Five to Four

George stood at his mother’s door and composed his expression. For years now the mere mention of Arlington was apt to send her into fits, and her health had not been good. She could read his face like a headline. Still, this was good news––of a sort. He tapped and entered. She sat upright in […]

The Lost

“This store like one of those charm bracelets,” she said, “only the chain is broken.” “Uh huh.” He was inspecting a framed set of trout flies, each with its  name neatly inked below it. Yellow Stone Fly. Beetle Bug Fly. She plucked a photograph from a basket marked 2 for 50 cent. A man and a […]

Sükhbaatar Well Met

“Have you ever seen such a horseman?” Yanjmaa had not. Certainly she had seen great riders, even a Mongol cavalryman famous for throwing a dagger and skewering a running rabbit as he galloped past,  reigning in and bending in the saddle to retrieve both weapon and quarry in one quick motion. But she had never […]

Principles

“I’m a pacifist,” he’d told Eddie Arnold, a foot taller and two grades ahead of him. “So that means you won’t fight back if I hit you?” “Violence doesn’t solve anything,” he’d said. “It’s barbaric.” “What did you call me?” said Eddie, who immediately whipped him two hard blows in the face that knocked him […]

Bump In A Long Road

She ran her hands over her leather-clad thighs, flexed her fingers. Her trusty Bell helmet had been knocked askew in the tumble but seemed sound enough. She pulled it around so she could see her situation. Her motorbike was on its side, about six feet from the cliff edge. She breathed a sigh of relief, […]

To End All Wars

They used to tell me I was building a dream And so I followed the mob When there was earth to plow or guns to bear I was always there right on the job They used to tell me I was building a dream With peace and glory ahead Why should I be standing in […]

Then, and Now

He took his time with the adze, setting it against the wood with relaxed precision and drawing it across the grain as though floating a scarf through the air. The bright curls of oak drifted down onto the toes of his boots. He set the adze aside and ran his hand along the smooth board, […]

Tuesday Maybe?

The skylight blazed hot on her face. She opened her eyes. Pain. Oh God, she thought. Not again. She raised up on her elbows and looked around. She was lying on a butcher block table, pots and implements suspended above her as though dropping randomly from some airborne kitchen. Tamping down a swelling nausea, she sat up […]

Fantasmas Em Toda Parte

I learn this from Bonifatius Mbwale. He is known to lie, but to tell a proper story both truth and lies are often employed. Bonifatius is a man of such power that it is better to believe him than not, for to contradict him can lead to many evils. Bonifatius tell me, “You walk around […]

Orgins

She lived at the end of the row of squat stone houses. There were seven of them all told, hulking and sullen, tough as old wood. Dorothy was somewhere in the middle, but the largest of any of them, with a soft woman’s body that belied her tremendous physical strength. She was fond of teasing […]