August/September 2015

operating room lights

Old Dogs

It was well past midnight when a ring awakened Krebs’ from a dreamless sleep.  The old surgeon groped in the dark for the phone.  His hand found the receiver, and he pressed its cold plastic to his ear. “Dr....
empty road with view of mountains

Second Time Around

In late January, 1967, three months after my back had been broken in a car accident, the radiologist and orthopedic surgeon decided I could move gradually from being prone to upright and walking.  First I had t...
Willow tree in the spring

Souvenir

October 2000 "Good morning, Mrs., uh, Ms. Falloughs?" "Please, call me Ellie." Eleanor Falloughs extended her arm across the desk. "Thank you; I will."  The man offered his own hand, which was warm and s...
Red Texture

The Crimson Mask

It was July.  San Marco was filled with tourists feeding seeds to pigeons.  I drank a bellini at Cipriani.  How ordinary the place looked, like the out of date Italian restaurants in Jersey suburbs.  I bought a...
speed blur of tunnel lights

Pajamas and Bathrobes (a novel excerpt)

Francis was sitting in the back seat of her father’s car, staring herself in the eye in the rearview mirror. She rested her left hand on the bag that lay next to her, filled with clothes and books, and put ...
sky with sun shining behind clouds

Confession

“I’m worried.” “What are you worried about?” I asked. Mr. Jones was a sixty-five year old veteran teetering between living and dying, more dying than living. I knew it, and he knew it. A cancer had eaten ...
Patchwork Quilt

Surprise at Sunset

Lift off beyond sixty, and here my heart as flutter-fed as any girl’s. The patchwork years blew by.  Still, I in some odd state I dodge as not senescence have faith that few will note and fewer ca...
closeup of two hands and chin turned up to the light

Light

I saw an old friend at the supermarket, a friend of my firmer flesh and lighter heart days I heard that she’d been ill – that big, mutilating women’s disease We exchanged the discreet inquires of suburban m...
closeup of dna strand

Inheritances

1. Calculate mattress undulations 5:00 am, upstairs. Meiosis in her fallopian tube shortly after, determined by timing of ovulation, not coitus. What is the susceptibility gene? Pocket watch reflected in the...
Paris bridgeover seine

Les Mouchoirs*

As I sit here in our one-star hotel in Paris I think of my father, chronically ill these six months, physically changed, frail and smaller. This spring, his eighty-seventh year, I’m buying him old man h...