People say that without scientific rigor we learned nothing from the plague. Our parents did learn not to let us play among the bodies, but I wanted to learn something else. I was young enough to know that fear was beside the point, and old enough to care what would happen to my toes, and I found that rotting flesh was sweeter than nostalgia and discovered that was the last lesson I’ll never need to know.
--Jonathan Penton is the editor of www.UnlikelyStories.org and Unlikely Stories of the Third Kind. He has written four chapbooks of poetry: Last Chap (Vergin' Press, 2004), Painting Rust and Blood and Salsa (Unlikely Books, 2006) and Prosthetic Gods (New Sins Press, 2008). He is standoffish to the point of being unfriendly, which might be why he's so often accused of being an undercover cop, which confuses him because he'd expect undercover cops to be really ingratiating but he doesn't actually know.