June 9, 2020

“The Alarming Misadventures of Henry’s Continuing E.D.,” by Len Messineo

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“The Alarming Misadventures of Henry’s Continuing E.D.,” by Len Messineo

“Have you no sense of humor?” Sylvia says. Earlier in the evening, she had jokingly referred to Henry—who suffers from male-pattern baldness—as “Cue Ball” in front of their friends at the Eagle Cove Yachting Club.  Now Henry is sulking. He might have been a good sport about it, but Henry, an engineer having a keen intelligence for machines, has none for humans, especially Silvia. He reasons, falsely, that if only he could grow hair, he would escape his wife’s withering remarks.  So, Henry sees his family doctor. The doctor writes him a prescription for Propecia.  By now we’ve all seen the ads on television for the newly FDA-approved medication. A soft lulling music plays while a voice-over—as consoling as a funeral counselor—reads a list of possible contraindications: drowsiness, burning, tingling sensations, difficult bowel movements, seizures, and on and on with the tag…

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March 1, 2020

Milton P. Ehrlich — Poems of Rumination

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Milton P. Ehrlich — Poems of Rumination

ONCE Following orders   on the battlefield,  it was kill or be killed   my sergeant said,  no different than   when he taught me  to thrust and parry   with fixed bayonet.  The young soldier  wore thick glasses  and looked a lot like    one of my classmates.  Sergeant claimed  Gooks don’t belong  to the human race.  Don’t ever feel sorry   for killing an enemy,  I can’t forgive myself.  I look down at my finger,  ready to squeeze the trigger,  and hear my mother asking:  What has become of you?  ** THE MARITAL HAPPINESS QUOTIENT    I Uber my way across the country  in my Hugh Hefner silk pajamas  to study happiness in marriages  of all my old friends who are still   walking and talking coherently.  Computer porn ended a few bonds  that had once bloomed like a flower.  For those that served breakfast in bed,  a lotus blossom was…

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November 30, 2019

“Out of Time,” Powerful Flash Fiction by Lucy Zhang

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“Out of Time,” Powerful Flash Fiction by Lucy Zhang

A ticking time bomb. Every tick a precious second lost–not preserved in Snapchat or Instagram–the memory of it cached in a few brain cells before a new memory purged space for itself. Ellen, twenty-nine years old and ticking, kept a bright pink box, the First Response Rapid Results pregnancy test, in a cabinet behind the bathroom mirror. She already wasted one test on a false-alarm missed period. After peeing on the tip, feeling the warmth of a droplet of urine on her finger, she had stood watching the test for ten minutes while her husband, Wes, stood outside the locked door to the bathroom. No pink. Safe.  Or not safe, she supposed. She and Wes had been trying for children for a few months now. You’re in the prime of fertility in your twenties, Ellen’s mother had…

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