A Challenge

Image Credit: Mandi Z., Phoenix, AZ The author's comments: Based on a picture of a kitten in a blender. Also based on Thor and Loki kittens. I guess... Thor was stuck. He was stuck and he did not like being stuck. His avocado green eyes looked out through the clear glass with longing for the outside. He sat in this place ashamed of how he had gotten into this mess. First he had been lying in the sun all curled up by the front door. The family was gone and he had the whole house to himself. Then he heard a jingle of bells. He lazily rolled his head up to see where the noise came from. His yellow fur and fat stomach covered his view of the rest of the house. He turned over and yawned. When he opened his eyes, he saw him. Loki, the cat of mischief. His blue-black fur was on edge and he hissed as if taunting Thor. Thor couldn’t take this mockery. He jumped up on his four paws and stretched for a moment. If he was to be chasing his brother, he needed to stretch. When he was finished he sauntered into the kitchen. There was Loki sitting in front of the food bowl. ‘A challenge?’ Thor wondered. He began to growl and hiss at his brother who sat stone still. Then Loki leaped into the air and landed on the countertop. Thor followed shortly behind. Thor lunged at Loki and they began to scratch each other. Suddenly Loki went for Thor’s feet. ‘No one dares to touch the feet of Thor!’ Thor internally screamed. He hopped high into the air and then landed in a tight bowl. He stared out at Loki who pushed the lid on the blender cup, which was in the sink. Then Thor watched as Loki went over and ate both of their food for the day. Thor was stuck and he did not like it.


She reads quietly in the corner, sublimely beautiful. Serene. Her soul surrounds her, highlighting every motion, drawing me like a moth to a flame. I’m not worried that I’ll burn, only that she’ll never notice my tiny spark against her brightness. Smiling, she looks up from her book. “Hi, there.” Raven Corinn Carluk writes dark … Continue reading RAVEN CORINN CARLUK: Incandescent →


We lie around the pool, melting, burning, toasting, marinating. Nobody speaks, except for one woman berating her husband for not using sunscreen. Later the waiter tells us they’ve been coming to this same hotel for twenty years. Well, twenty-three if you count the years since he died of skin cancer. Tom O’Brien is an Irishman … Continue reading TOM O’BRIEN: SPF →

SHAW CHEN: Reintegration

The livestream of his daughter’s birth crawled; he didn’t recognize himself in the black flicker. Just earlier he shot a child who had pointed a gun at him. Watched the hate and fear fade from his eyes. She’s now the only part of him that still belongs in this world. Shaw Chen is a USAF … Continue reading SHAW CHEN: Reintegration →


Evening. I lie in bed, absorbing the hum of the fan. Shadows spill through, lavender and pink cheer bathing me. For this moment, I put aside father’s lectures, bad son, too artistic, not living in the real world. Darkness deepens. For a moment, I can almost forget. Almost. Close enough. Mir-Yashar Seyedbagheri is a graduate … Continue reading MIR-YASHAR SEYEDBAGHERI: Evening →


A man wrote a song and died. Trembling, the song tried to sing herself. Each day she practised, flexing melodic limbs, strengthening pale notes, until she came to understand discordant beauty. That day, her song spilled into rivers and comet trails, spread throughout galaxies. The universe leaned in to listen. Lisa Alletson is an emerging … Continue reading LISA ALLETSON: Discordant →