“Fallen Angels” was published in Ember: a journal of luminous things vol. 1 issue 1 on May 31, 2015
“Fallen Angels” opening paragraphs
“It’s a bad luck sky.” Lizbeth’s mom pointed a finger at the first shooting star of the evening. She made the sign of the cross—Catholic style, even though she was a Baptist.
“Stars cast out of heaven like fallen angles. Bad times are on the way.” Mom said the same thing every August when the meteor shower came. Sometimes she was right, like when the Germans invaded Poland. Sometimes she was wrong, like when the family cow gave birth to twin claves. Sometimes she was half-way-wrong, like when the neighbor boy, Tommy Hotabee, came back from the war last fall—crippled but still alive.
Lizbeth helped her dad carry wooden lawn chairs from their front porch into the yard. She lined them in a row like the seats in the Orpheum Theater in Idabel, four pine chairs painted white so they stood out like ghosts. One for mom, one for dad, one for Lizzy, and one for Tommy, who looked like he’d fall over if he didn’t sit down pretty soon.
You can buy Ember: a journal of luminous things here.
And on Amazon soon.
“Unfinished Business” was published in Pure Fantasy and Sci-Fi on March 27, 2015
“Unfinished Business” opening paragraphs
Sinti’s mother always knew when someone was on the way to the cabin. “Spirit telegraph,” she said, but Sinti thought it was the buzzards. The footpath to the Maytubby cabin started under the roosting tree and those big ugly birds weren’t the least bit sociable. When a car pulled to the side of Nanih Waiya Road the carrion birds flushed into the sky like quail. They flew above the roosting tree in interlocking circles that looked like figure eights and Idabel Maytubby would tell her daughter, “Someone’s coming.” She was almost always right.
It was a ten-minute walk from the road to the cabin if visitors followed the footpaths. The trail was clear enough for people who knew what they were looking for. The locals did. They were Choctaw; it was in their blood.
The route to the healing woman’s cabin had been common knowledge among the tribe since Idabel Maytubby moved there twenty years ago with her newborn fatherless daughter, Sinti. Visitors had been coming longer than Sinti could remember. One or two at a time. Mostly women.
You can buy Pure Fantasy and Sci-Fi vol. 3 here.
“Sassafras” was first published in the trade paperback and ebook, Shadow Masters, Imajin Books, May, 2013. It was subsequently published I Pure Fantasy and Sci-Fi vol. 3 on March 27, 2015.
“Sassafras” opening paragraphs:
Smell is the simplest sense. Awareness enters through the nose without an invitation, an unwelcome guest with a master key. An injured brain needs only a few molecules to remember everything there is to know about disinfectant, urine and adhesive tape.
Sound comes next: distant conversations, wheels with bad bearings, compressed air hissing at regular intervals. Fifteen times a minute, but who’s counting.
Then vision. Two of everything—separate images that won’t come together without a struggle. The first thing is acoustic tile on a ceiling a thousand miles away. Then a pair of faces merging into one. A man I recognize but don’t remember. A lover? A brother? Something else entirely?
You can find Shadow Masters on Imajin Books website, here.
or on Amazon, here.
You can buy Pure Fantasy and Sci-Fi vol. 3 here.
“Things Like This” was published in Open Road Review, issue 12, Feb1, 2015.
“Things Like This” opening paragraphs:
Things like this can happen. A man waits for a woman as she takes a shortcut through an alley on the way to her car that’s in a free lot—because her safety isn’t worth eight dollars.
His timing is perfect.
He knows her name. “Angela.”
What else does he know?
She goes to him like a dog whose master calls, because names have power and Angela has none.
“What color are your eyes?” he steps out from behind a dumpster that smells like soured grease.
Angela doesn’t run because the man is an impenetrable object. Too tall, too dense, too strong to resist. His face hidden in the shadows. His voice a mellow base counterpoint to the Louis Armstrong music filtering through the exhaust fans of a Cajun restaurant that serves blackened everything.
You can find “Things Like This” here.
“A Different Kind of Indian” was published in Eleventh Transmission, issue 1, Feb. 2015.
“A Different Kind of Indian” opening paragraphs:
Some kids sell tacos after school. I make arrows. Four of them a day, because that’s a sacred number. I haft them to shafts of white aspen harvested from the spirit-mountains somewhere in Montana. I fletch the shafts with wing feathers of the red-backed hawk—that’s Crazy Horse’s spirit bird. Mom sells them for a hundred bucks apiece on the Internet.
The flint is real, but everything else is as phony as my website name. In cyber-space I’m Joseph Little Wolf, a cool old dude whose great-great grandpa was the Cheyenne Chief who kicked Custer’s butt.
You can find issue 1 of Eleventh Transmission here.
“Unk” was first published in Disturbed Digest, issue 1, Alban Lake Press, June, 2013. It was subsequently published as a reprint by A Murder of Storytellers in Beyond the Nightlight in December, 2014.
“Unk” opening paragraphs:
The Oklahoma City Family Medicine Center might not be a good place to meet guys, but I see a really hot one the moment I walk out the door. Good looking. Tall and dark. Native American. He’s just my type, so I check my watch and pretend I haven’t been inside for anything important.
He likes my hair. Who can blame him? I spent a lot of time mixing in the eight long, thin, highlighted braids with tiny glass beads whipped at the ends. I toss my head so he won’t notice if my smile is a little crooked. It probably is because my lower lip is partly numb. Doctor Martha Singleton says the feeling might come back in time. Continue reading