Last Contact

My story, “Last Contact,” appeared in Nature Magazine in September, back before I really committed to this site. As a result, it never got announced in these pages. Nonetheless, I recommend it. It’s an elegiac piece about a gorilla lost in a large city and about personal connections. I remain rather proud of it.

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Lawn Cares

He lunches, daily, on the same graveyard bench. Sees, daily, the same woman, with careful steps and reverent gestures, lay origami flowers before neighboring headstones. Wonders, today, what she’ll make of a laughing boy and girl, tossing Frisbees among angels and crosses. Warms when she smiles and sits to watch.

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When to Nuke from Orbit

Commentary:I just deleted my posts in an online conversation. Someone insisted on misreading my comment about methodology and sources-of-facts as a sign of political ideology.

I’ve deleted posts like this before, and will, I’m sure, do it again. Long experience has taught me that once someone challenges me to defend a position that I don’t hold, that talk is never going to recover. …

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Scatter

Like others around the bungalow, it had been purchased for decoration alone. Never was it used as an aid to sleep, for sitting. Perhaps once a relative had leaned against it, unsure where else to put the thing. Tonight, used finally and improvisationally to muffle reports, it provided its owner no comfort whatsoever.

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Changeable Natures

After the strange cow—on our land that night, yet unbranded—nipped Pete, we watched him close for a month, and, this proving wise, every full moon thereafter, until Ma, Mellie, and I returned from vacation to find Pa’s dementia had deepened, and over a mouthful of burger, Mellie asked, “Where’s Pete?”

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