Yellow Mama Archives

Andy Tu
Home
Abbott, Patricia
Aclin, Ken
Adhikari, Sudeep
Ahern, Edward
Alan, Jeff
Aldrich, Janet M.
Allan, T. N.
Allen, M. G.
Allen, Nick
Allison, Shane
Ammonds, Phillip J.
Anderson, Peter
Andreopoulos, Elliott
Anick, Ronald
Anonymous 9
Arab, Bint
Arkell, Steven
Ashley, Jonathan
Aymar, E. A.
Ayris, Ian
Babbs, James
Baber, Bill
Bagwell, Dennis
Baird, Meg
Bakala, Brendan
Baker, Bobby Steve
Baker, Nathan
Balaz, Joe
Baltensperger, Peter
BAM
Barber, Shannon
Barnett, Brian
Bates, Jack
Baugh, Darlene
Bauman, Michael
Baumgartner, Jessica Marie
Beale, Jonathan
Beck, George
Beckman, Paul
Beloin, Phil
Benet, Esme
Bennett, Brett
Bennett, Charlie
Bennett, Eric
Berg, Carly
Bergland, Grant
Berman, Daniel
Bernardara, Will Jr.
Berriozabal, Luis
Beveridge, Robert
Bickerstaff, Russ
Bigney, Tyler
Blair, Travis
Blake, Steven
Bohem, Charlie Keys and Les
Bolt, Andy
Bonehill, L. R.
Booth, Brenton
Boran, P. Keith
Bosworth, Mel
Bowen, Sean C.
Boyd, A. V.
Boyd, Morgan
Bracey, DG
Bradford, Ryan
Bradshaw, Bob
Brady, Dave
Brannigan, Tory
Brawn, Jason D.
Brewka-Clark, Nancy
Britt, Alan
Brock, Brandon K.
brook, j.
Brown, Melanie
Brown, R. Thomas
Brown, Sam
Bull, Warren
Burton, Michael
Bushtalov, Denis
Butler, Janet
Butler, Simon Hardy
Butler, Terence
Cameron, W. B.
Campbell, J. J.
Campbell, Jack Jr.
Cano, Valentina
Carlton, Bob
Cartwright, Steve
Carver, Marc
Castle, Chris
Catlin, Alan
Chen, Colleen
Chesler, Adam
Christensen, Jan
Christopher, J. B.
Clausen, Daniel
Clevenger, Victor
Clifton, Gary
Coffey, James
Colasuonno, Alfonso
Compton, Sheldon Lee
Conley, Jen
Conley, Stephen
Connor, Tod
Cooper, Malcolm Graham
Coral, Jay
Corman-Roberts, Paul
Cosby, S. A.
Crandall, Rob
Criscuolo, Carla
Crisman, Robert
Crist, Kenneth
Crouch & Woods
Crumpton, J. C.
Cunningham, Stephen
Curry, A. R.
D., Jack
Dabbe, Lyla K.
Dallett, Cassandra
Damian, Josephine
Danoski, Joseph V.
Daly, Jim
Daly, Sean
Dalzell, Randy
Davis, Christopher
Day, Holly
Deal, Chris
de Bruler, Connor
De France, Steve
De La Garza, Lela Marie
de Marco, Guy Anthony
Deming, Ruth Z.
Demmer, Calvin
DeVeau, Spencer
Dexter, Matthew
Di Chellis, Peter
Dick, Earl
Dick, Paul "Deadeye"
DiLorenzo, Ciro
Dionne, Ron
Domenichini, John
Doran, Phil
Doreski, William
Dorman, Roy
Doherty, Rachel
Dosser, Jeff
Doyle, John
Draime, Doug
Drake, Lena Judith
Dromey, John H.
Duke, Jason
Duncan, Gary
Dunham, T. Fox
Dunn, Robin Wyatt
Dunwoody, David
Duxbury, Karen
Duy, Michelle
Elias, Ramsey Mark
Elliott, Beverlyn L.
Elliott, Garnett
Ellis, Asher
Ellman, Neil
England, Kellie R.
England, Kristina
Erianne, John
Erlewine, David
Esterholm, Jeff
Fallow, Jeff
Falo, William
Fedigan, William J.
Fenster, Timothy
Ferraro, Diana
Filas, Cameron
Flanagan, Daniel N.
Flanagan, Ryan Quinn
Folz, Crystal
Franceschina, Susan
Francisco, Edward
