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We’ve already tried everything. We tell the waitress to bring rolls, wine. Meanwhile we’ll decide what we want to order. This is our favorite restaurant. It’s the only restaurant in town as far as we’re concerned. The atmosphere is exquisite—carpet with hunting scenes, dark wood. The mayor and his cronies sit nearby, tearing apart their steaks by candlelight and spilling juice on their ties. I wave. […]

Flight

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I am traveling across the sea, again. Sometimes it seems I have spent more time on water than on land; sometimes, when I am home, I wake up in the middle of the night and am surprised when my old legs meet solid, unswaying ground.

The Sister

The Sister Feature SQUARE

A girl named Caroline lived with her twelve brothers in a house on the edge of the woods. The youngest, Philip, was her friend and responsibility. Mother and Father had died years ago of an illness. The brothers talked about how hard it had been to watch, something Caroline couldn’t remember. Each of the brothers had a job. Some wore suits and some wore coveralls. Philip had been born with one eye, due to his mother’s fever during pregnancy. The eye rolled around in his head, searching whichever room he found himself in for his sister. […]

2017 American Short Fiction Prize Winners

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We are delighted to announce that Lauren Groff has selected the winners of the 2017 American Short Fiction Prize. The first-place prize goes to Michaela Hansen for her story “The Devil in the Barn” and the second-place prize goes to Wendy Rawlings for her story “Coffins for Kids!”Our deepest thanks to Lauren Groff for judging the American Short Fiction Prize, and to all of you for submitting your work. And congrats to the winners! Look out for the winning story in an upcoming issue of American Short Fiction! […]

Ray Charles Never Lost Anything Important

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Hugo was a neighborhood debate. Ask me and I’d say, No, he wasn’t gifted from birth, wasn’t like Mozart composing with a finger up his nose and diaper rash on his ass. But mine was a minority opinion. To this day, people come to me and insist, with a passion I’ve only seen in late-night […]

The Seagull

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At the Gala to End Sexual Assault, which was to benefit a non-profit founded by an actress who starred in a TV show that sensationalized sexual assault, and which was held in a museum of dead animals who had been shot and killed by men who were by now themselves quite dead, I found myself feeling a little—how to say it—agitated. […]

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