STORIES

2024

“Home Safe” in Translunar Travelers’ Lounge

I saw him sitting hunched up on his screen porch, eying the shadows in the woods like he was waiting for something dark and terrible. I wanted to go take the grief offa him so bad. I let myself through his screen door and sat on his camp stool. He didn’t say anything, and I didn’t start up, but he seemed to puff up a bit at my presence and crouched closer and we watched the woods together until the dusk started to fall.

 


2023 – (all stories awards eligible for Nebulas, Hugos, FIYAH, etc.)

“Amrit” in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction

The Unit wore a hot pink turban with leopard spots. His beard was tucked neatly under his chin, and the turban was impressively crisp. He sported a slim-fitting jodhpuri suit like he was on his way to a party. The hem of its purple satin jacket slashed diagonally across his hips. “Mr. Singh?” He extended his hand. “I’m Amrit, your Senior Well-Being Unit.”

[purchase issue]


“The Year of the Humming Turban” in PRISM International

The Spring 2023 cover of PRISM International, featuring a colorful abstract geometrical and an image of an adult and childIt was about three weeks after my father died that I heard his turban start to hum.

[purchase issue]

 


“Pigeons in Every Universe” in The Masters Review

A flock of pigeons flying across waterMa is banging pots in the kitchen, and this is how I know Grapa is on the roof feeding the pigeons. The HOA had a meeting about him and Ma is worried about eviction.

[read now]


“The Thin Rising Line” in Bullet Points

A bright orange image of an unspecified explosion.In the event that the inspector wanted to see the weapon discharged, the steel mesh would prevent potential carpet burns. Dad set the tripod down in the living room and Robbi ran the microfiber cloth over the parts so no dust would reveal their neglect. He touched the metal with the back of his hand. “It’s cold. He’ll know we had it in the basement.”

[read now]


“A Cor da Conflagração” (“The Color of Conflagration”) in Terra Mágica (translated from English into Portuguese)

Eles entraram na unidade. Paneer fervia no fogão em molho de tomate cremoso, temperado com cominho, açafrão e manga em pó. Vin não pensava nessas coisas há décadas, sequer sabia que guardava memória delas. Ninguém cozinhava mais.

They stepped into the unit. Paneer simmered on the stove in a creamy tomato sauce, spiced with jeera, haldi, amchur. Vin hadn’t thought of these words in decades, didn’t even know he remembered them. No one cooked these throwbacks anymore.

[purchase at Amazon (in Portuguese)]


2022 and earlier:

“Coiffeur Seven” in Strange Horizons

Today one of the minders rolls one Veena Kaur Chan into my hairbay for a shampoo and cut. New client, transferring in from Palliative. Brainstem stroke. Unsuccessful rehabilitation. Pancreatic cancer. Ouch. Triple whammy.

[read now]


“More Than a Lion” in The Forge Literary

Christmas morning, during my sister’s visit, we came out to find a lion in the living room.

Best Small Fictions 2023 MedallionSelected for Best Small Fictions, 2023

[read now]


“The Night Skiers” in Shenandoah

Joanie Beaver told Seema that she could talk anybody’s mother into anything, so when Seema’s mom pulled up outside the roller rink, Joanie cracked her knuckles and said, “Watch me work.”

[read now]


“Your Tomorrow Clothes” in Gulf Coast

When it finally comes time to lay them out, I can’t decide between the print with the tree silhouettes, or the flowing red with gold embroidery, shimmering and geometrical like a mosaic.

  • reprinted in Lightning Strikes: An Anthology of Flash Fiction by 50 Indian Writers

[read now]


“Lalbir’s Laugh” in Gone Lawn

Three decades had passed since Harminder Singh had heard that laugh. It was thirty years distant and it was another country, on the other side of the world, but there was no mistaking it.

[read now]


“The Augury of Bats” in Tahoma Literary Review

Sheri tells me there are bats in her closet. “They’re diving and circling around and diving again.” Sheri is four and, as far as I know, has never seen a bat.

[read now]


“A Girl Like Elsie” in Glimmer Train

I tell Mama I waitress in the Village so she don’t have to cut me out of her heart. But when I come home with bruises on my wrists and she’s rocking in her chair by the window in that quiet rhythm, I want to say to her, Mama, the john wrench my arms down to the floor and slap me upside the head while he’s getting his money’s worth tonight.

  • Nominated for the Pushcart Prize

[read now]


“The Shape of a Prayer” in Chelsea

She comes out of the bedroom with her eyes glazed so thick with sleep you know she cannot recognize you. She holds the wall like an ivy creeper. She is low to the ground.

[read now]