Filed under Short Story

IT REALLY WAS ALL JUST THE SAME

IT REALLY WAS ALL JUST THE SAME

John left for work at 7am every morning, never later. Well sometimes later and it upset him when he was late. It didn’t happen too often as he was used to this routine, but it would upset him just the same. John worked all day as hard as he could, being that he’s been working … Continue reading

HOMELESS NEWS: THE LEVANT

HOMELESS NEWS: THE LEVANT

Homeless News is back and UP to the minute and ahead of the curve here. HN reports that now that the war in Iraq is back on, prepare to be inundated with pundits and politico talking-heads once again mispronouncing the name of the country. It’s not Eye-rack, it’s E-rock. Know the language. Eyerack is from the old times. George Bush times, … Continue reading

YOUR GOD DOESN’T RUN THIS COUNTRY

YOUR GOD DOESN’T RUN THIS COUNTRY

She wasn’t looking forward to seeing his parents today. Louise hadn’t spent one on one time with them yet, and the way Tom went on about them, she didn’t want to. It seemed Tom had nothing nice to say about them, and her impression was that they were the intolerant types, and self-righteous. Tom always said he was raised “well enough” in … Continue reading

I MADE THE WEDDING

I MADE THE WEDDING

“I can’t do this day,” said the burly man to himself, breathing heavily and laboring to tighten his bow tie. Josh reached in his pocket and pulled out the locket, and turned it in his calloused hands. “I remember your smile.” He stood in the parking lot of St Andrews Chapel 1895, shuffling his feet. … Continue reading

HEART LINE

HEART LINE

“I told you it was bad.” “Yeh but it’s okay. I don’t mind being here, staying with you.” Laura picked up the pitcher of iced tea from the nightstand and freshened his glass. “I can get more ice and lemon wedges if you want, you need to stay hydrated, that’s what the doctor said.” She handed … Continue reading

DIFFERENT FOR EVERYONE

DIFFERENT FOR EVERYONE

Marty hadn’t seen his father since the big blow up. That was almost three years ago. Blow up doesn’t even do justice to how embarrassing and pathetic a scene it really was. But wasn’t that how it always went? With the fighting and yelling and hurt feelings? The modus operandi really. And for as long as … Continue reading

BAY LEAVES

BAY LEAVES

“Well doc, I think I might take down the bay leaves, that’s a start. I know it’s not a New Year’s resolution per se, but a whole ‘nother year of looking at them isn’t gonna do me a hill of beans of good. I just can’t look at them up there anymore, ya know?” “I … Continue reading

THE LOCKET in the Piker Press

THE LOCKET in the Piker Press

Published in the Piker Press “Well I can’t help if it takes time. It does, right?” There were no customers in the store and Eunice had been vacuuming and was now back behind the counter, windexing the display case and fussing around with the jewelry inside. She’d worked here eighteen years and always had a sense … Continue reading

THE DEL MUNDO

THE DEL MUNDO

It was a cold dark night, yes that. Flamenco Street, 1 am. The cafes were closing up and the only sound was Jaime’s boots hitting the cobblestone street. It hadda be winter, of course. The wind blew dry as a bone. Jaime pulled his coat to his neck and swiftly made way down Flamenco, trying … Continue reading

GYPSY HILL

GYPSY HILL

Published in the January Piker Press I spend most of my mornings sitting on a park bench. A particular one in Gypsy Hill Park. Now that I’ve quit the rat race and been off the treadmill for awhile, it’s become a regular part of my morning routine. My very early morning routine. There’s a promenade around … Continue reading

COOP

COOP

No one cared much anymore. The usual suspects who would have caused a ruckus in the past were quiet- evidence of how times had changed. All the former chatter about a “homosexual agenda” now seemed passé, out of date. There was a time when having a man who was single or divorced at the helm of the … Continue reading

LUNCHBOX

LUNCHBOX

I put a surprise cookie in your lunchbox today.   I tucked it underneath the black peppered turkey sandwich I made for you. The one on the 13-grain whole wheat bread you love so much, with the cajun mayonnaise you think is so special. It gives me such pleasure to make your lunch for you everyday. This is something I wouldn’t trade … Continue reading

