Reverse-Gentrification of the Literary World

Akashic Books

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Tag: short fiction

“On the Way to the Clinic” by Randolph Splitter

On the platform between the subway tracks, a young woman was playing the violin. A few dollar bills and coins were scattered over the inside of her case. She played semiclassical versions of pop tunes that Maria couldn’t quite recognize. The music was nice, and the young woman had a sweet, pleasant face, but as soon as she got onto the crowded subway car Maria knew that she had made a mistake. It was a simple procedure, they had said, but not that simple . . .

“A Night at Storytime Hamlet” by Richard Klin

As Chessy slowly approached Thomas’s house, he offered up his usual fervent litany: that Thomas’s mother or father wouldn’t answer the door, and if they did, the strained, obligatory small talk would somehow be less excruciating than usual. But fortune was smiling on him this evening—Thomas was perched right outside. For now, at least, the parents could be avoided . . .

“Cup Check” by Carolyn Smuts

Rule 1.17 Athletic Supporter & Catching Gear Requirements:
All male players must wear athletic supporters; metal, fiber, or plastic type cups are acceptable. Cups must be worn at all times and not removed during breaks or between innings . . .

“Ain’t Living Long Like This” by Robert James Russell

“Do you understand?“ the man asked as he looked from the driver’s seat to the empty parking lot to the gas station at the other end. He couldn’t believe how quickly night had fallen. “Do you understand that this is a necessity?”

He waited for a response but got none. He looked at the large black duffel propped up in the passenger seat and sighed . . .

“Intuitive” by Carolyn Smuts

Psychics are fake. They are lying bullshitters who make a buck conning the stupid and the naïve. I’m no psychic. He thinks I’m intuitive. I’m not; he’s just a drunk . . .