The Furious Gazelle

Literary as hell.

Tag: literary magazine (page 2 of 17)

“After Eliza,” a short story by Tom Gartner

Eliza said once that she couldn’t imagine not being in love with me.  Seems her imagination was faulty, though, because now, not only is she not in love with me any more, she doesn’t return my calls, my emails, my letters.  I’m not sure what would happen if we ran into each other by accident. I’m guessing she’d force a smile, stop for a minute and talk, then frown and say she was late for something.  But I’ve been wrong about her so many times. It’s possible she’d just purse her lips, tighten her shoulders, look away from me, and keep on walking.

When she said that, we were in her apartment, a shabby little cave in the Sunset District of San Francisco.  This was a year ago, six months before we broke up. November. We’d just gotten back from a camping trip to Yosemite, and she was sick.  She’d gotten laid off. She had student loans the size of Everest. The apartment was freezing, with only a time bomb of a space heater to warm it up.  Mice had chewed holes in everything chewable and left miniature turds all over. Her books, her clothes, her papers, her CDs were scattered around like fallen leaves.  She hated the apartment, was desperately ashamed of it. But we were snuggled in her bed under two quilts, our clothes still damp from Yosemite snow, completely lost in each other.  Her skin was hot with fever, and she couldn’t stop coughing. She wanted to make love.

And she said that.  She couldn’t imagine not being in love with me.  I guess at the time I was the only thing going right in her life.  As for my life—maybe she wasn’t the only thing going right, but she was the only one that mattered. Continue reading

“Endings,” an essay by Pamela S. Carter

Sometimes I see scenes from my life like a long, disjointed movie on which the credits should have rolled hours ago. But it just keeps going, at least for now. Still, my lifetime, like the life cycles of the ash trees in my backyard, is finite. My trees, although a year or two younger than I am, are at the end of their life cycles, according to an arborist who came out to determine why they looked so poorly this fall. He recommends cutting them down and replacing them with young catalpa trees, but I am torn. It will take years for the new trees to provide the shade the old ones do now, and I don’t want to leave my son John, who will inherit this house, with the cost and worry of taking down the ash trees. The trees are living beings but not sentient, as far as I know, so I assume they have no sense of their impending end of days.

Damn those trees. Until this fall I always took them—and their shade—for granted. I even planted a garden of shade-loving plants beneath the shelter created by the giant canopy of the tree on the north side of the house. But then I believed Paul, my third husband and the love of my life, would live forever. He certainly seemed invincible. In his sixties he had low blood pressure, even lower cholesterol, and the sex drive of a teenager. He shoveled snow, raked leaves, kept the yard weeded, and built every stick of furniture in our house—right up till he developed a pain in his right upper abdominal cavity in the spring of 2014. He went to the doctor in July, spent the summer months undergoing tests, was diagnosed with Stage IV cancer in late October, and died in the predawn darkness of November 7, 2014. It happened too fast for me to comprehend. Continue reading

Poetry by Annie Blake

She is a Meat-Eating Carousel

children love riding them      i am part of the game too

but i’m trying to be a bit more civil      

i have a megalodon jaw      but i only ever touch potato      

we are devices that rotate      like the hands of a clock

its face only as wide as earth      i wonder if i will live long enough     

to survive Continue reading

Poetry by Dean Baltesson

Affairs Of Snow

The snow lies

in tarnished piles

of moonlight

pushed aside from

sidewalk and step

 

you prepared this exit

light drowning from your window

leaving me to wander

the poor brick

of the neighbourhood

 

for all this uprooted winter

had I not been captive

to mysterious seductions

I might still walk lightly

on pure snow.

Continue reading

“The Last Sunday in September,” a short story by Conor O’Sullivan

I grew to hate All-Ireland Sunday, keeping this torment concealed from my family. The day stiffened my resolve to leave Dublin after wasted college years. I went to flat parties with childhood friends and pale girls who rolled their eyes at my slurred advances. Now winter lingered, inducing darkened days that lead to early gatherings in pubs and late nights on the quays.   

A taste of whiskey was lodged in my throat, the fetid sweat off a weekend binge bleeding into the walls.  I forgot it was All-Ireland Sunday for a moment, although this business of Dublin versus Kerry soon flooded my consciousness. I reached across the bedside table for my watch, the hands on the dial approaching two p.m. Sundays had become an effort in killing time. Ashen clouds brushed the sky through a slit in the curtains. My mum had come in earlier to say she was going to my aunt’s house for the afternoon.

‘Try and at least drag yourself out of bed for the throw-in!’

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Poetry by Donovan James

Dating without alcohol

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Poetry by Megan Denese Mealor

Photo by Brian Michael Barbeito

Tunneling

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Book Review: Monstress vol. 1 Awakening Written by Marjorie Liu art by Sana Takeda

By E. Kirshe

 

Monstress Vol. 1 compiles a compelling story into a physically beautiful book. This volume is a collection of the first six issues of the Monstress series.

 

The surface plot is engaging fantasy fare- we have a young woman with a mysterious past driving her current path which includes danger and dark magic. She holds a dark power- in this case a literal demon living inside her- and is caught in the middle of an old war. Liu is a fantastic storyteller. She tackles a lot of different themes in this fairly short volume and does so almost seamlessly.

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“Why I Hate Spring, or How I Almost Hung Myself but Went to the Nervous Hospital Instead,” by Dr. Patrick Dobson

 

About five years ago, I went to the mental hospital. I was going to hang myself. Just as I was choosing the rope, I experienced an epiphany. Maybe this wasn’t a good idea, at least, not as good as I thought it was.

Springtime was on me. The season has always been difficult. As days get longer and the light more intense, I get more and more depressed. I find myself crying, seemingly just for the hell of it. Feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness grow. I stay in bed longer and sleep during odd times of the day. Fatigue plagues me.

Soon, usually by the beginning of March, the world looks and feels dead to me. I see the flowers and the trees busting into green. I hear the birds and see the rabbits. Beauty is all around and I have no connection to it. I isolate myself. Thoughts of suicide and of absconding from home haunt me. A pall hangs over me. I know I should be doing things but cannot find the energy or ambition to undertake them. All sounds are too loud. Activity around me, any activity, grates on me like sandpaper on raw nerves. Continue reading

“Moss,” a poem by Michael Sandler

Photo by Brian Michael Barbeito

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