Grateful Mother by Kayla Pongrac

When I was a child I owned a teddy bear that I leashed and dragged into supermarkets and banks and shopping malls. His eyes never changed shape and his smile never rotted despite the dirt that he wore but could never wear well. When my mom eventually boxed him up and took him to our attic I remember watching her kiss him on the cheek and pat the top of his head as if to say – May all the dust settle in your lungs.

 About the author:

Kayla Pongrac is an avid writer, reader, tea drinker, and record spinner. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in theNewerYork, Split Lip Magazine, Oblong, The Bohemyth, DUM DUM Zine, and Mixtape Methodology, among others. When she’s not writing creatively, she’s writing professionally—for two newspapers and a few magazines in her hometown of Johnstown, PA. To read more of Kayla’s work, visit or follow her on Twitter @KP_the_Promisee