The Quotable

The Infidel

I flag him down when no one else will stop.
His truck comes to a halt— two flame stickers
On each side. He flashes two forearm tattoos—
One in Arabic, the other Hebrew.
Unbeliever, That’s me. I tell him home
Is on the other side of town. He hands
Me a few pebbles, his eyes on the road.
He whispers  Let’s play a game I call Signs—
Hit as many of the signs as you can.
Traveler, Let’s see if you’re better than me.
I throw a rock, then another. I’m good
At this. And he says “You are bad, so bad!”
My arm begins to writhe in the cold air,
I lunge like a snake perfecting the strike
And when I run out of stones I fall deep,
Disappearing, a vehicle of night.


Tasha Cotter’s work has recently appeared in or is forthcoming in Booth, The Rumpus, Contrary Magazine, and elsewhere. Her fiction was recently nominated for a storySouth Million Writers award, and she regularly blogs for Contrary Magazine. She received her MFA in Poetry from Eastern Kentucky University. You can find her online at

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The Quotable Issue 3 - Transformation