Archives for category: Fiction

From the back of the gallery, Calista surveyed the room. A couple lingered beside Josh Patrick’s “Samantha.” Over the past ten years, she’d become more astute, knowing when to hang back, letting browsers explore, and when to approach potential collectors. The subtle task of selling. She took very little personally—except artists’ loyalty. Suddenly, she was about to lose one who mattered too much. And this, she was taking personally. Calista stood, thinking about how Josh did it, how he pulled people in with swirls of paint. She would close this deal. He’d stay. She approached the couple. “Wonderful, yes?”

-Sharon Rousseau

 

The apple trees were in bloom. Looking at the house for sale, Anne imagined herself in the garden, digging in tulip bulbs and potatoes. She felt the soft cushion on the lounge chair while sitting in the sun, watching her children play. She planned her 30th birthday party. It would be a surprise.

In this house there would be no loneliness in the living room, no boredom in the bedroom, no anger in the kitchen. It would shelter her through the divorce, support her through art and graduate schools, and safely embrace her before the move to New York City.

—Pat Horner

Visit Pat’s website here

Pat Horner is a painter/collage artist and writer exhibited and published in the US and abroad. Horner is a member of the Board of Directors of the Woodstock Artists’ Association Museum and a journalist, photographer, coach, teacher, publisher and editor at publications including the “The Woodstock Guide.” She’s currently writing fiction and memoir from Woodstock, NY.

 

While waiting to cross Fifth Avenue near Fendi, a woman noticed a forgotten ribbon dropped on the sidewalk. There was something about the color of the fabric, a cool lilac, her favorite shade, that seemed appropriate to the day.

The light turned. Nudged forward by the crowd and the enthusiasm of Santa’s shrill bell ringing, she stepped off the curb and heard a stranger whisper, “Beyond snow angels / and glittering shop windows / –a quiet park bench.”

The traffic cop motioned frantically, so the woman kept walking. She looked back and saw a man smiling—holding the ribbon.

—Sharon Rousseau

(This fable was inspired by an overheard story with completely different details. Sharon wishes everyone a happy holiday season filled with fun and a few quiet moments.)

Seven Minutes of Heaven with Margie, determined by a spinning 7-Up, an odd turn at “Indie Junior Non-Prom”, the Youngbloods’ cabin.  She had taken his hand, bypassing the coat closet, straight out into the darkening cornfield.

“Sorry about your mom and Roger.”

“Yeah.  Rough.”

“Sorry.”

She wasn’t pretty.  But her nose and upside-down smile were perfect.  Maybe it was all pattern recognition.  She touched his hand again, but her cell’s buzzing startled them both.  If he Google-Earthed them, right now, there would be velvety softness, deceptively corrugated, from continental ridges to crumbly furrowed fields to the fray of her corduroys.

—J. Michael Kilby

Michael Kilby is a Professor of Medicine, Division Chief, and AIDS researcher. He has a morbid addiction to stamp-collecting, movie matinees, and rock bands incorporating banjos.

Ball meets concrete: cracked, uneven, bleached from heat and exposure. Echo. He remembers years ago, after the hard rains, trying to dribble through patches of debris blown onto the court.

Sky’s the same. Blue heat, cloudless—-always been like that above what drove him out here alone in the first place.

Looking off-court, he surveys The Vehicle—-his roving funhouse, logging highway miles.

No nets on the rims now. He lifts the ball, shoots. Spalding rolls off his middle finger into the habitual follow-through, nearly perfect. He remembers the boy, squared up, obedient to form, listening to echoes at dusk.

—Sharon Rousseau

Sharon Rousseau writes from both city and country New York. She sometimes forgets that she used to practice jump shots on outdoor courts from late afternoon until dusk.

Excerpt from piece published in The Rambler magazine, July/August 2008

It started in the boiler room. Two a.m. The clanking crawled up walls, waking the E line. Melissa reported it, then others: disturbed sleep, frustration, a desire to sue. Once a 1920’s speakeasy-brothel, the building held secret staircases zigzagging behind apartments—a dim maze of unused space. Melissa confided her ghost fears to Ben, the super. Vaporous flappers, lost to jazz and melancholy, banging for freedom. Ben never confessed his nightly jaunts through the building’s hollows, wrench and kitchen spatulas in hand. In darkness, heat, and steam, his symphonies swirled, growing louder. Apartments went up for sale. Melissa started packing.

—Sharon Rousseau

100 Word Writing Contest
 #7 Fiction—
Gotham Writer’s Workshop
—2nd Place Winner

After that first snow, we walked through wood smoke and the weighted arbors of birch trees, our boots heavy from salt and sand. A passing car slowed, stopped, and the driver asked if we needed a ride.

You said, “No thanks, we’re seeking adventure,” and I laughed.

The man in the car laughed, too. He knew you were joking, probably thought we were renting for the week, up from the city shopping for a weekend place. We looked like that.

Today is seven snows since. I walk outside for more wood, glance up—and you’re there in the study, writing.

—Sharon Rousseau