Bottom of the World by Ron Gibson, Jr.

Nona and I are on a couch, in a room I do not recognize. The walls are lined with inlaid shelves of old books, like I have always wanted. No titles visible, drab and beautiful as Moscow tenements. I watch her drawing a comic strip with Bette Davis and Barbara Stanwyck, as Tom Waits’s growl…

Dinner at Jack’s by Jill Hand

Before she was Flame she was Amber, and before that she was Candi. Before that she was Tiffany, and before that she was plain old Mary Ellen. One thing remained constant throughout all her name changes and that was her profession, which was the world’s oldest. Flame was getting ready for work. Unlike other women in her profession…

The Alabaster Man by Jennifer Todhunter

I met Ben in the park on a Wednesday evening, when a yellowed slice of moon hung sideways in the sky. A humming reverberated between his lips, his vocal cords conducting an orchestral masterpiece. He sat beneath an old willow tree, its wispy arms sweeping the grassy floor. I thought he was a statue at…

The Things He Says by Ross McCleary

He says the sun only shines because a globe in his house is pointing out of the window. Sunbeams fracture against it, lighting up the sky. He says he joined the indie rock scene so he could one day rise above it. He says he scores his songs by measuring the tonal fluctuations in interviews…