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The Memory Dresser – Nicholas M. Stillman

Our parlor is small—tucked in a corner of Helm, folded between an empty Gassa stall and the home of a half-deaf mystic. For this reason, discretion numbers as one of our services. Not even the moon bears full witness, as Illsea, the largest Tower on the hill, shades us from the first few hours of evening light. Under our lamps, we shape the memories of the people of Helm, our people. Unlike the royals in Illsea, they are not looking for beauty. No shine-oil treatments or the newest configuration of knots and trellises. Our client’s memories are coated in the dirt that lines our streets and our teeth. They sit in my grandmother’s chair and weep at their reflections. Each length tracks the harrowing years of their lives in the dim lamps or beady sun: yesterday’s shame growing from their scalp, their unfortunate births dragged through the streets. My grandmother’s job is to make them feel well—to clean and wrap, braid and twist them into people who can walk back into their lives without shame dragging them down.

My own memories are unremarkable. Ordinary, frizzed, limp. My childhood must have been something to forget, because I all but have. There are a few years, though, that are different. Four finger lengths that hold the light like river rocks after rain. Memories that burst forth like the sweet juices of thin-fleshed berries, eclipsing all other flavor. My mother excited, touching my shoulder, pointing at the marigolds and the poppies not yet in bloom around the village pond. Fresh bread and cool paya juice as the fireworks erupt above the Towers during the New Sun dance. Then, below the shore rocks we clambered onto, the rich Oversea folk filing in and out of their boats—their strange memories gleaming in impenetrable designs, fractals upon fractals. Mother’s breath curling warmly in the cold night onto my scalp and tips of my ears, running her thin fingers through my memories while we watched the beautiful people glisten. One day, her voice sounds as if she were still beside me, you’ll have memories like that.Keep reading“The Memory Dresser – Nicholas M. Stillman”

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The Memory Dresser – Nicholas M. Stillman
Our parlor is small—tucked in a corner of Helm, folded between an empty Gassa stall and the home of a half-deaf mystic. For this reason, discretion numbers as one of our services. Not even the moon bears full witness, as Illsea, the largest Tower on the hill, shades us from the first few hours of evening light. Under our lamps, we shape the memories of the people of Helm, our people. Unlike the royals in …
Read it "The Memory Dresser – Nicholas M. Stillman"
In the Beating of a Wing – David Cleden
When his mother calls, Chester is in the back yard tending to his various projects, which all seem to be going badly. “Chester!” Her voice is shrill and tired-sounding, as though she’s been crying again. “Inside now, please.” He ignores her, head bent over his work. The frankenstem is dying, and he’s sad about that. The books he’s read make it sound easy—how you can graft cuttings from one plant onto another, taking the best …
Read it "In the Beating of a Wing – David Cleden"
One for the Wounded – Phoenix Alexander
“Minutes… they are the easiest to kill,” he whispered. His voice was thick with the drowsiness of spent passion; I thought he had fallen asleep, and felt grateful that he was staying awake with me a little longer. “You need something sharp… Cut their throats. Hit them on the head. Hard and accurate. Break their necks.” I remember thinking that it was an odd thing for him to talk about, this killing. So I lay …
Read it "One for the Wounded – Phoenix Alexander"
Somewhere to be Going – Katrina Smith
The changeling boy goes to space in a ship of his own making. Late at night, as the house sleeps, he labors over steel and circuits in his father’s garage. Next to the classic Tesla S and the mid 20th century Cadillac with predatory tailfins, Corbin carves curves into plastic, coaxes lines of electricity until they bloom like branching veins in the structure of his heart’s desire. As dawn begins he steps back to look …
Read it "Somewhere to be Going – Katrina Smith"

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The Memory Dresser – Nicholas M. Stillman

Our parlor is small—tucked in a corner of Helm, folded between an empty Gassa stall and the home of a half-deaf mystic. For this reason, discretion numbers as one of our services. Not even the moon bears full witness, as Illsea, the largest Tower on the hill, shades us from the first few hours of evening light. Under our lamps, we shape the memories of the people of Helm, our people. Unlike the royals in …

It came from Tris Matthews

Tris Matthews’s story “When the Last Friend is Gone” was published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 16 November 2018. I did cognitive science at university and became fascinated with what consciousness and cognition are, how they emerge in animals, how we will achieve this in robots, and the possibilities this will open, such as the solution to currently unimaginable questions and the shift to a hive mind society with utterly different desires and goals. Along the …

A question for Tomas Marcantonio

Q: What is your favorite fairy tale and why?

A: Beauty and the Beast. A wonderful romance, but also because the Beast’s library is to die for.


Tomas Marcantonio’s story “Unmasked
in Metaphorosis Friday, 31 May 2019.
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A question for Danos Philopoulos

Q: Is there a specific environment you find most conducive to drawing, and is it different for different kinds of scenes?

A: All my drawing is done indoors at the convenience and privacy of my home. I’ll either be creating on the sofa, in bed or at my desk. It mostly has to do with being in a calm and happy state of mind.


Danos Philopoulos‘s image “Escape” is the cover art for our June 2019 issue.Metaphorosis

About Matthew Amundsen

Matthew has lived in seven states and has worked in advertising, film and commercial production, and information management. He has been publishing fiction since 1990. When not writing, he is a musician and sound engineer in Minneapolis, where he lives with his daughter.

@gallopingfoxley


Matthew Amundsen’s story “Country Whispers
in Metaphorosis Friday, 7 June 2019.
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In the Beating of a Wing – David Cleden

When his mother calls, Chester is in the back yard tending to his various projects, which all seem to be going badly. “Chester!” Her voice is shrill and tired-sounding, as though she’s been crying again. “Inside now, please.” He ignores her, head bent over his work. The frankenstem is dying, and he’s sad about that. The books he’s read make it sound easy—how you can graft cuttings from one plant onto another, taking the best …