Original photo by Jamshed Khedri

At the corner of Rue de la Commune and Rue Saint Jean-Baptiste, we sat out on the patio of a pub, that hot Augusta afternoon, enjoying cool pitchers of juicy red wine sangria. On one side, behind us, there was a long street mottled with cars and horse-drawn calèches tramping by, and on the other, right in front, were flocks of tourists sauntering and moseying up and down the sidewalks, peaking their fascinated heads every which way, speaking in gaggled tongues. Scott and I were a little beat from the flight and having to fight through the mob at customs…


Photo by Andrea Mininni

The realization of Mr. Donahue’s impending presidency began to set in personally for Christopher months and months before the election ever occurred. While drinking and discussing the usual sort of politics in the local bar up the street from his house, he was aloof, gulping down the third round of whiskey shots and pale ales of the night. Three of his best chums were seated up at the bar beside and around him roaring all up and down about the current climate of things. …


Photo by Gabe Pierce

This world has ended. Isn’t that always the case? Benny says that’s the flippant beauty of existence. Chopping and pushing together three dinosaur-tail-size lines, inside a brown vintage cigar box, he turns his head back and asks, “What’s more beautiful than that, huh?” I shrug and shake my head in drowsy ignorance. “Think about it,” he says. “We go from order, chaos, death, then boom . . . a goddamn rebirth, right back into order. Bro — there is nothing more savage, nothing more beautiful than that!”

Like a gentleman, Benny passes the cigar box back to me along with…


Original photo by Evgenii Pliusnin

Lying dead drunk
in the Southern grass
the waning breath of this City
comes and sits beside me,
whispering:

“You are a fool,
but you are true
and unforgiving.”

Blurry-eyed
I try to tell her off,
but everything
always seems
to black out
into a hopeful
Tomorrow.

From How to Moan Like an Ogre
Available in paperback and Kindle ebook
Copyright © 2019 by H. Jean-Baptiste


Claude Monet

Catherine reached again and again for the window, but I swatted and pulled her hands away each time. She was raving, frantic, saying she’d jump, that she’d finally do it. I was sitting down at the hotel room desk, trying to jot down notes for a potential essay — annoyed by all of her racket.

“The wintry streets of Paris will enjoy my blood if you wo — Let go! Let go!”
“You mean that bird-shit-stained sidewalk down there,” I told her.
“You vile cretin!”

With my left hand, I held one of Cat’s arms down by my waist, as…


Photo by Dave Hoefler

Park looked up and then down the long, dark, and peaceful road. His helmet then tipped over a little, sagging down toward his right cheek. He pushed it back up and pulled on the chinstrap, cinching it up a little tighter. If the Supreme Leader saw him disheveled like that, then the poor grunt would surely be vanquished with the simple bat of an eye.

He thought about this, and shivered.

No reason to die today. There was only ten minutes now left. In ten minutes the sun would slowly jump over the vast wall of pine trees, and a…


Photo by Sergio Medina

Inside The Beer Garden on Edgewood Avenue, across from that half restaurant-half frat house, Noni’s, Marchel, Eric, and I sat on barstools, having a simmering argument about names. I’ve had too many of them, apparently. Marchel was a bit disconcerted by this. Eric wasn’t partaking in the argument, so much, exactly; he was sitting to the right of us, sipping his double whiskey on the rocks, in slouching silence, almost like a turtle in the way he’d burp his chin off his palm every so on to give a groaning comment that partially favored one of our sides. …


Photo by Hansel Wong

It was like everything before. Five years ago. But with a different rucksack on my back and a much farther destination to cruise on after. The train six Zephyr had finally rolled in and I walked the side walk all the way down till I found the coach cab, with Amtrak uniformed joes asking along the way, “Where ya going?” And I’d respond back with a tired, cold “Chi-ca-go” and kept on. I rustled into the train and walked up the tight stairwell, finding an open section on the left side which was just the same as it had been…


Photo by Louie Castro-Garcia

“They’re a bunch of hooligans, fresh in from the Atlanta United match,” Jenn says, pointing her head toward the loud mob drinking by the jukebox in the back. “Don’t mind ’em.”

It’s been 6 years and 29 nights since the last time I was arrested. That night, my knuckles were worn out, and I got handcuffed and thrown into a cop car alongside some god-damned obnoxious white boy. A rich hick who’d gotten cuffed and thrown in right before me. During the short drive to the police station together, the hick sat to the right of me, throttling around, banging…

H. Jean Baptiste

H. Jean-Baptiste is a Haitian-American writer who once met Charlie Day after taking a piss at a Bartaco.

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