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Notes From the Underground

speculative-fiction

It is a good day to rock.

We end our final rehearsal and step away from our instruments. On the table in one corner of the dark studio sits the bottle wrapped in damp cloth. Jesse, Dickie, and I tie on our headbands. I open the bottle, wipe condensation off the neck and lip, and pour three glasses.

I lift my glass and say, “To music.”

Jesse and Dickie answer, “To life.”

We drink the peach wine, now cool and sweet. But I am the only one who can taste it.

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bill magnuson and his leaf blower must die

a friend told me
there is a huge cash reward
for proof
aliens are here
among us
visiting our earth

i have such proof

in fact
aliens told me directly
(telepathically of course)
that the next time
my neighbor
magnuson
bill magnuson
turns on his leaf blower
pointlessly
on a perfectly sunny day
and ruins my solitude
destroys my peace of mind
my precious quiet...

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Bad Dogs, Good Tricks

Dr. Nelson believes I have a distorted view of reality. I’ve argued that even Psych 101 students know we all invent our own world. Not one is the same, or real for that matter, whether or not those worlds include two-headed people with proboscis noses and tails made from their own arms, or furry kittens with cloven hooves. I have a “crass imagination, ill-paired with an absence in forethought,” so I’ve read in the charts.

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Coffee and Cornbread

It’s a universal law: the customer wants the one item they can’t afford.

I’ve been working at this diner for three years now. On the edge of Saturn’s farthest ring, I watch the rock shards tumble past our containment shields. The sun is so far away.

“Serve me up some hash and grits, Sally.”

Cletus hangs on the counter’s edge, his work sleeves rolled up. If we needed fresh ham, those forearms would do.

Shipments from the terrestrial planets come in real slow.

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Eminent Domain

free scifi by Bruce Holland Rogers

by Bruce Holland Rogers

What would have been nice on those six acres of city-owned land behind our homes was another park. We already had two. Another park would have suited the character of the area. That's what we said, loudly, at hearings about a proposed bridge, about the possible sale of the land to a grocery chain, about a planned clinic for disabled veterans. A bridge, a store, a clinic, any of those would have meant obstructed views, more noise, traffic. A park was what we wanted. A park, a green park, and nothing but a park, so help us God.

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