Fast Fiction

Fetch Me That Jimson Weed — by Christopher Citro

Each of these malfunctioning androids around me on the street can tell I’m a man who used to own moonflowers, more than I could count. A younger man I was then, as they say. A different man I was then. I’d grab him now, if I could, enlist the aid of a passing android and demand, What have you done? There’s a guy who sits on crates at an intersection yelling at drivers, I can see dead people. The pole at his back covered in RIP So and So, Rest in Peace This One and That. Maybe he could help. My hammock at the time was unusable for a cloud of mosquitoes that never lifted. She said, Maybe the neighbor’s pool is full of stagnant water. I thought she was going to tell me she could see dead people. The lid of the sky has lifted this morning and all I can think about is how, in the middle of the day, they were these tight green squints. Come night, great white wings unfurling under the eaves. The scent in through the kitchen windows, ghost breath, android cologne, years drifting down a sweet and spindly stem.

Christopher Citro_HeadshotChristopher Citro is the author of The Maintenance of the Shimmy-Shammy (Steel Toe Books, 2015). He won the 2015 Poetry Competition at Columbia Journal, and his publications include poetry in Prairie Schooner, Ploughshares, Best New Poets, Sixth Finch, and Poetry Northwest, and creative nonfiction in Boulevard and Colorado Review.