The Softness of Flesh by Sarah Mitchell-Jackson (September 2020 Winner)
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Even on a calm day, when the sea looks flat, dangerous currents twist and eddy beneath the surface.




            “No. No siblings,” I lie, looking her in the eye and smiling slightly. I know how to do this, having had to so many times before. I don’t know her, this woman at the school gates, so it makes no odds.

            An image of Scott buttoned into his blue duffle coat, on our playground at school, flicks across my mind’s eye. Sometimes I see him in my son, Finn, and it chills me. Just a flash of expression, something about the cast of his brow, maybe even his cheekbones.


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