by Chris Milam
Mom was a gazer. A pale finger parting the tobacco-stained blinds, exposing sickly grass. At the beige walls with thrift store art. At empty spaces filled with lost things. Her frozen stare always darting, fluttering, never quite landing.
Step-dad Rick hovered in the garage. A place where his vendetta against anything that wasn’t a Budweiser was unleashed. He experimented with rabbits and mice at first, the occasional Monarch butterfly.
That didn’t satiate him, though. His welder craved human flesh and emotion. The soles of my feet, the back of my calves. My screams stifled by electrical tape. I didn’t grow from his seed so I was expendable. Fit for burning. A slab of human steel.
His dark mask shaded his eyes but never his intentions. Thick leather gloves, a stream of fire and rage and a boy clawing at the oil-stained concrete floor.
Rick scorching, me begging and mom being indifferent. She never even glanced at the garage.
Issue #3 Contents
ART & PHOTOGRAPHY
Kirsten Imani Kasai
A Heart So Pure
Slips of Yew
The Anointed One
The Flustered Husband’s Guide to Spices
The Gallows Tree
The Gardener Estate
When You Love Someone
Chris Milam lives in solitude in Hamilton, Ohio. He’s a voracious reader, a diehard baseball fan, and a coffee fiend. His work can be found in The Molotov Cocktail, Firewords Quarterly and Burningword Journal.