Funk, Matthew C.
Gallik, Daniel
Gann, Alan
Gardner, Cheryl Ann
Garvey, Kevin Z.
Genz, Brian
Gilbert, Colin
Gladeview, Lawrence
Glass, Donald
Goddard, L. B.
Godwin, Richard
Goff, Christopher
Goodman, Tina
Goss, Christopher
Gradowski, Janel
Grant, Christopher
Grant, Stewart
Greenberg, Paul
Grey, John
Grover, Michael
Gunn, Johnny
Gurney, Kenneth P.
Haglund, Tobias
Hamlin, Mason
Hanna, J. T.
Hansen, Melissa
Hanson, Christopher Kenneth
Hanson, Kip
Hardin, J. Scott
Harrington, Jim
Harris, Bruce
Hart, GJ
Hartman, Michelle
Haskins, Chad
Hatzialexandrou, Anjelica
Hawley, Doug
Haycock, Brian
Hayes, A. J.
Hayes, John
Hayes, Peter W. J.
Heatley, Paul
Heifetz, Justin
Heimler, Heidi
Heitz, Russ
Helmsley, Fiona
Hendry, Mark
Henry, Robert Louis
Heslop, Karen
Heyns, Heather
Hilary, Sarah
Hill, Richard
Hilson, J. Robert
Hivner, Christopher
Hobbs, R. J.
Hockey, Matthew J.
Hodges, Oliver
Hodgkinson, Marie
Hogan, Andrew J.
Holderfield, Culley
Holton, Dave
Hor, Emme
Houston, Jennifer
Howard, Peter
Howells, Ann
Huchu, Tendai
Hudson, Rick
Huffman, A. J.
Huguenin, Timothy G.
Hunt, Jason
Huskey, Jason L.
Irwin, Daniel
Jacobson, E. J.
Jaggers, J. David
James, Christopher
James, Colin
Jensen, Steve
Johanson, Jacob
Johnson, Beau
Johnson, Moctezuma
Johnson, Zakariah
Jones, D. S.
Jones, Erin J.
Jones, Mark
Kabel, Dana
Kaplan, Barry Jay
Kay, S.
Keaton, David James
Keith, Michael C.
Kempka, Hal
Kerins, Mike
Kerry, Vic
Keshigian, Michael
Kimball R. D.
King, Michelle Ann
Kirk, D.
Klim, Christopher
Knapp, Kristen Lee
Koenig, Michael
Korpon, Nik
Kovacs, Sandor
Kowalcyzk, Alec
Krafft, E. K.
Lacks, Lee Todd
Lang, Preston
La Rosa, F. Michael
Larkham, Jack
Leasure, Colt
Leatherwood, Roger
Lee, M.A.B.
Lees, Arlette
Lees, Lonni
Leins, Tom
LeJay, Brian K. Jr.
Lemming, Jennifer
Lerner, Steven M
Lewis, Cynthia Ruth
Lifshin, Lyn
Lin, Jamie
Liskey, Tom Darin
Lodge, Oliver
Lopez, Aurelio Rico III
Lorca, Aurelia
Lo Rocco, Brian
Loucks, Lindsey
Lovisi, Gary
Lucas, Gregory E.
Lukas, Anthony
Lynch, Nulty
Lyon, Hillary
Lyons, Matthew
Mac, David
MacArthur, Jodi
Macor, Iris
Madeleine, Julia
Malone, Joe
Manteufel, M. B.
Manzolillo, Nicholas
Marcius, Cal
Marlin, Brick
Marlowe, Jack T.
Marrotti, Michael
Martyn, Clive
Mason, Wayne
Massengill, David
Mattila, Matt
McAdams, Liz
McBride, Matthew
McCabe, Sinead
McCartney, Chris
McDaris, Catfish
McFarlane, Adam Beau
McGinley, Jerry
McElhiney, Sean
McLean, David
McMannus, Jack
McQuiston, Rick
Mellon, Mark
Memblatt, Bruce
Memi, Samantha
Merrigan, Court
Miles, Marietta
Miller, Laurita
Miller, Max
Mintz, Gwendolyn
Monaghan, Timothy P.
Monteferrante, Luigi
Monson, Mike
Mooney, Christopher P.
Moore, Katie
Morgan, Bill W.
Morgan, Stephen
Moss, David Harry
Mullins, Ian
Mulvihill, Michael
Murdock, Franklin
Muslim, Kristine Ong
Nardolilli, Ben
