Volume 2, Issue 8    |    ISSN: 1941-2908
ABOUT  |  MAIN  |  SUBMISSIONS





































Chimaera Constant

by ROB HUNTER






          A woman, light of hair—once auburn, now gray—is attacking a ball gown of many ruffles and flourishes. The gown is being dismembered for a quilt. "A delicate case, clearly, Doctor," she addresses a commanding presence on the label of bottle of patent elixir. Elizabeth Profitt Pease starts her mornings with strong sweet tea and Dr. Pomeroy's Herbal Draft, an alcoholic infusion. It is now afternoon. On his label, Doctor Pomeroy wears a black serge box-back tailcoat, a foulard bow tie beneath his stiff collar, and a haircut center-parted. The dress is a prom gown, hand-stitched by Libby's mother—crepe du chine dyed blue in a watered silk effect, tulle netting at the bodice with a pattern of blue cornflowers. "I have worn it once. Once was enough," says Libby Pease. Her mother's stitches are sure and small. As a quilter of surpassing skill, Libby is envious and reaches for her tea.
          "Sweet Jesus!" Elizabeth Profitt Pease has—for just a moment, a split second—the queer idea that there is an eyeball in her cup. "Uh . . . hello, eye." The eye does not speak. She takes a swallow of Dr. Pomeroy's straight from the bottle and shakes her head to clear it. She squints; the eye in her teacup squints back—the eye is hazel and clear. It is her mother's eye.
          "Peculiar," says Libby Pease and drops the cup. Her mother's eye winks at her and disappears as the teacup continues on alone to the floor where it concusses with a sharp, porcelain shudder before shattering into pieces. The teacup—one of a set—had been her mother's, painstakingly gathered-in at the Willipaq Cinema's Thursday matinées.
          Libby tries to picture her mother, Eurydice Wyndham Pease. She instead remembers Profitt Pease, her father, a man of adamant opinions, a stiff-legged banty rooster of a man with an Old Testament inflorescence of a beard. "The Blue Willow," sighs Libby, despairing of the scattered fragments. She sits and stares at the broken pieces, the scattered tea leaves drying on the kitchen linoleum. No mother is in evidence. This had been an eye without a face.
          She rummages through attics of lost memory and realizes her mother had never had a face. Surely she must have; people had faces. Libby's mother has a name, Eurydice—a name fraught with possibility. "There are deeper meanings in a name if one looks for them," Libby's mother says as she pins a gardenia to her daughter's prom dress fifty years earlier. Her father is not one for deeper meanings—the world presents itself to him, is considered, and put in a proper order. "Dicey . . ." her father calls his wife by her short form, "if you keep fussing with Libby's dress . . . ." Fussing caused wear, and dissolution followed—this is a tenet of the Pease household. That the dress will wear out at the pinning of a corsage is unlikely; Eurydice Wyndham Pease made the dress herself.
          "Ahem." There is a perfunctory throat-clearing and the smell of molasses and plug-cut tobacco. "Don't mind if I do. A cup of tea?" says Sun-ripples-pool, a dead Indian. He is a regular visitor. He wears a loincloth and is well-muscled, albeit stringy. Libby offers him a thick white diner mug of tea. It is waved away. "Only in one of those Blue Willow teacups," says the dead Indian, a spirit-priest, "if there are any left, that is." Sun-ripples-pool munches on a triangle of cinnamon toast. The Algonquian spirit-priest is 400 years old and values his occasional treat.
          Libby reaches down a cup and saucer from the third shelf of a converted pie safe. She checks first against the likelihood of an eye inside and dumps the contents of the white diner mug into the teacup. "Here. Careful, there are only three left."
          "Nonononono," says Sun-ripples-pool. "Brewed fresh in a matching teapot. And it should be Lapsang Souchong, by the way—loose, not in the bag."
          "There is no teapot comes with the set of matching dishes. If there had been a teapot, the theater would surely have said so."
          "The Willipaq Cinema shut down thirty years ago, Lib. Remember? As they are now a parking lot they can not be expected to offer any guarantee on their dimestore dishes. Besides, from your psychic aura, I would say there is a statistically significant probability that you have encountered an eyeball in your teacup," says the spirit-priest. "Your missing mother—this is about her?"
          "No. I mean I don't think so. Is it?" In a reverie engendered by the Dr. Pomeroy's, Libby idly traces the quilting stitches of a white-on-white that she had made many years before. The quilting alone took her more than a year to complete. The white-on-white is a quilt that hangs on the wall—its quilting is an intricate design of filigree and feathery plumes, stitches all but invisible except in the long diagonal light of a late afternoon. People find both Libby and her quilts difficult. "Artistic," is what they say.
          "Ah. Do I detect a slight slur?" says the spirit-priest. "It's that Doctor Pomeroy's. You should really cut back on the booze, Lib. Have you a Fortean wild talent lying dormant beneath that placid exterior? Nurture it. You'll have the eyeballs standing in line for a dip in your oolong. You should feel special."
          "Then that is all you have to say. You, medicine-man, had me believing you are all-knowing, all-seeing, and not just a run-of-the-mill witch doctor." Libby adds another dollop of Doctor Pomeroy's to her tea.
          "Well, if this is not about your vaporous mother, then it is about you. Spirit visitations are impromptus. You can't pin 'em down: one day an eyeball in a teacup, the next day Mom wears a fishnet body stocking and comes tap-dancing down Broadway. It all depends."
          Eurydice Wyndham Pease, Libby's mother, would have been disgraced to be caught scantily dressed, even in New York City. In a teacup—well, here there was room to move.



