family

Reasons To Tremble Like Earth

Reasons To Tremble Like Earth 2208 1656 Larina Warnock

Underwater rumblings off the coast of Oregon, apt occurrences while I ponder seismic waves crashing through my brain. How much pain can you possibly cause all these years later? The…

How Do You Call It When

How Do You Call It When 3814 2198 Rodd Whelpley

nothing apparently is imminent, but the extra weight; the hair increasingly, if not the texture, then the hue of the bristles in the wire brush you used to scrape the…

Delirium, After Plath

Delirium, After Plath 2208 1526 Gilberte O'Sullivan

I thank her too early, the woman who has brought me tea in a broken handle cup that was once my mother’s. It’s plain orange pekoe, the kind that ails…

To a Grandfather

To a Grandfather 1467 2208 Kaitlin Ruiz

I was not appointed anything so linear as a form like yours, nothing so costly as your eyes—mine are little departures, stained where yours had been basins, washed over white.…

Deliver These to Ricky

Deliver These to Ricky 2208 1656 Christy Lorio

In June 2018 I made a discovery that I shared something with my dad. These letters serve as a way to explore and connect our shared experience. Chris and Christin…

Oscoda

Oscoda 2500 1600 Lisa Folkmire

It was my first skeleton, the once birch forest now bare Look, the command like water dripping from our mother’s mouth as we all turned our heads to drink from…

Mother of Blood and Bone

Mother of Blood and Bone 3024 4032 Aremu Adams Adebisi

When father wanted to take a new wife, he sang mother her panegyrics, bought her the finest boubous from a local shop, traced her wrinkled face, her feverish hands, then…

in memory of someone who may not be dead

in memory of someone who may not be dead 2000 1125 alyssa hanna

for lillaree she was getting her doctorate on the last island she owns in my memory’s receding fogbank. it’s been thirteen years and i’d always figured she’d be dead by…

The Coffin Club

The Coffin Club 3016 1874 Hannah Grieco

We heard about it on the radio Sunday morning: Older people in New Zealand were forgoing book groups in favor of coffin clubs. They were learning carpentry and reminding themselves…

Lepidoptera Breaks

Lepidoptera Breaks 3024 4032 Anna O'Brien

I broke my right collarbone falling off a horse. Bucked, rather. She bucked me off. An act of violent defiance, after knowing me a whole thirty minutes. Clearly, a decision…

Grandmother, Baking Bread

Grandmother, Baking Bread 2000 1125 Sara Anderson

Up to your elbows in yeast and flour, you smiled, hummed followed no recipe texture of the dough your own small empire My father bit his tongue though the muscles…

Inheritances

Inheritances 2032 1013 Katie Karnehm-Esh

I. My paternal grandmother lived in a brick ranch, with white trim and black shutters that didn’t close, in a small Ohio town. Her house was two doors down from…

I Imagine Cancer Feels Cold

I Imagine Cancer Feels Cold 2448 3264 Rachel Haywood

Mom had cancer when I was in preschool. Breast cancer. Four-year-olds shouldn’t have to think about much beyond counting by ones and coloring inside the lines. But cancer doesn’t care…

Sanctuary

Sanctuary 2000 1125 Wanda Deglane

one day, my mother stops coming down for dinner. she goes to a place not even my father can drag her back from, sleeping day after day in my brother’s…

Letter from Lot’s daughters

Letter from Lot’s daughters 2500 1406 Helen Freeman

(Genesis 19:34) Sheep-counters, camel-conquerors, gods-over- the-palm-groves-and-oasis-pools, hawk-handlers, royal-ensigns-of-the-Via-Maria, lamp-lighters, seed-planters, grape-stompers, shawl-weavers, sealed-secret-keepers, border-crossers – childhood was such a blast. But if one evening now, as you light a farthing…

Buried in the Ground

Buried in the Ground 2500 1406 L.N. Holmes

There are few things your dad can do that will surprise you, but sending your cat back to the shelter and claiming to bury a bunch of money in the…

