About the Anthology:
Exquisite Duet (formerly Exquisite Quartet) is not so much a composition between two writers, but rather something created within the murky midlands of each author’s mind, yet set off by the same first sentence. Meg Tuite chooses two writers each month and gives them a first sentence to start with and a 250-word limit to finish an exquisitely mesmerizing story or poem. These duet-dueling writers will craft two completely different cosmos that have rotated, pitched, and blasted from the depths of their cerebral cortex to the twitching nerve endings of their digits onto dueling keyboards and separate screens until their sublime duet is prepared to see the light of an audience.
Dena Rash Guzman, Michelle Elvy, Joani Reese, April Michelle Bratten, Dennis Mahagin, Teisha Dawn Twomey, Bud Smith, Indigo Moor, Lauren Becker, Ryan W. Bradley, James Valvis, Kenneth Pobo, Cooper Renner, John Burgess, Paula Bomer, Stephanie Barber, Dorianne Laux, Joseph Millar, Mia Avramut, Barry Graham, Michael Gillan Maxwell, Matthew Nadelson, Kaite Hillenbrand, Ken Robidoux
Both were pale with the blight of their beige trench coats,
belted lumpy at mid-section. Survivors. She looked for blue
eyes, he searched for a yellow dress. They waited for dark hair
or password, to recognize or be found. They woke to each other,
startled again by gone memory. Strangers. They dressed behind
closet doors, avoiding mirrors. They knew the rain, and, dressed
in matching coats, went to the beach. Colorless cloth on skin. On
sand. The sky did not part.
They created conversation, new every day, with shyness of
strangers. Wisps came and went, never for both.
Both remembered how to make a cup of tea, how to drive a car,
address and phone number, a wedding to someone else. Keeping
company, impatient, each waited for the other to return.
Ryan W. Bradley
with the blight
of their own beige
waiting for winter
to chill their bones
there is music
tie us all together
and tangle us
there is hope