          The Blue Willow is a "self-liquidating premium" at the local movie theater where Dicey Pease attends the afternoon matinée in season. The plates are transfer-printed, the pattern a glorified decal, baked on. Libby has heard this while watching Antiques Road Show. They might be worth something someday.
          "Movie dishes," says Profitt Pease, her father, to his wife. "Those tear-jerkers of yours." The Willipaq Cinema offers the whole set—eight place-settings. "Service for Eight, plus Serving Pieces," says the marquee, meaning a vegetable dish, the gravy boat, a platter, sugar-creamer pair and a condiments carousel, no teapot.
          In her thirties, her mother housebound, Libby attended the Thursday ladies' matinées until the cinema closed, driven into bankruptcy by television and the added expense of a popcorn kiosk. By Libby's spinsterhood, as her friends said of women unmarried and past the age of thirty-five, the population of the Blue Willow stood at service for five and quarter. Libby scoured the yard sales and discount outlet stores to honor the memory of her mother. Blue Willow was out of fashion, even the Ben Franklin Store in Lincoln—a half-day's drive—had stopped stocking the plates in 1973.
          Libby once comes home with a gas-powered lawnmower. The Pease house teeters uneasily on a granite ledge near the fish pier; there is no lawn to speak of. This is Willipaq, Maine, the leeward limit of North America, and a lawn signifies gentility.
          "There's a war on," says Profitt Pease, deep in dementia, "and you are scavenging scrap. There's my good baby girl." This, also, is in 1973. Profitt Pease prowls the house in his pajamas while Libby pushes the lawnmower through their starveling patch of green. He will die the next year.
          "My father thought the Germans would come marching up Key Street to attack the arsenal. Right to the end."
          "You are having the nostalgias," says the spirit-priest, "a popular female complaint. Hot flashes?"
          "Not yet. Not today. Yet."
          "The mother without a face? Was she subject to moody spells? And if so, what did she do for them?"
          "She went visiting."
          "Ah-ha. Spreading the hormonal joy around." Sun-ripples-pool gestures expansively. "You allergic?"
          "Penicillin once—not that I know."
          "Good. The Gatekeeper sheds."
          "Gatekeeper . . ."
          "We are going to Hell," says the spirit-priest. "It is time to cross that line, Lib. The underworld."
          "We are going to Hell . . ."
          "Everybody goes to Hell. From time to time. Well . . . sometimes, some folks. The celestial movers and shakers: Orpheus, for example. His wife got stuck in Hell with an expired visa. He had to bail her out. Wanna know her name? Eurydice—same name as your evanescent mother."
          Sun-ripples-pool reaches down a dinner plate from its shelf in the converted pie safe and spins it on the tip of a finger. Libby tenses; she has seen basketball players do this on television. "The Gatekeeper—he is a coyote. We shall expand your vistas, Elizabeth. We too shall go visiting. To see your mother-without-a-face." He stops the spinning and holds the plate before her face. There is no reflection; the glaze has been worn off with many washings. "Look at the plate—the bridge. The two lovers."
          Libby shuts her eyes. "Medicine-man . . ."
          In the inner darkness of her closed eyes Libby sees an Oriental garden. Lovers—why should they be lovers? The two could be an old married pair out for their evening's constitutional. Or two men—the Oriental dress makes it difficult to assign any sexual identity to the strollers. "There are no lovers on the plates." A pair of doves, perhaps.
          On the Blue Willow plate the magnolias are in bloom. Libby peers closer. "These are not magnolias. Surely they are sweet oleander. Oleander," says Libby, "vomiting, diarrhea, cardiac arrest, decreased body temperature, death." Oleander, bitter and nauseating. "My mother . . ."
          A gentle plash plash from a freshet springing at the footings of the tiny bridge. The distant mountain coughs—the clearing of a seismic throat. Libby pauses midway on the bridge's soft high arch to place a hand on a polished rail. She leans forward on her elbows to look down.
          An oleander petal floats by, a water strider clinging to its back. Libby's own face regards her from the water. Beside her is a bird with the face of a man. It is Sun-ripples-pool; he is changing. The spirit-priest reaches out to her. "Come with me. You are afraid of meeting your mother?"
          "I am afraid that she will be me."
          "Daughters become their mothers—the Chimaera constant. You have a face. If you are to buy peace in the valley you must confront your fears. Things will be hunky-dory again."
          "What do you get out of this?"
          "I get you. And we will require a covered dish bring-along. Coyote loves his casseroles. No accounting for taste—the canine divine and all." His eyes grow huge; his ears are tipped with tufts of speckled white feathers.
          "You . . ."
          "What you see is me as I am. But this is not about me. This is about you. We are here on business. The business of the mother without a face who collected dimestore dinnerware at the movies."
          "My grandfather might have brought them home. He was on a voyage. The Barbary Princess."
          "Poppycock, Libby. Your mother brought them home, collected piece by piece at the moving picture show. We will have to fortify ourselves for a chat with your mother. More tea, if you please."
          "The river—it has a name?"
          "Lethe. Greek, go figure. Slim pickin's is better than no pickin's hereafter-wise. And don't drink the water. Coyote pees in it."



