Misunderstanding by Chris Pollard

“You don’t want to sit here!” said the chair, brusquely, as I sat down on it.

Startled, I leapt to my feet.

“Ouch!” cried the carpet, “That bloody well hurt! I’m sick and tired of being trampled on all the frigging time.”

“You think you’ve got it bad,” called the wok from the kitchen, “You should try being me!”

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Back when Syd Barrett led Pink Floyd , the band recorded its first album at Abbey Road Studios at the same time as The Beatles recorded Sergeant Pepper’s there and The Pretty Things were recording S F Sorrow. They called it, The Piper at the Gates of Dawn.
Flash forward to this century and a habit I picked up in Amsterdam and can’t seem to shake. The habit is listening to the World Service on the radio all night. It’s the CBC All Night Radio here, the BBC World Service there (I think). A lot of countries contribute reports to the World Service. I don’t really understand how it works but there’s nothing quite like laying snug in your bed, free to fall asleep or listen to Holland, Sweden, Korea or Poland talk about their news. For instance, the other night there was a report from somewhere near Alice Springs, Australia about a race they held between honey bees and homing pigeons. The bees won.
Continue reading PIPER AT THE GATES OF DAWN CONSIDERED by Steve Wheeler

Last Days to Nowhere by Jason Duke

The road winds and passes through the mountains of the High Mohave Desert. I see white wooden crosses along the side, etched or painted with names of car accident fatalities. Multi-hued flower wreaths and ribbons adorn the crosses, colorful and bright, signed by loved ones and strangers alike. Hundreds of people died along this road. There are only a handful of crosses.

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An Interview With Jason Duke

By Jason Michel

Jason Duke writes hard, truthful stories. He should do. He’s seen more carnage than the average pen/pun-pusher. Than you or me. I was lucky enough to interview him.

Q1: Hey Jason! Who are you? Where are you? How are you?
Tell us a little about Jason Duke.

I’m from Phoenix, but I grew up in San Diego. Got into all kinds of trouble as a kid, drugs, gangs, shit like that. I dropped out of high school, earned a GED. It Continue reading An Interview With Jason Duke

Suture by Nigel Bird

Pony cleared the dust and looked at his reflection. It was none too pretty.

The smaller cuts might heal on their own, leaving only the biggest to deal with.

The mere idea of touching it made him feel faint. He consoled himself by reducing the number of sutures he’d insert.

A doctor, he decided, might use six to do a neat job, but even a doctor might miss a few if working alone.

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Before It Dies by Benjamin Imamovic

It will stop the stretch-marks and give you a chance to bond with the little one, his wife said and passed him a bottle of coconut oil. He turned off the TV. He said, Sure, I’ll give it a go. He knelt on the floor before her. At first his wife’s stomach was half a beach-ball, then a swallowed balloon, then a watermelon, then his childhood dreams. He kept at it and said, Nice. After she gave birth, he oiled that stomach, when Continue reading Before It Dies by Benjamin Imamovic

I Didn’t Say That Did I –July 2010. Book Reviews.

Long Time Dead by Tony Black.

In Tony Black’s Long Time Dead , journalist turned reluctant private investigator Gus Dury is in the gutter again but he’s still looking at the stars, albeit through the bottom of a bottle of whisky.

Long Time Dead starts off with Gus waking up in hospital, after a particularly prolific drinking session, and being told that he’s close to knocking on heaven’s door. Gus, of Continue reading I Didn’t Say That Did I –July 2010. Book Reviews.

My Muse Plays Hard to Get by Kevin Lynn Helmick

I’m usually reluctant to talk about my muse, (in fact he doesn’t like it,) but he gave me a pass here, a nod, and said, “sure, go ahead.”

He’s been quite the backseat driver lately, maybe even moved up to shotgun. In the past he’s been more like the road weary hitchhiker, leaning forward once in while just to say, “turn here…slow down,” and keeping me in the dark, on edge, guessing if my throat would be cut and I, left for dead in a ditch around the next corner.

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The Wild Country by David Massengill

“A ghost, you say,” Luc said in an uninterested voice, “with a tree branch where an arm should be.”  He wished the motel owner would just shut up and leave him alone with this lovely young woman.  But the old man remained in the doorway of Luc’s sparsely decorated, wood-paneled room, droning on about the malicious phantom while his daughter, Penny, changed the bedding.

“Long before he haunted this patch of desert,” the motel owner said, “he was a decent young man.  Name was Vince Renton.  Worked as a mechanic.  Then he went over to Vietnam and did some awful things to them Vietnamese civilians and lost his arm.  He came back and Continue reading The Wild Country by David Massengill

Fancy Eating By Richard Godwin

Whenever I took a piss there, my habit was to stand feet shoulder width, one hand firmly on my dick, the other deep in my pocket. The place had a reputation, and there’d been some shit going down.

Old habits die hard.

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