SALTER’S LUCK (a short story)

In every way my second (and last) marriage is wonderful, my first marriage was a nightmare. A fruitful situation rich in fiction-producing toxins. This story and another  (and this chapter in my memoir) are the stories I got out of that dark, dark period. . . Salter woke up to Lola shouting there was oil fucking paint on her Jil fucking Sander. He couldn’t at first tell if he was having a heart attack or caught in an earthquake or both but Lola was so up in his face she appeared to have one long ice-blue eye in the middle … Continue reading SALTER’S LUCK (a short story)


Miriam with the curly blonde hair that when you looked closer was full of white and gray. Her point being that everyone knew she had two college-age offspring from a previous marriage. Who would she be fooling with a dye job? Robert didn’t want to seem timid or dull in Miriam Wallace’s eyes. Robert had first met Miriam during the Christmas season after his twenty-second birthday, the Christmas he flew back to Philly from Minneapolis to tell his parents he wouldn’t be going to graduate school. Turbulence on the flight had strengthened his resolve. Turbulence and his rotten stomach. His … Continue reading THE GRADUATE (a short story from DIFFICULT TEXTS)


Goss slithered out of the hotel bed, careful not to wake her. This was not easy because she was the lightest sleeper ever. He hadn’t been able to shift a millimeter without getting an interrogative grunt from her and his escape from the bed had taken what seemed like hours of excruciating control. When he finally slipped into the bathroom he realized it must be suppertime back home. Sat on the toilet, seat down, lights off, with his elbows on his knees and his head in his hands but he was smiling. Not quite laughing. Actually maybe he felt slightly … Continue reading OEDIPUS Rx (a short story from NOT REALLY DIFFICULT TEXTS)


I remember the day of the morning I found out that my father had died.  His partner in my creation, my long-divorced mother, said only  Another victory for Big Tobacco when I called her with the news. I grabbed a light jacket (it was Fall in Berlin) and left my apartment on Bismarckstrasse. I had the idea that I should find a park bench in the vicinity of a fountain and sit with my thoughts. It was one of those undecided days of blinding sunshine interrupted with maddening frequency by chilling clouds. The clouds would come suddenly and refrigerate the … Continue reading CONVERSATIONS with a REMARKABLE MAN: a Short Story


Sometime around the year 2002 or 2003 I wrote a novella called THE BAD CZECH. The narrative of that novella is a proper Möbius strip in which the narrator dies about two-thirds of the way through. Then I wrote two more novellas, THE BOMB COLLECTOR and JESUS IN VEGAS. They form a postmodern (I’m not ashamed of the word)  trilogy that I’ve collected in one book called 3PSTMDRN MURDER MYSTERY NOVELLAS (CLICK HERE) I painted the Phalli, illustrating this post, in Southern California, during a time the THE BAD CZECH references (the narrator had been living with the female lead of that … Continue reading SEX, DEATH & IDENTITY


Ruby-June  stood shivering in a cloud-shaped queue at what appeared to be a bus stop on the sidewalk outside the Frisbee-shaped terminal. Awake for endless hours already she sang  a song under her peppermint breath and every frosted word she crooned exploded like kisses on a Crossmaus wind.  And there and there around her other dim lanterns of human breath rose and blurred into the evening. Singing under her breath was always a sure sign that Ruby was nervous,  thought Ruby, nervously, but  what was there to be nervous about? Ruby sang  doot-da-doot-da-doot…  Remembering when floatels were silver puddings. Puddings … Continue reading RUBY’S LOOPS: A SHORT STORY

totally naked with wild dogs: an allegory

Barry lectures: One out of every hundred people, or perhaps one out of every two hundred, harbors the seed of a cardinal talent. By cardinal talent meaning: the extraordinary ability to write or write music or paint or craft technical inventions (and nowadays to write code for software) and so on. But only a fraction of that fraction will have the strength or unstoppable compulsion to bring the talent to any useful level of fruition. Many of the talented will dabble,  in school, at an age at which it’s safe to dabble, and then stop when society and hormones force … Continue reading totally naked with wild dogs: an allegory


    When you have the sweet disease (compulsive writing) you will write things and put them away and later not quite understand them; you will remember that there were secret meanings folded into the text but you will not quite remember what those meanings were. When you discover these orphaned narratives, from time to time, in old boxes or at the backs of drawers or on old memory sticks, you will have the pleasure of reading yourself like a stranger. I wrote this story, in a fever, almost three years ago, wrapping it up just before Christmas of 2015. … Continue reading COMACOSM: A VERY LONG and STRANGE SHORT STORY

CAREER MOVE (a short story from CITY of AMATEURS and GERMANTOWN)

Wednesday evening at 19:00, Simon’s event at the North Coast Gallery, in association with Absolut Vodka and Virgin Records, is scheduled to open with a wine-and-cheese reception, followed by a learned discussion between Kahn-Meyers and five panellists, followed by the event itself. Simon is in competition for the lucrative and prestigious Stein Prize. The North Coast gallery is a handsome space on Sophienstrasse in Berlin’s gallery ghetto, where there’s an opening every night of the week in the last warm period before the soggy beast of winter’s stomping return. Openings which feature munching crowds on the sidewalks in commingled clouds … Continue reading CAREER MOVE (a short story from CITY of AMATEURS and GERMANTOWN)


  for Comrade EC, who’s happy in Heaven with Francoise Sagan now PROLOGUE: I am Born, Elvis Reports to Nixon, Primates and Bladder Infections, Fatidic Frank, a Schwinn is Taken, How Dietary Habits affect the Flavor and Bouquet of Mexican emissions, A Glimpse of the Primordial One in Pedal-Pushers, Hippie-Do’s Aflame PROLOGUE This isn’t one of those unreliable narrator jokes where the character talking thinks he’s god but really he’s some tragic sack in a coma. Really I am god and I am not in a coma. Really. I was a kid in a coma once, true. Well that was the … Continue reading HOMO ZERO


  The previous text I posted, a day or two back, came with a warning about its difficulty. This one… FIRE PAPER GUNS THE INTERNET and ALL WHO FOLLOWED AFTER (an excerpt)… makes that look like a book by John Irving or Erica Jong in comparison. It’s Sumo Class stuff in the hierarchy of obscure narratives. Chapter One: SUMMER OF NONE The splendors of existence are so near. Smell them, taste them, they are yours, right there, in thick liquids or crunchy solids or blown twinkling on your face in a highway mist through the passenger-side window of a secondhand … Continue reading FIRE PAPER GUNS THE INTERNET and ALL WHO FOLLOWED AFTER: an excerpt