Tag Archive | short stories

The Honor of Armadillos

The armadillo had wandered into the middle of the road and stopped. It was either too stupid or too scared to move, even with the truck headed straight towards it. Gilman stared at the animal. Then he stared at the telephone pole twenty-five feet off the right side of the road from where the armadillo […]

The Philosopher’s Way

“One evening a tap-tap-tapping and the faint smell of wintergreen candy drifted into the study from the hallway. When the unmistakable cat’s head cane and black bowler hat appeared in the doorway, Stephen didn’t bother to ask how Stilts had gotten into the locked house. He didn’t bother to wonder why, despite the decades that […]

Like Water and Stones

“On the same day Jo turned thirteen, a girl drowned down by the lake. Summer vacation had just started and Jo didn’t hear about it until everything was already over. The story had it that the girl fell out of a boat and didn’t even try to swim to safety. She just disappeared beneath the […]

Fire Devils

Fire Devils Let it be cleansed, let it be reborn anew.                      Let creation come from destruction,                     as all life must come from death.                                        Let it burn.   Still from Chris Tangey’s footage of a “fire devil” in the Australian Outback “Fire Devils,” a short story from my new collection  The Knife and […]

Earth Shall Return Them

Earth Shall Return Them     Skeleton w/ jaw, arm bone, and thighbone from different people “The mummified corpse was blackened with time and twisted into a fetal position so severe it was almost spherical, but it was still unmistakably human. However, every time Dr. Rahmano looked at it, he had to remind himself that […]

The Devil’s in the Details

The Devil’s in the Details “Why is it that some artists just as talented and hard-working as the next guy never make it, while the next guy goes all the way to the top?” That question has haunted musician Mathew “Maz” Zolbe  ever since his neighbor Old Lady Ivy told him the story of Robert […]

A Simple Game of Chess

A Simple Game of Chess   Obsessions… that particular someone who for reasons neither rational nor restrained possesses one’s thoughts, preoccupies one’s mind, stains one’s soul with pure, single-minded mania. Obsessions… the incendiary devices that ignite the passions that sustain us–and threaten  to immolate us within their flames. Few writers have traveled the dark, twisted […]

The Suffering Other

The Suffering Other     “A trauma so great that it can’t be absorbed. At least not all at once. So it gets cast out of time, cast out of consciousness. It’s still happening, though, and that’s where things get tricky.” When I was eighteen years old, slinging coffee in San Francisco’s Embarcadero and surviving […]


Released The sixth short story in my  new collection The Knife and the Wound It Deals is an exploration of the limits of both body and mind when taken to extremes more dark and desperate than most of us could ever imagine. It was one of the collection’s most challenging stories to write and, I suspect, […]

Grief Assassins

Grief Assassins “Grief can be the garden of compassion.” –Rumi Wise, true words indeed–but what happens if that grief-sown garden begins to wither away beneath the deadened dregs of apathy and neglect that remain after grief’s tsunami wave carries all else out to sea? In the fourth story in my new collection The Knife and […]