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117 on the door. Alex checks his slip of paper. It’s a match. He makes a fist, knocks. The door opens. Low voices inside. Margaret introduces her guests. “This is Tara, this is Esther.” Esther steps forward toward Alex.

“Don’t I know you?”
“I don’t think so.”
“What do you do?”
“I’m a singer.”

Esther snorts. “I mean, ‘What do you do for money?’”

Margaret rushes back to her guests, puts Alex’s hand in hers, leads him to the couch. “Pay her no mind. Truly, thank you for coming. He thanks you, too.” She points to the bump in her dress.

Esther shambles over, apologizes. Alex sees now she’s drunk.

“Betty Crocker cake, dollar store party hats… the most pathetic baby shower there ever was.”

Still, Margaret is happy. Esther, Tara and Alex put candles in the cake. They feel they should sing something, so they sing happy birthday. Margaret laughs. She closes her eyes, makes a wish—blows out the candles.


from Small Comforts, released January 27, 2023


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The Chairman Dances Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Band/mystics (indie rock & folk from Philly)

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