August 17, 2012
Xanthe Terra

An extract from Xanthe Terra, as published in this month’s Aspidistra X

- Giacomo Lee

**

August 22nd, 1924

 

The old man was surrounded by young men with machines. While the latter were checking dials and measuring radio waves, the old man made notes on the machines, and on what the young men did with their hands. His own meanwhile etched sketches, annotated with names and numbers, ideas. He was a respectful guest, careful to keep his stooped figure out of the men’s way, like a pivot in the middle of the observatory, an ancient space body moving in ever decreasing circles. Ironically, he was being respectful to men who were awed by the mere presence of him. It was the Camille Flammarion after all, and when one by one all these young men left, their ancestor in astronomy was left on his own with all their machines in matrix.

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March 8, 2012
Tarahumara (Strap it on)

From the Midnight Train anthology, February 2012. Annotations here

The dream would follow the same pattern all summer. I’d be seated on the train to work, riding the westbound route of the Northern Line. It was my normal morning trip, though the carriage seemed a little emptier than normal, and the scarf wrapped up over my chin meant it must have been winter above ground. In my stare: my foot, shaking, with both of my legs crossed as inconsiderately as usual. On my right: a man holding the Metro, but I could only see the front page, a blind spot for the brain, with its photograph and headline as indistinct as the reader’s face.

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