There never was a gator killing around here, contrary to everlasting rumor, and there was only one real murder, but it seems each bad thing that happens is like an incantation invoking the Binderup family, its women and their dying.
GIRLS WITH LONG SHADOWS
by Tennessee Hill
(via Park & Fine Literary and Media)
Identical triplets Baby A, Baby B, and Baby C Binderup came into the world as their mother left it, leaving them nameless and in the care of their Gram Isadora, whose maternal instincts died alongside her daughter. 19 years later, the triplets work at their Gram’s crumbling golf course, where the watchful eyes of the town observe them perched on lawnmowers, serving up glasses of lemonade to golfers and swimming in the murky waters of the river nearby, hoping to attract the kind of attention they are only beginning to understand.
Through the eyes of cautious Baby B, we watch as lustful Baby A and introverted Baby C find matches among the town boys. When even Baby B notices that the town’s golden boy seems to be intrigued by her, only her, it begins to appear that the young women’s wish to be seen as individuals has been granted – until a seemingly trivial kiss is gifted to the wrong sister. What comes next forces the sisters to confront the devastating implications of their collective anonymity. As insecurities become weapons and the tight bonds between sisters are severed, the threat of female teenage angst turns real and deadly, and the young women face a future where triplets must learn to be twins.
Tennessee Hill is a poet by trade; she was the 2022 Gregory Djanikian scholar and holds an MFA from North Carolina State University. Her work has been featured in POETRY, Best New Poets, Southern Humanities Review, Fugue, Arkansas International, and elsewhere. She is a South Texas native, where she still lives and teaches with her husband and their dog, Bark Ruffalo.