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Podcasts

Missing Dolls Around the World

They found the first coffin in North America, in Vancouver, BC, at a grave yard. The slender mahogany box was no larger than the forearm of a child of ten. The workers were digging up a slot for an upcoming burial of an important political figure that I were hired to document. This was meant […]

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And A Piece of Coal Where Her Heart Once Beat

Nothing lasts forever. Not Christmas, with its bright lights and spangled promises of good things that never quite come to pass. Not the dreams of magic that it conjures for children everywhere. Not even Krampus, with his sack of coal and his cold heart. Even villains grow old and achy, age softening their sharp edges, […]

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The Catcher in the Eye

I kept my right eye closed because I saw ghosts through it. My parents thought they were imaginary friends I would soon outgrow—they weren’t. But what did they know anyway? “One—or two?” my optometrist asked, switching lenses. “Two,” I said. He repeated the process until I recited the words on the eye exam chart a […]

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Hundreds of Little Absences

Mandy finds the jar of baby teeth in her mother’s sock drawer, the week after she turns eleven. Daydreams about a frothy fairy with butter-blonde curls leaving coins under her pillow have long since evaporated; this is the first of many horse girl summers. The jar, white china with hand-painted blue flowers, is nestled between […]

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Send in the Clowns

This is a work of the author’s imagination, an alchemy of memory and soul’s longing. Beth joined the turn-lefters, pulled off the highway, and found a park beneath a giant fig tree before the twins even registered. Then heads turned like open-mouthed clowns. Confusion; at last, the dawning. They’d been restless, constrained by seatbelts and […]

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Lace, Comb, Apple

There was nothing here but swirling grey fog, and me. The laces around my waist were cinched so tight I could hardly breathe. A comb threaded through my hair, and in my hands I held an apple. For the longest time I sat in the haze, listening to silence. Then, footsteps. Your face swam into […]

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Eating Bitterness

Every evening we tie Mama down. It’s my job to fold a clean rag for her to bite on, so she won’t hurt her tongue. Three folds, hot dog style. Now that I’m thirteen Baba even lets me place it between her teeth. Ray, four years younger, is too little to do anything except watch, […]

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The Spelunker’s Guide To Unreal Architecture

In time, the dedicated Spelunker will grow to instinctively recognize unreal architecture, senses picking up the minutiae that others miss. Wind coming from impossible directions; shadows cast at awkward angles; a dearth of wildlife; a strange doppler effect to sound, as though distance between source and listener stretched like taffy. Details and nothing more, but […]

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The Urn

I dusted the window panes and rolled up the curtains because Akwaugo was visiting. I first met her at the Lagos book festival. Someone in the crowd had stood up and asked a question on race in Africa, especially in black Africa. Did it exist? If we were all cleped ‘dark skinned’, was racism existent […]

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Crooked House

I always said I got to get out of here, but that was just talk. Now I for sure mean it. Anyway, I’m almost sixteen, so I have to go. Ma and Pa say sixteen is the limit for boys staying in the house. My two older brothers took off when they hit sixteen, one […]

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