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Volume 8 Number 4

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We are pleased to present the third issue of our eighth year, published on Monday, 6 November 2006. We hope you enjoy browsing through our extensive collection of fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry! (See the Works List to discover the over 300 works in our collection, including the ability to search through the issues.)



Meat Puppet
by Jim Chaffee
I remember the poor bastard's blood. Not gobs of it clotting in great liver-like chunks, like you'd expect in war, but rather a single drop viewed at a focal point projected with convex lenses in a pair of tubes; image resolved to enlarge and discriminate between corpuscles burst and whole swimming in the azure-dyed pin-prick's ooze squeezed between glass slides; corpuscles intermingled like the lucky and not so lucky adrift in a battlefield of some purple swamp. Infested with fauna from hell: Plasmodium falciparum scattered within and between the dead and dying cells, platelets, schistocytes, the stuff of disseminated intracellular coagulation halting capillary flow, strangling brain, kidneys, everything. continue

by Sean Gallagher
Early in 1915 Jack "Blueman" Richardson, inshore fisherman, lifeboatman, sometime mariner, made his entry in the Great War, called up into the "red-duster" merchant marine service, now under Admiralty orders, for convoy duties on the North Atlantic and Baltic Sea. North Sea fishermen were a prized catch--wonderful seamen, hardy and able about a ship, though often too free in spirit and speech to best suit the brass-bound Royal Navy. And so Blueman, "Rumboat" to some who knew his occasional reckless side, quit his place in his fishing mule Mizpah and, entrusting his gear to one of his kin to work out of the little home port of Whitby, sailed up around the savage Baltic. Too slow off-loading supplies in one freezing port there, his old steamer became trapped in ice, her bottom eventually sliced clean off, as he recalled, like the lid off a boiled egg. continue

Standing Eight
by Kevin Brown
After commission approval, my right hand is out flat and Sam is wrapping twelve yards of two-inch wide bandage through my fingers in a standard figure eight. After this, he tapes it up with twelve feet of inch-wide surgeon's tape, and, with a commission representative watching, makes sure to stay an inch from the knuckles. He says to make a fist, then sticks a tube of nasal spray in each of my nostrils, squeezes, and tells me to breathe. He smears a wad of Vaseline over my cheekbones and around my eyes to keep punches from twisting skin and cutting. With me this is necessary, since I've become what fight analysts call a "bleeder." continue

by Natasha Grinberg
I surf the Internet looking at Russian mail-order brides. On most sites, the women are divided by age, their thumbnail pictures displayed in a grid, like parrots in birdcages. All look stunning. I click on Elena. Oh-la-la. She wears a red eyelet-lace bra, touching a strap with her slim manicured fingers. continue


Creative Nonfiction

On a Wing and a Dare
by Rebecca Johnson
Cats in tow--two cats, old cats, cats who've been by my side and seen me through divorce, my mother's death, my move from Tampa Bay to Orlando for ten years and back again, and now, we are leaving this paved paradise, if the villa sells, and the hurricanes don't get us. We are moving to a two-story log cabin in a boreal forest on 40 acres along the Rainy River, a wild international waterway separating Minnesota from Canada We are moving in with Tom and his golden retriever, Willie. continue

White Picket Fences
by Ann Parkinson
It is the immemorial American dream: suburban bliss, white picket fences, houses with even-cut lawns and verdurous backyards bursting with the jubilant cries of neighborhood children, two cars parked in the driveway and lives that fly as smoothly as the Hindenburg didn't. But when Henry D. Thoreau quilled Walden, stating that, "Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind," he paved the way for domestic diversions, unorthodox parenting, and awkward childhoods. Thoreau may have been referring to electricity and running water, but as far as my life was concerned, spending a youth in a housing compound wedged between a veterinary office and a large peach colored "Guidance Clinic"--a euphemism for "Low Security Psychiatric Facility"--was a distant trot from the American dream. continue



by Kristine Ong Muslim
The cargo ships are bigger
than the world,
floating like graffiti
on the wall of the waters. continue

A Window for Monique
by Kristine Ong Muslim
The repetition
of repetition
is comforting: continue

by Angie Palsak
My fallopian tubes are drawstrings.
My uterus
nothing more
than a leather pouch
full of marbles. continue

Paradise to Paradise
by J. William Miller
Eve, with the lazy serpent
about her night-gazing breasts,
shall sing from Paradise to Paradise. continue

I Wonder Over the Sound of a Dying Sea
by J. William Miller
Over the sound of a dying sea,
fast afloat I know the groan, the gasp,
a rattled urge to pass.
I hear the grunts of mother near her dead, along with all the love-begotten
songs ever borne or crooned by troubadour. continue

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Works by Issue

2006 Volume 8 Number 4, 6 November 2006 - Current Issue
Volume 8 Number 3, 7 August 2006
Volume 8 Number 2, 8 May 2006
Volume 8 Number 1, 6 February 2006
2005 Volume 7 Number 4, 7 November 2005
Volume 7 Number 3, 8 August 2005
Volume 7 Number 2, 2 May 2005
Volume 7 Number 1, 7 February 2005
2004 Volume 6 Number 4, 1 October 2004
Volume 6 Number 3, 2 August 2004
Volume 6 Number 2, 3 May 2004
Volume 6 Number 1, 2 February 2004
2003 Volume 5 Number 4, 3 November 2003
Volume 5 Number 3, 4 August 2003
Volume 5 Number 2, 5 April 2003
Volume 5 Number 1, 3 February 2003
2002 Volume 4 Number 4, 4 November 2002
Volume 4 Number 3, 5 August, 2002
Volume 4 Number 2, 6 May 2002
Volume 4 Number 1, 4 February 2002
2001 Volume 3 Number 4, 5 November 2001
Volume 3 Number 3, 6 August 2001
Volume 3 Number 2, 7 May 2001
Volume 3 Number 1, 5 February 2001
2000 Volume 2 Number 4, 6 November 2000
Volume 2 Number 3, 7 August 2000
Volume 2 Number 2, 1 May 2000
Volume 2 Number 1, 7 February 2000
1999 Volume 1 Number 3, 1 November 1999
Volume 1 Number 2, 2 August 1999
Volume 1 Number 1, 3 May 1999

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