LESBIAN PASS

LESBIAN PASS

She talked about the dog next door. “I like him well enough. I never hear him bark. Actually you hardly even know he’s there. He looks more like a pig to me, at first that’s what I thought. But black. He walks around like a pig is the funny thing, with his nose down in the … Continue reading

MORE HOMELESS NEWS

MORE HOMELESS NEWS

This morning at dusk while outside watering her prize heirloom roses, Mrs. Sullivan reports walking into a cloud of bats. Did you know that’s what it’s called, a cloud? We here at Homeless News had to look it up. She says she innocently turned a corner and a single bat swooped low in front of her. … Continue reading

LIFE AFTER MOXIE

LIFE AFTER MOXIE

Moxie sat in the doctor’s office, waiting. Why is it so mandatory to be on time for an appointment but these doctors are always late? A travesty of justice! She spent her time reading an old issue of Vanity Fair, with that deliciously pretentious Christopher Hitchens going on and on about the integrity of his … Continue reading

NANTUCKET

NANTUCKET

Dear Bitsy, Your behavior last night was abhorrent. You hit a few too many Cosmopolitans there eh girl? How many times have I told you you can’t hold your liquor like you used to? Those days are gone Bitsy. Your rambling diatribes about the “state of things” nowadays were not only misinformed and naïve, but … Continue reading

ANOTHER HOUR OR SO

ANOTHER HOUR OR SO

Momma was in the kitchen and Katie sat on the sofa across from me, relieved to have completed the long and arduous drive down the interstate from DC, what with all those eighteen-wheelers and the holiday traffic from too many states to count. She’d been nervous about meeting the family, but she and Momma seemed to … Continue reading

CURSED

CURSED

Hector felt like he was getting bedsores. But just turning over was a huge chore, exhausting. And he was in the hospital anyway, isn’t that what you’re supposed to do there? Stay in your bed trying to sleep it off,  while a worker comes in periodically and takes your blood, another comes in and checks … Continue reading

YOU KNOW IT

YOU KNOW IT

We made way into the living room fashionably late, where hors d’oeuvres were laid out on the coffee and end tables, and soft music played courtesy of a harpist- a very atmospherically appealing room no doubt. It was already a bit crowded but we found a spot on the sofa by the fireplace. The crowd … Continue reading

I REMEMBER YOUR SMILE

I REMEMBER YOUR SMILE

And it’s beautiful. I remember a time when I would see it quite often, and now that I think about it, I certainly took it for granted back then. Otherwise why would I be sitting here talking about it alone and without you? It’s been so long since I’ve seen it, and when I think … Continue reading

CONNECTIVE TISSUE

CONNECTIVE TISSUE

Rob sat in his chair with the phone cocked to his ear, listening to the eighty-five voice mails that had accumulated during his week-long absence. Lots to catch up on here for sure, but isn’t that the way it always went down when he missed work? He’d sure the hell missed too much lately. He clutched … Continue reading

GOOD FATHER

GOOD FATHER

I had a dream about my dad last night. Well it was a fuzzy dream, you know. He was in it or as it is in that REM type of dreaming, the thought and vague impression of him was there. The presence of him. Well anyway it was interspersed with other dreamy things, those visions … Continue reading

MEET JOHN TAYLOR

MEET JOHN TAYLOR

I enjoy silly string more than the average person. I laughed when Anderson Cooper got scared by the fake Bigfoot. The lady in the library’s smug for some reason. They’re mowing down trees and building roads and putting up stores and the weather’s nice and there’s lots of activity all around. I had giggles yesterday when … Continue reading

LEMMING in the Piker Press

LEMMING in the Piker Press

Published in The Piker Press You’d think he woulda learned his lesson. But no. It was 2AM and he heard his cell phone ringing and started to feel around under the covers and his pillow to find it. Who calls at 2AM? Bleary eyed, he found the phone and looked at the Caller ID. Oh, I … Continue reading

