big change but hopeful.

photo kintsugigifts.com


Neptune 16


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Conrad opened his eyes to a view of a massive blue globe.  He jerked back and twisted around in the microgravity.  He touched something solid in front of him.  A window.

He pushed against the window and turned around.  Conrad scanned the small room, no larger than a public bathroom stall, and empty except for an EV spacesuit and door.  He studied the view through the window.  Neptune, he thought.  How did I get here?

Then, it all flooded back to him.

The strange taste of the cocktail she gave him. The kiss that went on till he could not remember.

The micky was wearing off now. And, as his head began to clear, he became more and more distraught.

He should have never boasted about his old NASA days! He was just a guy with a pocket protector and a big mouth. And, now he was orbiting Neptune!

“Good morning, Navigator Conrad. Are you ready for the conditions of your next mission?” a disembodied but pleasant feminine voice inquired.

“Yes,” Conrad squeaked.

“You will meet with Navigator Thornton in 2 hours. He will give you the mind controller prototype A. He will then tell you your human target.”


Fresh from the space’s microgravity, he had a hard time keeping up with the tour.

He was so angry. He could have been assigned the president of the United States, the queen of England, anybody…

How did he get stuck following around all the yokels at Dollyworld trying to get a moment with Dolly Parton? What good could controlling her mind do for the Alien United Front?



Translation from the Neptunian dialect

“Daddy, I will just die if I don’t get Dolly Parton to play my sweet sixteen!”


photo by laweekly.com




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