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  • Endless Joke
    Endless Joke
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    Here's that writers' manual you were reaching and scrambling for. You know the one: filled with juicy writing tidbits and dripping with pop cultural snark and smartassery. Ew. Not an attractive look. But effective. And by the end, you'll either want to kiss me or kill me. With extreme prejudice. Go on. You know you want to.

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    Please click on the above thumbnail to buy my short, intense nonfiction book featuring 9/11 and trauma. It's less than the price of a cup of coffee... and contains fewer calories. Although, unlike most caffeine boosts, it might make you cry.

  • Music Speaks
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    My story "Solo" appears in this excellent music charity anthology, Music Speaks. It is an odd hybrid of the darkly comic and the eerily apocalyptic... with a musical theme. Aw, rather than me explain it, just read it. Okay, uh, please?

  • First Time Dead 3 (Volume 3)
    First Time Dead 3 (Volume 3)
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    My story "Unquiet Slumbers" appears in the zombie anthology First Time Dead, Volume 3. It spills blood, gore and genuine tears of sorrow. Anyway, buy this stellar anthology and judge for yourself.

  • Seasons
    Seasons
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  • Indies Unlimited: 2012 Flash Fiction Anthology
    Indies Unlimited: 2012 Flash Fiction Anthology
    Indies Unlimited

    I have two stories in this delightful compendium of every 2012 winner of their Flash Fiction Challenge—one a nasty little horror short, the other an amusing misadventure of Og the caveman, his first appearance.

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Saturday
Apr132019

Soledad

"The only truth is music." — Jack Kerouac

Here beneath the strip mall sign, by some nameless roadside, I want to tell you something, whisper it even. You are not an adjective; you are the full noun. You are majesty. 

Cue faraway hillside banjo jank.

This urgent child now, this sparrow hawk. Quietly edging past the darkest of holy hours, suspended in dwarfland, in tens of millions cowed and streaming SoCal dreams, old strings droning like worlds of doom, pale draped bronze things nude as headlines, the hidden corners articulated, the lost so close to (yet endlessly far from) being found. This is how it is now.

Drop into a mandolin pizzicato. 

I succumbed to a ten-dollar haircut at the ramshackle mall. It felt like being sheared. By a shepherd with voluminous breasts and wildly uneven mascara. Now I run my fingers up my skull through tiny spines against the grain. Feels sorta fine. Scratch my itch with a loose grip then wish you'd kissed me there. You contrary winsome fucking bitch. (I'll always be here.)

Yo. Yo. Arpeggiate this

I'm sorry. So often I stray. I promise I'll be better.

Ahead of low skies, a cellist sweeps her sorrow like the final sigil after a flood, a godawful flare of rainbow. Will you hear that? Are you friendly, are you kin? Does this oily tide recede beyond the rocks? Is it choked, retching with our dead? Expectant, we are here now. Reading a book and lost in a wood. Waiting for what? Drop your instinctive pretense and stop, then listen. 

Verse chorus verse chorus bridge chorus outro.

Hooded by a caul of accumulated ice. Silent night. That arbitrary melody. That Indiana sawgrass. Those veiled amphibian eyes. Miss Sarajevo. The first Noël. Hoarse and lost adagios. Throaty requiems for all. Dig deep, my sister, my glorious amigo, make this a worthy dirge, our celebratory hands clasped like prayer flags first held aloft then whipped unforeseen by balmy leeward gales. 

"Look to windward." All gathered and aghast.

A fjord song, echoing past the headwaters, into the wailing abysm.

O please. Not now. Let me hear their harrowing threnody. So defenseless. Divested of all, of everything. My heart. My queer, my derelict, my tumbledown heart, don't quit on me now. Don't you dare, don't you ever fucking dare protect me.

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