Death of a Box

Death of a Box 2000 1125 R.E. Hengsterman

A determined fog on the windshield tested the Volvo’s defrost, and its lack of motivation, as did the rain on the wipers, and the hectic speed, which took much of…

And I bent over like a sow

And I bent over like a sow 1920 1440 Elisabeth Horan

Worked me over something good Made me a jenny a heifer a mare Used the gifts I brought to bear My shoulders my muscle my mane Flaxen haired pony…. A…

Sister

Sister 2500 1406 Ian S. Wilson

I’ve spent my whole life dying.  I’ve lived a life like I was dying.  I’ve been dying to meet the right person, I’ve been dying to be something, I’ve been…

Rattle

Rattle 1920 1440 Julie Rea

I taped flyers to the maple trees that lined both sides of the street. Your gap-toothed smile stared back at me, crooked school tie, and favourite pink bow. I only had one…

A 1,000 Piece Puzzle

A 1,000 Piece Puzzle 2500 1406 Christine Taylor

After dinner we have time Daddy’s feeding tubes cleaned his pillows fluffed so Mommy, Paula, and I spread puzzle pieces on the basement tile floor. Manicured gardens surround an old…

Quail Keeping

Quail Keeping 1920 1276 Elizabeth Felicetti

The first time I see him after his ten-hour surgery, we sit in stuffed chairs in their living room where we’ve sat many times before. But I’ve never seen him…

From the diary of little boy cries

From the diary of little boy cries 2000 1125 Jacob Fowler

bald rock-room, breathing  sand drenched in the indifference to wildfires there are only two Basque people in Oakland we’re strangers and spend too much time eating ourselves our eyes are…

Come September

Come September 2500 1406 Tiffany Sciacca

We will still walk hand in hand, talking each other down from our brittle edges and I will wonder if my mother’s blood has finally gone bad beneath the skin.…

De Consolatione ad Kamil: On Death

De Consolatione ad Kamil: On Death 2500 1406 Kamil Ahsan

I was three years old, the youngest of three, when my father passed away in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. I have no recollection of him. Any remainders are memories of memories, or…

Hurt

Hurt 1000 750 Chimeka Garricks

Your mother starts crying when Dami turns up for his funeral. He is fashionably late. You expect this. You also expect him to overdo his entrance, but you are still…

Visitation

Visitation 3852 2245 Marissa Glover

When Abraham came by after work to pick up Isaac and said he was taking him hunting on Mt. Moriah, Sarah cautioned them to be careful— look out for mountain…

Zero Tolerance

Zero Tolerance 3264 2448 Jayne Martin

Lights blaze from above day and night, but give none of the sun’s warmth. Around me the littlest ones grab onto the metal fence, cry out “Mama,” “Papa,” and look…

The Outsider

The Outsider 1328 889 Kristin LaFollette

is the woman with no children— I’m not tall enough to see what everyone carries, the broomsticks they hold behind their backs. My feet— They haven’t taken me as far…

Chinese Bleeding on a Friday

Chinese Bleeding on a Friday 2990 2290 Peter Ngila

Your mami first appeared to you on a Friday morning, three hours after her death. Minutes before, your classmate Nzeli’s bad news, that your mother had given birth and bled…

White Knives, Blue Tears, & Red Whips

White Knives, Blue Tears, & Red Whips 4032 1824 Shirley Jones-Luke

The whips fed on the blood of my forefather’s backs. Soaked it up like needed sustenance, leaving the drops for the soil We cried into the sea, bodies floating there…

Road Trip

Road Trip 3000 2403 Paul Beckman

My GPS was broken. I realized it when I saw the sign, Welcome to Des Moines. I had planned to drive down to the Yucatan in my new silver Beemer…

subject line: usage notification

subject line: usage notification 700 1200 Kristine Esser Slentz

[norebro_text]Originally published at Flying Island Journal.[/norebro_text]