An excerpt from the novel "Dust Collectors"

by Lucie Faulerová
Translated from the Czech by Alex Zucker

It was the worst moment of her life—except for all the others, that is. It was the worst moment of my life—except for all the others, that is. Except for the ones behind me now, waving to me with that look of satisfaction from a job well done, and except for the ones looking forward to me, shuffling their feet in anticipation, watching out for my arrival, chins lifted and arms spread wide.

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Caitlyn Garcia
Name

by Marek Šindelka
Translated from the Czech by Nathan Fields

The grain is smooth and shined like a pearl. Hardly half a millimeter in length. Its origin is unclear. Maybe the remains of undersea mountains on the bottom of the ancient ocean, maybe a tiny particle of Saharan sand transported by subtropical wind from continent to continent. Maybe (and this is most probable) it is just ordinary debris without meaning or past. The grain, along with a number of others, is stuck onto a tiny piece of apple pulp full of putrid bacteria. The pulp glistens and ferments.

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Caitlyn Garcia
Vertigo

by Bianca Bellová
Translated from the Czech by Julia Sutton-Mattocks

There’s no avoiding it. Everyone suffers from it up here, even if they don’t speak about it. It grips your bowels like a citrus juicer. Vertigo seizes you with such strength that it paralyses you right from the tips of your fingers to your respiratory muscles. You have to resist it from the very first and crowd it out, as fast as you can, or it will eat you alive.

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Caitlyn Garcia
An excerpt from the novel “Hinterland”

by Jana Šrámková
Translated from the Czech by Andrea Goldbergerová

And then there was an awful humming sound, and it already fell down, flying crossways, it just cut out a portion of our house from the side like this. Wouldn’t you go hide in the cellar? We would, we had been there three times at night, but there was no time, I don’t know why they did not sound the alarm, nobody was expecting it.

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Caitlyn Garcia
An excerpt from the novel "Hana"

by Alena Mornštajnová
Translated from the Czech by Andrea Goldbergerová

That year, the smell of disinfectant filled the air instead of spring. The houses were huddled to one another, as if they wanted to be comforted in the desolation also surrounding the figures walking through the town streets. Feuds and neighborly quarrels—which seemed important a few weeks ago—were put aside and all conversation revolved only around powerlessness, fear and disease.

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Caitlyn Garcia
Lalibela

by Kateryna Kalytko
Translated from the Ukrainian by Oleksandra Gordynchuk

The icon rode in the wagon with him amid sacks full of last year’s potatoes. This grim man in a clunker with a wagon has been Osyp's only chance for a ride on the way there, but at least he was able to stretch his legs out. The potatoes were sprouting; he could even hear their shoots moving in the sacks. The fabric in which the icon was wrapped, slid down a little, revealing a corner of a colorful canvas, and a stray bee, woken by an early warm spell, tried to land on it. Osyp saw this as a good sign and didn’t even worry that the bee would inevitably die once it got colder again.

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Caitlyn Garcia
Funeral

by Kateryna Khinkulova
Translated from the Ukrainian by Oleksandra Gordynchuk


I did not bury Tanya – I scattered her ashes in Paris. All this romantic appeal – dying somewhere but not in Paris, bridges over the Seine, whatever – really got under my skin. I stood on one of the bridges, Bolik sleeping in his stroller. It wasn’t the Mirabeau Bridge, but I could see the Eiffel Tower and the Musee d’Orsay from it anyway. I didn’t have enough courage to do this during the day, so we came late at night when it got completely dark.

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Caitlyn Garcia
There Are No Happy Loves: A Retrospective of Forgotten Films

by Sophie Gertrude Strohmeier

A brief encounter in Brussels at Christmas, then the flight eastwards: a housewife and a shopgirl caught up in an amour fou that will lose itself, unresolved, in a criss crossing of limbs and European landscapes, finally coming to a standstill in Trieste, along the Slovenian border. At the edge of the Western world, one burning question: where do lovers go when all has been escaped from?

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Caitlyn Garcia
An excerpt from "Offended Sensibilities"

by Alisa Ganieva
Translated from the Russian by Isaac Stackhouse Wheeler

The three law enforcement men had already been clicking around the parquet of the downstairs rooms for quite a while, two citizens deputized to witness the search trudging along behind them, gaping at the fancy décor of the Lyamzin house.

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Caitlyn Garcia
The Youth of Gerhardt Frei

by Oleksiy Chupa
Translated from the Ukrainian by Zenia Tompkins

These days no one would even remember who Gerhardt Frei was. Yet, some sixty-odd years ago, this name ended up at the center of most kitchen table conversations throughout the city. After the final rout of the Third Reich, he, along with thousands of other German POWs, was sent here, to our part of Eastern Ukraine, for construction work. Frei was taken prisoner all the way out in the suburbs of Berlin.

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Caitlyn Garcia
The Yellow Chinese Jeep

by Serhiy Zhadan
Translated from the Ukrainian by Hanna Leliv and Isaac Stackhouse Wheeler

The story I’m about to tell could’ve only happened at Christmas time. It has all the traditional elements of a Christmas story: the Magi, the messengers, the angels singing in a pomegranate-red December sky, and a sense of mystery living inside every one of us. If you listen carefully, this story will, if anything, seem to imply that mystery in its pristine form always exists somewhere around us. All you have to do is stop acting like you’re above it all and try to feel its presence. 

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Caitlyn Garcia
A Room for Sorrow

by Andriy Lyubka
Translated from the Ukrainian by Reilly Costigan-Humes and Isaac Stackhouse Wheeler

From the outside, his building looked absolutely ordinary. The old, two-story stone structure had been divided into four apartments. His was on the first floor of the right wing. The neighbors didn’t exactly know what he did all day. Perhaps they noticed that he only left the building on rare occasions and almost never in the morning, which meant he didn’t work or worked from home. 

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Caitlyn Garcia
Losers Want More

by Tanja Maljartschuk
Translated from the Ukrainian by Zenia Tompkins

A certain man lived up to age 33 in peace and harmony. He had a job, he had a family, he had relatives and acquaintances. He had two good friends with whom he met up once a month. Together they would put back four mugs of beer each, they’d talk over their jobs, families, relatives and acquaintances, then would part ways, happy and tipsy, to their respective homes to sleep. 

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Caitlyn Garcia
Happy Naked People

by Kateryna Babkina
Translated from the Ukrainian by Hanna Leliv

I bought those photographs – the entire album – for 70 euros at Place du Jeu de Balle in Brussels. Roma always said I didn’t know the value of money, and he was probably right. I don’t like flea markets; I prefer new, nice stuff. Roma’s the complete opposite, though.

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Caitlyn Garcia