I never-ever-ever-ever–I can’t stress it enough: EVER post actual work of my fiction/poetry etc. for several reasons:

  • I don’t want to scare people.
  • Sometimes I think it’s too revealing of my process… not that I am so mysterious… I just feel like a stripper, that’s all.
  • I’m self-conscious–of course.
  • I really wouldn’t want someone to steal it. Does that sound egotistical?

But I’m breaking my Never-Ever Rule and posting some here, for several reasons:

  • I’ve sort of been a Hybrid-Fiction skeptic… in that, mostly, I feel I am not good enough to attempt such post-modern arts.
  • I’m attempting hybrid-fiction, even though I feel too inferior to attempt such post-modern arts.
  • I could really use some feedback in relation to this attempt.

Please–let me know what you think: here’s an ever-so-short blip of something that will (hopefully) evolve into something much better (PoV issues certainly plague this little excerpt, and a lot of other big issues… but I’m mostly interested in thoughts about the little poetic diversion… but any thoughts are MORE than Welcome!!):

Prologue

“I got cancer of the liver,” Violet said over dinner one night. Jenny had the strangest urge to laugh, but let it crumple in the back of her throat, wadding it up and stuffing it back down.
“Well, then.”
That was all Jenny said.
The man at the end of the table spoke, his voice ragged.
“When did they tell you?” He asked. This man, called Tam, didn’t know who they were, even as he said it. They. The proverbial they: all knowing and all seeing; it seemed a mundane way of saying that, when thinking of the collective, one rarely involved the inclusion of himself.
“I got three months, they say,” she said, ignoring Tam’s question.
“Aunt Vi?” Samantha asked. “Does this mean you’re gonna croak like Momma did?”
Samantha was seventeen; her thoughts were often out before her tongue could stop them. Usually, though, Samantha’s thoughts were the collective thought—only the insolent narcissism of youth dared to speak so honestly.
“Of course,” Aunt Vi said, grimly nonchalant. Her eyes were flat brown and didn’t show the slightest emotion. She smiled then, and said, “Dessert, anyone?”
Her smile didn’t reach her eyes, but her hands reached for the pie plate; she had baked a cherry pie especially in honor of her announcement, though no one had known why Violet had been so insistent on fixing such an elaborate dinner of fried chicken, collards, mashed potatoes and, finally, the cherry pie. Everyone assumed it was one of Vi’s many whims.
No one ate much, except a few polite bites; Vi ate greedily, though, shoving bite after bite into her mouth. She never said another word, but let the still warm cherry pie push any words she might have wanted to say down into her belly. She finished two pieces of pie and pushed herself back from the table.
“I best get on to bed,” she said. “Cancer—it wears on a body, you know.”
“Aunt Vi?” Samantha asked again.
“Yes dear?” Vi asked finally when Samantha sat still, not asking anything.
“I don’t know. I guess… goodnight.”
“Yes, of course,” Vi said: calmly, matter-of-factly: goodnight.
Violet shuffled from the room, her steps heavier the further she got from the table; the three left around the table could hear her muttering, though they couldn’t tell what. Jenny, Tam and Samantha exchanged glances; it was Tam who broke the silence.
“Jenny, you go rest; Sam and I will see to the cleaning.”
“We will?” Samantha asked.
“Of course,” Tam said with a wry but tired grin. He reached out to tousle her hair. She dodged his hand and stood up quickly.
“Y’all can clean the damned table. I’m going for a walk,” she said. She left so quickly that her chair rocked back as she clumsily brushed past it.
“I don’t think she took to Vi’s announcement too good,” Jenny said. She wiped her hands on the front of her dress, the one sign of nervous energy that Tam observed, but then began picking up plates as methodically and steadily as any waitress working a mundane shift might.

We jump into dreams, as into days. We flatter ourselves to think it’s only one more: one more thought,

one more moment to be held and let go.

Into dreams we let ourselves fall, like logs dropped into fire.

Into dreams we jump, headfirst, to quench thirsty smiles.

Tam had jumped into dreams, into days, into moments and fires and rivers. He had seen others do these things, too.

His mother, into days,

Sunny: into Fire.

Bitsy: into a river.

Himself?

Maybe it was he who jumped into dreams.

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