Barb Johnson
Beggars and Choosers

Barb Johnson - Beggars and Choosers

Fiction
Barb Johnson worked as a carpenter in New Orleans for more than twenty years before receiving her MFA from the… Read more »
Maria Kuznetsova
Cornucopia

Maria Kuznetsova - Cornucopia

Fiction
Maria Kuznetsova was born in Kiev, Ukraine and grew up mostly in New Jersey. She is a recent graduate of… Read more »
Melissa Ostrom
For Every Pain, Consolation

Melissa Ostrom - For Every Pain, Consolation

Fiction
Melissa Ostrom teaches English in rural western New York. Her fiction has appeared in The Florida Review, Quarter After Eight,… Read more »
M.C. Williams
In the Light We Became Children

M.C. Williams - In the Light We Became Children

Fiction
M.C. Williams’s writing has appeared in The Open Bar (Tin House) and The Journal of Microliterature, and has also made… Read more »
Kathryn McMahon
It’s Too Hot for Flannel

Kathryn McMahon - It’s Too Hot for Flannel

Fiction
Kathryn McMahon is an American writer living abroad with her wife and dog. Her fiction has appeared or is forthcoming… Read more »
Jennifer Carr
There Were Three

Jennifer Carr - There Were Three

Fiction
Jennifer Carr was born and raised in San Pedro, California, in the heart of the Port of Los Angeles, and… Read more »

Beggars and Choosers

Barb Johnson

We’re changing the starter on the car that I told my brother, Calvin, I bought with money saved from working concession at the Blue Moon Drive-In a couple summers ago. He knows me well enough to doubt this story, of course, but he would never say as much. He’s the good twin. When we’re through fixing this thing up, he’ll get himself a license before he drives it. I’ll drive it without paper until something happens.

I want to tell him the real story, but he’s too tender-hearted. He thinks our father is dead. Anyway, who wants to hear about a father too lazy even to send a birthday card?

~

A while back I asked our mother how the old man died. As with most stories that would be helpful, this is one she has never told us. She said, “Don’t you worry about that, sister.” She said, “We’re better off without him.”

I don’t know about better off. I’m not talking about money or even love. I figured someone who runs off and doesn’t look back probably isn’t good with either. I have learned that my mother is not a reliable witness, though, so… Read more »