Christmas Tales

Nobody Writes to the Fat Man Holding a pair of darned socks and a hot water bottle, Albtraum stood outside the fat man’s room. The elf nudged the door open and peeked inside. By candle light, he saw his old friend, wearing nothing but his y-fronts, seated by the frosted window. ‘Leave everything on the […]

Sons of Sorrow

Sons of Sorrow They rode into town at sundown, wild boys on black horses. Sorrow, on a white horse with no saddle, galloped ahead of them. It wasn’t enough that some called her a witch, others dared say that her sons were her lovers, too. Fathered by the devil all. In the saloon, they drank […]

Like Rain

The rain never let up. And all the while she could see him standing out on the street across from her apartment, looking up at her window, his blue umbrella always open but held so far back that the water got under his skin anyway. She fought the urge to shout down to him, to […]

The Soldier

The Great War was firmer in his mind than the raised butter knife in his hand. He saw himself in the glint of the blade and hid it beneath a napkin. His daughter came in with tea on a wooden tray, printed with a depiction of a provincial French scene. He walked forever before coming […]

In the Shade at Noon

It was noon and the bar was closing for siesta. By the fountain, in the shade, his mandolin held against his chest, José stood waiting. The sun burned directly above as Mariana, the barista, stepped out into the deserted street. She walked across to the fountain and José began to play. He played her song; he played […]

An Odyssey

He decided. It was something that bothered him no end. He took a plane across the ocean, an afternoon flight, soft music played, and supper was served. He rode a train into the city. The station was built on a lake that looked like a sea. Clouds came in across the sky. He walked up […]

The Theatre

The final curtain fell and the public, some still applauding, others already discussing where they’d go next, left the theatre. I took up my flashlight and began to make my rounds, collecting forgotten things and tidying up. When I came to the second floor there stood before me a startled girl, with long, dark hair […]

Undinélé

Time drifted for Undinélé like a sailor at sea. In school she was often in trouble. ‘Undinélé, stop dreaming,’ the teacher would say. Geography was the worst: the continents, heavy as enormous ships, floating across maps. How did they not sink to the darkest depths? She carried this question home with her and, in the […]