Wortman’s debut collection of short fiction, This. This. This. Is. Love. Love. Love. skillfully explores this intersection of intimacy and mental illness, each story examining the act of seeking and receiving love despite a disease that claims we are unworthy of it.
I was born the year before we landed on the moon and those missions had an undeniable impact on a boy growing up in Indiana. We had a National Geographic that commemorated the event with iconic photos and it came with a square flexi disc phonograph record of the sounds of Apollo 11.
I came across a library behind a dilapidated two-story house one afternoon when I was walking to the pharmacy around the corner from my mother’s house. The library was red and square with gilded letters. I couldn’t remember it being there before, but it was possible that it was new or that I had missed it.
Brimming with maps of imaginary places and lost cities, and natural disasters in the form of volcanic eruptions and impact craters, Breazeale’s stories explore extinction in all its possible forms, from the disappearance of the dinosaurs and the course of human plagues to the death of a single beloved sister.
I recently started a new day job at a software company. I’ve never worked for the government or for any company that requires a security clearance, and I doubt that during the interview process, my new employer analyzed my Google search history.
Rub the coarse fur. Let his heat warm your hands. White his yellow coat with suds that split the sun. Smooth his fattened belly, hoping it’s not all cardboard and plastic bags, that le mouton, the ram, also ate mango skins and fish heads with all the other garbage in Yoff, where he roamed the beach.
Recipe for Tired People Seeing America by Claire Hopple (V) (GF)
The day after I got the news about my father, I drove to the mall to buy a suit. It was the middle of the afternoon, bright and hot, but the parking lot was nearly empty. Fat seagulls, with feathers the color of spent mops, congregated near the entrance doors.
Oddly, when I started to write There You Are — which was originally titled Rahsaan’s Records until the publisher decided it needed to be something else, I didn’t have a soundtrack already made up.
Because I didn’t have a dad, I identified with two guys: Jesus Christ and Darth Vader.
Each fall, a truck from the Harkness Feed Mill chuted anthracite coal into our cellar to warm the drafty old farmhouse through western New York State winters. I’d listen to the crash of the fuel into the bin, pick up fallen chunks of the stuff, glossy and blue-black, and turn them to catch the light.