AmituofoBy Vanessa Hua
Religion in America: If he were superstitious, he would have blamed the monks for cursing him.
Household GodsBy John Benditt
Religion in America: The house of the Memory God is filled with junk in piles. It started innocently enough, the way a blizzard starts: a flake here, a flake there.
Festival for the PigsBy Memtimin Hoshur, translated from the Uyghur by Darren Byler and Mutellip Enwer
Soon a rumor spread through the city that a pig was riding on another pig, circling through the streets, commanding the riot.
Butterflies in NovemberBy Auður Ava Ólafsdóttir, translated from the Icelandic by Brian FitzGibbon
You’ll barely notice him, he won’t nag or pester you, doesn’t even sing the way other kids do.
Gulf ReturnBy Deepak Unnikrishnan
Only for a short time, my mother promised when she left, but the shortness has grown longer, many years, almost twelve, and I am now grown.
Seven Micro-Stories on War (and Only One on Love)By Alex Epstein, translated from the Hebrew by Yardenne Greenspan
We reported on the two-way radio that the only nut alive asked to surrender.
BecomingBy Anna Noyes
She hugged me goodbye and left in her boat. I didn’t wait for the boat to grow smaller. I walked into the jungle. I wanted to be something real.
Stand StillBy Shelly Oria
We realize, of course, that one day the force may strike again, leaving one of us breathless at the side of the road.
Ghost HouseBy Ingrid Rojas Contreras
The stories of the kidnapped always begin the same way.
For What Purpose?By Karen E. Bender
American Empires: I wanted to stop something, everything. I applied for a job in airport security and they placed me here.
Wounding RadiusBy Constance Squires
American Empires: PFC Larry Pierson, a 21-year-old Afghanistan veteran from Vermilion, South Dakota, had made off with four M-16 A2s, six thirty-round magazines of ammo, and two M67 grenades.
MercyBy Melissa R. Sipin
I only question my father about these half-truths now, after all these years, because of the nightmares. Because I think about my mother. Because I imagine leaving my husband.
You, DisappearingBy Alexandra Kleeman
The apocalypse was quiet. It had a way about it, a certain charm. It could be called graceful. It was taking a long time.
Our FathersBy Dan Sheehan
I don’t remember the trial, of course, but I’m told there was a stink of hatred in the room that would undo your tie.
A Planet for RentBy Yoss, translated from the Spanish by David Frye
Science fiction from Cuba.
The Bully of OrderAn excerpt from the novel by Brian Hart
Bigness required boundaries but this water had none save the shore we stood upon and the end of my eyeball’s reach.
Henna HouseBy Nomi Eve
I knew that the Confiscator was a bad man. I knew that my father hated and feared him.
GirlsThe 2014 Dzanc Books/Disquiet International Literary Program Award-winning short story by Laura Adamczyk
Girls, the man said, I’ve got an itch.
Switchback, 1994By Jack Livings
The pool of blood had grown a custardy skin in the cold, so that as the wind blew, it strained and jiggled.
2 A.M. at the Cat’s PajamasBy Marie-Helene Bertino
Boys cross rooms for Georgie, who is full in the way they like. Foxy is the word for it, Sarina thinks, whereas she is foxless.
More Than ThisBy Tracey Rose Peyton
The boys here looked past her, their eyes steadily transfixed on the procession of tight designer jeans and heels clicking through the quad regularly on the hour.
Who Can Shave Thirteen Times a DayBy Tracy O’Neill
“I brushed Michael Bolton’s hair once,” I said, “and moisturized George Clooney too.”
Brest FortressBy Vladimir Kozlov, translated from the Russian by Andrea Gregovich
We walk along the forest on the side of the road. Onishchenko stops. “Give me your word, as one of the brothers, that you won’t tell anybody,” he says.
WaterborneBy Josh Weil
They had never been this far out in the lake, this lost, this on their own.
CrossbarBy Josip Novakovich
Instead of sobering up upon seeing the beheading, I went along with the hooligans. Hell, I was one of them.
What Lights Up the NightBy S. Hope Mills
“This is how your parents have explained Paula’s coming: In Northern Ireland, the Protestants and Catholics are fighting.”
Waiting for the ElectricityBy Christina Nichol
In the beginning, when God was distributing the land to all the nations, we Georgians missed the meeting.
The InteractionsBy Aaron Steven Miller
Most people experience the fullness of what it means to be a person. Most people, but not him.
A Brave Pilot From the New ChinaExcerpts from a novel by Ernesto Semán, translated from the Spanish by Tara FitzGerald
For many years I had thought about my father’s suicide, about his various possible suicides.
Someone Is ThereBy Jean McGarry
Every profession had its misfits and mediocrities, but few attracted, as his did, the very people it was designed to help.