“Counters and Booths” By Susan Dashiell

Fleets of buses and trucks jockeyed for position along Northern Boulevard, but Gayl stared ahead looking at nothing in particular. Shoulder pressed against the vertical box of sealed-off space, her cupped hands cradled the phone like she was whispering in someone’s ear. Red panels enclosed the base of the phone booth, providing coverage from her …

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“Dog People” By Emma Jane Van Dinter

I’m rubbing the dimples of the backside of a paragraph, feeling the remains of your tone. Summer sweat is now replaced with damp skin under quilts. Growling within the baseboard heater is an echo resembling the sound of kids sloshing about pool water. I watch the Shih Tzu figurine sitting on my typewriter and listen …

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“The Sex Puzzle” By Kevin Freeman

"Do it!" whispered Jon. I glanced up the aisle, shelves filled with trinkets and toys. The local stationary store resembled a carnival midway, with colorful concessions as far as the eye could see. For months we had shoplifted here; small tokens of bravery from Matchbox cars to key chains. None had any real value to …

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“Bring Me Your Dead, Your Dying” By Shilo Niziolek

I want all buildings to be old buildings. I want brick walls or older than brick walls. Caves underneath the base of the houses that the houses were built on, walls creased in limestone or granite or ash. Walls that speak when you touch them. I want old lantern lights that illuminate only a small …

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“What Lies Beneath–The Re-Education of a Young Environmentalist” By Ruby McConnell

By the time I was seventeen years old I could easily be described as an environmentalist; more than that really, a full-fledged idealist, a true tree-hugging dirt-worshipper. I believed in a better world, the preservation of natural resources, biodiversity, sustainability, and the possibility of a healthy planet. I believed that grassroots organization, social change, thoughtful …

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“Multiple Choice” By Hannah Laudermilch

I feel my breathing get faster as I sit down at one of the long tables in an otherwise empty room and look at the white, stapled packet in front of me. I read the instructions: “After each presented scenario, circle the best response.” 1. Your plans to get smoothies with your brother fall through. …

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