Nazar, Rebecca
Nell, Dani
Nelson, Trevor
Nessly, Ray
Nester, Steven
Neuda, M. C.
Newell, Ben
Newman, Paul
Nielsen, Ayaz
Nienaber, T. M.
Ogurek, Douglas J.
Ortiz, Sergio
Pagel, Briane
Parr, Rodger
Parrish, Rhonda
Partin-Nielsen, Judith
Penton, Jonathan
Perez, Juan M.
Perl, Puma
Perri, Gavin
Peterson, Rob
Peterson, Ross
Petroziello, Brian
Pettie, Jack
Petyo, Robert
Picher, Gabrielle
Piech, JC
Pierce, Rob
Pietrzykowski, Marc
Plath, Rob
Pletzers, Lee
Pluck, Thomas
Pohl, Stephen
Pointer, David
Polson, Aaron
Power, Jed
Powers, M. P.
Price, David
Priest, Ryan
Prusky, Steve
Pruitt, Eryk
Purfield, M. E.
Purkis, Gordon
Quinlan, Joseph R.
Quinn, Frank
Ram, Sri
Ramos, Emma
Rapth, Sam
Ravindra, Rudy
Rawson, Keith
Ray, Paula
Reale, Michelle
reutter, g emil
Rhatigan, Chris
Ribas, Tom
Richardson, Travis
Richey, John Lunar
Ridgeway, Kevin
Ritchie, Bob
Ritchie, Salvadore
Roberts, Paul C.
Robertson, Lee
Robinson, John D.
Robinson, Kent
Rodgers, K. M.
Roger, Frank
Rogers, Stephen D.
Rohrbacher, Chad
Rosa, Basil
Rose, Mandi
Rosenberger, Brian
Rosenblum, Mark
Rosmus, Cindy
Rowe, Brian
Rowley, Aaron
Ruhlman, Walter
Rutherford, Scotch
Saus, Steven M.
Savage, Jack
Sawyer, Mark
Sayles, Ryan
Schneeweiss, Jonathan
Schraeder, E. F.
Schumejda, Rebecca
Scott, Craig
Scott, Jess C.
Scribner, Joshua
See, Tom
Seen, Calvin
Servis, Steven P.
Sethi, Sanjeev
Sexton, Rex
Seymour, J. E.
Sfarnas, John
Shafee, Fariel
Shaikh, Aftab Yusuf
Shea, Kieran
Shepherd, Robert
Sim, Anton
Simmler, T. Maxim
Sin, Natalie L.
Sinisi, J. J.
Sixsmith, JD
Slagle, Cutter
Slaviero, Susan
Sloan, Frank
Smith, Adam Francis
Smith, Ben
Smith, C.R.J.
Smith, Copper
Smith, Daniel C.
Smith, Paul
Smith, Stephanie
Smith, Willie
Smuts, Carolyn
Snethen, Daniel G.
Snoody, Elmore
So, Gerald
Sojka, Carol
Solender, Michael J.
Sortwell, Pete
Sosnoski, Karen
Sparling, George
Speed, Allen
Spicer, David
Spires, Will
Spitzer, Mark
Spuler, Rick
Squirrell, William
Stephens, Ransom
Stewart, Michael S.
Stickel, Anne
Stolec, Trina
Straus, Todd
Stryker, Joseph H.
Stucchio, Chris
Stuckey, Cinnamon
Succre, Ray
Sullivan, Thomas
Swanson, Peter
Swartz, Justin A.
Sweet, John
Tarbard, Grant
Taylor, J. M.
Thoburn, Leland
Thomas, C. T.
Thompson, John L.
Thompson, Phillip
Tillman, Stephen
Titus, Lori
Tivey, Lauren
Tobin, Tim
Todd, Jeffrey
Tolland, Timothry
Tomlinson, Brenton
Tomolillo, Bob
Tu, Andy
Ullerich, Eric
Valent, Raymond A.
Valvis, James
Vilhotti, Jerry
Waldman, Dr. Mel
Walsh, Patricia
Ward, Emma
Ward, Jared
Waters, Andrew
Weber, R.O.
Weil, Lester L.
Weir, G. Kenneth
White, J.
White, Judy Friedman
White, Robb
White, Terry
Williams, Alun
Willoughby, Megan
Wilsky, Jim
Wilson, Robley
Wilson, Scott
Wilson, Tabitha
Wright, David
Young, Scot
Yuan, Changming
Zafiro, Frank
Zapata, Angel
Zickgraf, Catherine
Zimmerman, Thomas
Znaidi, Ali

