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by Amy Montemarano

Perhaps the surest sign of her state of indignity was the crotch of her pantyhose, torn and stained between her splayed knees. What was the point of wearing stockings anyway, over those old, blue-grey legs -- to make them look sexy?

Perishable Night

by Annette Aryanpour

The street light caressed his face. He was beautiful, but that night they had grown apart a couple of inches more and a pretty face could not fix it. She broke into a silent, violent cry. If only I could take everything back, she thought, the first word that set everything off and all the dirt that came after.


by Jan Hodgman

The Buddhist nun had lived on Black Bamboo Mountain for over twenty years. She shaved her head after leaving a marriage she could only describe as tasteless. The priest who ordained her thought it might be convenient to have a live-in disciple for various chores and delights, but Koen had other aspirations.

A Way into the Woods

by Fiona Curnow

I think I love them all the more in autumn. The way just a few leaves cling to the very tips of the branches. Like people cling on to things sometimes. And the way there seems so much more space - more sky - between the trees. It brings it home how vulnerable they really are.

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