Truth in Silence

It was years before I realized my father was a criminal. I am sometimes tempted to argue this point, but everybody already has an opinion. Once the tabloids got hold of a story,  it didn’t matter if what they said was true or not. When a mob smells blood, that’s all the bastards can think […]

Mister Nervous

Ellie’s voice in the darkness. “Mommy.” “What is it, honey? You have another bad dream.” In answer she crawls into the warm bed, face wet and hot. I hold her slim back as she sobs. I stroke her hair. “You want to tell me about it?” “It’s Mister Nervous,” she says. “He comes in because […]

An American God

Every fifteen February we come down to Tanna for John Frum’s Day. Chief Isaac, he give us the GIs we all wear, each one with a flag. My woman Wanda at the time, she embroider the flags on here, as you see. These rifle we make ourself from the bamboo, except for Chief Isaac. Chief […]

Terrors Shall Drive Him

Terrors shall make him afraid on every side, and shall drive him to his feet.  -Job 18:11 When it gets dark I begin to worry in earnest. A quick trip to the shopping center usually takes all of two hours, but it’s now closer to six. For the tenth time I check to see my […]

Not If, When

Clive and me always planned on retiring to Spain or Majorca someday. Someplace warm, anyway. Maybe planned is too strong a word. More like wished, since the pay of a London  cabbie don’t go as far as it once did. All this changed when he come back to the flat after work with  an expression on […]

Led to the Noose in Diapers

I was in town and arranged to meet him for tea. He looked older. We all did. He rose to shake my hand. “Haven’t seen you since Toyko,” he said with a trace of a smile. I’d been one of those tasked with the delivery system. His job was the chemistry, Others in the group […]

The Middle Kingdom

Old Liao spent most of his hours watching the trains through the window. He ignored his grandchildren’s noisy inattention as they ran around the apartment with their phones and music. He remembered how he had respected his own grandmother, a raisin-faced woman whom none in his village could remember ever being young. Liao watched a […]