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Medium 9780253008183

12 The State Bird of Minnesota

Jason L Brown Quarry Books ePub

Charles McLeod

LUDD LIVED WAY OUT ON THE NORTH SIDE of the lake. No one really ever went over there. His cabin was built up right to his dock, and in the summer Ludd would often go swimming. He was bearded and awkward, an oaf of a man, but in the water he was something to look at. Ludd could hold his breath longer than anyone I’ve known. You could watch him dive in, go take your meds, and when you came back Ludd would still be down there.

His dock’s pilings were dressed with what he’d found while submerged: fishing lures, the handlebars from a children’s bicycle. There too was a raft Ludd had fashioned from logs and the tanned hides of animals—badger and deer and foxes. Late afternoons, as the light bowed and stretched, Ludd would untie and drift until sunset. He lay perfectly still, his arms at his sides, legs brought tightly together, and when the light hit the lake at just the right angle, and turned the water golden and orange, Ludd and his vessel looked set ablaze, his raft transformed to a pyre.

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Medium 9780253010476

Chapter 14

William Williams Indiana University Press ePub

Now while matters were thus in agitation how they should act for the future We had much trouble to encounter, as thus. Altho Mr. Vantulden and the Boatswain used every method to keep good Order while on Shore, yet as there was plenty of Liquor it was totally out of their power to keep the people sober. Then Somer acquainted me that if I did not provide to secure some of it for my own use, it would soon be all gone, and privately conveyed by Mr. Van Tuldens order four Anchors of Brandy and some few kegs of Gin away by the assistance of Harry and Toby, while they were all sleeping.

After they had concluded to go to the southward in ye longboat and to leave the Yawl with me, I asked them where they intended first to touch at, and they told me at Puertobela1 if they could reach it, that they intended to keep in shore along the coast. I then desired they would inform me what lattitude they thought we were then in, and they said they judged about IId and 30 m North. Then I enquired what name the country bore, and they said they believed it was Costa Rica.2 I desired Mr. Van Tulden to leave the date of the Year and day of the Month as I was quite ignorant as to any certainty about it. He then asked me for the bottle he had given me and I told Harry to fetch it, then expressed a desire that I would contrive some sort of a pen. This I was under the necessity of being beholden to one of the Parrots for, and made a sort of a pen with one of her feathers He then bid Harry get a little water in a small shell, and when it was brought he took the bottle and emptied forth a powder of a grey colour and then with his finger produced Inck, being the first Ink powder I had ever seen. He then told me that Somer should speak it in English or I should not understand his writing, so I had best to write it myself. This was done and I found that It was thus: Anno 1754 and the Month of August the 5th day; so that by my own account I had missed in my reckoning about six week, some how or other, but it was a matter of no great moment to me.

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Medium 9780253220042

7. Honor

Elsa Marston Indiana University Press ePub

A STORY FROM JORDAN

 

Yasmine speaks …

I was not exactly thrilled when the biology teacher teamed me up with Wafa Ar-Rahman. We’d be working in pairs, she said, when we started cutting things up—a learning experience I really did not look forward to one bit. And now I had to do it with Wafa. Not that she was obnoxious or stupid, but she was new in school, and so conservative and quiet and shy that she really sort of stuck out.

When I got home, I told my mother that my biology partner would be this girl Wafa, whom I could hardly even see, she was so covered up by her hijab. “She wears her head scarf over her eyebrows, and she doesn’t say a thing. She’ll be so boring, Mum,” I moaned. “I’ll hate that class.”

But my mother was the wrong person to complain to. She was a hard-hitting investigative journalist, and she saw opportunities for social change and noble struggle in practically everything. She was so good at her job, in fact, that she’d won a special fellowship to study in London the previous year, and we’d all spent six glorious months there.

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Medium 9781771870023

Asters

Worrell, P.J. Thistledown Press ePub

Asters

RACHEL IS ON ONE KNEE AT the front door tying her laces when she hears them come in from the garage and set down heavy bags, probably groceries, on the kitchen counter. David brings the carseat into the living room. Lilia is making snuffly piggy noises.

“Mother, could you take Lilia for a walk while we fix dinner?” Obviously they had planned this on the drive home.

“But I was just about to go for my run,” she says over her shoulder, then stands up and stretches her back. “Oh, I suppose I could. I want to check out the autumn flora. I’ll run in the morning instead.”

“I noticed some scraggly asters. We’ve had a touch of frost.” David is dressing Lilia in a red sweater no doubt knit painstakingly by the other grandmother. Her arms resist being forced into the sleeves. “The daycare said Lilia was fussy. It’s her teeth.”

“You cut your teeth without any problems.”

