"Alice stood in front of a display of broccoli, waffling over whether or not to buy organic. It cost almost a dollar more, and once she'd found a plump, green caterpillar nestled in the florets like something mildly obscene..."
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“Fairway,” has been launched! Huge thanks to riverbabble, an imprint of Pandemonium Press, for publishing my flash fiction in their Seeing and Looking themed issue. I’m honored to be included with this talented group of writers, and what better place for “Fairway” than riverbabble, as it inspires us to look and see, and see some more.
I remember my mother, not unkindly (well, maybe not exactly kindly), telling me to stop staring at people with my mouth hanging open. Taking this good advice to heart, I learned to keep my mouth closed (not really, alas…) and my eyes and ears wide open so as not to miss a second of that crazy jumble of humanity that is our world.
See it here. Take a look! Enjoy.
The cherry blossoms have whisked away, the forsythia have had their fun. Spring rollicks into summer, and I’ve left a gray street and passionate darkness on the front page of my blog. This cannot stand. And who better to usher in the pleasures of summer than the rollicker himself, Sir Geoffrey?
How acutely I recall standing in the office of the Head of the English Department at Yale reciting the Prologue to The Canterbury Tales. I’d climbed and climbed the stone steps to the top floor of Linsly-Chittenden Hall to find…was the door open? The scene cuts to a book-lined garret, burnished wood and lancet windows, and there the Head, an ex-hockey player, waited, not old enough to be not confusing, and altogether too good looking, in a jock-y (Chaucer-toting?) way. Did I stumble through my recitation? Or maybe I had fun. That pesky thing, memory. So acute, but a trickster at heart, much like our friend, Geoffrey.
So here we are, ready to embark on summer’s next adventure. When read a few times out loud, the rhythm, even without footnotes, of Chaucer’s Prologue transports like Zephirus’ sweet breath or the prick of longing to go on a pilgrimage somewhere. Tally ho!
The Prologue to THE CANTERBURY TALES
By Geoffrey Chaucer (1340?-1400)
Here bygynneth the Book of the tales of Caunterbury
Whan that Aprille with his shoures soote,
The droghte of March hath perced to the roote,
And bathed every veyne in swich licóur
Of which vertú engendred is the flour;
Whan Zephirus eek with his swete breeth
Inspired hath in every holt and heeth
The tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne
Hath in the Ram his halfe cours y-ronne,
And smale foweles maken melodye,
That slepen al the nyght with open ye,
So priketh hem Natúre in hir corages,
Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages,
And palmeres for to seken straunge strondes,
To ferne halwes, kowthe in sondry londes;
And specially, from every shires ende
Of Engelond, to Caunterbury they wende,
The hooly blisful martir for to seke,
That hem hath holpen whan that they were seeke.
The blog is taking a hiatus from publication news to work on a longer project, but not before giving a nod to March, that fickle-bad-witch of budding trees, chopped ice, transcendent light and mud.
From “Time”by Dragana Tripković
“…I cannot promise you much but a gray street
and passionate darkness in the Ides of March.
Spring always brings a pile of survived decay,
undreamt winter loves
that shudder to melt into summer, white wine,
So take your time…”
P.S. Did you know that horse sweat smells of jasmine, orange blossom and Tide fabric softener? Or so I’ve learned courtesy of June Soulis, equestrienne star of the fictitious Byrd Family Circus from the soon-to-be (soon being a relative term) novel…
Farmer’s market season is just around the corner, even if last night’s deep freeze toasted the magnolia blossoms to shriveled, frost-burned blooms. Which makes this a perfect time for a story that takes place under the stars surrounded by abundance and bitty bites brownies.
I’m honored to have “Ray’s Juice” included in the March issue of Foundling Review, “where simple pleasures are corralled into folds of finely finessed sentences.”
To read “Ray’s Juice,” click here.
Come join us for what promises to be a fun and fabulous evening at the historic Warner Library in Tarrytown, NY!
Authors Lori DeSanti, Ann Podracky, Andrea Stone and I will read from the anthology SIBLINGS: Our First Macrocosm. Works of poetry, memoir, and story explore and celebrate the mystery of those earliest relationships with those who knew us before we knew ourselves.
“Our families, especially our siblings, provide our first macrocosm. How much of that experience do we carry out into the world as part of our deepest, inchoate expectations of the world and of our self?”
If you can’t make the reading but would like to order a copy of the book, click here and use the code “Tarrytown” for free shipping.
I’m thrilled that “Toroid” is now live and online at Pithead Chapel! I could not imagine a better home for “Toroid” than Pithead Chapel, which publishes “gutsy narratives…[that] leave a brilliant bruise.”
“Toroid” holds a special place in my heart, in part because it’s an homage to those ancient emperors in spirit, of which my father was one, who create wormholes in the universe. My father was not a mathematician like the one in the story, but he was a poet – a bit cracked, shades of a tyrant, yet someone who scoured his soul in the pursuit of truth and beauty.
“Toroid” has earned its own category in my mind, if only because I’ve been writing and revising this story for five years. You heard it, folks, five blimey years (“blimey: a minced oath from [God] blind me”–Wicktionary). Even a real, live baby only takes nine months. Over the years the story expanded and contracted, shape shifting and boiling itself down into the condensation you find here. Enjoy!
The Flexible Persona is the small press equivalent to the local farmer’s market, where every visit is an adventure, and you get to meet the people who grow the pumpkins or harvest the pears. The magazine features authors reading their stories aloud, and the personal timbre of each voice lends a vulnerability that becomes part of the tale being told, a perfect accompaniment to the original musical compositions that have been chosen for each piece. A special shout-out to Nathan Corder, whose composition, “Fabric,”—a high, reverberating wire pulled tight against the resonant keening of a trombone, a whale song, a hawk, stretched across the sky—accompanies “Ordinary.”
So grab your laptop, head out to a hammock strung between the trees, and click here to take a listen.