Blog Archive

Thursday, June 10, 2010

2 Stories

Got 2 new(ish) stories out in the world: "Postpartum" in Up The Staircase and "Gifts We Are About to Receive" in Toasted Cheese


This story in Up The Staircase has gotten some sharp criticisms from people who usually like my work. It's about a baby with an afro and his father, who is less than thrilled by his existence. The first draft was narrated by the baby, which was stupid.

It was inspired, in part, by a line in a Nas song, "Book of Rhymes." At the end of the song he reflects on on the birth of his daughter and the new reality of losing the attention of the child's mother.

The story begins like this:

Purple lips. Red-eyed. Skin, puke-yellow. Little lightskinned baby. His screams are a several times a day lobotomy. My disrupted thoughts beam into his Zombiebaby mouth to die. Zombiebaby. I haven’t given him that title because I’m a jokester. I’m not. See, pomegranate is an abortifacient and when my wife, June, carried him, the fruit became my God. I sprinkled it atop every meal I cooked.

The other story, "Gifts We Are About to Receive" is based on an early memory. Plus it is illustrated with a great picture....

Perhaps he had gotten fed up that time. Fed up is an odd way to describe a kid, six or seven years old, but he's always been sort of strange, popping with anger at some perceived slight, some injustice, some small inconvenience or a bit of stupidity; he's still like that. You'd expect an angry child to scream and cry facing down some wrong, and I assure you, he usually did, but not this day.

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