Saturday, December 19, 2015

Beneath the Decoration

On the mantle, the shimmering stag perched, a desperate silver spray-painted statuary, a fake gray fur secured with a lopsided satin bow looped around his neck. His glittering eyes beseeched. The jolly fat man’s nose twitched. “An indignity, even for a replica reindeer. Won’t you join my sleigh tonight?” The twinkle in Santa’s eyes loosened the beast’s frozen shoulders. Dipping his mighty head, he shook off the fur loop and pitched it from his antlers. He reared and jumped into the open sack, hearing “Ho, ho, ho” as the drawstring closed above him. Up the chimney, they escaped d├ęcor purgatory.


This 100 word story is offered as an entry for the annual Advent Ghosts event hosted by Loren Eaton at I Saw Lightning Fall. See the other entries there. Thanks, Loren, for the opportunity!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

In Thanks and Memorium

John Donne

“. . . all mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language; and every chapter must be so translated; God employs several translators; some pieces are translated by age, some by sickness, some by war, some by justice; but God's hand is in every translation, and his hand shall bind up all our scattered leaves again, for that library where every book shall lie open to one another . . .”
John Donne, from Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions, Meditation XVII.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Helene Hanff

Helene Hanff with Anne Bancroft

In college, I adored Helene Hanff’s work, particularly Underfoot in Show Business, her personal history of trying to succeed as a playwright. 84 Charing Cross Road became a sentimental favorite. Who can resist a relationship between a reader and bookseller who communicate by correspondence and never meet? Recently, I saw the movie featuring Anne Bancroft, Anthony Hopkins, and Judy Dench. I was so delighted that it incorporated facts I learned in the sequel The Duchess of Bloomsbury Street. In 1997, Hanff died of diabetes in New York City. The apartment building where she lived has been named “Charing Cross House.”