Category: Short Story

8

By Rob Tomaro

Posted on

Finkelstein put his hand on Jerry’s shoulder.

“That’s all I can tell you.”

Jerry could barely button the buttons on his shirt.  His fingers felt like hot dogs and the buttons felt as small as tic tacs.  He had come to trust the doctor and had begun to believe he could maybe fix it.  Finkelstein snapped the metal clipboard closed and looked at him with big, sad eyes. He hated this part. He always hated this part.

“I’m sorry, Jerry.”

Jerry bumped into the wall on his way out of the examination room and two nurses saw it.  He looked at them sheepishly, then realized that embarrassment, along with a whole host of other things, was something he wouldn’t be bothered with much longer.

What was it, anyway?  Embarrassment seemed suddenly so abstract, so arbitrary.  Why feel one thing when you can just as easily feel another?   Great, he thought, wish I’d had that revelation sometime during my twenty years of therapy.  Well, it’s never too late, he chuckled, as he turned up his collar and stepped out onto Prince Street.

Then, he stopped. Well, actually it is, bubbie. It is too late.

He jiggled the ice around in his glass, tried to tune out the band, and attempted to recall exactly what Finkelstein said.…

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The Right Side of the Crowd

By Yuliya Klochan

Posted on

On Friday, the crowd stopped by the most vulnerable place. A library. An orchard. A school.

The people in the crowd raided bakeries because they’d never baked bread. Shot at rotten houses because they’d never had to live in filth. Every experience they didn’t get, they annihilated for the humans to come.

Then the caravan trudged onward. The nurses on duty cursed as they removed broken glass from bleeding bodies.

They had marched for the same number of days as the age of their oldest walker. 83.

I traveled with the crowd for 9 Fridays. On the 10th, the crowd schemed to raid every treehouse in a suburb where white picket fences got hosed with an unlimited supply of potable water. Where roads extended into dead ends and every pothole was the cause for an evening’s complaint.

I grew up in a place like that. Then I left for a college more isolated than my town. All while I dreamed to see more.

When the crowd swept through the candy aisle, I joined. My father said, “Don’t go.”

I said nothing when I slammed through his door. Behind me, my mother cried.

Some memorable members of the crowd were: Henry, who squeezed his legs close at the table to pick dirt from under his toenails.

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