Tell Me Again

“Where did you say they are?” “I told you.” “Tell me again.” “They’re in the walls. And other places.” “What other places?” “Everywhere.” “What do you mean, everywhere?” “You know. Wherever. The ceiling. The floor. The electricity.” “They’re in the electricity?” “Yes. Don’t ask me how. But they are there. I can hear them in […]

Hard Livings

I was born here and never left here until Bishop Aldean set up the student exchange program where a couple of us kids got to go to the States for a year. That was alright. I pitied the poor bastards who come to Manenberg while I go to Kansas City, but I learned later the […]

This Affliction

For me, the affliction largely occurs in the very early morning before I head off to work. I get up at four AM and write for a couple of hours until it’s time for exercise, breakfast, hygiene.  Then whoopee-boy, eight hours of work in the cubicle hive! My current contract has me designing interfaces for a giant […]


“Hello?” “It’s Jim.” “I almost didn’t pick up. What’s this number?” “Pay phone.” “I didn’t know they still had those.” “It’s at a rest stop on I-35. Lost my cell phone. Long story.” “I bet.” “So what’s happening? You at the hospital?” “No. Not anymore.” “Shit.” “Yeah, brother. You missed it. You’re too late.” “When?” […]


In the spring of 1953,  an immigrant farmer named Ünger Möller was hit by inspiration while mowing a hayfield. He was convinced it was the voice of God as heard by Noah and Moses before him. God commanded Ünger to create a spectacular carnival on his property. The modern amusement park had not yet been […]

The Fetching Party

Braniff mopped his face and wished for the thousandth time he had not come on the fetching party. Digger Blake had tried to discourage him. “Not necessary, Colonel. Me and my boongs will find ’em for you. See Charlie there?” He had pointed to the black-skinned aboriginal squatting on the dirt, a tin cup of […]

Hemingway’s Birthday

For Hemingway’s birthday, a bit of his flash fiction (before it was called that). Cat in the Rain, from 1925, is a remarkable study of using the unsaid to tell a powerful story. This is similar to the more famous Hills Like White Elephants. I like this one more. CAT IN THE RAIN There were […]


When I met Doc he shook my hand like a man, told war stories with a southern accent. My best friend Reno introduced him to me. Doc, he said, was cool. Doc had a nice house, a marble sculpture. Greek boys wrestling, masculine furniture, heirlooms and aged books, a Colt’s revolver on the nightstand next to a […]