Make this restaurant great again

In the triple-digit heat, three unmasked older couples sat out on the patio under the misters, sharing a table and talking with gusto in a release of all the gossip and opinion that had been bottled up inside them for months I awaited my take-out order near the register, wearing my bandana over my mouthContinue reading “Make this restaurant great again”

Summer casualties

Everything colorful was gone from the woman’s flower beds, despite all her ardent work. The summer just wouldn’t allow anything other than perennial green now. Listening to Chopin’s tender Nocturnes as dusk descended, I gazed into her yard at a wheelbarrow holding slender planks of oak she had acquired for a trellis. A large ceramicContinue reading “Summer casualties”

Sunday morning at Charlie Frias

Up ahead I see a man lounging on the pavement in shorts — no shoes, no socks, no shirt. Leaning up against a utility box, he is a white man tanned browner than a band aid. His feet nearly reach the curb, so I step off my bike and wheel it gingerly past him. WeContinue reading “Sunday morning at Charlie Frias”

My story is online at Entropy magazine

My creative nonfiction story The Size of Hummingbirds was posted yesterday at Entropy magazine. There was an American robin on a bough above us guarding its nest. I had pointed it out to Rob, as well as the male grackle that had been looming higher in the tree for several days, as if setting itsContinue reading “My story is online at Entropy magazine”

My great-grandmother lived into her late 90s

In my late great-grandmother’s building on Bathgate Avenue in the Bronx about a block from my old Catholic elementary school the stairs creaked like a rocker on the front porch they had resonance as if empty crates walked upon. A skunky amalgam of boiled cabbage and potatoes still in their dusty, cratered skins always permeated the air as IContinue reading “My great-grandmother lived into her late 90s”

The mushroom lady

The mushroom lady is afoot after a winter-long downtime. She has the air of someone who worked in retail or perhaps an administrative office in a grade school. In her Old Navy shorts and button-down shirt and her hair done like Margaret Thatcher, she prowls the grounds of the apartment complex for sprouts of fungi. ThenContinue reading “The mushroom lady”

A note about perfection

I sit in the morning, tweezing my eyebrows, my coffee turning lukewarm. Over the past few days, my hairs have gathered like the poppy seeds on my toasted bagel — a small colony near the tail of my left brow, spread out like the homes of a suburb on the periphery of a city. ButContinue reading “A note about perfection”