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Excerpts, Hot Flashes

Steamed Artichokes

She held it, hot, in her hand and slowly pulled back one of the outer leaves. She grazed her teeth down from the narrow tip and caught the tiny mound of flesh at its base. The flavor surprised her; the globe’s geometry and architecture were gothic, yet the taste earthy and unrefined. It was delicious. […]

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Sistah, Take Your Time

I drove Maw Maw’s huge Impala, made for making out with long bench seats—you could fit four couples in it, easy. We parked on Melpomene, a street that sits along the thin line between the haves and have-nots, and steamed up the windows in the Impala kissin’ and carryin’ on even though I knew that […]

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Indigo Void

She took my locker key to record the financial arrangement, then led me by the hand down a narrow corridor, past a warren of small rooms redolent with a mélange of perfume, sweat and disinfectant. I was like a little kid, touching the grass cloth wallpaper, poking my head into empty rooms, smiling sheepishly as […]

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Takeout

Gina slickened her fingers and her face with the dripping noodles, rubbing them against her lips, widening the circles to include her chin and her cheeks, and touching her tongue to her hand. She could easily smother herself. Instead, she moved her hand, still full of the food, to the base of her throat, the […]

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Games

I found everything Daddy hid, every book and magazine, card deck and little plastic vibrator. It wasn’t even very hard to do, especially in the cedar closet in the attic, even with the door jamming and scraping against the floor and the too-little door handle poking into my fingers when I pulled and lifted to […]

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