Friday, July 27, 2012

Peyton Marshall "The Other Hemisphere" Blackbird




Peyton Marshall's work of nonfiction "The Other Hemisphere," published in Blackbird, tells the story of a brother, Fields, who's changed since nearly dying of cancer and moving to Chile (which, as the narrator tells us, Pablo Neruda said was a country "invented by a poet")--and after Fields' marrying a cute, girly-in-a-way-the-narrator's-never-been way.

The narrator goes to Chile with her mom and dad who, in wonderful lines of conveying all sorts of character, seem older than she would like to remember: "In the months we'd been apart, they'd grown younger in my memory, sliding back through their fifties and into their forties. It bothered me to feet hem now accelerated through time, their thick hair turned to dandelion fluff."

As the wedding and celebrations unfold, the narrator realizes Fields, her older bro, seems to have forgotten what the narrator would like to remember--including a flammable sweater. And the final passages are some of the best anyone can find in a somewhat longer short-narrative.

Great read at a great literary journal.

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正义

River Dragon Skya new novel

Mark Slouka "Dog" Ploughshares



Appearing in Ploughshares, Mark Slouka's short story "Dog" starts with opening passages that describe, in gripping detail, a dog owner discovering something sharp apparently embedded in his dog's fur. Upon a little more inspection, he finds razor blades, and not just one of them.

Just as readers might be settling into a story whose opening seems to imply a conflict centered on who or what had been torturing the dog, the narrator's strange guiltiness and avoidance of animal hospitals ("All they had to do was put up with it for a while, endure it as best they could, and all would be well.")--all work together to communicate that, in fact, the dog symbolizes something much more than a dog.

I'll never forget the hauntingly vivid details and artistic strangeness in this story.



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正义
River Dragon Skya new novel

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Mike Heppner "Sleeping Together" Small Anchor Press & www.mikeheppner.com

Leading up to the release of his new book of fiction, The Man Talking Project, Mike Heppner has made available a number of shorter works (fiction and non-fiction) for readers to enjoy.

Now available at his website, among others, is the story "Sleeping Together," and it features the wit and keen insight that mark Heppner's writing. In it, the narrator reflects on the act of sleeping with a new lover. As the relationship evolves, and as the couple becomes more accustomed to each other, habits in bed change--until a life-altering event afflicts the girl the narrator loves, and honest, articulate introspection follows and explains the extent and even sometimes limitations of human goodness.

Check out this and other stories at www.mikeheppner.com.

 

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正义


River Dragon Sky, a new novel