NOT NIHILISTIC

NOT NIHILISTIC

First appeared in the The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature It’s a common thing around here. Family cemeteries in people’s backyards or somewhere on their land. On land that’s been passed down from generation to generation. There are currently laws on the books protecting this sacred land from development. Would you want to build a … Continue reading

THE LANDING

THE LANDING

Published in the Piker Press July 2013. No it’s very flat. It’s not like here,” she said, indicating the surrounding mountains with motioning hands. “It was hilly in spots but not much. Where I grew up, next to my Grandpa’s farm, we used to spend a lot of time working the land- but also spent … Continue reading

LIFE AS AN AESTHETE

LIFE AS AN AESTHETE

Published in the Piker Press Harry was upstairs in the bedroom with the door locked. Like usual. He’d just returned yesterday from his eighth-grade camping trip, and while the very thought of having to spend any time with his classmates in any way, shape or form made him thoroughly sick to his stomach, overall it … Continue reading

COINSTAR

COINSTAR

Around 6am I went to the grocery store to use the Coinstar as I’m known to do and it was out of order. I jokingly and with feigned indignation dropped my tupperware of coins on the counter in front of the ready cashier and told her to “start counting”. Being the little darling that she … Continue reading

MOUSSAKA

MOUSSAKA

“I’m really mad at you, don’t you feel bad about that?” The waiter took away her menu. She ordered the moussaka, here where she says it reminds her the most of the moussaka her grandma used to make when she was growing up, the most “authentic” is how she put it, closest to real “old … Continue reading

HOMELESS NEWS SPRING PLEDGE DRIVE

HOMELESS NEWS SPRING PLEDGE DRIVE

This just in: Arthur Delaney of the Huffington Post reports that the U.S. Labor Department announced that “the economy has been steadily adding jobs, pushing the unemployment rate down to 7.5 percent from 7.6 percent.” Mr. Delaney adds, “The improvement won’t mean much to people without jobs, especially people who’ve been unemployed a long time.” … Continue reading

CHECKOUT LINE

CHECKOUT LINE

“You use humor as a defense mechanism,” she said. “No, actually I use it offensively.” The cashier asked for and scanned his Shrewd Shopper Discount Card. “The pizza’s two-for-one Sir.” “How so?” She was caught off-guard, eyebrows raised, hands on hips. “Well, you tell me. Who here’s on defense?”

KUDZU

KUDZU

He pushed the shovel down in the dirt and turned it over. This was gonna be easy. The morning was brisk and the sky was blue and no doubt it was gonna warm up quick. He moved swiftly, thinking about the cash that would be leaving with him. He sang a little bit of that Paint … Continue reading

COMPLICATIONS

COMPLICATIONS

“No I work two other part-time jobs too- one of them cleaning houses and the other picking up people’s garbage.” “Oh so like you’re a garbage woman? You ride around on the back of a truck for the county or something? In a uniform?” “No no, on my own- I have a few that I … Continue reading

HIGH RIDGE AREA FOOD BANK

HIGH RIDGE AREA FOOD BANK

Brenda has lived out in the county for over twenty years. Her ex-husband hasn’t worked in over two, leaving her with no child support for her three young children. She’s struggled to keep up with the house payments and been in danger of foreclosure for months, this despite working two jobs. She’s been coming to … Continue reading

ECOTONE

ECOTONE

He thought he ruled the world. Well HIS world, at least. In all his days no one around Jimmy much disputed he was in charge. A mover and a shaker. He met Valerie when they were still in high school, and when he knocked her up and both sets of parents insisted he do right … Continue reading

BUZZ KILL

BUZZ KILL

Fixated. On oddities. From time to time, strange little things. I face them head on when they come up. Then they go away. Until they rear their ugly heads again.  They always do. Know what I mean? I hate my neighbor. His fat, puffy face. His awkward gait. His squeaky, incoherent way of talking. Well … Continue reading

