Boise Weekly Fiction 101 2018: And The Winners Are... 

Page 4 of 4

JUDGES' PICKS

"I Still Remember" —Peter Silva, Boise, picked by Laura DeLaney

He wondered often about Jenny, his first, truest love. She symbolized everything he'd lost or forgotten over the years. She loved life passionately, without fear. She laughed freely, her life force shining always through kind eyes and soulful smiles. Her sweetness buoyed her exuberant humor. She dreamt aloud and waxed yearningly about life's possibilities. She knew, instinctively, the magic of youth and closeness to source was fleeting, so she soaked up everything and laid herself open to the world. She gave her love away. We parted long ago, she to eternal grace, I to dark despair. I miss us both, everyday.

"Starlet" —JSP Jacobs, Huntington Beach, California, picked by RE Zickau

She was so famous, girls dressed like her for Halloween. Then she got older, hungrier. Her body wouldn't hold. Directors poked her belly. She left Hollywood and graduated with a Ph.D. in geology.

Now, she crawls, bare-faced and wide-bottomed, inside craters, her hands full of ancient dirt.

A colleague asks her to autograph an old poster of herself.

"This used to be taped over my bed," he smiles.

"I used to eat nothing but Chapstick," she says.

He stares at the poster, tongue-lolled, like she isn't even there, like she isn't the same as every mineral—hard enough to scratch itself.

"Cats" —Allison Maier, Boise, picked by Jocelyn Robertson

I've been dreaming of forgotten cats. Golden-eyed assemblies crying from hidden corners, haunting empty cupboards, scratching at my sleeping soul. They are starving and wild, and I don't remember where they came from or if I ever knew. I crash through the house in post-slumber delirium, inspecting rooms and calling to ghosts.

The dog is waiting when I return to bed. As we face each other in darkness, I wonder if we're trading subconscious anguish—if unrequited loves and unmet expectations now enter her nightmares. If it's the reason I wake each morning to find her curled so close against me.

"Bury My Heart at 16th & Main" —Greg Heinzman, Boise, picked by Christian Winn

Maybe it was raining. Weasel and I ducked inside for shots and a pitcher. We were wrecked and chasing your ghost. The lead singer for Wooden Indian Burial Ground was wearing an electric green balaclava and screaming like God was closing in with a pitchfork.

The sound dislodged my lungs, my heart, my spleen. They were crocodiles loose inside my skin and struggling for places to rest.

"To Wooden Indians!" I raised my whisky to Weasel who replied, "Bury them."

The dance floor was a battle ground. I forgot who and where I was and that I'd never see you again.

"Just Like Mother" —Amber Saylor, Boise, picked by Kurt Zwolfer

Vivian flicked a grocery clerk's nose after he'd given her the wrong change. Public outbursts were fueled by high expectations. Her therapist warned her that her son would imitate her behavior.

While Vivian was pregnant she'd spilled bleach on her abdomen and claimed David would have a white spot in his hair. Indeed, he had a quarter-sized colorless patch next to his left temple.

As an adult David rubbed bleach in small circles on his wife's growing belly while she slept. He didn't believe this equated to his mother's level of madness, it was merely a loving attempt to validate her.


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