Glimmer Train Stories: "The Comfort of Foam"

"Nan's journal rests on her lap. She's written out 'my marriage' in her loopy script handwriting on the spine and across the front like it's the title of a real book, and she's illustrated her diary with pencil drawings of hearts with knives stuck into them and wedding rings that are broken in half like crackers."


Pleiades: "Captain Aluminum"


"Sure, he was considered a lesser metal, but he drew confidence from his ubiquity. I imagined him with a smirk at the corners of his thin, cold lips and a shiny glint in his eye that showed he knew he was everywhere, and a little part of everything: cars, cans, cement, deodorant, light bulbs, license plates, office buildings -- even the roll of Tums my Dad kept in the front pocket of his pants and ate like candy."

Hobart: "Tiny Frozen Universes"

"I'm really good at cutting out wound-shaped sponges."

Midwestern Gothic: "The Last Tannery in America"

"Why tell him about the lice? She imagined the tiny insects burrowing into his pillows and hairbrushes, hiding in the fibers of his sofa, taking root on his thinning hair, getting stuck in the gel he'd started using last winter. She used to cook for Mark, rub his back at the end of a long day, make him handmade Valentine cards. Now she thought about sending a lice bomb into his new life."

Kestrel: "Joy"

"Anderson Cooper let out a deep breath and brushed past her, the first national news correspondent she’d ever had in her house. If she’d known, she would have straightened up, lit some candles."

Minnesota Review: "Echo-Lala"

"It's only been three years, and I swear that every day another part of my memory of him vanishes, freckle by freckle, mole by mole, until pretty soon I'm scared the legs, arms, eyes, nose, hair will be gone, too."

© 2018 by Mashfik Siddique