Out there in the woods, a tree unfurls its roots; they are nooses, its branches, bone. It claws at the clouds until sunlight spills out. Its decades aren’t carried in the rings of its trunk, but in the bodies hanged up unrevenged. How many children have hanged there? How many boogeymen have added to its collection of endings?Read More
I don’t remember when it started. Some time after the program. A lot of people who never had a problem are leery of the program but it works. I’m almost one years sober. You resurrect from the inside out. It starts small and grows. You have to let the dream inside, you have to let the hope inside of you, like a seed. It grows into the future.Read More
He woke up itchy and hot on the floor of the flophouse, insects fleeing his body. He raked his fingers against his ribs to kill off the slower vermin; panted for air. The room’s other occupants shifted on lice-ridden burlap and ignored him. The nightmare burned the last of its hellfire fuse through him and left him cold and pointless. His cot, so much as it was his, was damp with his sweat.Read More
She shows me a card. The back is absence-white, color of nothing and everything at once. “I need you to focus on the card,” she says. “I’ll know if you don’t.”
She’s not lying. I’ve danced these steps a dozen times. I haven’t had a choice. Legally speaking, I signed up for this. Technically. There’s a contract somewhere, my name’s on it.
I focus on the card. Blank white. Nothing white.
“What do you think is on my side of the card?” she asks.Read More