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The Storm-Fiction by Sean O'Keefe
Claire Morgan's Key to Happiness-Fiction by Roy Dorman
Badass Ted's Christmas Adventure-Fiction by Kenneth James Crist
As Good on Him as on a Dead Man-Fiction by Jeff Esterholm
Using Your Kit-Fiction by Andrew J. Hogan
The Apathetic Tide-Fiction by Alan Edward Small
Christmas Karma-Fiction by Cindy Rosmus
Salt Lake City Slaughterhouse-Fiction by J. Brooke
Mean Mama-Fiction by Tom Barker
All You Can Drink $5.00-Fiction by D. L. Shirey
Shell Shocked-Fiction by M. A. De Neve
The Present-Mark Joseph Kevlock
Red Christmas-Flash Fiction by Morgan Boyd
Samurai Santa-Flash Fiction by BAM
Guns and Rose-Flash Fiction by Paul Beckman
Christmas Eve Blow and Doll Houses-Flash Fiction by Luke Walters
Holly, Jolly-Flash Fiction by Mandi Rose
Pineapple-Poem by Cindy Rosmus
Life is Weird-Poem by Meg Baird
Appendages-Poem by Samuel Cardinale
The Means of Production-Poem by Robert Beveridge
Suicide of Living-Poem by John D. Robinson
It's On My List-Poem by Judith Partin-Nielsen
Hoarding Life-Poem by Michael Keshigian
Homeless in NYC-Poem by Michael Keshigian
Death Speaks-Poem by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal
Time Stops-Poem by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal
House of Un-Reality-Poem by Dr. Mel Waldman
The Ghosts of Borges-Poem by Dr. Mel Waldman
The Bitchers-Poem by David Spicer
Voltaire and the Literary Guerillas-Poem by David Spicer
Cartoons by Cartwright
Hail, Tiger!
Angel of Manslaughter
The Gazing Ball
Strange Gardens
Gutter Balls
Calpurnia's Window
No Place Like Home
Dark Tales from Gent's Pens

Art by Hillary Lyon 2018

Holly, Jolly

by Mandi Rose

And you call yourself “Santa.”

You make me sick.

You failed the lie detector test. Then confessed to some of what you did. To your own granddaughter.

Now you’re pleading “not guilty”? Don’t make me laugh, Santa. What do you think the jury will do, when they look at you? When they see your victim? That trembling child, with the haunted eyes.

 Think they’ll sympathize, because you’re an old man? This is Jersey, pal! If we still had the death penalty, there’d be a needle with your name on it: William Madigan. Last name same as mine, I’m sorry to say. When I look at Shithead, I see you in his bleary eyes. You sick, perverted sonuvabitch. 
You loved playing Santa for the kids . . . now we know why! How many others were there? Rosy-cheeked girls begging you for American Girls, and you sliding your fat disgusting hand inside their pants. Did you diddle the boys, too, like those “reassigned” priests?

Like those sick priests, you’re capable of knowing right from wrong! You just chose not to use the common sense God gave you! You chose to go the path of the devil!

And then became the devil! 
You are so lucky to be locked up, nice and safe. Outside your cell, seasoned inmates mill around like big, hungry cats. Just waiting . . .

Your own fucking granddaughter! You saw her the day she was born! When Shithead held her, so carefully, like he was scared she’d break, I thought you looked proud. Little did I know what was festering in your mind, and crotch.

And to blame it on her! A nine-year-old. Said she came onto you! You have real issues. For three years, you put her through hell. And you’re still torturing her. To put her through a trial . . .

You really think you’ll be found “not guilty”?

All you need is one “sympathetic” juror . . . or one with the same sick urges as you.

You will not win this case! You can’t win this case! There is no way on God’s green Earth that you could win! 

Still . . . you know what?

Maybe you should win. 

Your cellie, that bug-eyed Puerto Rican, with the gruesome tatts? He’s up for parole after the first.

Ha-ha, I did my homework.

Cellie’s got daughters he needs to support. He’s looking for extra work. Off the books. Way off the books. . . .

So I’ll have myself a “Holly, Jolly Christmas.”

Picturing your jollies rammed down your throat.



Mandi Rose is a single working mother of two. Recently she became a grandmother for the second time. She resides in Florida with her awesome boyfriend and teen daughter and granddaughter. In the little spare time she has, writing is what assists in keeping her sane as she takes bits from her life.

Hillary Lyon is an illustrator for horror/sci-fi and pulp fiction websites and magazines. She is also founder and senior editor for the independent poetry publisher, Subsynchronous Press. An SFPA Rhysling Award nominated poet, her poems have appeared in journals such as Eternal Haunted Summer, Jellyfish Whispers, Scfifaikuest, Illya’s Honey, and Red River Review, as well as numerous anthologies. Her short stories have appeared recently in Night to Dawn, Yellow Mama, Black Petals, Sirens Call, and Tales from the Moonlit Path, among others, as well as in numerous horror anthologies such as Night in New Orleans: Bizarre Beats from the Big EasyThuggish Itch: Viva Las Vegas, and White Noise & Ouija Boards. She appeared, briefly, as the uncredited "all-American Mom with baby" in Purple Cactus Media’s 2007 Arizona indie-film, "Vote for Zombie." Having lived in France, Brazil, Canada, and several states in the US, she now resides in southern Arizona.  https://hillarylyon.wordpress.com/

In Association with Black Petals & Fossil Publications 2018