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Soap

Story by Katrina Denza (Read author interview) June 15, 2008

Art by Robinson Accola

Jackson’s a chocolate lab. I brought him home from the no-kill this morning. I’ve always wanted a dog, but I did it more for Wylie. We stand under the willow with the water running out the hose, Jackson, Wylie and I. Dandelions cover the lawn: a yellow rebellion.

When Wylie was four, a pit bull took a chunk out of his left cheek. He’d been trying to tell the neighbor’s dog, this pit bull, the story of three little pigs and his little arms and hands described the shape of the house and that was it: the dog erupted.

Wylie turns the bottle of soap upside down and squeezes. You can rub it in, I tell him. It’ll feel good. Wylie’s hand hovers above the river of shampoo. If I look close enough I’d see the trembling, but I don’t. Instead, I take in Jackson, sitting on the wet grass, covered in strawberry-scented soap, straight, still, waiting for my son’s hand.

–“Soap” was originally published in Wigleaf. It appears here by permission of the author.

About the Author

Katrina Denza lives in North Carolina with her husband and two sons. Her short fiction has been published in Ink Pot, Lynx Eye, and New Delta Review, among others.

About the Artist

Robinson Accola creates artwork for SmokeLong Quarterly as needed.

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