Organizing the Satellites

Because her husband refused to splurge (his word) on a mattress for their growing girl, the one queen mattress remained a family bed. Fitting four (husband, daughter, their lanky hound, and herself) was an easy puzzle on paper, their cut-out shapes slipping into allotted slots, but in the darkness, her gravity seemed to increase, her daughter burrowing beneath her while the dog sprawled across the top. As she lay pinned and paralyzed, her husband snoring undisturbed on a wide tract of mattress, she Read more [...]

Over the River

Claire doesn’t think much of those kids. That much was evident even before I met her, and it’s plain to the kids, too. I imagine Tank-Top lady telling the girl after their visit, “Grandma Claire wasn’t feeling well today,” but she’s old enough to know better.  “Grandma just isn’t an affectionate person,” Tank-Top probably insists to the boy while he stares at the television and nods his head to her, silently wondering if his mom is really that clueless about Grandma’s obvious Read more [...]

Albuquerque

“Did you hear me, Jack?” I asked loudly. “I’m not deaf, Ed,” Jack yelled, though I suspected he was referring to my question, not to the news I had shared just before that. I smiled and nodded. I could have apologized, but he wouldn’t have heard me. If you believed Jack (I hadn’t made up my mind yet), he actually heard everything perfectly well, but all at the same volume, so if you talked to him while a record spun on the turntable and bacon fried on the stove, the three sounds Read more [...]