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alone i am always smoking by Clare Schneider

Tobacco companies support nicotine patches because, studies have shown, that without counseling, nicotine replacement therapy hardly ever works. Tobacco companies view all “nicotine products as a way to support smoking” i quit smoking for you and then you left me. this seems unfair. Girls who start smoking before age 15 are nearly…

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OPEN TO AN OCEAN by Tommy Dean

He circles the fountain like an animal pushed out of his habitat. The heat smothers his body. It’s the tenth day above ninety, and still they—the powerful men he imagines sitting in a tall building chewing on ice and swiveling in office chairs whose leather seats cool these men’s backs…

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TALONS by Ran Walker

Her story went like this: When she was three years old, she was playing with her brother in the backyard, when an enormous hawk swooped down, latched on to her, and lifted her from the ground. The only thing that stopped her from being carried away was her brother grabbing…

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ABANDONED TOYS ‘R’ US LOVE STORY/ABANDONED SPORTS WORLD LOVE STORY by Jordan Hayward

abandoned toys ‘r’ us love story stone cold steve austin sits unaccompanied by a military grade transport vehicle, unflinching in someone’s captured breath, hidden amongst a dark spot on a crowded aisle, watchful and waiting beneath elsa’s hollow glare and woeful pale complexion. piped music aches in surges from corners…

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TEACHING MY BELLE THE ABCS by Oliver Gaywood

Annabelle always answered her aunts accurately, as abruptly and authoritatively as an adolescent. Their ambitious attempts to addle gone awry, the astonished aunts acted aloof afterwards, averting avuncular attention. Boastfully, I birthed a bright and bubbly baby. Belle behaved brilliantly and blossomed beautifully. The bairn boosted brainpower by borrowing books…

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