Selected Short Stories
“The year my twin and I turned eight, we vowed to kill our neighbor’s cat. Buster was an enormous marmalade and, a couple times a week, he left the heads of decapitated songbirds in our front yard. He belonged to the girl across the street, Liza Parker. Liza was in our grade but not our class. She wore button-up dresses every day and had her mother drive her to school each morning because she thought the bus was too dirty. When we saw her outside, she’d turn around and go inside; or if Buster was there, she’d bend over and pet him and whisper “Dirty orphans” in a singsong voice we could hear from our side of the street.”
from “Buster” Winner of the 2014 Meridian Editor’s Prize and cited in Best American Short Stories 2015.
“Each June, sisters slink up from the swamp. Spanish moss clings to their arms. Uprooted blueberry bushes drag in their wake, zigzagging black sand. The butch ones drape water moccasins around their necks like bowties, but most wear nothing. Mud clumps on their hair and skin. They lurch forward, bone thin and hungry, picking the pine needles from their teeth and ears. This year I am twelve, and I’ve brought my lasso. I’m determined to be an only child no longer.”
“Lake Sherando was a tea-colored pond with a wooden structure, like a hangman’s platform, rising from its center. On the stairs in its center, children pinched each other and butt in line. At the top of the tower, they jumped, flailing their arms and shrieking before splashing into the tannic murk. Tiny waves lapped at the caramel sand and a bloated brown tampon floated near the shore.”
from “If The Forest Floods.” Terrain.Org.
Additional stories in Ninth Letter, Yemassee, Carolina Quarterly, Nano, Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet and elsewhere.