“She has all of the symptoms,” Avery interjects from the kitchen, like it’s the second verse of a duet. It’s her teeth, it’s her teeth.

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Medium 9781574416473

My Doppelganger's Arms

Polly Buckingham University of North Texas Press ePub

When I first saw her, she was wearing a long-sleeved, white T-shirt and gray men's cotton pants rolled up almost to her knees. She was carrying a white Styrofoam cup with a lid and a straw as she walked along the beach. I noticed her from far off because she looked so aimless, not like someone walking briskly down the beach, straight any way you look at it. She waded into the water as the tide pulled in over the bottoms of her pants. I thought how odd to roll one's pants up and still not move away when the water washes over them.

I watched the woman from inside a driftwood hut built up against the dune. She was down the beach and to my left. The knots in the driftwood looked like eyes. The pieces, crossing one another, formed shapes that appeared to be more than one thing at the same time. I saw a bird that could also be a woman, and two birds that were one. There was a small fire ring, a table made of a thick stump and a board flaked with red paint, and an empty wine bottle. There was just room enough for one person only to curl up and sleep.

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Medium 9781574415384

January on the Ground

Jessica Hollander University of North Texas Press ePub

January on the Ground

I was having trouble, lately, flitting around. The thing was, people told me about the choices I’d have in college, how I’d learn all this amazing stuff. But there were no classes about bat-eating cults or the origin of jack-o-lanterns or how to carve things in the wood of dead trees. There was a lot of construction—those dusty orange cones—and worksheets covering the same things I’d learned in high school: composing a thesis, the convolutedness of World War One, rules about imaginary numbers. And when I left the dorms and drove across Chapel Hill for another “reasonable” Sunday Family Dinner, it seemed my heart beat normally again. My breathing slowed, my head cleared: just seeing the sturdy brown colonial, the white pillars, the wrap-around porch.

But the inside of my parents’ house deteriorated. The rooms had the hastily cleaned feel of a nine-year-old’s bedroom: pictures and trinkets awkwardly angled, magazines shoved beneath couches, shoes in a massive pile by the door. Dad sat on the edge of a chair, an afghan folded unevenly beside him, reading his latest Men’s Health. He had a slightly ashamed, slightly indignant look when I caught him reading it. And Mom developed a fondness for leaving things burning on the stove. She went to the back porch and stood stiffly, her arms bent, her shoulders back too far. She stared into the long flimsy grass and weeds, the weary pine trees. It was unsettling to see, especially once, when rain suddenly poured from the sky, and she stood there, pelted with water—these millions of drops whizzing through the air, flying into her—like someone attacked. Her clothes sagged from the weight. Her pants in the back got so sad and droopy, I had to look away.

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Medium 9781574413311

YOLANDA’S POOL

Peter Brown University of North Texas Press ePub

Yolanda’s Pool

Lucy surveyed the patio. In the glass doors she saw her reflection in the white swimsuit and wondered if she’d lost her nerve. Her eyes hurt. A cloud, high overhead, weakened the shadow of her little table. Sunlight dappled the water. At the far end of the pool, the branch above Scott swayed, the only hint of a breeze. She checked her watch and felt the sun on her arms. It was already past lunch. Time to go. She squinted at the water, she leaned back and rested her eyes. She meant to relax, in spite of Yolanda, to indulge in one last sniff of Yolanda’s vodka, but where had she left her sunglasses? Most everything was packed. She dropped her sandals and put up her feet. She raised the heavy shot glass to her face and swallowed, wincing at the reflected light. Scott, fifteen now, difficult to see over the glare, showed his teeth in a defiant, bewildered smile. She put her drink back on the little table.

Shouting so he would hear, she said, “You ready to go?”

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Medium 9780861967254

Chapter 18

Tony Grey John Libbey Publishing ePub

He’s pushed roughly into a small lightless cell. Nothing is in it except a bucket in the corner, no bed, no chairs, just a blank mud brick enclosure with no windows. The door slams shut with a harsh rattle and a key scrapes in the lock. He’s been deprived of his liberty before but never locked up. On one level it’s frightening, being alone in the dark with no idea for how long – people grow blind without light after a while, but on another, its horror is assuaged by the events in the hall. His sprits soar out of the cell as he savours the one thought that comes to him over and over again. He’s done what was needed to placate the Eumenides. Now he can breathe without a clamp on his heart. Deep down at the spiritual level he feels a new sense of freedom. He doesn’t care about his incarceration. It’s sure not to last long; something will happen to release him.

The night passes well, though he has difficulty sleeping on the stone floor. The torturing birds don’t appear. While the tormentors didn’t come every night, the threat was never absent. This time is different; he knows they’ll leave him in peace now.

