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She Used to Have Nails

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...the job was easy, just pour and deliver, pour and deliver.

Tender Mercies

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After he was wounded in Iraq, Wilson Jenkins came home to Monroe. He had suffered two wounds. The first was a waxy-looking scar on his left leg. A twisting crevice of flesh, it started inches above the ankle and ended on his outer hip. In the field hosp

Go ahead

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Sit right down in the chair. It's a glider, see? Smooth and easy movement without that annoying head-swing you get from a rocker. And easy to get out of, unlike a lounge chair. Relax. "Reba" reruns will be coming on in a minute.


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1: The Zero Product Property states that if a multiplied by b equals zero, then zero must equal a or b. Thus, to prove this theory, multiply a and b divided by a. Use the broken chord theorem to crease the zero by disrupting the circular movement of the skewed line. As a…

Route 346

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Route 346 is the way Pop drove to Troy long after everybody else took Route 2. Today Charlie and I drive in the opposite direction. Back then, Pop drove us to Troy on Route 346 on Sunday afternoons with the car windows…

Three Examples Of Male Arousal Without Desire For Intercourse

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Suddenly it’s as though a wild creature has swung in from a tree through an open skylight. Everyone in the place recoils and looks around to see if there might be others like her. But it’s just her.


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I am standing in my neighbor’s back yard in my underwear, and my trash can is clean.

The Window

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Just beyond the tree, beyond the fence, close to the grey clouds that hung almost to the earth, a boy sat on another tree's stump. Beneath his crossed legs that he moved up and down rhythmically, under his bright red, Superman shorts, inscribed in the stump, a symbol which…

Riding Off into the Sunset

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There's only one road out of here. It goes straight north for a while, then starts veering off toward the west. You and Horace Greeley can get all dreamy-eyed if you want, but I know which side of the river the Egyptians buried their dead on.


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And besides, since winter is coming, the dying clammy ground cherry makes a good Pilgrim hat for the fieldmouse. We found one the day after you left, at moonset, in the garage, building a nest with toilet paper in the air filter of the car.

Fall Apart Stuff

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He is snoring inside the silo of his throat. The inside there shines golden but that’s not the truth. There is something caught below the gold.

Proust's Moustache

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My brother and I had often debated whether we could get our father to shave his moustache off, just to see if his sophistication remained intact without it.

The Best Interest of the Child

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He was here and then he was gone. He wasn't at my ex-wife's house either. On Tuesday we were at the circus and that's the last I saw him. I jumped into my '68 Beetle, one step above a clown car, and I stopped by The Big Top. The carnies were there, smoking cigarettes and…


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What else, H, is there to say about heartbreak? What else could it be but our hands, cupped as if holding water against our chests, then broken into halves. Or the picture of this one, pretending to load a gun. Or this one, soaked in smoke—asking for

Her Smile

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The white and yellow are sublime and desperately powerful, like angry screaming over tears and through laughter or hatred. Maybe the words are about crying or laughing, but the expressions are altogether impenetrable and distant. The jokes told behind the teeth and through…


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They say nothing, but instead watch the birds and people hovering. Every day is an echo of the one before, and the weight of waiting has begun to show itself in the stature of the tiny man and his little old wife. …

Old, Broken Toys

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A boy sits in a room filled with old, broken toys. A mother is in the next room reading Cosmopolitan, dreaming of a life that should have been hers. There is the zoo and an unnecessary stroller on a very humid day, beads of sweat dripping slowly down a face. A trip to the…

Could Be

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Years later, the couple is different in some terribly profound way. Maybe they have grown old and begun to look like one another. Or maybe they have been divorced and haven't spoken in months or years except through the kids, who they spoil and use against their…

The Continuous City

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The night sky was washed gray by city lights.

Starting from Scratch

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Each time his eyes closed, he shook off the sleep, whimpered, and opened them wide again. I’d never watched a baby fall asleep before, but I realized at that time that falling asleep could be a scary thing. The world gets fuzzy and starts slipping awa


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On Soapography, two actresses are discussing everyone’s personal heaven, and in another room you can hear a woman who is your dead mother combing her hair in a doctor’s smock in a dream,

All Her Ribbons

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She was always last.

Chinese Apples

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Mother still calls pomegranates “Chinese apples,” much to my embarrassment.

Mermaids Need Other Mermaids

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Pauleen tries to split open her legs because she doesn’t understand how to love someone without them.


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The Japanese sun, blood-red and vibrant, like a Cézanne apple, was setting far away in the distance over the snow-capped peak of Mt. Fuji. For a moment, the intensity of the light blinded him. He could not see the road ahead. His front bicycle wheel wobb

Gummi Worms, Love, etc.

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It was R who embodied love for me. We’d eaten gummi worms in the park, held them up to the sun, yellow and green and translucent. When we returned to her flat, they were everywhere. I’d never seen such a thing. They hung in the air, these gummi worms.

The Right to Privacy

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Every day, I come home from work and hear you two screaming next door, breaking dishes and furniture and sometimes each other while your toddler wails. And if I can't drown it out with the TV and a beer, I stuff in the earbuds and crank up the iPod, too. That way, I…

Rejected York Peppermint Pattie Commercial Blurbs

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When I bite into a York Peppermint Pattie, I get the sensation of being curled in a ball inside a cold, dark cave filled with my darkest, most paralyzing fears.

Elegy for the Sun

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When winter comes again…

Wild Dreams of Reality, 2

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All of a sudden I felt a hand on my neck. I jumped up from my chair and turned to face my brother Darrell, with his surprisingly white shock of hair, the result of all the drugs he'd been experimenting with, back in his mid-twenties. He was even taller