Island Fever

I walked out of the Sheraton Waikiki half-drunk, the warm air heavy with the smell of sea and flowers and grilled food. Kalakaua Avenue was jammed with thousands of Japanese tourists, most of them a full head shorter than I. I drifted against the crowd as the sky above us turned a sudden purple, vivid…

A Wrong Un

The dump entrance was chained shut. Cringle swore and smacked the steering wheel. “I am so sick of this pandemic shit.” “So now what?” “This is what. ” He popped the truck into reverse, spattering dirt and gravel against the city’s CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE sign.  He slammed the shifter to drive and fishtailed up…

Last Respects

Gino walks through the dining room, smoothing tablecloths, straightening chairs, lining up silverware. He picks up a wineglass and holds it to the light. Spotless. In fact, the entire place is spotless, the staff having stayed late to make sure their restaurant will be at its best for this, its last day. Gino walks to…

Guys Like Him

“I wasn’t sure you’d come.” “You kidding? My curiosity is killing me.” “I just thought that after what he did. To you, I mean.” “And a whole lot of other women. Yeah, well. I’m over it. Getting over it, anyway. Maybe this will help.” “The detective told me that nobody’s been in here since he…

Before the Storm

After the emergency broadcast, he got busy, talking the whole time. “My great-grandfather was a whaler,” he said as he slid a heavy-duty cable over the bollard, cranking the capstan to draw the hull tight against the fenders. “He wrote about rounding the horn down by the roaring forties.” He tightened down the hatch battens. …

The Grim Journal

Saturday, September 26 The first of the leaves falling. It’s a month now since they took Molly to the hospital.  I often catch myself unconsciously weeping.   Wednesday, November 4 Frost came early this year. When the electricity is on I try to warm myself. There’s the gas range, but the ration box is late…