Harmonica Rescue

Joe Samuel Starnes

If you find yourself at the bar alone Sitting late for a quick beer Before catching the train home Surrounded by transparent young people, Good-looking, but simple, Half staring at their phones, Half talking to each other, Ignoring the aged drinkers, most stoned, All unaware the digital impostor of a jukebox Is silent, the TV turned down, The incessant babble of the […]

The Flemish Captain

Gwen Wille

So some of his friends made it out for his last, weathered   the late March rain, thin and soaking as wave crests on a prow. Better   to have scattered him off of Newfoundland, says one. Another,   He hated Scottish pipes. But again, it was the best his widow could do:   Cape […]

LONGING

Claire Scott

Years and years ago when I was six, and there were four of us kids always fighting, when my mother stayed in bed the entire year, bottles under blankets, orange vials on the floor, when us kids made bologna and mayonnaise sandwiches for supper, combed each other’s gritty hair in the morning, pulling and tugging, […]

The Challenge of Choosing a Winner

 Carla Spataro

Since we launched the Marguerite McGlinn Fiction Contest in 2008, I am tasked each year with two duties. First, I must find a judge who is also willing to come to Philadelphia and deliver the keynote address at our Push to Publish conference, as well as offer a master class the day before. I start […]

What the Tourists Left Behind – Third Place

Derrick Calkins

Abby Morales, age nine, grew up just south of Mecca, California on the northern shores of the doomed Salton Sea. The shoreline was thirty-four miles of fish hooks, broken bottles, and car parts. If you believed everything people said, you’d think it was a truck-stop toilet. Her abuelita forbade her from going. So she snuck […]

The Tanner Scale is Always Wrong – Second Place

Christina Milletti

Not long before Olive called a meeting of the Insult Club for the first time on the shaded, snail-calloused back steps of PS 64, she discovered a small lump, a scaling horn-like barnacle, growing on the severe wing of her shoulder. Soon, a second crustaceous bud sprouted on her opposing limb, pushing its way through […]

Minato Sketches – First Place

Minato Sketches

1. She kept reading about how all the paper houses had burned. But as she came down out of the clouds, she saw shiny fields, wet with a sheen of green water and the spikey hills she remembered. The villages tucked into crevices between the islands of trees and rocks and fields. There were certainly […]

Bacchanal

Michael Hyde

She was a fast learner, an easy learner, therefore, a joy. She could be counted on, never late, sitting front row, her hair twisted twice, pulled and bound by a ribbon.

Like It really Is

Aimee LaBrie

My stepson is reading Romeo and Juliet for his eighth grade English class. I asked him what he thought about it the other day during dinner.