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Venom!: Fiction by Pamela Ebel
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Trans/Figure: Fiction by Michael Steven
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A Spider Among the Flies: Fiction by Gary Earl Ross
He Wore a Purple Heart Inside a Gray Uniform: Fiction by John C. Mannone
So Bright They Were, So Bright: Fiction by Paul Radcliffe
Coyote-Murder-House: Flash Fiction by Hillary Lyon
Spring Cleaning: Flash Fiction by Mikki Aronoff
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While My Mother Dreams of Judge Judy: Flash Fiction by Tina Barry
Snoopy: Flash Fiction by Cindy Rosmus
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Freddy on 14th Street: Poem by Jack Garrett
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Hillary Lyon: Coyote-Murder-House

Art by Bernice Holtzman 2023



Series of 3 Thematically Connected Drabbles


by Hillary Lyon




Coyote Knows


Laughter woke us around midnight. Not laughter, but a coyote’s special howl—the one celebrating a kill.

Next morning, I found Bradley, my husband, by the backyard wall, staring at the coyote on the other side. “Fetch me my gun,” he growled, like when he told me he’d filed for divorce.

I took the pistol from his nightstand, came up behind him. Looking over his shoulder, my eyes met the coyote’s predatory stare. A stare that challenged, What are you gonna do about it?

I raised the gun. The coyote threw his head back and laughed.

I squeezed the trigger.




This Heat Is Murder


“Why a ‘dry heat’?” Lana whined as we hiked into the canyon. “How’s that a good thing?”

“When it’s humid, your sweat doesn’t evaporate,” I explained. “So—” She wasn’t listening; she was scowling at the desert scenery.

“Take water everywhere, take sunscreen. And the car is like an oven! Next year, I pick the vacation destination.” I whacked her on the back of her head, hard, with my binoculars, then half-carried, half-dragged her out of the canyon.

I tossed her into the trunk of the rental car, locked it. “You’re correct,” I admitted. “The car is like an oven.”


House of Scorpions


New couple moves in across the street. Being neighborly, I give them a little UV flashlight. So you can see scorpions at night, I explain. They glow in the black light. I warn them, Check your shoes before you put them on—scorpions love to hide inside small, dark places.

Why am I being so friendly? Because her ex pays me handsomely.

Next day, the pest control van is in their driveway. That night, a fire truck. Seems she set their bed ablaze, convinced the mattress was scorpion-infested.

If she’s scared of scorpions, just wait until she hears about tarantula hawks.



Hillary Lyon founded and for 20 years acted as senior editor for the independent poetry publisher, Subsynchronous Press. Her stories have appeared lately in 365tomorrows, Black Petals, Sirens Call, Night to Dawn, 50 Word Stories, Legends of Night drabble series anthology, and Revelations drabble series anthology. She’s the Assistant Art Director for Black Petals and is also an illustrator for horror & pulp fiction magazines.  


Bernice Holtzman’s paintings and collages have appeared in shows at various venues in Manhattan, including the Back Fence in Greenwich Village, the Producer’s Club, the Black Door Gallery on W. 26th St., and one other place she can’t remember, but it was in a basement, and she was well received.

In Association with Black Petals & Fossil Publications 2023