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Nothing gold can stay.

THE GOOD CHINA BY PAMELA SUMNERS 34THPARALLEL MAGAZINE ISSUE 96

I told him nothing’s the same after six months. All the good stuff’s gone.

Pick the ending you want.

DEAD CAT BY MELVIN STERNE 34THPARALLEL MAGAZINE ISSUE 96


What’s the most likely ending? What’s the worst-case scenario? What’s the best ending? There’s a billion potential endings. Pick one.

No one could have saved Dad.

VISITING HOURS BY JOAN ELLIOTT 34THPARALLEL MAGAZINE ISSUE 96


I know he was difficult. I know. But he’s done a good thing. He really has. A good thing.

I made it through. 

On my own.

MACHINE GIRL BY REBECCA EGAN 34THPARALLEL MAGAZINE ISSUE 96

I’ve always encouraged my students to follow their bliss.

THE CLASSROOM & LIFE ITS OWN SELF BY JOHN FOLEY 34THPARALLEL MAGAZINE ISSUE 96


I’ll miss the kids. I liked most of them and wanted them to succeed, in my class and in life its own self.

I threw a paper plane across the classroom.

THE PAPER PLANE BY FRANK KOWAL 34THPARALLEL MAGAZINE ISSUE 96


I pleaded with the teacher, “Please, please, please, I promise—I promise to dear life!—I will never ever do it again!”


34THPARALLEL MAGAZINE ISSUE 96

THE GOOD CHINA BY PAMELA SUMNERS, HOW TO END A STORY ABOUT A DEAD CAT BY MELVIN STERNE, THE PAPER PLANE BY FRANK KOWAL, VISITING HOURS BY JOAN ELLIOTT GRAY, MACHINE GIRL BY REBECCA EGAN, THE CLASSROOM & LIFE ITS OWN SELF BY JOHN FOLEY.

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