How to Lose an Ocean by Sara Davis

We set up our tent in a campsite midway between the ocean and the salt marshes. Ecosystems crowd together on Assateague island, like a microcosm of the continent: saltwater and fresh, forest and desert. Feral, like the bands of wild…

Tom’s Diner by Rachael Smart

He pours already boiling water from a kettle to a pan for eggs. I tell him I’ve not seen it done that way before. Saves time, he says, and I explain that I have been conditioned to serve time rather…

Kitchen Balcony by Lucy N.

When she picked me up from arrivals for the first time, she was wearing a soft jeans-coloured overall amounting to little more than a tank top and shorts. Her bare arms and legs were golden brown, her breasts girl-like, free…

Apple Pie Aphorisms by Ellie Nava-Jones

Grandma always said the best apple pie starts with fruits with the sharpest bite. My house is filled with Christmas carols, bright and clear in digital remasters. We always made pie with old scratchy records, some long-forgotten Canadian band singing…

Let Me In by Ben Slater

A strange sound woke me around two in the morning. I lay listening for a while. A human cry, forming unintelligible words, repeating them after a pause and getting louder. I slipped out of bed and went into the living…

Not All Men by Maria Thomas

TW: This flash deals with sexual assault. Not all men, although there was that time when that reptilian managing director pulled me oh-so-close, ran his scaly fingers though my hair and underneath my top, hissed when I told him I…

Dragonfly by Alpheus Williams

Mother has latticed wings, translucent tinted amber, sectioned like leaded glass in church windows.  Her flight is poetry, lyrical, beautiful, full of grace, deadly.  She kills on the wing, takes prey in taloned limbs, rips off wings and devours it headfirst.  Harnesses the…

Risk Assessment by Hannah Storm

It’s almost Halloween and the guesthouse owner has embraced the season with a ghoulish fervour, but it’s clear we have different perspectives on creepy.  I tiptoe past pumpkins, a scarily unconvincing cat, waft past webs of spiders, store-bought rather than…

From Pretend I Am Real by Leigh Chadwick

Monogamy is buying a gun and watching your lover swallow all the bullets. This is what Leigh Chadwick thinks as she lies in bed, listening to the thunder outside her window. It’s night, late enough to almost be called morning.…

Game Over by Victoria Buitron

Wearing white is like carving a bullseye on our bodies, inviting men to spray us just so they can peek at our nipples or the floral etches of our bras, which means the first rule is never to wear white,…

Bedtime Stories by Hannah Storm

Every night, my little boy repeats the same things before we leave his room. ‘Cuddle and kiss before you go to bed.’ He tugs my arm towards him, neither of us ready to let go. I kiss his forehead, searching…

Horace Dancing by Helen Victoria Anderson

Horace is twisting again, under my skin. I cup my hand on my pelvis under the candy-striped sheet in the saggy double bed in my parents’ best spare room. My nearly-new husband’s hand joins mine. “Anything to report?” Only the…