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it seems like a mistake at first.
I guess this is a mistake she says. it probably doesn’t know where it is.
then the deer begins dragging in grasses and leaves from the woods.
it spreads them out into a nest under the kitchen table.
all day she and her grandfather watch the deer.
it gets tiring over the next few weeks, living with this creature.
the deer eats their food, nibbles on her sweaters.
it doesn’t help with the dishes or sweep the floor
or pay its share of the rent.

the deer has no understanding of the salient history of her town,
a place nicknamed The Village of Fatherless Children.
when she was young, the dads of
half the kids in town disappeared.
the other half did not have dads to begin with
either they had two moms or single moms.
she often wonders why it is called The Village of Fatherless Children
and not The Village of Many Mothers
or even The Village of Mostly Mothers
which would be a much more positive and progressive way of viewing things.

one day she finds that a framed photo of her father is missing.
the deer, when interrogated, discloses nothing.



Nikki Caffier Smith is a writer based in Brooklyn. Her writing has appeared in Anti-Heroin Chic, Typishly, and Awakened Voices Magazine, and is forthcoming in 42 Stories Anthology and on the podcast Kaleidocast. She works as a fiction editor for Cleaver Magazine. She lives with her partner and their two ill-behaved cats.
Current Issue
26 Sep 2022

Would a Teixcalaanli aristocrat look up at the sky, think of Lsel Station, and wonder—with Auden—"what doubtful act allows/ Our freedom in this English house/ our picnics in the sun"?
I propose that The Expanse and its ilk present us with a similar sentiment, in reverse—a warning that for all the promise of futurism and technological advancement, plenty of new, and perhaps much worse futures are right before us. In the course of outrunning la vieux monde, we may find that we are awaited not simply by new worlds to win, but also many more which may yet be lost.
where oil slurped up out of the dirt, they drink the coffee
Science fiction is a genre that continues to struggle with its own colonialist history, of which many of its portrayals of extractivism are a part. Science fiction is also a genre that has a history of being socially progressive and conscious – these are both truths.
Bring my stones, my bones, back to me
If we are to accept that the extractive unconscious is latent, is everywhere, part of everything, but unseen and unspoken, and killing us in our waking lives, then science fiction constitutes its dreams.
they are quoting Darwish at the picket & i am finally breathing again
Waste is profoundly shaping and changing our society and our way of living. Our daily mundane world always treats waste as a hidden structure, together with its whole ecosystem, and places it beyond our sight, to maintain the glories of contemporary life. But unfortunately, some are advantaged by this, while others suffer.
Like this woman, I am carrying the world on my back.
So we’re talking about a violence that supplants the histories of people and things, scrubbing them clean so that they can fuel the oppressive and unequal status quo it sustains.
Issue 21 Sep 2022
Issue 12 Sep 2022
Issue 5 Sep 2022
Issue 29 Aug 2022
By: Cat T.
Issue 22 Aug 2022
Issue 15 Aug 2022
Issue 8 Aug 2022
Issue 1 Aug 2022
Issue 18 Jul 2022
Issue 11 Jul 2022
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