Tag Archives: Timothy Gager

Clarence’s First by Timothy Gager and Teisha Twomey

Clarence hated that his professor made him go to the tutoring lab for the first time, as he would much rather eat. Yet, there he was sitting across from the tutor licking his lips with anticipation, his eyes on Amelia, trying to look inside them. She pulled the first of four pages between her pointer and thumb with one hand, while twirling her blond hair with the other. She knew that some of the students could be tricky customers, mentally unstable, or overbearing, so she wondered how to say what she needed about his ridiculous opening sentence on the subject of pan fried brains. She always tried to be open-minded and generous in her counsel.

“Couldn’t it be ground beef?” she asked.

“You don’t know what I’m getting at.”

“Well it appears to read like an odd cooking piece.”

Clarence snickered at her, “What does someone like you do all day?”

“I kick the world’s ass and kill zombies,” Amelia countered, aware of his put down and raising her guard. “Here,” she said. “Nonfiction describes information understood to be fact. Implicit in this, however, are the varying degrees to which the writer’s subjective interpretation of facts, and/or selective presentation of facts, end up making a “factual” work less true. Clarence shifted uneasily, as he was unguarded by her cleverness. “Um, yeah,” he told her. Clarence stared blankly past her, the wall being very white.

“An interesting way to delineate nonfiction forms is to look at them in terms of how accurately they reflect the writer’s experience, beliefs, and emotions in real life.”

“So,” Clarence said, “you kick the world’s ass and…ha, well you can’t kill a zombie, technically speaking, we… ehhh, I mean…they are already dead.” His nostrils flared as he sucked in the essence of her beautiful gray matter.

“I don’t really believe in Zombies anyway. Anywho, back to the paper. Why does the girl offer herself up to you? Doesn’t really make sense for her to do that does it?”

“She does if she knows what’s best for her…” Clarence hissed. Amelia splayed her pens on the table and tapped them for a moment, as if making every effort to drum his creepiness away, before balling her fist into her palm and cracking each knuckle self-consciously, a life-long habit.

Little did Amelia know, this was akin to Zombie foreplay, when she made the fateful choice to twist in her chair, releasing an earth-shattering symphony of snaps and pops from her spine, an undead requiem, which resonated through Clarence’s soulless body, rocking his world so hard he felt his still heart flicker for a moment.

He had never wanted something so badly in his life and envisaged cradling Amelia’s fair head in his sallow arms, bringing it near his sunken chest, before snapping her fragile neck with one swift twist. He wanted to eat every part of her, that way she could remain inside him forever and always help him with his papers. He quivered as he prepared to lunge.

Clarence had never actually tasted a human being, but had always known he was a Zombie. He remembers when he first watched Night of the Living Dead and looked in the mirror wondering why his parents never told him. When he confronted them, they waved him away, blaming his pale skin and dead eyes with anemia and a severe stigmatism. Now, Clarence knew the truth. Amelia would be his first.

He grabbed her in his arms, swinging her like a lasso then sweeping her to the floor the way one dips their partner during a waltz. Amelia’s eyes were wide and wet as he pulled at her turtleneck and tasted her at the collar. She let out a giggle as he sampled behind her ear.

“Yuck, you are disgusting!” Clarence shrieked, pulling away, recoiling in horror. The first time should have been special; he sulked, leaving her where she lay, a pitiful heap of need.

“Wait! Where are you going?” She cried out, “I love you Clarence! Don’t go! Wait! You forgot your paper…”

Clarence didn’t even bother to reach for it as he ran away, closing the Tutoring Center door behind him. “You keep it Amelia… I am going to have to rewrite the whole thing anyway.”

Hello Iceman by Timothy Gager

After the meeting John walked up to Michelle, the rain turning to ice again. The twigs on nearby trees looked like toy animals completely encased; trapped in clear plastic cubes. As a child he’d imagined the entire world melting, the ice and all the animals coming to life.

“My name is John. I’m an alcoholic,” he said.

“You don’t need to say that outside.” She looked at the ground from the top of the stairs.

“I didn’t mean to say that but I wanted you to know I liked what you said in there about vitamins. How one made you feel good and soon you were taking ten a day. I thought it was funny.”

“It’s what we do.”

“I’d like to know what brand of vitamins.”

She side-stepped down the brick stairs of the church.

“Be careful out there,” he said.

“Yes, I know.”

“If you fall, don’t worry, I’ll pick you up. I’ll probably laugh, though.”

“I would too. I always laugh at someone who falls on their face. My name is Michelle.”

“I know. I heard it inside.”

“Well, see you next week.”

They walked to their cars, navigating places where they could see down to the blacktop. John looked for animals in a tree, instead saw a twig ricochet to the ground.

Timothy Gager is the author of eight books of poetry and fiction. Over 250 pieces of his work have been published on-line or in print. He lives on www.timothygager.com

How Do You Love a Capitalist? by Timothy Gager

I go on a Valentine’s bender buying the super-duper extra-large box of chocolates which barely wedged into a shopping cart, a stuffed teddy bear, cards with gooey Hallmark sentiment, some with funny “bend you over the sofa” quotations and finally ones featuring Mickey and Minnie Mouse.

Then I’m buying pajama-grams and something from Victoria’s Secret which can be purchased on-line and a poem written by Neruda, I’m printing out in red—bold on white paper thicker than what’s usually in the printer,

It was during the last snow storm that I cheated on her; told her I was going to work, called the office and said the weather was too rough. When the going gets tough…three dozen roses can be purchased tomorrow, 24 red and 12 white, wrapped up with a necklace with a heart shaped pendant of tiny diamonds on its border, then breakfast in bed and shit, did I forget anything? How about something for her cat?

Timothy Gager is the author of eight books of poetry and fiction. Over 250 pieces of his work have been published on-line or in print. He lives on www.timothygager.com

Their Own Planet by Timothy Gager

The world was too large, full of vast points of distance, so Sal and Crystal went away for a weekend to their own planet, undiscovered and fairly close. It was small and when they lay down together, her head rested on his shoulder and their legs wrapped completely around the orb. At the end point their feet nestled on top of each other.

When they made love on it, Crystal said, she felt a earthquake.

“Shut up,” Sal said. “Planet-quake! Don’t talk about that other place. This is a tiny planet that I’d like to stay on it forever. It has everything we need.”


“You may not see it, but I’m sure we’re lying in it.”


“We can eat if we want—there’s a restaurant right around the bend. More importantly is that we can talk…feel good. There is so much to feel bad about on earth, I wish I didn’t have to return there.”

“We have to go back at some point.”

“Do we?”

“Yes. That’s the gravity of it.”

“Can we dance first?”

They stood up and wobbled as if rising from an all-day barstool. They made bad-ass faces, and laughed until the weight of the affair pushed their planet back into the earth’s atmosphere. There was a burst of fire, and their pieces fell mostly in the ocean, but some fell into houses on the Eastern seaboard and many of the larger chunks were found spread all over Oklahoma, Louisiana and Texas.

Timothy Gager is the author of eight books of poetry and fiction. Over 250 pieces of his work have been published on-line or in print. He lives on www.timothygager.com

New flash from Gager and Konrath at In Between Altered States

In Between Altered States is a zine of mind-bending flash fiction, edited by Aleathia Drehmer. Its 23rd monthly issue just came out, with the theme of “torture”. It includes flash from long-time AITPL contributor Timothy Gager and editor Jon Konrath.

Head on over and check out Gager’s “Chiller” and Konrath’s “The Locality Principle”, plus six more awesome pieces of flash.