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FOUR STORIES by Joe Aguilar

Face Tattoo I get a tattoo of my face over my face. Now my face looks even more like my face. It’s my face twice over. My wife asks me if I’m in a good mood because today I look brighter than ever. I tell her yes. It’s true. I’m true. My truest face.     The Man with the Tiger’s Head Who Answers Phones I have a human body and a tiger’s head. People stare at me on the train. I avoid their eyes. I answer phones at the company that makes weapons. Nobody sees me over the phone.

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CHASE by Frankie McMillan

Mr Whippy here and there, up the street, down the street, swerving his pink and cream van to avoid a dog, Mr Whippy his face emperor white, hunched over the wheel wondering what dogs want with Mr Whippy. Mr Whippy glancing in the rear vision mirror, kids still chasing him on bikes, their heads ducked under the handlebars, a mother jogging with a baby on her hip, ice cream, ice cream but Mr Whippy is wrecked, days leaning out his window, handing out cones with the perfect pointy top, pulling on levers, eyes squinting in the bright sun. his ears ringing. Mr

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LUCID FIRE by Coleman Bomar

I’m dreaming that our bed is engulfed in flames, but in the waking world either your body lies draped across my torso, or I have a fever, or we forgot to turn the oven off, or someone dropped a burning corpse between us, or we have too many sheets, or I can see the future, or our bed really is engulfed in flames, or God came back when we were sleeping, or global warming works faster than they say, or a Republican tweeted, or there was a gas leak, or the neighbors can tell we aren’t just friends, or I’m

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YOUR HOUSE ON ZILLOW by Stephanie King

You died on a Wednesday. In the years since, when the anniversary falls on a different day of the week, everything feels off somehow. That dreamy, floaty feeling of a day, like trying to describe what it is to have loved – but not like that – a man who is gone. They say men and women can’t be friends, but it was never a problem. Now your wife has put the house up for sale. I guess the mortgage was too much to handle on her own. I scroll through the real estate listing like playing the world’s worst

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DIVORCED by Amy Barnes

A car the size of a house rams our house that’s the size of a house. Thunder from a 1986 Thunderbird shakes me out of my canopy bed to the window to the street. It’s the moment I know my mother is a liar, a big one. She lays there lazy for too long or maybe not long enough, in her satin-sheeted bed and satin-matching lingerie with a man who isn’t her husband or my father. Her lipstick is smeared and our house is too, a brick mouth opened up on one side. When the red lights encircle our house

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BABY ON BOARD by Natalie Warther

It’s not a lie. It’s just a sticker. A sticker that says there’s a baby on board, when technically there is not. Can you blame me? You’ve seen how careful people are around a new mother. Otherwise, they are reckless. Besides, people lie about much worse. And there is no sticker that says “Be careful, please, I have a lot of student debt.” Plus, it’s not like there aren’t important things in my backseat. The screenplay I’m writing about a boy who wants to play major league baseball, for example, and a pile of towels from my mother’s garage. Why

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GREGOR MENDEL NEVER KNEW MY FATHER by Kristin Tenor

Mr. Chavez stands in front of the classroom and talks about peas. Green peas, yellow peas, wrinkled peas, smooth-as-Mr. Chavez’s-bald head peas. He says when two different varieties are sown together under a blanket of dark, loamy soil, they sometimes yield plants with pods containing green and wrinkled peas or yellow and smooth or maybe they’ll come out the same shade of chartreuse as the faded bridesmaid’s dress hidden in the back of your mother’s closet, the one she wore the night she met your father and got drunk on wild dandelion wine for the first time and conceived you,

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THREE MICROS by Evan Jerome Williams

Carl Carl is a cobra with nine eyes. Carl has seven too many eyes, and none of them see well. He has difficulty finding eyeglasses that work for him on account of his extra eyes. Carl needs eyeglasses to read. He is a scholar studying applied reptilian physics, a discipline primarily concerned with asteroid-detection and trajectory-disruption techniques. Carl needs eyeglasses so he can protect us. Carl found an eye doctor who used to be a pirate. The eye doctor poked out seven of Carl’s eyes with precise stabbing motions, then made as many eyepatches with equal precision. Carl looks like

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THREE MICROS by Carolyn Oliver

Sunrise House In the sunrise house walking on stilts, the snake-filled water rises. It’s Sunday morning. I am old, very old, my joints as conspicuous among my limbs as the lead strips between stained glass. I’ve lost my glasses. It’s not my house, but the house of a friend. You are not so concerned about what kind of friend he is to me because you are fixed on the snakes. They are not venomous, not large, not hungry, and though I have lost my glasses I can see the lovely bands of red and black and gold roiling through the

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THREE TRIPTYCHS WITHIN A TRIPTYCH, OR: SPINACH PIE by Benjamin Niespodziany

a multi-level triptych   [1] Woodsman’s Lint-Licked Pockets after Leśnik, the Slavik forest deity   [a] Woodsman protects the forest by writing messages into the rocks. Messages in clock talk Woodsman doesn’t understand. Messages in dirt. In fur. In bark. Important forest, he writes. Formative forest. Former corner, cornered form.   [b] With beard of grass and vine, Woodsman wears skin of reed and tree and string. His stomach is a lake of fish. The torch he carries bares a blue flame. It assists in guiding his moon, in practicing the magic of being alone. Silence hangs like a stranger

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