Second Thoughts: Hammersmith (eight)

Hammersmith Chapter Eight Second Thoughts         Hogben had broken a rule of his own, one that had always served…and Hogben had been a traveling man for twenty-odd years. He’d had scrapes. He’d not often had a partner to rely on. But even these past couple, when with the Professor he’d gone the […]

La Catastrophe de la Martinique: part six

Jean Hess La Catastrophe de la Martinique (part six)                     At Fort-de-France IV  Ashes and Terrors Black Fears. White Fears. Blue Fears.     Zulima has not lied. She has barely exaggerated. Fort-de-France is sad. The city seems to go forth from a bad dream. It […]

Assorted Opinions: What Can You Laugh At

    What Can You Laugh At Only joking   We seem to live, these days, in the “it takes one to know one” era. Those most likely to taunt others, with a motive of dominance, silencing, or plain cruelty, or to openly aggress on them with nothing that lives in the neighborhood of humor, […]

The Ad Said: part one (short story)

Short Stories The Ad Said (part one)                 The ad said, “Girls wanted. Good wages. Steady hours.” It said also: “Must pass physical exam.” “You’re crazy,” their mother said. “Come on!” Hester smacked Hermina’s arm. “Let’s go down to the corner.” Here, at the drugstore, they sometimes took […]

Adventures in Research: Garfield Edition

      Adventures in Research: Garfield Edition   I’m currently writing All Bedlam Courses Past, the sequel to A Figure from the Common Lot. In Bedlam, the assassination of President James A. Garfield, (shot July 2, 1881, died September 19), bears on the characters’ lives…and the interest, for me as author, is in those aspects […]

Decoration Day (poem)

  Decoration Day   There is a gentling terrain Of tussocked bluestem parchment brown Straw that compliments a bloom Turning the new leaves glaucous Color schemed by negligence Sallow below, a bloodless husk calicoed into cloth And lichen over stone and marbled bone Verdigris, vanilla…moss viridian Will here be advertised by name An ancestor the […]

Two Reunions: Hammersmith (seven)

Hammersmith Chapter Seven Two Reunions         Ruby Magley went walking down the dewy hillside towards the same creek that had attracted Hogben. This early morning, she too hoped to sit in quiet thought; listening, in her case, to birdsong. She felt not quite so bereaved today…just lonely. All the same, it wasn’t […]

My Blog Week: May 13 to 19

All the Latest from Torsade!                     A new chapter of A Figure from the Common Lot began this week, with part one of “Peas in a Pod”, the narrative taking up young Richard Everard’s perspective. “All the Sires of Generations”, flash fiction, is the story of […]

Peas in a Pod: part two

A Figure from the Common Lot Chapter Three Peas in a Pod (part two)               “I can read and write,” he’d told Mrs. Purfoy. Richard’s father had paid her ten dollars cash, extra, for two weeks lodging. She had been unwilling, when she’d accepted the money, to sign a […]

The Loath of Oilty (poem)

    The Loath of Oilty   You, the undersigned Sacrifice your present ha ppiness for future winnings The future is the be st place for be ach combings and the shaking out I saw the shine Of a crushing double blood Macchiato lime twist with a cinnamon stick Moonbeam Bearing heavy on the vanishing […]