The Sweetest Things

by Dinamarie Isola   She left a box of half-eaten chocolates sitting on his dresser. Waxy and whitened along the edges, they looked inedible, if not fake. He didn’t bother to confirm what he knew to be true: the expiration date had long come and gone. Pitching them into the trash, the mounds of chocolate dinged against the metal rim, scattering over the floor. Even when she wasn’t around, somehow she made work for him. I don’t need you to take care of me. Lorelei liked to say that, but getting to her doctor appointments required crossing a six-lane highway.…

Desquamation by Megan Jauregui Eccles

  The lizard suns herself. She looks happier than I ever have. She blinks one eye, then the other. She doesn’t look at me. Does she know that, like me, she once belonged to you? The days wind like hours on a clock. I try spending more time outside. Lying flat on the ground and soaking up the rays of the sun like I’m a plant or a very small lizard. My skin reddens and blisters. I go inside and nurse my wounds with aloe and Tylenol. Later, I see the lizard bite off a piece of her own shedding…

Aperture

By Christina Rauh Fishburne Look at her go. See the ghost of sinew in those triceps and biceps as the creamy brown silk slides up to her shoulder in retreat. This gown was always her favorite. The one destined only for significant cocktail parties and evenings of general greatness. Observe her form. The strain of her graceful neck, the fluid rise of her arms like a worshipper of the sun, and the determined fan of her fingers spreading to embrace. The line of her shoulders as she rears back in Olympic elegance bent on a clean kill. Note the placement…