Colin Rafferty

Pardon (#39)   A country built on stolen land and by stolen labor, through revolution and annexation, the hoodwinking of governments and the overthrowing of sovereign monarchies, and still we have the gall to say that our president may forgive the transgressions of citizens. These presidents, fallible men, flawed men, men who cut backroom deals,…

Ryder S. Ziebarth

Letters from my Father   July 5th, 2016 Dear Gilly, Your mother and I are very proud of you on this day, as well as unduly impressed with your tenacity and courage in pursuing your dreams of becoming a more fully realized writer at age sixty-one. You are and always have been a dogged and…

Michele Sharpe

A Short History of Fraud   Our mother told me and my sister we were about to learn a secret. She walked us to the far end of the house and nudged us into our father’s downstairs den, a sunken room where he smoked cigars and read newspapers and played out hands of bridge with…

Heidi Czerwiec

Means of Labor   With adoption, the issue of labor is an issue of labor. When the birth mother Kinzey agrees to meet me and Evan, and throughout her pregnancy, she’s a struggling single mom working at Subway, a fast-food job in a right-to-work state that depresses wages, keeps its workers depressed, oppressed, pressed for…

Shaun Turner

Shopping Habits   Each year, in a symbolic gesture, the president pardons two turkeys. Last year, President Obama granted two, Tater and Tot, the stay. This year, Donald J. Trump pardoned Drumstick and Wishbone. Together, the four will live the rest of their lives on the campus of Virginia Tech, to be able to gobble…

Sheila Squillante

The Greenland Shark   Description and Habitat Greenland sharks flourish in the waters around Iceland. They move through the northern Atlantic and Arctic oceans, huge and old and slow as mountains. Approaching the heft of the Great White, they eat whatever they want—apex predator/crafty scavenger—and could eat you, too, but for the icy, inhospitable habitat…