My Ride on the 26, by Mat Woolfenden

They are all standing around the bus stop – and are like children. There is the waitress, early fifties, cute in her lipsticks, and the black pinny spoiled only by long black trousers. She ignores me, she understands how I am a top predator of the top deck. She couldn’t trust herself upstairs with me in the eye-line.

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When Life Gives You Greg, by Patrick Simons

In twenty-six slashes of an angry pen, I enact my bloodthirsty revenge. An indigo insolence five thousand and twenty-six years in the making, a cuneiform callback as old as anger and ink and implements. A brilliant crescendo of rage, all staccato and forte and I’m the conductor, and for twenty-six seconds I feel strong, and there, just there on the seat, the culmination cut in the cream:

Message In The 26th Bottle

Short days ago we were together, we watched sunsets glow, felt the Dawn. We lived and were loved by each other, but now I am saddened that in the past few months I have nearly completely forgotten your face. I wish I had dedicated every minuscule feature better to memory, but as the days past, and my mind was slowly swallowed by madness like a droplet in a pit of slime, I remember less and less of my previous self- my previous life. The slight curvature of your nose, the lift in your brow, the tiny wrinkles on the ends of your lips- the wrinkles from a lifetime of laughter. Such tiny insignificant features which now have taken on such profound and sacred meaning to me, suddenly it has become so vitally essential to remember everything about you. The exact colour tone of your hair, the exact angle of your jaw. Why is it that faces, being so easily recognized, so easily pulled up from our past, are yet so easily forgotten in our minds in their absence.