          The day before she went to Hell, Libby smelled cloves and peppermint. With age had come a rearrangement of taste and smell, and she was curious to see what she might have stepped in. "Cloves and peppermint—unlikely." Sitting to remove her shoes, she was prepared for the worst: a night-wandering skunk upwind behind the shed where she carried her garbage bagged and wrapped to be filed against collection day, this now smelled like sawdust, fresh and pitchy from the mill. The scents of childhood eluded her; they were masked and made repellant. The masquerade of cinnamon and nutmeg as chlorine bleach annoyed Libby Pease the most of all. It was like hearing words in a foreign language—a language she studied once but had forgotten. An Easter ham, the cloves. It is not Easter, so surely no ham in the oven. Peppermint. No, eucalyptus—like the mentholated lozenges she takes with a cold. There was a granularity under her feet, felt through her thin-soled house slippers called China flats.
Sweeping compound from the Red and White—that was it, the smell of peppermint and clove. She had brought it home on her shoes.
          The Red and White closes forty years earlier under a relentless onslaught of vinyl-floored mega-stores—the Pick N Pay with its soulless checkerboard aisles and wire racks of romance novels near the bagged salads.
          "The concatenations of desire," said her dead Indian. He had smelled gingerbread in the oven and popped in for a taste. "Orange and oily—spicy. Like those bodice-rippers you are always bringing home." Libby was a devoted reader.
          "Wha . . . ? I beg your pardon, medicine-man. I was woolgathering. I was a million miles away."
          "The sweeping compound. Orange and oily. I felt it, too. Figured you were off on a toot, Lib."
          "I thought I smelled cloves and peppermint. I am seeing things; the wires are crossed somewhere—smell, taste, mind. Everything is getting smaller—constricting. I am not the woman I was."
          "So, the universe is shrinking, not expanding. Live with it. And you've still got a nice, tight ass. Spread out, but tight."
          "You are quite forward for an apparition." Libby blushed but was secretly pleased. "I am sixty-eight years old."
          "And I am four hundred—so? You remember your father's blustering . . ." It was a statement, not a question. The spirit-priest's voice was muffled; his mouth was full of gingerbread. "You have told me this."
          "And his face," said Libby Pease. "There is the picture." She gestured to a framed photograph on the mantelpiece. "He was a handsome man when he still had his teeth."
          "I hesitate to mention this, Lib, but the picture of your father contains one half of a baby and some wisps of a female hairdo. The happy couple has been rent asunder with a scissors. Was Profitt Pease trying to send a message to his one-and-only, the delirious, ah . . ."
          "Dicey Pease. That was her name," says Libby.
          "A precarious name, Dicey. Short for, for . . . short for something I do not doubt."
          "Eurydice," says Libby.
          "Eurydice. Marriage is only a piece of paper, and divorces may be cancelled out by marrying again—although I don't know why anyone who has once had resort to the law would repeat the same mistake. Your mother was a spendthrift?"
          "My mother was quite frugal, medicine-man." Elizabeth Pease was mildly surprised to find herself about to defend her mother's tight-fistedness. "She made do in hard times."



