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1968

A story about what changes and what remains the same, in just six words.

46

I don’t want fiction. What I want is truth. Or someone’s version of it.

A Common Story

“I think he does not care for art; I fancy he has not even read Pushkin.”

A Dark and Empty Corner

Human language, Winston thought, was not adequate for spiritual union.

A Dark Place

There was no sense in brushing off or any other civilized thing.

A Day at the Beach for Aphrodite

I was enraged at being alone on the outside of all that love and lust.

A Different Ending

The peanut seller tore sheets out of paperback books to make the cones.

A Dream of Ease

I shoved them one by one, easy as pie yet with care, just shy of mercy.

A Father’s Story

Certainly the ushers who pass the baskets know me as a miser.

A Good Woman Blues

You will be a broke blues man with only some story of how you were.

A Kind of Thinking and Other Poems

Life, then, was song and purple font, imagining in words a future.

A Life with Bears

I want to focus on bears. On knowing them, and on what they need.

A Likely Story: Anniversary

Passions played among the orchids and through cherish and reveal.

A Master at Work

Man is always beginning everything anew, even in his own life.

A New Year’s Gift

He ended every year in this manner, writing and dreaming.

A Place Like This

I can see on him how things are changing for and against us.

A Portion of Your Loveliness

My daughter’s favorite game is Holocaust. She’s quite inventive.

A Redeeming Sacrifice

Paul King was shiftless and drunken; ugly tales were told of him.

A Sailor

She did not leave him for the sailor. So why should he be angry?

A Saint from Texas

So that’s what I’d look like if every beauty parlor in the world shut down.

A Secret Space

Two weeks after she and Mark were married, Hannah fell in love.

A Small Blip on an Eternal Timeline

I grabbed him by the face and told him life only comes to a person once.

A Small Hotel

The allure of Mardi Gras is to feel this way: unseen and unseeable.

A Soldier’s Lover

We never really had what might be considered a normal conversation.

A Son of Baghdad

For me, Selweh was the real magic. She was nothing like my mother.

A Storyteller’s Story

Americans have always a kind of tenderness for cheat.

A Theory and Other Poems

I have, in the long solitude of my body, asked for something else.

A Trout in the Milk

How much simpler and more satisfying was the company of men.

A Weary Desperado

I was convinced she’d be back in the morning, like the sun.

A Wedding Story

The chocolate was old, dusty white, the way chocolate gets after many years.

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