G is for Prank

G is for Prank I opened the shed and saw ropes hanging from my bike. Garlic. Of course. Tabitha started it by putting an artichoke on my homeroom chair. My revenge was a liquidly-ripe banana in her pencil case. She stuffed cotton candy in my gym shoes a week later. After that, the pattern was…

The Incognito Me

The Incognito Me I am beginning to like the smell of chlorine. Before this trip, the only picture it brought to mind was scrubbing floors or the stinging smell of hospital corridors. But now it smells like leisure: of early morning swims in the pool before practice or warm afternoons sitting by the water before…

Reading to Mrs. Smith

Reading to Mrs. Smith It was my first day and I didn’t want to be late. I was seventeen and volunteering to read to shut-ins in their homes. I felt every bump of the rough pavement up into my nerve-jangled stomach as I drove my mom’s car along Cedar Road, looking for number 460. The…

The B.U.G. (Big Unfriendly Giant)

The B.U.G. (Big Unfriendly Giant) Bus ticket to Mount Crius Park: $15.60 Snacks for six-hour hike where I found the BUG: $6.35. Search and rescue efforts after he took me to his cave: $38,500. Collect call to my parents at rest stop after escaping: $2.36. Cost of his following me home:           Rest stop shelter:…

Savanna Classroom

Savanna Classroom It was hot and the class was restless. It consisted of 8 young red-billed oxpeckers perched along the neck of Giraffe 216 and a yellow-billed oxpecker lower down on the flanks who was a recent transfer student. The teacher was droning on about air currents and thermals. “What’s your next class?” Mbaya whispered…

To Serve Man (and Woman)

To Serve Man (and Woman) The book was called To Serve Man. It was a cookbook. We told our Yrganian hosts that humans was preferable, but even aliens like obscure cultural references. The Yrganians were hospitable, but since most of their food would kill us instantly, they meticulously compiled a list of non-lethal foods and…

Shell Game

Shell Game The stall was just a door-on-sawhorses table spread with a selection of fantastical shells you could never find in a marine biology textbook. Most ships avoided the rift that had recently opened offshore, but this girl and her brother were clearly more enterprising. “How much?” I pointed at a coconut-sized blood-red shell. “10?”…

Finding Koimee

Finding Koimee I was just getting off my knees after looking under another garbage-strewn bench, when the flashlight beam fell on me. “Can I help you, sir.” It wasn’t a question. “Um, hi, sorry,” I said, shielding my eyes. “Just looking for Koimee.” “Is that your dog?” “No, he’s a frog.” “A frog.” I sighed….

Reunion of the Titans

Reunion of the Titans They arrived together, monstrous ships blotting out the sun as they landed. Trash dervished in the still air. Security forces poured out, forming concentric perimeters around the Meeting Location, scanning for threats in three dimensions. The two Titans descended, walking towards each other like a Wild West re-enactment. Either of their…

The Greens Shall Inherit the Earth

I swear that I didn’t intend to write on a similar theme as my last post: The Birth of Dandelions, written by Kazakhstani writer Anel Fuller. But when you sit down to write and a story pops out, that’s what you get. The Greens Shall Inherit the Earth We were assigned four plots, so we…