The Cure

Any regular reader of the tabloid press will tell you that it’s not a matter of money. It’s not a matter of success. Last year I was paid three million an episode, plus residuals. I had a loft in Tribeca, a stilt-house on Maui and a recently-acquired chateau in the Basque Pyrenees. I had a stack of scripts […]

God’s Newest Country

The boy stares into the wake as the keelboat churns slowly up the river, the twin motors groaning in the current. An endless green canopy stretches away on every side, clouds of birds erupting from the trees as the boat passes. He watches the Captain’s broad back as he turns the wheel against the water. Mama […]


I got off work early and arrived around midnight. The leaden sky was pregnant with snow, the cold air stinging my lungs. Uncle John had pulled strings with the nursing staff to extend visiting hours, since Grandma had always been a night owl.  I entered through the ER and made my way through the dim hallways, glancing through […]


The itching was almost unbearable. The starched Arrow shirt chafed against the  new irizumi tattoos that covered Takahashi from waist to collarbone, the final stage of a five year initiation into the Sumiyoshi-Kai family of Yakuza. The thought of his four thousand years of Samurai lineage did little to relieve his discomfort, and he longed for his uncle […]

Not at Home

Valentine’s Day was a Sunday that first year, I remember.  The cat marked the occasion by presenting us with three headless voles left on the doormat.  We didn’t think anything of it, since some cats are like that. It’s in all the books. But the next holiday, St. Patrick’s, he presented us with a brace […]

Carn Horneck

The healer stood over the bed, enshrouded in smoke from the bronze brazier he dangled over the prostrate king. Erwald lay on his royal bed of heather, wracked with fever  and calling out in a strange tongue none could understand. Garth leaned in the doorway, his face a placid mask that betrayed none of the dismay he felt. […]

Serpiente Oculta

The only reason he agreed to meet me, he said, was that his life was over. Estoy muerto pero no me acuesto, was how he put it. I am dead but I won’t lie down. I sat on a  bench in the Bosque de Chapultepec, just outside the castle, the location  texted to my phone an hour […]

Milk From a Bucket

Once I ate cites whole every step a rending tear, tight jaws around fabric of flesh a whited glare sluicing strangers’ faces dry of all but haste the every flavor quick forgotten, ground to ash harvests of cabbage grown from small seed watered all the dry summer only to be hacked from October mud throat-slit […]

The River Through The Trees

April showers, they say. It had not stopped raining since December. It might slack off  some, drop to a drizzle, but then it would start back up stronger than ever. The ground was all thick mud where it wasn’t standing water, the trees bending with the weight of their swollen branches.  I figured Pa was all right […]

Boy Griggs

Sunday morning all us survivors meet at The Grand Canyon Cafe.  Ah Su takes good care of us. It was her uncle opened the place back in 1942. Route 66 was just a two-lane road, though it did reach all the way to Chicago even then. At first it was strict Chinese, but Flagstaff used to be a working […]