March 20, 2019

Casey Stanberry, Architectural Illustrator

Casey Stanberry, Architectural Illustrator

We’re pleased to introduce some new and fascinating art from Boston’s Casey Stanberry. Casey was trained as an architect and furthered his education at an art school in Spain. There, he participated in his first art shows and allowed the dense, historic architectural fabric to inspire his work. Originally from South Carolina, he has always had a passion for historic architecture and its relationship with contemporary daily life. His work reflects the intersection of the built environment and fine art in sweeping perspectives captured in painted and penned architectural diagrams.  Artist’s Statement “These pieces are drawn in elevation, plan, section and aerial to best expose certain structural and aesthetic qualities. Paint is sometimes layered over drawings followed by pen, which gives pieces a sense of being in architectural progress. There is an analytical approach to…

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March 18, 2019

“Never Odd or Even”

“Never Odd or Even”

A New Short-Short Fiction by Janelle Hardacre Editor’s Note: Ever wonder what goes through the mind of a fish and chips cook? Wonder no more. ** I collect things to tell her. Did you know that ‘never odd or even’ is the same backwards and forwards? I think she’d like that. Some of the things in the collection are white lies; like that her mam didn’t wanna see me anymore because I could never get the grease stink out. It’s getting busier. I slide the slice under the fish, check that the batter isn’t burning, then pull across the Perspex door. The hiss of the fryer blocks out the small talk of the server lasses. Every time I go to shake the chip baskets I see her name in flicky writing on my arm, so…

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March 14, 2019

The Poetry of Keith Carreiro

The Poetry of Keith Carreiro

A Caprice of Nature the earth, a drop of cerulean dew in a black puddle ocean of space, whirls on its news paper axis, while I walk by portland amazed at a barber seated in his cutting chair — he plays paganini on a violin. the ancients thought the soul capable of re-remembering life if asked precise questions such acuity would provide a channel through which the mind and heart might flow   as a modern when i again experience what an ancient knew i see the might and decay of empire wane and glow   in the yes of joy in the no of sorrow   time a current of mystery with its own tug and pull rushes my spirit within its tidal pulse   knowledge re–born is useless without wisdom as a sage…

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March 1, 2019

The Weekend Podcast: “Anna Schutz” by Dean Peterson

The Weekend Podcast: “Anna Schutz” by Dean Peterson

We have a terrific new audio arts program for you tonight. It’s the story of an enigmatic young German woman named Anna Schutz and an American GI named Oli, who has a really bad case of depression. Or, in the author’s words: “A white-clad phantom seen running through the woods in Germany . . . a warren of abandoned tunnels under an American base . . . a forgotten clinic once used by the Nazis . . . one soldier’s obsession to solve a fifty-year old murder before his suicidal plans go any further. Listen to the madness unfold in Anna Schutz. “It’s like Jarhead meets The Shining.” We are providing the first six chapters to whet your appetite for this strange, enchanting ghost story, narrated with great empathy by the author. And speaking of the author, please be…

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February 27, 2019

The Poetry of the Prolific Mercedes Lawry

The Poetry of the Prolific Mercedes Lawry

A Woman Who Paints Saturated sky, two figures buta suggestion near a yellow blushof wheat. The eye regards, sensesthe repetition of hours, a trajectoryof absence, a pause. Whatcollection of brushstrokes emergesfrom this woman, dismissed or chided,discouraged or sick of the moon’sromantic lies. To choose this roundedshape, smear of viridian, she bravesthe tyranny of time and place, her children and the hungryhouse, all that love regrets. When she paints, she is betweenellipses, melds hand and eye,draws in the gases of the sun,exhales this field, empty of wind,and these two who might be toilingor traveling or devoted. Message intention of rootsdown and around earth seethes invisibly,a conjunction of hunger the knowing of treeto tree, beyond a pale, cream sky the wind is emphaticleaves, unanchored, blood red to dun brown,become a handful of flakes mingled with bird wingand seed, November’s pulse of loss I…

