My short story “Posies” appears in The Chamber today.
You can find it here: https://thechambermagazine.com/2021/11/19/posies-post-apocalyptic-fiction-by-jason-kahler/
“Posies” is a lot more like a tone poem than a narrative, though there is a story there. Post-apocalypse, even!
I’ve always preferred an unexplained apocalypse. The Walking Dead never really gets into why there’s a zombie plague (at least in what I’ve seen and read), and Night of the Living Dead just vaguely points to a returned satellite as maybe having something to do with it.
Since I’m not a scientist, I’m when a story starts after whatever big event brought about the end of the world, and it’s just people figuring out how to deal with it.
“Posies” does that, though not as successfully as I’d hoped, maybe. It does end with the creepiest imagery I’ve ever written, that echo across some of the worst moments of American history.
I’ve always thought that end-of-the-world stories were a battle between whether people can be better than we were before, or if we’re helpless to avoid returning to old habits.
“Posies” doesn’t present the answer I’d prefer, but stories go where they go.