"Evangelina Concepcion" by Ani Sison Cooney

by Ani Sison Cooney

Carlos couldn’t stop sobbing that night because the ringing in his ear was loud. You shared a bedroom with him, and you told him to be quiet but he bawled anyway, his mouth open and really gummy. His breath smelled of milk and garlic. “It’s in my ear, Lila. You want to listen?” You put your ear close to your brother’s and, of course, you heard nothing. You carried him over and let him sleep next to you even though it was a warm night.

"Deportable Alien" (excerpted from THE BODY PAPERS) by Grace Talusan

by Grace Talusan

To celebrate having passed the boards for foreign medical graduates, my father bought a new Chevy Caprice station wagon, turtle green with matching interior. The flatbed in the back folded into a bench seat that faced the rear. In the summers, we rode the highways of America in our green station wagon. I would perch on the armrest between my parents’ seats while my father asked me to read the highway signs. My parents avoided spending money on fast food; instead, my mother brought freshly cooked rice and chicken adobo. I was embarrassed as I watched other families eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and potato chips at rest-stop picnic tables.

FROM THE ARCHIVES: "Labor Day" by Dorothy Spears

by Dorothy Spears

(from the Fall/Winter 2016 issue)

Labor Day weekend at the Brown family beach house was a time-honored tradition, so it only made sense that George would make the long trip up from Washington. He had called Vance’s office on the off-chance that we could meet his train, but neither Vance nor I could get off work early, so he was not with us that Saturday when we bumped into the dirt driveway of the Brown’s old cedar-shingled Victorian on Shore Road. Vance parked our Toyota in a weedy spot between a fleet of rusting Buicks; Judy only bought American, when she did buy, about once every twenty years.

"The Dictator" by Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry

by Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry

The Dictator eyes the men convened in the room: his compatriots, all potential traitors conspiring to destroy the Empire he’d spent a lifetime building. Everyone smokes, including the Dictator, whose long massive pipe, clenched between his lips, serves at once as an extension of his power and an affirmation of his will.  Both have been unquestionable thus far. Yet, there are rumors, rumors that his sexual appetites affect his rule. The need to curb the tyranny, to curtail the street riots, to appease the mob, which can’t be pitied but must be subdued. The Dictator conjures his predecessor, who was forced to abdicate the office, his family kidnapped and tortured, his beautiful daughters sold to brothels. They had such fine skin, delicate bodies, breasts.