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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 1: January 2020
Micro-Fiction: 269 words
By Kika Dorsey



People have babies later than they used to, which means the moms are menopausal when the children go through puberty. Hormones breed and die in dusty corners and breasts swell or sag, boys learn to shave, and the dog grows old. The mother decides that she’ll stop cooking and gives the teenagers a twenty to buy burritos at the gas station, saying, “I’ve been cooking for 17 fuckin’ years seven days a week and I’m done!” The father desperately pores through recipes to cook crab cakes that the kids won’t eat, too busy watching busty women dance on YouTube and fingering their cash. The mother wears five layers of expensive prescription cream, but still the lines like rivers wind toward the death that took her parents. The father lifts weights and talks about the length of his limbs. The dog starts farting all day. The mother gathers all her broken jewelry, lays it on the florid comforter, and cries. The father is sick of her crying. The teenagers steal the bottle of vodka and vomit the next morning. When it’s spring, it snows and kills the baby chick from an osprey nest the mother has been following in the news. The mother sets down the newspaper and cries again. The father pats her back like a metronome. The children buy lacey bras and vape pipes, neighbors spray herbicide on dandelions, summer grows hot, and everyone walks around half naked. The parents pay taxes, the cars break down again and again, hormones climb the wall and swing through the house like trapeze artists, and the country goes to hell.

Kika Dorsey
Issue 1, January 2020

is a poet, fiction writer, and educator who lives with her two children, husband, and Border Collie in Boulder, Colorado. She wakes up every morning and crafts poetry out of dreams, myths, her body, and her travels. While finishing her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in Seattle, Washington, she performed her poetry with musicians and artists. Her poems have been published in Freshwater, KYSO Flash, The Columbia Review, The Comstock Review, The Denver Quarterly, The Pennsylvania Literary Journal, and numerous other journals and books. Her writing has been nominated four times for the Pushcart Prize.

Ms. Dorsey is the author of three poetry collections: Beside Herself (Flutter Press, 2010), and two published by WordTech Editions, Coming Up for Air (2018) and Rust (2016), the latter of which was reviewed by Clare MacQueen in KYSO Flash (Issue 6, Fall 2016). Ms. Dorsey is also an adjunct instructor of English at Front Range Community College. When not writing, teaching, or tutoring, she swims miles in pools, and runs and hikes in the open space of Colorado’s mountains and plains.

Author’s website: http://kikadorsey.com

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