          Libby gets her hair done on the last Wednesday of the month. This is to coincide with the arrivals of her Social Security disbursements. There are colorful bottles—dried flower arrangements, baskets of potpourri—clogging the windowsills. There is the comforting gossip of the salon, but nothing to assist in Libby's search for her faceless mother. She is offered blue hair, tight curls. "No thank you. I shall have my regular bobbed cut. I am going to see my mother."
          Elizabeth Profitt Pease—Bitsy then—swallows a watermelon seed when she is seven. The other girls giggle: Gonna get a baby, Bitsy. They knew that babies came from a seed; the Bible was full of seedings—the seed of Abraham, the seed of Israel. Pastor Brooks Havermeyer thundered seeds from the pulpit any admonitory Sunday. Pregnant, they said in hushed whispers—seed-swallowing came with a word attached. The Bible on its lectern—carved walnut feet of a lion, wings of an eagle—lay huge and heavy, edges kissed by peeling gold leaf, the words of Jesus printed in red, spoke of a mustard seed.
          "I don't buy the mustard seed," says Bitsy's mother—the faceless mother. Eurydice Wyndham Pease's choice is the yellower-than-yellow prepared mustard, a sauce that came in faceted glass jars with screw-on lids. Empty of mustard, the jars would be filled with the Christmas candies she boiled and rolled and dusted with confectioner's sugar for the mailman, the milkman, and a holiday disbursement for friends and family. Libby's mother uses cane sugar, refined into twenty-five pound bags and flavored with essential oils in tiny vials that come in the mail.