LOVE IS WHAT YOU NEED

LOVE IS WHAT YOU NEED

Remember when you told me my old truck wouldn’t pull a slick prick out of a lard bucket? Well I thought about it and you’re just plain slicker than otter snot. Slicker than cat shit on linoleum. It’s so hard to deal with you.  It’s like tryin to put butter up a wildcat’s ass with … Continue reading

HOMELESS NEWS

HOMELESS NEWS

Of all the wacky things we thought Facebook might roll out for its ninth birthday, Homeless News most coveted the replacement of the LIKE button with the YAY! button. Facebook’s been flat. The LIKE overused. We really need some pep. We’d rather click on YAY! The world’s too morose. Talks of more deal-making today sent the … Continue reading

BEAUTIFUL OUTSIDE

BEAUTIFUL OUTSIDE

I don’t think she looked around in a while. When I walked in I couldn’t help notice several of the pictures on the walls were cockeyed. Not level. One in the living room-that seventies looking Buddha thing she got at the schlock market in Taos several years back, when she was honored with her lifetime achievement … Continue reading

LOOK AT ME

LOOK AT ME

I know how much you love me. Don’t worry, I’m not going anywhere. I’m staying right here. You can spend time with me now or later. Whenever. But I can tell by the way you’re looking at me you want to right now. Yes, look at me. I don’t mind. When was the last time … Continue reading

THICK AS A BRICK

THICK AS A BRICK

My husband is so mad at me. Again. I oughta be used to it by now, but he’s really starting to grate on my last nerve. Today it was the weatherman that got him all riled up. “Being wrong again,” is how he put it. Said it over and over too. Shouting at the TV telling … Continue reading

ACME PLUMBLING

ACME PLUMBLING

Are you having plumbing problems? Acme’ll send a guy over to root and unclog your pipes. We’ll remove all obstructions and free you up good as new. When’s the last time you had them cleaned out? Feels like forever huh? I’m sure they could use it. Has your well run bone dry? Acme’ll send a … Continue reading

PERCY

PERCY

Was I ever gonna learn not to fall into the same pattern? It never failed, over and over. I’m the guy that always overestimated people, gave them too much credit. I’m the great encourager. And every time it let me down. Why? Haven’t I acted in good faith?  It’s a “belief in fellow man” thing is … Continue reading

EARWORM

EARWORM

I have terrible earworm.  You remember they talked about that on the radio last week?  That’s when something pops into your brain like a hit song from years ago that you haven’t heard in like forever and you can’t get it off your mind. The guy on the radio used the example for him of … Continue reading

INDIGO

INDIGO

Indigo just wasn’t gonna have it. She’d been working too hard for too long, and without any contribution from her Joebob either. LETCH! The grandkids had been having all sorts of problems and drama, and Sophie dropped them in her lap again and gone God only knows where. And on her day off too, what … Continue reading

RED-BLOODED AMERICANS

RED-BLOODED AMERICANS

Did you ever have one of those days? I did yesterday and still don’t know what to make of it. I friggin worked my ass off too. I can’t remember the last time I had a goddamn day off to just lie around the house and do nothing. A day when the wife and kids … Continue reading

GOTTA HAVE A TWIST

GOTTA HAVE A TWIST

Hollywood is exciting to say the least. I finally heard from that Executive Producer. He called asking for script changes and for me to do some rewrites right quick. I didn’t mind that he called, of course. They told me he’d call.  Besides, everyone seemed to really like the story so I was looking forward to … Continue reading

FROM SOUTH BEND

FROM SOUTH BEND

“You sir, are an articulate and sincere advocate for your position, but of course I am diametrically opposed. Thank you for stating your case, I do appreciate you clarifying your talking points. But in this day and age, I doubt you’ll reign supreme. The numbers are evidence of what the American people want. The demographics … Continue reading

OUT IN THE COLD

OUT IN THE COLD

I was thinking back to when you used to throw things into the fireplace. Any old thing really. Cigarette packs. Fast food garbage. I’ll admit it got on my nerves. I mean I always worked hard on stoking the fire and making everything nice and you were so indiscriminate with what you put in there. I … Continue reading