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Creative Nonfiction


wooded road

My mother was the sort of woman who wound her way through unfamiliar places only to see if she could find her road home. But she was also the sort who sunk with relief into habit after a day made long by the weary world of customer service, happily exchanging adventure for the same patch of pavement every day for ...

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Great Grandpa


Great-grandpa spent the majority of his life at the bottom of a bottle. I never knew him, but that’s what they tell me. They say it was to drown out the memories. Memories of his time spent overseas in the Pacific Theater, during World War II. Grandpa manned the 50 cal., the big machine gun that was mounted on the ...

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Taboo: “a social or religious custom prohibiting discussion of a particular practice or forbidding association with a particular person, place, or thing.” My version of taboo: something that seriously freaks people out, causing them to avoid it at all costs, and even going so far as to shame the people who do talk about it, hoping that the shame will ...

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Cheering or Cheerful?

pom poms

“Let’s go, let’s go! L-e-t-s g-o!” I cheered for the millionth time trying to be as enthusiastic as possible. The fake smile was spread across my face as I pretended to be as cheerful as the crowd. In my mind, cheerleading was my gateway to popularity. My high ponytail, bright white cheer shoes, and short skirt made it seem as ...

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Zucchini Heaven


The heat of the summer sun beat down as we fight with the hard ground to bring forth some sort of useable lifeform. All the unwanted pests and weeds have to be delivered from the garden, and holes and trenches must be dug so that the seeds will bear healthy fruit. Day by day, the plants grow as water sinks ...

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The Salt and the Penny


Retaining vivid memories has never been one of my strong suits. Childhood events brimming with gut-wrenching laughter and bright smiles are shadowed right alongside memories best kept in the dark. But somehow, despite my brain’s strange desire to erase my past, there is one memory inexplicably burned into the back of my retinas. Twelve years ago, my family vacationed down ...

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I don’t have a lot of friends. I can count those I have on one hand, two at most, and three of those are immediate family. A fourth I married. I was a bit of an anomaly upon arrival in Denmark. I wore boot-cut jeans, was darker complected than the average Dane, and spoke with such a thick accent that ...

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Cultural Identity Crisis…or Not?


It has been long said that there is a natural rhythm of the world, one that is esoteric in nature so that few may keep up with it. The rhythm of the world is a saucy tango, rich in sudden shifts of movement, the pulse endearing. Many instruments comprise this rhythm, but I have always considered myself a musically gifted ...

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The Silence That Swallows You Whole

small town

People like big cities because they don’t want to face the fact that the world is empty. In big cities, buildings and billboards and barricades block out the void, and if you walk fast enough, you can forget that the stillness is bound to catch up with you by nightfall. Small towns offer no such delusions. One look at a ...

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Aww Nutz


The last bite of meatloaf tasted just as good as the sixteen before it. I started shoveling a mix of mashed potatoes, corn, and gravy into my mouth. I had to eat as fast as possible if I wanted to be able to pick out my dessert before my brothers and sister. It was always a race to the finish, ...

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