          Blue Willow. There is an arbor, a trellis perhaps, clouds of blue against a sky porcelain white. A snow-capped mountain dominates the distant horizon. "A volcano," says Sun-ripples-pool. "Extinct, the volcano. Not to worry." Libby holds a plate up to the light—to refresh her mind, she says. The figures have moved.
          "That's you and me on there," says Sun-ripples-pool. "Getting on with things. Did you notice, Lib, that on the matinée dinnerware it is always two-thirty in the afternoon? I mean, the sun, the shadows. Come, this is our time."
          Hand in hand, Libby and Sun-ripples-pool cross into her neighbor's yard where there is a geodesic play dome. A wood fire smolders inside. The seasonal dwellers from next door had built it from a kit the previous year for their sprawling brood of preschoolers. It is winter; they are gone. Elizabeth Profitt Pease and the spirit-priest crouch together under the dome. Over their heads, layers of blankets and quilts provide insulation. "Snug as a bug in a rug. What'd I tell ya, Lib?"
          "You're sure this will be all right? With the ancestors, I mean."
          "Huh. Dunno—let me check," says Sun-ripples-pool. He holds his right hand up to his ear, thumb and pinky extended in the mime for cell phone. "If you will—the sweat lodge is a tool. The spirits visit. They desire no offering other than an open heart."
          "Or mind?"
          "Ah, yes. The mind is your toy. The soul is God's toy."
          Sun-ripples-pool shakes a turtle shell rattle under her nose. "This is a vision, Lib. Go with the flow." From the knob end of the handle protrudes the turtle's mummified head. The turtle's neck has been wrapped with red duct tape. Sinews extend from the turtle's head for the length of the rattle handle, Libby supposes. The spirit-priest makes several passes—around, under, over, paying special attention to her armpits and groin—with a scallop shell in which smolders a shredded bark smudge. It has an aroma of a fire of fall yard rakings. He fans the smudge with a large eagle feather, stirs the embers to full glow with the tip of the quill.
          The outdoor temperature had hovered at zero when Libby tapped the glass as she left the snug confines of her kitchen. The glass was a barometer/thermometer lodged in the belly of a ceramic shepherdess which her father had mounted on the inside frame of the mudroom door.
          They are abruptly in a field of yellow dock and red clover. In the cold, brilliant sun, Libby can see for miles, as far as the horizon. Far down a steep slope is a network of green bogs and glistening lakes connected by fast-moving mountain freshets. Broken bits of sunlight dart back up the hill to her in shimmering pinpoints. The hillsides are mounded with fall foliage of red, brown and yellow. And nearby, up close, a huge boulder. "This is a native hereafter, my Elizabeth. No ferryman here to pluck the coins from your mother's dead eyes, no nasty medievalisms like eternal fire, no three-headed dogs." At this, a large crouching beast—like a wild dog, but not, with orange eyes—ambles out from behind the boulder. "Hail, Coyote." The spirit-priest shakes his rattle to the six winds.
          The coyote's coat is not well kept. Libby notices bald spots where creeping mange left open patches of skin worn raw with scratching. "Hail, Owl-husband," says the coyote, sitting down and whiffling at the base of its tail. "Who's the girlie?"
          "I beg your pardon," Libby bristles.
          "No offense intended," says Coyote. "Spirit-wife, then."
          "These days I am called Sun-ripples-pool, Guardian. And she has come for her missing pieces."
          "Ah, Owl-husband, so many do. The Blue Willow, then."
          "Correctissimo, Guardian. It's a woman thing. Her mother . . ."
          ". . . collected dishes. A common maladjustment. It is good that she left them behind. The dear departed are a clutter hereabouts—and with baggage, well . . ."
          "There are a lot of dead folks, I imagine," Libby says.
