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(to read any of the stories below, click the story's title.)

By Nicole Borgenicht

Fish Mirage Soup

“ ‘The chef says, “only God knows the mystery of our souls. When we are true to ourselves the mirage is plentiful.” ’ Sara asks, ‘Very deep. However I was talking about food not a metaphor for human predicaments.’ ”

By Mike Damascus

Dog Walking the Equinox

“I ran clockwise, turning right, turning right, turning right . . . and the circle I ran became an orbit, not just of the moment, but forever, like the earth and the sun. Then I spun free and the axis flipped over.”

By Christy Effinger

Stolen Supper

“I can't go in, I thought, I just can't. It's insane—and so is she—but I'm so lonely—and so is she—and, well, perhaps for just a moment— I stepped inside. The woman followed me in and closed the door.”

By Jerry G. Erwin

Come Go With Me

“He smiled in that truly loving way—which was now striking her as borderline creepy—and he seemed to pick up on it, making an effort not to look at her so intensely, and—”

By Billy O'Callaghan

~Editors' Prize Winner~


“Apart from the imminent eclipse, this was just another ordinary Tuesday. Time still puttered along at its usual rate, always chasing, always in debt. Billions of hearts across the map still leapt, ached, and, in dozens of tragic ways, broke.”

By Dominic Preziosi

Record of a Living Being

“Looking over my shoulder, I recognized the buildings behind me, with their awnings and stenciled addresses and tasteful commercial signage. But where had this forest in front of me come from?”

By Mary Lynn Reed

Another Time, Then

“My dead grandmother is on the phone, her voice as comforting as the shade of Magnolia. She asks to speak to Lindsay, my secret lover she never knew.”

By Lydia Fazio Theys

~Editors' Prize Winner~

Birdy Reformation

“Ever since the day that list appeared tacked on the door—the one saying which birds are allowed to sing about which other birds—that's when my bathtub became some sort of retreat for the Old Crow.”

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