by Kyle Hemmings
One day the world ended. It ended for everyone but us. Either God nuked the world or everyone nuked each other. For months, we shuddered in our dorm rooms listening to the radio reports as to who was winning. But in the end, everyone lied. All the priests were dead. They made arrangements to keep us safe in a deep basement below the chapel and provided us with food and water. The priests remained above ground. They never returned to tell us that the war was over. We grew tired of waiting. We ascended secret staircases. Over the barren fields, a huge gray-orange mist was rolling in. Then, an uneven line of girls dressed in bright long skirts, white stockings, and flowers in their hair walked towards us. We stood frozen and shell-shocked. It hurt to breathe, or maybe we stopped breathing. We forgot about breathing. There was a thumbnail of sun. After facing each other and considering our options, we shuffled and reshuffled our lines to match boy and girl according to height and weight. Approximately. The tallest girl in the middle clapped her hands once. We bowed; they curtsied. We began to dance.
Kyle Hemmings lives and works in New Jersey. He has been published in Your Impossible Voice, Night Train, Toad, Matchbox and elsewhere. His latest chapbooks are Underground Chrysanthemums from Red Bird Press and Terminal from White Knuckle Press. He blogs at DogPunk & Psychedelic Stinky Cat: Kyle Hemmings' Blog.