THE STARLIGHT ON 2ND

The last time I saw you, we were wasted at The Starlight, eating from a bag of cherries we had stolen from the grocery on the corner that stayed open all night. Remember I bit into one so hard that my tooth cracked against the pit? You saw me spitting crimson chunks onto the motel bed, and you said, You’re making it hard to want you. I could have sworn you were joking, and that you would be there in the morning, which is why I laughed instead of kissing you, and why I said, Relax, this only looks like blood.

— Dan Leach has published work in The New Orleans Review, Copper Nickel, and The Sun. He has two collections of short fiction: Floods and Fires (University of North Georgia, 2017) and Dead Mediums (Trident Press, 2022). An instructor of English at Charleston Southern University, he lives in the lowcountry of South Carolina with his partner and kids.