feedmemysoul.jpg
Art by Steve Cartwright 2016

Feed Me My Soul

Andy Tu

 

Daniel was walking home when he noticed the shop on the corner of the street, the front door cracked open and a glow of blue light trying to escape from inside. He’d never noticed it before, even though it sat there between the ice cream parlor and bookstore, which he passed every day to and from work.

A curiosity drew him near that windowless place, the only sign of a merchant inside being the words etched into the wood above the frame: For Purchase, or Trade.

He glanced around at the people enduring the winter fog, scarves wrapping their necks and arms around themselves. Yet a line stretched outside of the ice cream parlor; a mother and daughter left with cones in hand, licking the chocolate swirls as if it were a warm afternoon. There was something queer about it all, and it seemed like he was the only one who could see the shop on the corner, as those who passed behind him did not even glance over.

He went inside. The blue glow persisted, reminding him of one of those brothels on the other side of town that informed you of its seediness by covering everything in a shade of color. It looked more like a garage sale than a shop: items were spread across long, wooden tables that had been set up in the middle and along the sides with no regard for convenience of browsing. A woman with pitch-black hair sat on a stool in the far corner, her body angled at the door and a smile on her lips, as if she’d been waiting for someone to come in. Daniel expected her to say something—welcome, maybe—but she just sat there.

“Hi,” he offered, but she did not respond. Strange place, he thought. You could always tell what kind of items a store sold by the characteristics of its owner, just as you could tell the temperament of a dog by its master. He was about to turn right back around to leave when among the jumble of picture frames, jewelry boxes, lamps, and figurines, something caught his eye—a radio.

It had no numbers on it, just a single dial that glinted in the blue light. Two antennas perked up its sides like bunny ears. Strange, but unique.

“This radio here,” he said to the woman. “Why’s it have no frequency measurements?”

Still she did not respond.

“Excuse me!” he said, wondering if she were pretending not to hear as some sort of joke (even though her eyes seemed to be on him). “How much for this radio?” He picked it up.

“Ten dollars.” The voice came from where the woman sat. But her lips did not appear to move and it sounded like that of a much younger woman’s, high and mouse-like. Daniel took a step around the table when the voice said, “Please, sir, you may take it and leave the money on the table. I’m sorry but I have a fear of proximity. You see I was mugged and thus I’m prone not to trust anyone, especially as the lad had asked for the time and all seemed well until he kicked my shins and stole off with my watch!”

Daniel could swear her lips still hadn’t moved. But it was somewhat dark, and he didn’t feel the need to press further, so he turned around and placed ten dollars on the table before leaving with the radio in hand.

“Thank you, sir!” said the voice as the door closed behind him.

In his apartment, he plugged it in and began turning the dial. All was static for a while, until he heard a voice softly singing.

Embers to ashes…

The voice was familiar, but he couldn’t figure out who it was.

This home that burns into hell…

“Breaking news! Fire has broken out in City Square! The roofs are ablaze as store owners rush out with merchandise and families head for Lilac Park. The city is warning everyone to stay away, and to not approach even if you have family and friends there, as this will only congest the roads and make evacuation impossible. The fire is being put out, so please do not panic.”