          "Yes." The Guardian's eyes glitter, a warm paw touches her elbow. Libby wants to jump away but feels that would be interpreted as bad manners. She strokes Coyote's paw. Orange irises close to slits as the creature smiles an array of sharp white fangs. "Sorry about that. Go ahead—jump. First-time visitors always jump; I won't be put off."
          "First time."
          "Some come back."
          Sun-ripples-pool gives Libby a gentle jab with his elbow. "And the lost lovers disappeared from the plates of your mother's hard-won dinnerware? Ask about them."
          "They were here once—of this I am sure," says Coyote. They were of the intuited."
          "The intuited."
          "Rocks," says Coyote. "And the silver birch weighed down by last winter's ice storm just before it snaps. Rocks though, mostly. Rocks, stones, escarpments. They have huge souls, escarpments. And the not so huge—like the skipping stone, before it sinks. Its dream of flight. But their aspirations . . . you could paper over the Sistine ceiling with a lithographed lover's dreams of flight. You brought me my casserole?"
          From an insulated carrier, a scallop casserole, hot and moist with a breadcrumb crust, is produced. "Excellent. For you, Owl-husband, no problem. I'll send the missing place-settings. Watch the mails."
          "You have postal service in the spirit-world? And you are shabby," Libby thinks despite the luxuriant sable ruff encircling its head, Coyote needs a comb-out.
          "Shabby is as shabby does. I think of myself more as a facilitator," says Coyote. "Slipping and sliding over the line." He passes a ceremonial pipe. "Here, have a toke."
          "Line."
          "Line . . . yes. An imaginary boundary that keeps the spirit-world and the material world from tripping over one another. Dicey Pease?" Coyote calls over his shoulder—slowly, deliberately.
          From out of a roil of vapors comes a hooded woman. Auburn curls frame a face forever young. It is the face of Elizabeth Profitt Pease.
          "Uh . . . is there a message?" Libby has heard that the spirit-world often sends messages to the yet living.
          "I am transfigured," says Libby's mother. "I am content."
          Coyote sniffs at Dicey Pease's ankles. "That's it? Your message for the home folks? A mite self-involved if you ask me."
          "No, Guardian, I have no message. Besides, whom would you tell it to, Elizabeth?"
          "I believe we can spare her," says the Gatekeeper. "If you'd like to take her home with you . . ." The Guardian flops over on his haunches to scratch at a mange spot.
          "No. I will stay. You have gone to Hell to complete my place-settings—a dutiful daughter. This is enough." Her mother throws back her hood; the face is Libby's. Coyote licks her hand.
          Libby notices that they are no longer in the sweat lodge, but back in her kitchen. There is the smell of nutmeg and gingerbread fresh from the oven. "My mother—I am she and she is me . . . But can we be? I am me," says Libby.
          The dead Indian is now seated cross-legged atop Libby's Hoosier—Dicey Pease's repository of flour, sugar, tea, coffee and salt, herbs and spices—her mother's kitchen helper. This has come down to Libby with the house. "The picture. Of your father when he had teeth? Well-posed. Hometown photographer?"
          Libby is seated at the table, quilting the reassembled fragments of her one-time prom gown. "Drat!" There is a knot in Libby's thread.
          "Language, Libby, language," says Sun-ripples-pool. The spirit priest gives the Hoosier a mighty thump with his heel. "No moving parts, built to last. Like you and me. I like that."
          "Elias Schoop was the photographer. He sold insurance. State Farm, as I recall."
          "Do I detect a pattern here, Elizabeth? No face for Mom, but you can cross the Ts and dot the Is as to the occupation of a rural camera enthusiast."
          "He was also the principal at the high school."
          "Aha! A father-figure. Now we are getting somewhere." The spirit-priest has seen more remarkable things in his 400 years. "The parental ectoplasm—it's all in the winds. How they are blowing in the spirit world, if you get my drift."



