Saturday, April 27, 2019

Written in the Stars

“Congratulations, you have won a free consultation.” A heavily accented voice tells me that he’s calling from Montreal’s Astrology Center.
 How unusual. "Where?"
“The Astrology Center. I will transfer you so that you can receive your free consultation.”
“Thank you but I am not interested. Have a good day.” I hang up.
But I wonder. Have I turned down a mystic message? What would my consultation have revealed? How quickly would I have been asked for money or information?
My phone displays the call came from Ontario. The Astrology Center is not in Montreal, their stars cannot be trusted. Too bad.



Saturday, April 20, 2019

Tea Leaf Reader

I read tea leaves.  It’s an old art; a simple form of fortune telling. There is one definite rule. Don’t leave people without hope. Sure, there’s memory work to do but often it’s a matter of reading the people not the tea leaves. Their body language, or their own words, they give it away.

I’ve never been mean. I’ve always made sure that I’ve softened the blow if it looks like I’ve struck a nerve.  People have enough burdens without my adding to them with a bleak reading.
Wouldn’t you like a cup of tea? Is something is on your mind? 

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Rita's Bear

Rita sees the bear. It checks the mirror on the truck like a paramour concerned about their hair before a date, then drops to all fours.

It’s her first bear sighting. As a newcomer to the wilderness community the event is also an initiation; her reactions will be noted. Wonderfully, she’s excited but not afraid. This surprises her, she had worried.  

Across the street someone spots the bear and darts back inside as though their heart had stopped but their feet sprouted wings.

Rita hadn’t done that. Her first bear story is how she saw the bear before it saw her.   

Saturday, April 6, 2019

Shaving Mirror

Catherine looks into the shaving mirror that is in Herb’s drawer.  He hadn’t used it for years.

“Leave this drawer alone.” He said. “These are my things.”

His tone is not to be argued with, but she had not dreamt his gruffness was about a secret. Beneath a couple of cuff-link boxes and his passport is a bundle of letters. 

She stops. It’s Pandora’s box. A secret lover, a second set of children, a relative whose favor he tried to cultivate, his birth mother, all reasons for a secret correspondence.

The face in the shaving mirror is no one Catherine knows. 

Friday, April 5, 2019

Bardo the Between

This newly published story was a decade in the incubation stage. It is based on a real enough situation but my skills weren't up to the task to write the story until now. I hope you enjoy Bardo the Between published by Switchback the Journal of the MFA in Writing program at USF (University of San Francisco.)