City Square! What were the chances? Where the shop was! If he’d lingered around longer, perhaps he’d be surrounded by flames! His heart began pounding as he went to the other side of his room and peered out his window. But he saw no smoke, no glow of fire, no one in the streets. The station host had said to not panic, but he fully expected people to be fleeing their homes anyway. A chill wandered in through the window as if to confirm the idleness outside. The radio had gone silent.

It was that woman! Or whoever was in that shop, hiding somewhere! A prank! He put it together then: whoever they were, they had rigged this radio to pick up a signal only they controlled. And he was the fool listening.

He’d worked himself into a sweat, and so unplugged the radio and went into the bathroom to wash off his face before crawling into bed, hearing the faded voice of that song in his head—embers to ashes… Still, he’d go to the shop tomorrow, stomp toward the lady, and weasel out the hidden rascal behind the tables and inform them of the seriousness of their hoax.

Throughout the night, he kept waking up, disturbed by a sound that seemed to disappear the moment he listened for it. Eventually he became annoyed enough to get up and examine the radio once more.

There was no slot for batteries, and the surface was completely smooth without a single nail. Nor was the case two halves glued together, but a single piece. How the hell did they make this? He began turning the knob.

Help… me…

He froze and brought the radio to his ear. No other sounds came. Another gimmick of the radio? He wouldn’t be fooled again. He took the radio to the kitchen and set it in the cupboards above the sink, returned to bed, and finally fell asleep.

 

Daniel left for work fifteen minutes early so that he could give the pranksters a little lecture. But the door to the shop was closed. And the words that had been etched above in the sign—For Purchase, or Trade—had disappeared. He knocked. And waited. Knocked again. Waited. Until he remembered that mousy voice that had caused such commotion within him about the fire that he reached for the knob and turned it on the chance that it was unlocked, which it was.

“Forget manners,” he mumbled, going in.

“Hello?” he said. It was dark, without that blue light from yesterday. Dust sifted into his nostrils and throat. He coughed.

“I just want to talk about an item I purchased.”

His eyes adjusted to the outlines of the room, seeing only as far as the dawn light entered from behind. The tables lay before him, still placed inconveniently for anyone to pass to the back of the room.

“Hello?!” he yelled, demanding a response.

He saw a flashlight on the table, picked it up and turned it on; pointed it around the items on the table, then to the corner where the woman sat yesterday, and there she was! Her legs crossed, hands folded on her lap. That fixed smile! Daniel jumped back and felt pins pricking the insides of his skin.

“You there! I know about the radio, what it really is,” he said, making his way through the maze-like spaces. “It’s not funny, you know. Someone could have a serious fright hearing things like that.”

Still no response.

“Woman! Do you hear me?”

The door slammed shut behind him.

“Holy Hell, this is not funny!” His legs began trembling, as did his hand, which shook along with the flashlight and the spot of light on the woman’s frozen face.

“Oh but it is!” said that voice.

“Where are you?”

He saw a glow of orange on the walls in front of him and felt a heat rise from behind. He turned around and saw flames spreading, swirling and engulfing the tables.

Daniel pushed away the tables between him and the woman and ran to her face, throwing his hands wildly in front of her. But like a damned gargoyle, she did not move.

“No way out now,” said the voice.

He saw an opening in the wall behind the woman, a passage barely lit by the encroaching flames. He rushed inside and found himself descending stairs, the growing heat pushing him down as the light faded.

“Whatever this is, whoever you are. You must know, the police will come!”

He continued his descent as the darkness became darker and the air chilled on his face like cold rain. All was silent except for his footsteps, until he heard something and saw a light below.

Embers to ashes…this home that burns into Hell…

The light below did not grow as he took his steps. His legs did not tire, either. And those lyrics kept singing, looping over and over as time seemed to slow and fade toward eternity.

Feed me… feed me my soul…

He tried to yell; but only a whisper escaped, barely emerging through the chords of his throat.

Help… me…”


Andy Tu is currently living in Colombia to redefine his writing and himself. His past publications are in Apocrypha and Abstractions, Heater, The Literary Commune, and a bunch of others!

In Association with Fossil Publications