Cat Trap

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  A knuckle—a woman’s, I guessed—tap-tap-tapping at the kitchen door: exactly what we didn’t want to hear. Hello there! it seemed to say; it was not the kind of rap to bruise you. “Mom wouldn’t knock, it isn’t her,” I … Read More

Disgrace

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  Winter. Violet light, frozen ground, the sense that his marriage was over. In the term’s last weeks, while his seniors soldiered through a unit on short stories, Hollis Martin did his best to hide from his first drink. He … Read More

Freddy’s Vacation

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  I   Excursion, corrects my father, who is a hunter. He is standing over a basin in our shack, pressing freshly butchered venison into salt, and the finger he lifts from the salt cake makes it clear not a … Read More

The Anthropologist Problem

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  In the official texts that the villagers had permitted me to read, there was never a strict age requirement. What mattered was that the candidates were elders—re-tellers of stories, slow morning walkers, birdhouse watchers, coin-behind-your-ear jokesters, narrators of the … Read More

Rani

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  My grandmother, Daddi, kept calling her dead husband to bed. On the night of the funeral, Daddi looked for him in the folds of her velvet blanket, the hollows of her cheeks, and the flickering flames in the gas … Read More

Getting the Lead Out

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  The story was dangerous ground, I knew that instantly, and the little voice daring me to tell it a certain way should have stopped me before I started. C’mon, it said. Imagine her expression. I was cautious enough to … Read More

Goatman

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  Prince George’s County, Maryland 1986   Goatman lives in the woods: the woods behind your house, but also in the woods along Osbourne Road, and also in the woods out past the guard rail at the end of Greenhaven, … Read More

Disappearances

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  Nearing the end of my father’s sabbatical year in Florence, my mother convinced him to rent a house in the mountains. She slipped the Holiday Homes brochure on top of his computer: “This one has a Ping-Pong table and … Read More

The Lesser Light of Dying Stars

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  It is believed that Mr. Leon Levitt of Peridot, Arizona, began to emit sometime around his forty-third birthday—“emit” being the retroactive clinical term ascribed by those of the science community studying SDR phenomena where they occur. Given the location … Read More

Mr. Forble

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    The trees seemed to hunch closer as darkness fell. Something—a mouse, or maybe a squirrel—emitted a high-pitched shriek, and Marta startled. An owl, she thought. The notion of being seen by something invisible, a creature swooping noiselessly onto … Read More

Moon Song

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Mikayla convinced Andy to close the set with “Moon Song (Wouldya Look at That, Dolores),” and it is landing like shit. This is a Tranq Sea bar, packed with tourists who have been off-planet two weeks at most. They don’t … Read More

Objects Do Not Fall

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    I. In his entire life, Brother Giorgio has never once thought about rocks falling from the sky. In fact, no one in Milan knows that a stone, like the plum-sized one presently several miles above the city, can … Read More

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