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The Mind's Bakery
Lois Elaine Heckman

     She kneeled, working diligently, shaping the roundness with hands covered in make-believe chocolate. A stray curl tumbled into her eye, and she whisked it away, soiling her face along with the curl. Imagination transported her to fairyland worlds, where she was the Maître Pâtissier, inventing, creating and exhibiting her art. It was time for the finishing touches. A bouquet of dandelions, surrounded by pumpkin seeds, would be perfect. It looked almost good enough to eat. Now she works nine to five, transforming those mud pie dreams into $6 delights which can be found at the end of aisle three.

Lois Elaine Heckman grew up in Los Angeles, receiving a degree in Italian from UCLA. She now lives in Milan, Italy, where she was a volunteer nurse and first aid instructor for the Italian Red Cross. Her works have been in previous issues of Boston Literary Magazine and appear, or are forthcoming, in other publications, including The Fib Review, Shot Glass Journal, Victorian Violet Press, Lucid Rhythms, Tilt-a-Whirl and Yale Journal for Humanities in Medicine. In 2010, she won the New England Shakespeare Festival Rubber Ducky Sonnet Contest.

     By morning the booze and Viagra had worn off and Mitch had transformed back into his old self. He stayed in bed a long time trying to make some sense of it. The whore was gone; the shade was up; sunlight was pouring in, creating long shadows, as though remnants of the night had been retained for questioning. He threatened to charge each with conspiracy. He pointed a finger at the shadow of his head. “You,” he said, holding his hand in such a way that its silhouette took the form of a pistol. “Tell me what I paid for.”

Bob Thurber lives in Massachusetts. He is the author of "Paperboy: A Dysfunctional Novel" (Casperian Books, 2011) and the recipient of numerous awards, including The Barry Hannah Fiction Prize. Visit his website at BobThurber.net.

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