rainbow cleaners

rainbow cleaners is demolished and blue metal fences mark the perimeters of the construction site. soon the earthmoving machines will shove down the concrete foundations that remain, scrape away layers of contaiminated soil. and i wonder what fluids have leaked through the floorboards after 50 years of cleaning service? rainbow cleaners is demolished and there’s … Read more

vegas

12-years-old, long, clean brown hair, and pouting lips rouged scarlet. she’s pushing a baby carriage down the boulevard and the baby isn’t hers. a sister, by the looks of it. her dad is trailing in her pubescent wake, head swivelling as he checks out the action on the strip. there are people everywhere, on the … Read more

directions gone wrong

  “where’re we going?” “south.” “we’re going south?” “In this wind, south by southwest.” “isn’t that a Hitchcock movie?” “naw. that’s North by Northwest.” “good to know. you like Hitchcock?” “love him.” “favourite movie?” “Vertigo.” “that one makes me dizzy.” “fear of heights?” “absolutely.” “don’t let go.”  

hungry man

  there’s a hungry man waiting under the chicken-on-the-way sign. he’s got his eye on a 5-piece snack box, fries and coleslaw combo. there’s nothing finer than a hot greasy chicken on a summer day. there’s a hungry man waiting under the chicken-on-the-way sign. he’s got his eye on a 5-piece, nothing finer than a … Read more

freefalling

at the National Gallery, beneath de Goya’s portrait of Dona Isabel de Porcel, i wait. an assignation with the property agent who’s charming my husband with her long, dark, curly hair and vibrant smile. “what do you think?” i ask Dona Isabel. “it doesn’t matter how many times i change my clothes, i still feel … Read more

peel away the bark

i’m building a fort with leftover scrap wood my dad piled beside the carport. pieces of wood, strung with bits of bark, and plastic stapled into the gaps.  it’s january and the snow is deep. i have to dig out my fort each day, add a few boards. the hammer is heavy in my hands, … Read more

hair in place

Mitzi hated the breakfast shift at the hospital, staring into vats of lumpy oatmeal.  and scrambled eggs, congealing, then crusting on the underside of the ladle.  disgusting.  she adjusted the net that kept her hair in place and hauled the metal vat of oatmeal onto a rolling cart. “Need a hand?”  a male voice.  a … Read more

a hungry man

there’s a hungry man waiting under the chicken-on-the-way sign.  he’s got his eye on a 5-piece snack box, fries and coleslaw combo.  there’s nothing finer than hot greasy chicken on a summer day. there’s a hungry man waiting under the chicken-on-the-way sign.  he’s got his eye on a 5-piece snack box, nothing finer than a … Read more