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February 23, 2019

My Struggle by Karl Ove Knausgaard: Book 1 Review

My Struggle by Karl Ove Knausgaard: Book 1 Review

I have learned over the past few years if I am in need of a good book to read, all I have to do is peruse the current issue of The Atlantic. It has yet to fail me. I have discovered books such as Stuart Dybek’s Paper Lanterns and Olivia Laing’s The Lonely City. Thanks to the November 2018 issue, I read an essay written by Ruth Franklin entitled “How ‘My Struggle’ Transformed Karl Ove Knausgaard.” In it, she reflected on the worldwide phenomenon of his autobiographical novel My Struggle. Her article compelled me to experience all six volumes for myself. Within two weeks, I visited my local bookstore and purchased a copy of Book 1: A Death in the Family. I was hooked! Knausgaard brilliantly alters the storytelling paradigm. Typically, the writer has his or…

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February 21, 2019

New Hybrid Art from Hank Keneally

New Hybrid Art from Hank Keneally

I had the pleasure of meeting long-time Fictional Cafe member Hank Keneally at “FOG” (Far Out Gallery) in San Francisco this month. This neat little gallery, high in the hills of the Sunset District of SF, is only a few blocks from the actual fog of Ocean Beach on the Pacific Ocean. Hank graciously showed me his art and described how he got each of his shots and then how the images transformed into the hybrid art we see here. It’s always great to see someone’s art in person and have them explain the images or the inspiration behind the piece. If you’re in the bay area, or looking for an excuse to go there, his hybrid art is on display through February 24th. Artist Statement – “FOG” Gallery Exhibition by Hank Keneally As I…

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February 19, 2019

Mark Greenside’s New Rabelaisian Novel

Mark Greenside’s New Rabelaisian Novel

The Night at the End of the Tunnel, or Isaiah Can You See? “It was the best of the worst of times, the worst of the best of times, the beginning of the end of the beginning.” That’s how this story begins. It’s late 70s, early 80s, New York City, and nothing works. No place is safe. Porn is everywhere. The streets are filthy, and the subways are worse. Trust is committing suicide–love is abused, and institutions and individuals are corrupt, corrupted, or corruptible. The City and country are disintegrating. Enter two of the unlikeliest characters you’ve ever met–think Charlie Brown meets Mr. Natural, or Alfred E. Neuman in The Heart of Darkness. All these guys want to do is survive, and they do–but in a way neither they nor you can imagine. What follows is…

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February 6, 2019

Old Age: Three Vignettes by Jo St Leon

Old Age: Three Vignettes by Jo St Leon

Dementia I can’t find the word. Somewhere, in the swirling mist of my mind, I know it’s there. Just out of reach. I chase it but it skips away from me as it laughs. It doesn’t want to be caught today. I used to use it, the word, with such ease. It would trip off my tongue, along with a lot of other words, to make sentences, stories, jokes. A whole river of words, ever-present. Unappreciated, until now. Now, I would give anything for this one word—the perfect word—to say just what I mean. For the uncomprehending face which frowns before me to clear and shine with understanding. Still the word prances, dances, teases me as I reach out to grab it. Always on the periphery, never centre stage. I begin to get angry. I…

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February 3, 2019

“Ghost Train” A Short Story by Stephen Brayton

“Ghost Train” A Short Story by Stephen Brayton

After the seven-hour drive from Connecticut, Rick and Bill were following Joe Spence’s directions to his camp on Chebuncook Pond: Nutting Road for five miles, then right onto a dirt road marked by a row of mailboxes beneath a stand of birches. Bumping along with the boat behind, they crossed the abandoned railroad line that Joe had noted. Even though he knew the railroad map of northern Maine, Rick had searched this one anyway, a Maine Central branch abandoned over a decade ago. They’d come across it at different locations on past trips. Here, its right-of-way through the woods remained clearly evident, no doubt from snowmobile and ATV use. In another half-mile, the waters of Chebuncook Pond appeared through the trees. They passed two camps and pulled in at the third. Joe’s camp looked like…

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