Be strong in body, clean in mind, lofty in ideals.
Be strong in body, clean in mind, lofty in ideals.
“It occurs to me that I really can’t remember your face in any precise detail. Only the way you walked away through the tables in the café, your figure, your dress, that I still see.”
― Franz Kafka, Letters to Milena
I know I’ve done this (many) times before – but I am always amused in the winter by how the snow piles up on the little plastic nubs on the children’s climbing wall in the Park at the end of my block… and they look sorta like white hair on top of little faces. Makes it almost worth the bitter cold.
the experience of the work is inseparable from the place in which the work resides. Apart from that condition, any experience of the work is a deception.”
― Richard Serra
“Well, I know now. I know a little more how much a simple thing like a snowfall can mean to a person”
― Sylvia Plath, The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath
From my blog (I called it an “Online Journal” then), The Daily Epiphany, Tuesday, February 29, 2000
We had a bit of an ice storm a couple weeks ago. Although pitiful by northern standards, Lee, having lived in global-warming ravaged north-Texas all his life, was very proud of his two tiny snowmen. We keep small carrots in the house for salads and to feed the crickets that we feed to the toad – also good for snow-noses. No lumps of coal for eyes.
Even though he semi-hid them around the side of the house, the big kids found them that night and kicked them down.
And a piece of flash fiction for today:
“I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields, that it kisses them so gently? And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt; and perhaps it says, “Go to sleep, darlings, till the summer comes again.”
― Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland / Through the Looking-Glass
It was a long drive from Lawrence back to Dallas and we had to leave at six in the morning to insure we made it home in time to watch the Cowboys get beat. It was very cold with most of Saturday’s snow still frozen on the ground.
There was a thick… it couldn’t have been fog because it was too cold – some sort of pea-soup frozen haze… smothering everything. Over an hour later the sun rose unseen over the vast flint-hill plains. The haze slowly lightened into a gray blanket.
We stopped to switch drivers at one of the Kansas Turnpike rest areas, the ones with the oddly shaped water towers.
And I took this photo of one of the few trees within a hundred miles… blurred and obscured by the fog.
His misery is immense, beyond all bounds. If Iona’s heart were to burst and his misery to flow out, it would flood the whole world, it seems, but yet it is not seen. It has found a hiding-place in such an insignificant shell that one would not have found it with a candle by daylight. . . .
—–Anton Chekhov, Misery
Read it here:
“Life is a bucket of shit with a barbed wire handle.”
― Jim Thompson
I read a lot of short stories. I read A LOT of short stories. In most cases I read pretty much a short story a day. I like to read them, I don’t have much time for long novels, and I like to write them.I have learned that it is best that I read what I am writing.
Over time, I have spent months where I review and online short story each day –
Short Story Months:
Day One 2013
Instead of doing an entire month, I think I’ll put up stories I enjoy one at a time.
There is a fantastic independent publishing house, Akashic Books. From their website:
Akashic Books is a Brooklyn-based independent company dedicated to publishing urban literary fiction and political nonfiction by authors who are either ignored by the mainstream, or who have no interest in working within the ever-consolidating ranks of the major corporate publishers.
In particular, I enjoy their Noir series – each book consisting of a group of savage short stories based in a particular city. I have written about their Noir books based on the two cities I am most familiar with: Dallas Noir and New Orleans Noir.
They have a tasty extensive list of short and flash fiction available online.
Today I have a free online short story put out by Akashic Books. It’s a warped little romantic tale about how a relationship handles a snowstorm on I70 in Colorado. The flash fiction piece is a lot of fun – though it seems to have one obvious little error (Isn’t it nights in WHITE satin?).
Driven Snow by Nancy M. Michael – Loveland Pass, Colorado
Like the city-themed Noir books, fiction, especially thrillers or horror, is always more fun when it is set somewhere that you are familiar with. I am somewhat familiar with I70 through the mountains, Loveland Pass and Ski Basin, the scenic route off the Interstate to A Basin, and the feeling of snow whiteout conditions.
I remember jockeying down that stretch of highway in a blinding blizzard with a tiny Datsun jockying with a string of monstrous snowplows going 80 miles an hour inches off my bumper and looking bigger than the surrounding Rocky Mountains.
Whew! just the memory makes me feel frozen and sweaty at the same time.
So take a few minutes to go read the story and while you are there – check out Akashic Books and their other offerings. They deserve our support.
“Maybe it’s wrong when we remember breakthroughs to our own being as something that occurs in discrete, extraordinary moments. Maybe falling in love, the piercing knowledge that we ourselves will someday die, and the love of snow are in reality not some sudden events; maybe they were always present. Maybe they never completely vanish, either.”
― Peter Høeg, Smilla’s Sense of Snow
In a field by the river my love and I did stand,
And on my leaning shoulder she laid her snow-white hand.
She bid me take life easy, as the grass grows on the weirs;
But I was young and foolish, and now am full of tears.”
― W.B. Yeats, The Collected Poems
“Doesn’t it seem as though her heart were a green flame? Perhaps it’s the cold green heart of a small green snake, with a minute flaw in it, the kind of small green snake that slithers from branch to branch in the jungle, passing itself off as a vine. What’s more, perhaps when she gave me the ring with such a gentle, loving expression, she wanted me to draw such a meaning from it some day.”
― Yukio Mishima, Spring Snow