Sometimes the most horrible things that happen to us don’t show up in theatres or along the spines of novels. They have no title, and the blurb is too deep and felt too inarticulately to imagine. But horror can rescue us, too. We can’t describe the nameless thing that is trivialized by the mere attempt […]
The Tree of Breaking
A Story for the Fallen: One man stays away from windows and puts his back to the jambs of doorways, using the framing as a shield. No moving if the refrigerator compressor kicks on – you need your ears – every sound. Stay clear of the lamp – make no shadow. Don’t anticipate the recoil […]
Rewrite of a story from Oct 29, 2006 We had a large family together, ten children in all, some more successful than others. We were happy, oldest to youngest. But life throws curves to life, and ours was that our house caught fire with the children trapped inside. The flames were impossibly hot, but I […]
Don’t swing so high, my parents said. You’ll learn to fly, or you’ll wind up dead. You kick off with your knees. Your feet leave the ground and you immediately tilt back and encourage them skyward.
Everything was fine. We were fine. We were a family. Until the tree came up through the floor. It didn’t happen in a day, or a month, not even in a year, though by a year’s time we could feel the strangeness of it. It wound through our lives like blood courses through veins, spreading […]
There was an age of fire. It became so hot that it burned the first mother, even as she shielded her young from the inferno.
I looked at you, looking at me. At first, I basked in it. You would adjust your hair. You would smile. You would turn your face a little and look at me sideways. You were nervous and would fiddle with your clothes. I felt something I had never known. Longing. You filled me. You were […]
A man had twenty four hands, and each of his hands held a secret or an answer. He lived in Russia in 1913, under the reign of the last Tsar. There were many such itinerant people then, and many made their living from fortune telling or as oracles of astrological research. Let’s call him Ivan, […]
Racy Feder is the fastest sketch artist in the world. When the second tower fell in New York, she wasn’t taking a photograph, she was standing in the street, pencil in hand, making a sketch. When she was witness to two men making it out of the bank on 42nd Street with automatic weapons and […]
Mrs. Jenkins didn’t know about changing babies. She knew that when fruit spoiled, you tossed it out. She knew that when an egg turned, it went down the chute in the hall to the dumpster below, and presumably into the belly of some hobo desperate enough to fish it out. That’s why, when they asked […]