June 3, 2020

“The Outing,” A Short Story by Lee Marc Stein

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“The Outing,” A Short Story by Lee Marc Stein

They found his body at 5:00 am at the bottom of the stairs leading down from the sports deck to the pool. Claire Warner hears the announcement at 8:00 in her stateroom as she is curling her hair. “Ladies and gentlemen, this is your Captain. As some of you may already know, the body of our distinguished guest lecturer, Francesco Carlucci, was found this morning by our First Officer Paul Cornelius. We are guessing that Professor Carlucci missed a step, fell down the flight and hit his head. When we reach port in 30 minutes, an official Medical Examiner will come onboard to determine the actual cause of death. We promise to keep you informed.” Her husband was doing laps around the sports deck now. With the iPod blasting in his ear, he probably didn’t…

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June 1, 2020

Ben Gencarelle: Art’s Irrepressible Strangeness

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Ben Gencarelle: Art’s Irrepressible Strangeness

Artist’s Statement: “We are all strangers in a strange land, longing for home, but not quite knowing what or where home is. We glimpse it sometimes in our dreams, or as we turn a corner, and suddenly there is a strange, sweet familiarity that vanishes almost as soon as it comes.”― Madeleine L’Engle In the wrong place, in the wrong time, in the wrong job. Maybe misunderstood, maybe deluded, maybe both. Afraid. Too raw, too ugly, too real. Too much. Maybe you’re an immigrant. Maybe you’re neurodiverse. Maybe you’re both. Whatever you are or are not, the message is clear: you don’t belong here. So it starts. Masking. Crumpling up corners and sanding off edges. Tearing off the “extra” and pasting the scraps over the transparent places. Sometimes it helps. Sometimes you can fool them,…

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May 28, 2020

“Mutt and Jeff,” A Short Story by Robert Pope

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“Mutt and Jeff,” A Short Story by Robert Pope

Friends who knew us back in the day called us Mutt and Jeff. We had buddy tattoos on our biceps, cartoon characters: Jeff tall in an orange striped suit and fedora, with a mustache like mine, Mutt short, with mutton chops, dark suit and top hat. I never told Tina, my second wife, why I had the tattoo because I got into bad habits with Mick a year into my first marriage. I wanted him nowhere near me and Tina, until the bad times hit.   We had funny hours, Tina and I. She sold real estate, I worked from home, free-lancing web sites, buying and selling, investing. We made decent money, unpredictable, sure, but we talked about having a kid. That dropped off when things cooled in the bedroom. One Saturday, I drove by an open house to say hello when I saw her on the porch, talking with a younger guy in dark slacks, blue shirt. He had dark hair, styled, real regular white teeth.     I put it out of my mind overnight. We had a nice dinner, and off she went…

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May 26, 2020

“Bleeding Hearts,” A Short Story by Mary Daurio

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“Bleeding Hearts,” A Short Story by Mary Daurio

Sarah left early, taking her stepson Jacob to see his mother for perhaps the last time. * Upon awakening, John found his wife and son already gone, too late to rescind his permission from the night before. He was upset, not at her, but at himself. John knew how exaggerated his reaction to casual contact with Anne was, yet he remained afraid of his ex-wife’s illness. He prepared for work, swearing as he cut himself shaving in haste. The front door slammed behind him and the windows vibrated, but there was no one to witness his wrath, save the blackbirds flying off in raucous chorus. John wanted to scream but felt afraid he wouldn’t stop. He turned the corner to the newsstand. Force of habit. A byline about Liz Taylor’s celebrity fundraiser for AIDS caught…

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May 25, 2020

Storyteller Foundation Calls to the Children of the World!

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Storyteller Foundation Calls to the Children of the World!

Children of the World! Storyteller foundation is looking for drawings from you, wonderful children, to use in The Dreaming Tree Project which will be released after June 24th. The Dreaming Tree Project is first and foremost a book, written by Ruby Fink, but drawings from you will be added as illustrations not only to the book, but possibly to the audio/web video which is also being produced. The Storyteller Foundation is a non-profit organization, and the book, The Dreaming Tree, as well as any additional material, is intended to be a gift to the children of the world, not only to those who live through this quarantine, but also those who come after. RULES FOR ALL CHILDREN WHO PARTICIPATE! Children must be 12 or under to enter. Drawings must be from the list of options…

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