Some call them short stories, others call them short short stories (short shorts for short). Some even call them prose poems, and I guess that in some ways they might be.
I call them sketches, for that’s how I see them: an impression or mental view sketched out for joy or remembrance.
This collection includes thirteen sketches about everything from air to a Bristlecone Buddha. More
This collection includes the following sketches: “Air,” “Bristlecone Buddha,” “Crocuses,” “Designer Sex,” “Drowning,” “Infertility,” “Like a Little Jellyfish,”
“Lynx,” “Melting Into Earth,” “Moat,” “My Cricket People,” “Sex? She Asks,” and “The Teller Line.”
Here, as a sample, is “Air” —
In the last month of my fiftieth year I turned to air, not air we breathe but air we are, not the moon was the sliverest of a sliver in air we breathe but air we were before lung and nose and we had no need of air as breath, not bird as shadow against the stars in air we breathe and the moon the sliverest of a sliver but air we were when air we breathe had yet to gain this use, to this air I turned in the autumn of my fiftieth year, to air we were, to air as air before the air was air I turned, to sudden memory I turned, not memory of then but memory of now, not all the moons I’ve seen sliver to the sliverest of a sliver in a necklace of memories but to memory as memory when there was no then to remember, not all my lungs of fish and toad and fox and wolverine, of butterfly and flower in one abandoned memory in pursuit of another but into sudden memory that there are no memories and that the air we breathe is not the air we are, is not the air that air was then before the air was air, into this memory I turned in the last month of my fiftieth year in the air we breathe with bird as shadow against the stars I breathe and the moon the sliverest of a sliver I breathe for I am air now and not my lung or toe or nose or arm or elbow, not a name, a name, a name only air now, but not the air we breathe but air that see and yes I now it should be sees but this is not the kind of air that take its verb in the third person singular because it’s not third, it’s not person, and it is certainly not singular, so it is the air that see, not the air we breathe or fall or rise through, or that heat and cold can whip to frenzied storm that rearranges even small cities at large expense to tax payers, not that kind of air at all, but air that see, not even air that saw for there is no then in this air, it is air that see, it is the air we were before the air was air and all we did was see, when all the air was see, when all the world was see, long before lungs and toads and wolverines and the moon was the sliverest of a sliver and the bird just a quick shadow against the stars and then gone again against the black.