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Medium 9789810861131

Peeping Toe by Damyanti Ghosh

Goodwin, Temari & Hoye (Editors) Monsoon Books ePub
"Peeping Toe" by Damyanti Ghosh

A romance short story set in Singapore, first published in "Love and Lust in Singapore" (Monsoon Books, Singapore)

As I lean back on my seat, I cannot see much across the maze of legs. But there it is: a peeping toe. The toe is pale pink, with a thin, precise white line at the tip. It peeks, along with two smaller toes, similarly painted, out of mauve sandals. But I can’t see much else.I am tired. We have had a long day exploring, Alex and I, looking around, walking. This is a country where we all walk, like so many ants. We walk and walk our way to trains, to buses, to cabs, and even though most of the way we’re carried from one place to the other in air-conditioned comfort, it feels like a lot of walking. But the toe looks like it is not used to the open road, it looks cosy and homey in there.In Singapore, it is very difficult to guess a person’s age, especially if it is a woman: some of them look like schoolgirls, but actually have school-going kids. And this is the guess you make when you can see the entire person. What if all you can see is a toe across a crowded train?  See All Chapters
Medium 9780253008183

6 Circling in the Air

Jason L Brown Quarry Books ePub

David Driscoll

TODAY I WATCH WHITEY-TIGHTEY LINE. Whitey-Tightey Line is not real name, just name we use at factory. Real name is White Cotton Briefs. I am Inspector Number Seven. I work here long time. Too long, maybe, but this job is not so bad. I sit on stool over conveyor and watch for anomaly. I use Special Technique. Special Technique is pick spot on floor or paint chip on side of conveyor and spread out vision so it is big, big—like looking down from mountain top. In this way I see underwear three at a time, like looking at photo. Special Technique is very good for concentration, and sometimes I go very deep. Sometimes it looks like underwear is glowing, and sometimes I think threads are made of light. Sometimes vision drop away completely so there is no seeing and no hearing. This is very mystical state. I can always spot anomaly, though. Like now.

I press red button and conveyor stops, use Trigger Fingers to pick up whitey tightey from conveyor and transfer to Anomaly Bin. Trigger Fingers is metal pole with pinchers on end. Very handy for moving anomaly. Very easy on back. This anomaly is label sewed to front panel. This is functional anomaly. Functional anomaly means underwear still work fine but still is anomaly. If someone opens three pack of White Cotton Briefs in Boca Raton or Minneapolis and sees label sewed to front panel they will not like this. They will go back to store and ask for refund. They will see sticker says Inspected by Number Seven and shake their heads. I do not think they will call factory to complain but this is not the point.

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Medium 9780253010476

Chapter 26

William Williams Indiana University Press ePub

It was not long after this before we had a dismal stroke befell us, attended with fatal consiquences to us all, as thus. The while we men happened to be out in the bay after the Turtle the cursed Monkey overset a Yabba as it was boiling on the fire, by which my son Owen got one of his feet scalded. This so greatly alarmed them all, as they knew how much I prized him, that my Wife packed Eva off into the Woods after certain roots to stew as a remedy. The poor creture went off with speed altho then with child. We did not return untill about 4 oclock. When I went into the house I found the boy with his foot lap’d up, and had the story in full. My Wife said Eva had been gone a great time after herbs or roots, and wonder’d what detain’d her so long. I took no notice at that about her, but ordered the Monkey to be drown’d at once, being determined it should never be the cause of more mischief; and Harry settled that point with a stone about its neck in the Lagoon.

Now as the evening advanced Mr. Bell grew uneasy about his Wife, saying perhaps She had rambled beyond her knowledge and had lost herself. “How can that be? She has been all over the wood diverse times.” said I. “But you and Harry had better go off in quest of her with one of the Shells.” And away they went and did not return untill Sun down but without any tidings. Now I began to be much alarm’d and advised that they should get torches without loss of time, arm themselves and off again at once, dreading her being alone in the Forest after night as I made no doubt of her being devoured before ye morning. We heard them almost the whole time tooting and shouting. I ordered Patty to make up as large a fire as she could as a direction for them back again. Every now and then I blew a Conck, and thus time passed until midnight. Now all were in tears about me; and if I did not hear their sound now and then my Soul filled with horror least they should all three be lost.

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Medium 9781574412796

Chapter Six

Jane Roberts Wood University of North Texas Press PDF

Chapter Six

1

Wak ing up from his nap Mr . Roseborough rolls over and looks out the window. The sun is just about down.

Before long the cows will be coming up to feed. They will eat slow and then they will drink long slow drinks of water. Afterward they’ll stand around, shifting their weight and lowing. Mr.

Roseborough thinks their eyes are right pretty, like coffee in sunshine.

