New Arrivals, a short story by Mark Russo at
Johann Walter Bantz

New Arrivals

New Arrivals

written by: Mark Russo



The three of them had just crawled from the water’s edge, from the vomit, from the feces toward the first rung prodded by the clash of sirens and screams from the other side when she looked up, straight up, attracted by a plaque that swung like a float harassed by the wind that smeared seven white letters across a green background, robbing its significance like a thief while she, at each step upward, tightened her clutch on the small round body in her right arm and gripped the steel chain handrail, cold and wet, with her left, trying to silence its grating jiggle so that the burly shadow whose hot panting breath she felt on her behind could hear her translate the letters of the sign at the end of the ladder explaining in their language that it said, “Welcome.”

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