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Story by Sue Powers (Read author interview) March 15, 2008

The Brother comes home with a bride. He is the baby of us four, forever last, and in our hard feeling home, forever leave him out beat him down trip him up stick your foot out here he comes harassed. Cousins with an extra room put them up.

The Bride is refined, educated, previously married, the sharp delicacy of her features revealing sensitivity and no small amount of sophistication concerning the subject of Family. We like her immediately. The Brother’s eyes glow. He’s pleased to have pleased not only himself but us all. All but Mother.

Who has spent the evening reinventing it, and who at this moment is picking at her food. She slowly raises the fork to her mouth, slips a bit on her tongue.

“Delicious,” she says, her mouth twisted in distaste.

“Brother” was originally published in Happy, issue 6, 1996. It appears here by permission of the author.

About the Author

Sue Powers’ stories have appeared in numerous zines and publications such as StoryQuarterly, Another Chicago Magazine, SWELL, Happy, Facets, Samizdada, and elsewhere. She is a recipient an Illinois Arts Council Fellowship and an IAC Grant. If she did not (have to) work her day job, she would spend her time reading, writing stories, and learning the art of jewelry-making.

This story appeared in Issue Twenty of SmokeLong Quarterly.
SmokeLong Quarterly Issue Twenty

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SmokeLong Fitness--The Community Workshop

Next Date to Join: December 1!

On September 1, SmokeLong launched a workshop environment/community christened SmokeLong Fitness. This asynchronous community workshop is happening right now on our dedicated workshop site. If you choose to join us, you will work in a small group of around 10-12 participants to give and receive feedback. Each Monday, you will receive a new writing task (one writing task each week) designed by the senior editor team of SmokeLong. The core workshop is asynchronous, so you can take part from anywhere at anytime. We are excited about creating a supportive, consistent and structured environment for flash writers to work on their craft in a community.