Ten Windows

Eli Coyle

You find yourself stranded on a thawing block of ice in the arctic. You can’t remember how you got here, but a polar bear and its cub are approaching from a distance. As they get closer you notice your vision starting to close in, a funnel of darkness kaleidoscopes around you. You’re struggling to breathe, to get enough air. 


The heat is lifting you higher and higher as you sit in the thatched basket of a hot air balloon. Everywhere below you the water is […]

Ten Windows2022-12-29T15:54:45+00:00

Schrödinger’s Cactus

Anu Pohani

Erwin Schrödinger devised his thought experiment, now called ‘Schrödinger’s Cat,’ for Albert Einstein. Sitting in the lab, Maya imagined the two gray-haired men lounging together during Erwin’s visiting lectures at Princeton in 1935. Sipping iced tea in the shade of a New Jersey oak, they would have discussed the Copenhagen interpretation: that a quantum system remains in superposition until it interacts with or is observed by the external world.  Thus, if one were to place a cat and a vial of radioactive elements in the steel cage, […]

Schrödinger’s Cactus2022-12-29T15:54:52+00:00


Chris Belden

Lana had not spoken in so long that her throat felt swollen. For almost two weeks she’d gone about her day nodding or shaking her head, gesturing with a hand, rolling her eyes. At meals, she had to point to the salt and mime sprinkling it on her bland food. If she needed to use the bathroom during prayer sessions, she’d raise her hand and wave toward her crotch. In three days, Lana would be permitted to speak out loud again—but by then, if all went as […]


When It’s Time to Remember

Madeline Hof

The old man stood with his hands behind his back, oblivious to the new eyes that were on him. His skin was tan and wrinkled, his left hand home to a weathered gold ring. He wore a black cap pulled low over his eyes and a tan jacket that she thought might smell faintly of smoke. If only she could get closer. 

The woman rounded the corner, stopped, and peered into the wine cooler. Santa Margherita on sale, Ruffino full price. She was sure he’d be gone by the […]

When It’s Time to Remember2022-06-26T23:55:16+00:00

The Foot Race On PhytoLore

Phyllis Houseman

From her position in the middle of the line, Bianca Hernandez suppressed a shudder. It wasn’t cold under the contest site’s dome, but the ten-foot piles of snow outside the barrier persuaded her mind she should wear more than shorts and a T-shirt. Some of the other contestants didn’t even wear that much, relying on their furry bodies for protection. 

She was the only human competing among the entrants. Like Earth, the other civilizations in the contest came from the far edge of the Milky Way Galaxy. […]

The Foot Race On PhytoLore2022-06-26T23:55:54+00:00

Cinderella’s Monster

J.E. Seuk

And so it came to be, as it very often is, that the true monster of the tale was revealed long after you, Dear Heart, had toddled off to bed.

But have you not yet grasped that, “And so they lived happily ever after,” is but a cue for innocent heads to rest on welcoming pillows and dream before said dreams have learned to sharpen their teeth?

Do you not realize that children are to be sent away at Intermission, but you, Dear Hardened Heart, must […]

Cinderella’s Monster2022-06-26T23:55:58+00:00

According to Plan

Holly Van Hare


Chalk makes a grating sound; I know it well. I listen to its gravel talk daily as it etches numbers into memories I’ll nightly make no sense of. The room reeks of sterility, or wheat flour, or quicksand. I fear its dusty, dry residue I slip and sink slowly beneath. 

It has become a ritual—a daily perspiration. Trying to keep up to avoid the smoke on Ms. Gurney’s breath, hot as coals as she leans close to my face and reviews my paper. Stern instructions hang […]

According to Plan2022-06-26T23:56:02+00:00

When Someone Comes Knocking

Maureen Sherbondy

A teacher says that when a story stalls, I should make a person appear at the door. 

“Who is it?” I ask. 

A brown-haired monkey appears. When invited in, the creature climbs on the crystal chandelier in the foyer. Running to find the kitchen, she discovers the granite island where a bowl of fruit taunts. After devouring three bananas, the monkey then swallows down the remainder of my egg salad sandwich. My stomach growls and I throw her out.

“Who is it?” I call again. 

When Someone Comes Knocking2022-06-26T23:56:18+00:00

Like and Follow

Rodney E Schmidt

The shop had no use for a name. Everyone knew about the controversial technology inside, but very few saw it work. It was hard to get an appointment and even harder to convince people that Clarity Glass wasn’t a tool for the government anymore. The U.S. Army used it for interrogating terrorists; entrepreneurs marketed it as a cure for digital extroverts who became introverts in the real world.

Between a closed-down jewelry shop and a Greek cafe in downtown Los Angeles, the shop advertised Clarity […]

Like and Follow2022-06-26T23:56:20+00:00

Trapped in Time

Sofia Daley Sevilla

I looked through the window again, the figure still there, glaring back at me. It was him again. It was always him, watching me from the distance and judging my every move. Yet, I did not know who he was. I looked again, adrenaline slowly pulsating through my body like an intruder. He looked straight back. As soon as our eyes met, I looked away and stood up, needing to pace around the room.

I paced. Who was he? I paced. Why was he there? I paced. Why […]

Trapped in Time2022-01-19T23:06:33+00:00
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