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A Bad Place to Be-Fiction by Lamont A. Turner
If the World Never Knows Our Names-Fiction by Craig Fishbane
I'm Not Antonio-Fiction by Garr Parks
George's Personal Big Bang-Fiction by Kenneth James Crist
When the Omen Follows You Home-Fiction by Alyson Tait
The Pie Room-Fiction by Dave Kunz
On the Matter of Hennessey-Fiction by Ed Nobody
Proud to Be a Pig-Fiction by Bob Ritchie
Marmalade and Mayhem-Fiction by Bruce Costello
Check Out-Fiction by Cindy Rosmus
The Stanton Harbor Grocery Massacre-Flash Fiction by Roy Dorman
Seizing Power-Flash Fiction by Tim Frank
Frog Huntin'-Flash Fiction by Gary Clifton
Best Friend Forever-Flash Fiction by Serena Jayne
Bus Stop-Flash Fiction by Jonathan Woods
Doing Without-Poem by R. Gerry Fabian
Another Day-Poem by Ann Marie Rhiel
Don't Say You'll Play the Game If You Don't Know the Rules-Poem by David Centorbi
Why I Stopped Being Me-Poem by John Sweet
Something About Her-Poem by Meg Baird
Only the Good-Poem by James Lilley
Bill's Otherworldly Cafe Across from Cafe Bizarro-Poem by Dr. Mel Waldman
Eating Catfish on the Bank of the Sankuru River-Poem by Daniel G. Snethen
Post Mortem-Poem by Daniel G. Snethen
Deer in the Headlights-Poem by Brian Rihlmann
I, Cartographer-Poem by Brian Rihlmann
I'll Paint You a Picture-Poem by Brian Rihlmann
beside wild roses-poem by ayaz daryl nielsen
sitting quietly-poem by ayaz daryl nielsen
lifetimes-poem by ayaz daryl nielsen
All the Way Home-Poem by Judith Partin-Nielsen
like a poem written-Poem by Judith Partin-Nielsen
So There-Poem by Judith Partin-Nielsen
Sugar Wolf-Poem by Judith Partin-Nielsen
Cartoons by Cartwright
Hail, Tiger!
Angel of Manslaughter
Strange Gardens
Gutter Balls
Calpurnia's Window
No Place Like Home
Dark Tales from Gent's Pens

Art by Michael D. Davis 2021


by Gary Clifton

       “Damnation, Thibadoux,” DuPree growled, as he pounded on the door of Thibadoux’s shanty on the far side of Mounsone Creek, just South of Jackson’s curve. “It already be past six. Them frogs got better things to be doin’ than to wait aroun’ for us to be shooting their little asses. Whatchu been doin’ in there?”

       Thibadoux stuck his head out. “Pourin’ a bunch of them bottles together to make sure we got a full gallon o’ ol’ Rooster Boudreau’s shine to offer us comfort while we be a-harvestin’ them frogs.” He held up a crockery jug


“She’s damn near full, podner.”

       “Thibadoux, that’s gonna go right nicely. Mah ol’ lady sent along some biscuits. Hopin’ you got your .22 , cuz I cain’t find mine nowhere in dat damned house. I’m a’ hopin’ Flower Jo ain’t pawned it down to Slick Willy’s bait shop again.”

       Thibadoux waved an old single shot Remington. “She’s good to go and I got twenty catridges.”


“I found the bait bucket and the lantern.” Dupree grabbed the jug and took a long pull on the shine. “Da’um,” he coughed. “Da’um.”
By 2:00 A.M., the whiskey was gone, and so were Thibadoux and DuPree. Puttering away in DuPree’s old Dodge pickup in the pitch black, both were as drunk as old man LeBleu’s mule when she got into the rotten apples behind the outhouse. They'd cranked off nineteen rounds and not gotten within a foot on a single frog. 


Thibadoux declared in drunken despair, "DuPree, God loves frogs more n' he do us."


Dupree nodded and accelerated. 


“Hell-far, DuPree, you goin’ twice as fast as hell. Be a lot quicker if you’d slow down and stay on Route 41 over ‘dat bayou bridge.”
“Holy hoot in hell, man, don’t tell me how to drive mah own damned vehicle.”

Suddenly, the Dodge headlights went out.


Hootertown Courier, June 4th:

Willie Marvin DuPree, Jr., 52, and Cletus Thibadoux, 40, both of Route 4, Plugtown, were injured early Saturday morning when DuPree’s 1974 Dodge pickup overturned on the westbound approach to the Bayou St. Marie bridge on Highway 41.


Chief Deputy Willfred Shuckus of the Bojamine Parish Sheriff’s Office told the Courier that official investigation indicated the two men had been frog hunting with a .22 rifle. While returning home at approximately 2:20 A.M., Dupree’s pickup headlights blew a fuse. He managed to stay on the road.

      Having no spare fuse and seeing that a .22 cartridge fit exactly in the fuse slot on the steering column, they replaced the blown fuse with a .22 bullet. The cartridge restored the headlights, and they continued their trip. Shortly, the bullet apparently overheated, discharged, and shot DuPree, Jr. in the testicles.


DuPree, Jr. lost control and the truck rolled over, saved from plunging into Bayou St. Marie by the new bridge railing which was badly damaged.


Thibadoux suffered a broken left femur, cuts and abrasions, and remains hospitalized at Bojamine Parish Medical Center. DuPree, Jr., in addition to cuts and abrasions, remains hospitalized for treatment of the gunshot wound to the sensitive area.


Dr. Pierre Rochambeau of the Bojamine Parish Medical Center advised the Courier, “I got no way of knowin’ how well DuPree. Jr.’s testicles functioned before, but they never gonna ever work so good no more.”

       Chief Deputy Shuckus stated, “I been a officer of the law for 26 years, but this is a first. I cannot imagine how them two got so dumb enough to admit to how this accident happened.”

       Willie Marvin DuPree, Jr.’s wife, Flower Jo DuPree, 15, told the Courier, “Willie Marvin shot hisself in his whut? Far as I know, he didn’t have none. If he ever did have any, he never did use ‘um ‘roun’ here. Whut in tarnation would he need spectacles for no how? He could see jes’ fine. I’d be hopin’ to high h—l, that truck still runs when they get it up-sided.”


Mrs. DuPree continued. “And, a’ wishin’ them laws would look in the bait bucket behind the seat and see if them boys got any frogs.”


Gary Clifton, forty years a cop, has been shot at, shot, stabbed, lied to and about, and often misunderstood. He currently lives on a dusty north Texas ranch, where he doesn’t give a damn if school keeps, or not. Clifton has published approximately 120 short fiction pieces, including upwards of fifty in Bewildering Stories Mag. He currently has three novels available through Amazon and other outlets: Nights on Fire, Murdering Homer, and Dragon Marks Eight. He blogs at bareknucklethoughts.org.

If Charles Addams, Edgar Allan Poe, and Willy Wonka sired a bastard child it would be the fat asthmatic by the name of Michael D. Davis. He has been called warped by dear friends and a freak by passing strangers. Michael started drawing cartoons when he was ten, and his skill has improved with his humor, which isn’t saying much. He is for the most part self-taught, only ever crediting the help of one great high school art teacher. His art has been shown at his local library for multiple years only during October due to its macabre nature. If you want to see more of Michael’s strange, odd, weird, cartoons you can follow him on Instagram at mad_hatters_mania.

In Association with Black Petals & Fossil Publications 2021