Tyler M

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Since the days when he learned to walk and talk, Henry wanted to fly. Fuselages and wings were magnetic to his young eyes. Desire grew out of the fluid shapes of planes and their weightless elegance. His friends, teenaged, quarreled over cars, raced and repaired them after school. Henry drove the cheapest thing that would run and saved his money. Aviation magazines and manuals crowded the bookcase in his shrinking room. His parents expected a call from the recruiter any day when he turned seventeen. A boy like that can’t wait another year, they figured. He ran early morning laps around the neighborhood like a dog after a rabbit.

— read the rest of the story over at The Assortment

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Emily resumed her walks in the park when the dog bites healed. She took her faux leather sandals along the shaded paths for the first time in what felt like years. Shut up in winter, there was an odor to the house that had crept through her cuts and lay annealed beneath her skin. Hot summer rains and green lawnmower smells brought her to life. The park paths were like rugs she beat with the soles of her sandals, her cleansing walks.

— Read the rest of this story over at The Assortment

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Where the blight touches the land the people never leave. The roads to them are blocked and they become mice in the gullet of a snake. Government orders suggest with kind words to stay indoors. Jeeps filled with men and rifles will come to enforce those words.

— read the rest of the story over at The Assortment

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A black and white photo of a ramshackle dock that extends into a featureless lake

The pier runs out into the ocean and stops right where the boats come and go, come and go. When they built it, they knew exactly where people wanted to stop their boats. When I run its length, the mist curling around me like smoke, I stop at its end and place my big toe toe on the edge. And I watch, the few feet I can see beyond the pier, and I wonder how they knew right where to stop building. The boats come and go and take it for granted.

— read the rest over on The Assortment

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The man who had taken up unwelcome residence at my booth was arranged sloppily, one arm thrown over the back of the seat. His necktie lapped at the tabletop like a dog’s tongue, working side to side with his gestures.

“I can tell you all day that the place is very clean,” he said, “but you won’t understand until you go there. It’s spotless. Sterile.”

He grinned and I caught the liquor on his breath. There was liquor in his eyes, too, a kind of simmering dreaminess. This was a man too steeped in this very moment to care about much else.

— Read the rest of the story over at The Assortment

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