          Libby stands at the kitchen sink watching black-capped chickadees and nuthatches browse the bird feeder. Mouse-gray juncos prowl the sere grass of last summer's yard, pecking at their scattered millet seeds. She moves robotically, content with motions much practiced, smoothed and honored by use. Libby is washing her mother's dishes with the careless rhythms of routine. There is a potato ricer in the drain board, its metal handles protruding. With a swing of an arm, there is glancing contact, and the tinkle of cracked porcelain. The plate in her hand now has a chip taken out of its edge. She turns to the converted pie safe where her mother's Blue Willow is on display. Libby looks, surveying her mother's hard-won hoard. There is a longish scar where the gravy boat had been glued back together. The gravy boat faces front, a prominent placing.
          The dishes are not to be used everyday. Once she had brought them out for a meeting of the Quilter's Guild executive committee, hosted by her. When the quilters departed, Libby discovered that a cup was missing. She suspected Valerie Trott. Valerie's mother was a collector, as had been Libby's mother. There were no accusations; Libby swallowed the loss and never used the Blue Willow for company again. It was, however, dusted each month.
          The figures are no longer on the plates. "Huh. Moved on, we have," says Sun-ripples-pool.
          Libby coughs, a deep, raling rattle from the bottom of her lungs.
          "Pneumonia. From the sweat lodge. Life is cheap; love and death both are hard-won, dear Elizabeth."
          "I beg your pardon, medicine-man. We seldom discuss the cost of things." They sit on the porch swing. It is dusk with the odor of oleander in bloom—peculiar for Maine—and in winter, Libby thinks.
          "We could have been those lovers, Lib. Despite the difference in our ages," says Sun-ripples-pool. "All hot and sweaty, rambunctious and full of the juices of youth. But the Blue Willow patterns are not anatomically correct. So we make do with the hand nature has dealt us."
          "They are not? I had not noticed. Have you said you were not meant to be my beau?"
          The spirit-priest hastily backtracks. "Learn to think big while writing small. All politics is local. The devil is in the details," says the spirit-priest.
          "There should be a, a . . . What is the word they use these days, medicine-man? Closure. Yes, a closure. Some finality. I shall have completed my mother's place-settings, after all."
          "Dunno. I'd have to look that one up. We don't get a lot of closure in the spirit world," says the spirit-priest. "Death is an elision, an ellipsis. The dead go away and are quiet, and they tend to stay where you put 'em. I don't mean to say that ol' folks are to be forgotten entire. There should be a marker where someone has breathed his last—coyote scat or a fallen willow branch. Lib . . . Lib?" There is no reply.
          Tissue thin, the blue-veined translucency of Elizabeth Profitt Pease's skin catches the long shadows that highlight the fine stitching of her white-on-white, the quilt that hangs on the wall, the quilt that took her a year to finish.
          "Happy landings, dear friend," says the spirit-priest as he gently kisses Elizabeth and wraps her in the treasured quilt.







With the onset of late middle age Rob Hunter is the sole support of a 1999 Ford Escort and the despair of his young wife. He does dishes, mows the lawn and keeps their Maine cottage spotless by moving as little as possible. In a former life he was a newspaper copy boy, railroad telegraph operator, recording engineer and film editor. He spent the 70s and 80s as aTop-40 disc jockey.




copyright © 2008, Rob Hunter














      CONTENTS

     

      FICTION


      —Pigment
PAUL ABBAMONDI

      —Mystic Tryst
DANIEL BRAUM

      —Fly
BECCA DE LA ROSA

      —Chimaera Constant
ROB HUNTER

      —The Baby is Safe
MARC LOWE

      —The Fisherman's Child
CAT RAMBO

     

      NOVELLA


      —Faith, Hidden in the Hands of the Blind
MARK TEPPO

     

      POETRY


      —My Suicide
MATT MULLINS

      —A Comic History of Bullets
JOHN POCH

      —To Recover from Lightning, Etc.
JOHN POCH

     

      EXPERIMENTAL
      WORDFORMS


      —Geographical Curiosities
A. ROSS ECKLER

[ back ]