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One-Sentence Stories

Primitivity
Amy Sayre Baptista

Melvina said all her best recipes, and the two marriages that worked, began with an axe.

 

One of a Kind
Scott Nadelson

When I claimed it was no big deal that you gave away my favorite jacket—brown leather, wide lapels, bought in a vintage store long shuttered—that I’d be able to replace it easily enough, what I really meant, I now realize, was that I’d already accommodated myself to loss by the time we met, resigned myself to having precious things slip out of my grasp, so that even later that day when you apologized again and I said never mind, everyone makes mistakes, and later still, in bed, when I silently catalogued the things about you I couldn’t live without—your breath against my neck, your toes brushing my calf, the laughter that bubbled out of you without warning when I touched your side—and whispered that you were perfect for me, the only one in the whole world, I was already imagining a long rack of jackets in various styles and colors, several close to my size if not an exact fit, none particularly distinct but all perfectly adequate and reasonably priced, any one of which would do.
 

On the Way to the Philosophy Conference
Brianne Holmes

Before impact, we believed in nihilism.

 

Grand Junction
Simeon Ben Jeppsen

So there’s a train, a car, and another train coming the other direction, and out in the field there’s a rancher—watching everything, unassumingly, chewing on some grass, taking a break from the hay—who raises his head and looks to the sky because there’s a storm blowing in from the southwest and the sky is beginning to lose its sky-blue color, so he says to Emilio, who’s still bailing hay, “Looks like rain,” but Emilio doesn’t speak English, well, he knows a little, it’s just understanding certain vernaculars is difficult, even though he tries his best, practicing at night with North American action movies such as Lethal Weapon 1 & 3 and sometimes 4, or sitcoms like Two and a Half Men, or at least he did like the latter before they switched that one guy with that other guy, and though Emilio kind of likes the new guy, it’s just not the same, you know, and Emilio is thinking all of this before he nearly jumps out of his skin when out of the blue this roar, this cacophony of horns, like a multi-headed monster, like a crack of electricity mixed with metal rubbing metal, made the ground shake and the grass shudder, and subsequent to its wake the rancher struck to action, running through the field, calling Emilio to follow, but Emilio is still a little stunned, shaking his head, saying to himself, as if Detective Martin Briggs is there to console him, “Tengo demasiados años para este mierda de toro” cc: {I have too many years for this shit of bull}.

 

Bride
Kathryn Hill

So she stood in front of the cosmetics wall at the CVS at 2 a.m., filling her collapsible shopping basket with contouring cream and eye lashes, staring at herself in the tiny wall mirror like she’d stare at him tomorrow, imagining him imagining her with a thick Pacific tentacle rammed down her throat, imagining him imagining other breasts and hips in their honeymoon bed, tomorrow, at the altar, the implausibility of his vows, her sliding a gold ring down his finger like the circle of another woman’s legs.

 

Mush
Bruce McAllister

When the New Ice Age began and the glaciers soon covered the top half of North America, the Iditarod dog-sled races were moved from Anchorage to Newport Beach, California, where the first year’s winner was a team of two hundred Chihuahuas (the maximum allowed) led by a five-year-old six-pounder named Pilates.

 

Neck
Kate Berwanger

In the midst of passion, I am reminded of how well my hands fit around your neck.

 

Instructions Not Necessary
Nolan Hutton

The Ikea shelf would complete their apartment, but when a peg didn’t fit he reached for his hammer and drove the first hole through their life together.