Some days they have to wait a long time for him to get up strength enough to feed them. Thinking that now, he rolls back over, lets his legs drop over the side of the bed, and sits up. He has to sit quite a spell before the room stops spinning. Then he makes his way through the kitchen and, holding on to the screen door, steps off the back step and walks out into the yard toward the barn. Here it is hard going, getting up to the loft where he keeps the feed. He dreads it. He takes hold of the ladder and, “Well, here goes!” he says to himself. He puts one foot on the bottom rung that is a good ways off the ground, and gives a push, trying to get the other one up beside it. “Dad burn it!” he cries, when his foot doesn’t make it. He pushes again, but before his foot comes up, he is flat on the ground, and here comes this girl, thin as a

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Medium 9781574412994

Betsy’s House

Jane Roberts Wood University of North Texas Press PDF

90�

Out the Summerhill Road

Betsy’s House

Betsy Rogers had built her house as a diversion after the death of her husband, the building of it overseen every step of the way by her son Timothy. The house, a small Georgian, befits old money. It has only two bedrooms (Betsy’s with its own sitting room), but it is elegant with its small, public rooms, including a library and a small wine cellar. The wide chestnut moldings hand-crafted. The deeply carved panels in the guest room and the library imported from England.

Brightly covered rugs, designed by Calder, scattered over the stone floors. The guestroom, now called Gaynor’s room, is papered with antique French wallpaper, hand painted with

Mironesque birds and trees.

Pictures of Timothy Rogers—an infant in a bassinet, then a baby in Betsy’s arms wearing his christening gown and, at two, sitting on a tricycle—stand on tables in Betsy’s sitting room. In the hall are still more pictures. Here he’s holding a baseball bat over his shoulder, and here he’s kneeling, his mouth open with laughter at Lacey, his golden lab, with her paws on his shoulders. And in the kitchen, on the south wall, a picture of five-year-old Timmy sitting on the floor, playing with Ginger’s kittens. “See the tenderness in his face,” Betsy says, when someone stands gazing at it. In the dining room walls, Timothy fishes and camps and dives in photographs.

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Medium 9781574412796

Chapter Eight

Jane Roberts Wood University of North Texas Press PDF

Jane Roberts Wood

2. She gets a road map from the pickup, finds Montana. Then

Geraldine. Montana is a long way off but still it is a place, and she can put her finger on it. He is just like Daddy. She reads that again. Like Gundren. Something like Gundren, she amends.

There was just one Gundren. She thinks about the name. Jamie is a good name for a man. Sitting on the back steps with Stitch, she looks up at the sky. A row of clouds puffs across it like a train. She has heard from Echo! Her mind touches the thought, veers away from so much happiness. The leaves of the pecan trees, stirred by a brisk wind, shake themselves free of their drabness. An old crow sings a scratchy song from the highest branch of a tree. She knows where Echo is! The thought touches her heart again and again until finally it rests there. She sits quietly, reading the card over and over until even her bones believe it.

Overcome, she jumps up from the steps. She has to tell somebody. She will tell Anne! But Anne will not be in her office. The college is closed for the holidays and Anne is probably on a trip somewhere. Anne is better than anybody at listening to a person’s heart. She would know how lost somebody can feel one minute and then how a postcard—a little thing like that!—can make everything seem all right. She will drive by Anne’s house and see if she’s there. She won’t go in if she’s there. She will just stop long enough to tell her. Hurrying to collect her car keys and purse, she almost forgets her earrings. She opens her earring box, sees the frisky silver rabbits, and puts them on.

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Medium 9780253002365

Chapter Forty-Nine

Gregory Schwipps Indiana University Press ePub

The clouds to the west looked heavy and dark again, and Frank drove with the windows down, as he always had. The air blowing through the cab felt charged and it seemed likely another round of storms was coming. But there were worse things than getting wet, and if a squall hit before he got to the river they’d wait it out in the truck. His dog didn’t mind storms, but he knew plenty of them did. Being on the river in a thunderstorm got a little hairy, but sitting one out in a pickup made you happy to be alive, and he figured that would be the case no matter how old he was. It felt pretty good to pull this boat down the road again. He hadn’t driven out this way for a long time and now the gravel road was paved with some conglomerate of asphalt chips and oil.

Chesterton had been dead for almost a year, but Frank thought he could still launch from the gravel bar on what had been his property. An obituary had run in the newspaper but Frank didn’t remember what killed him. He recalled that Chesterton died in a nursing home, where he’d lived out the last couple of years of his life. Frank hadn’t made it to the funeral because he hadn’t gone to any funerals since Chub’s and he didn’t plan on going to any more. Well, he thought, he guessed he’d make it to his own.

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