Jeff Alan - April Again

And the lovebugs are mating on schedule, swarms of them drawn to the heat of highways, cued by some internal thermometer. Thick in the air like flurries of dark snow, black bodies glued at the hip, still flying somehow, wings tugging their torsos in opposing trajectories, so oblivious in their copulations that they don't see the oncoming cars. A driver curses their frenzied sex, the mess they make, the windshield splattered with fat.

This is all the man can think to speak of when he sits down to dinner with his wife, a common complaint, an attempt at bridging the sterile table between them. This, and again the neighbor's damn kid in the yard.

Later, he will follow a river of worn carpet to the bed where she lies sleepless, entering her dry as a cactus, and she will stare motionless at the fan slicing ribbons of air, thinking of the square of stale cake in the freezer, the moon and a fall of snow melting into a hot spring, the child asleep in the house next door.

Jeff Alan's prose poems have appeared in Eclectica, Camroc Press Review, and Pure Francis, among other publications. His flash fiction piece, "Long and Short," was selected for The Best of Every Day Fiction 2008. New work is forthcoming in Right Hand Pointing. He lives in the Appalachian foothills of North Carolina, where he spends his days writing, appreciating the wildlife in his backyard, and amusing his polydactyl cat. His website is located at

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