It’s a warble,” said her Uncle Ted. “See em in squirrels sometimes.” He drew on his cigarette and Leena watched its smoke spread out like fog around her mother’s face.

It was a typical summer Saturday afternoon, she and her mother “baking,” as her mother called it, in deck chairs around her aunt and uncle’s in-ground pool. Leena  and her mother had been staying there for two weeks while her father “packed his shit.”

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Samantha Atkins is a fiction writer from southern Indiana working on her MFA at Purdue University. She is the coordinator of Purdue’s visiting writers series and also the nonfiction editor of Sycamore Review. Atkins’s work can be found in Tahoma Review and the Madrid-based bilingual magazine Humanize. She was also short-listed for Glimmer Train’s New Writer Award in May 2015.

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