Thursday, December 15, 2011

Connotations Press Publishes "Payback" and "We Sustain"

Many thanks to Meg Tuite at Connotations Press for publishing these two pieces. Well done to my friends, Gill Hoffs and Jack Swenson also published here!

by MaryAnne Kolton
            She’d tried hard not to scream when he’d put his cigar out on the exact spot on her upper left arm where her childhood smallpox vaccine scar had faded to a pale, carrot-slice shaped mark.  But when she heard somebody shrieking like the victim in a slasher film, she figured it must be her.  She knew not to fight him.
He’d said she was like a daughter to him.  She’d known better.  Where his money was concerned, she was just another flunky.  She’d skimmed miniscule amounts over the years, calling it her retirement fund, thinking he’d never notice.  Almost twenty years of delivering cash to be laundered.  Easier when she was still young, harrowing the last ten years.  All those flights back and forth.  Monaco, the Caymans, Bermuda and more recently Zug, population twenty-six thousand, in the Swiss Alps.  Zug, for Christ’s sake.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Andrew Stancek Challenges MaryAnne to an Interview!

Andrew Stancek grew up in Bratislava, then Czechoslovakia, now Slovakia. As a teenager he saw tanks rolling through the streets of his hometown. That encounter, that betrayal led to many stories much later. Those then led to others and a vocation was born.
He now writes, translates and dreams in southwestern Ontario. Recent work has appeared in Bartleby SnopesApollo’s Lyre52/250 A Year of Flash and Istanbul Literary ReviewHis novel and interconnected story collection are both nearing completion.

AS  First question.  In Lorrie Moore's story Real Estate; Noel breaks into people's homes and asks them at gunpoint to sing him one song, any song, by heart.  What would your song be?  And can you tell us why that song is so memorable and meaningful to you?

Friday, December 2, 2011

Anya's Frustrating Friday Morning at the Reeza Cheney Surgery Center

Thank you Jim and Katie at The Legendary!

Anya's Frustrating Friday Morning at the Reeza Cheney Surgery Center
by MaryAnne Kolton

She’s cold.  Shivering cold. 
“Excuse me,” she says.
There are at least ten women inside a big circular work area directly across from her cubicle.  No one responds.
“Excuse me please,” Anya repeats, louder this time. 
There’s a lot of noise out there.  Laughing, jangling bits of singing, more laughing.  She can’t get off the gurney, wired as she is to a pole with two bags of something dripping through tubes into the vein on the back of her left hand.
“Hello!”  She hollers.  “Can anybody over there hear me?”


Thanks again to the ever-entertaining editices Liz & Laura at The Toucan

The Love Tap
by MaryAnne Kolton

As she took the marble-sized ball of green Play-Doh from the plastic sandwich bag and rolled it into a soft cone shape, she muttered, “What kind of crazy woman puts Play-Doh in her ears every night.”

Lena reached over her head with her right hand, pulled the top of her left ear out, thereby increasing the possibility of a good seal.  She positioned the cone into her ear canal and pressed down hard with her index finger.  A woman whose husband  makes more noise than a one man band, all night, every night, that’s who, Lena thought, as she pushed another green cone into her right ear.
She’d met Davis online.  After three months of increasingly affectionate correspondence, they had arranged to meet.  Davis, a writer, had been living in the Arizona desert for several years and had grown to hate leathered skin, Armani slip dresses and turquoise.  He was planning to visit his daughter in Texas and then head east to look for a spot with an ocean breeze in which to write.  They would meet in between the daughter and the ocean.

Davis rang the bell at her front door on a Friday afternoon, intending to stay three days.  Lena opened the door and they fell in love.  Two weeks after he appeared, he returned to the southwest to collect his belongings, and was back in Ohio in ten days.  At fifty-something, they did not feel the need to wait any prerequisite time to satisfy some convention or another.  They married four days after his homecoming.

Thursday, December 1, 2011


Many thanks to Liz & Laura, Editrices Extraordinaire, at The Toucan

Sex With Strangers, MaryAnne Kolton

she had sex with strangers
because of her madness
because of their sadness
because of the pain it caused her

she had sex with strangers
who slapped her a little and hurt her a lot
who showed her a good time and with some
who had nothing worth knowing to say