Short Stories

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A Grown Up Thanksgiving

Today the folks who make me feel safe in my world are coming for dinner…my family. It’s noon. I can see my mother from our kitchen window.


“Mom,” I need you to come to school right away,” my brother Mickey said. “Bob Loney gave me a puppy on the school bus and Miss Marwick said I couldn’t keep it at school.


Looking back at the list of 19 liaisons I’ve had over my lifetime I realized I’ve made some not-so-great choices. 

Dad’s Shotgun Shell

My father’s mind is okay. It’s his body that’s shot. He has trouble walking, with balance and his arthritis has bent him forward. 

Dad’s Sore Throat

Dad called last night from his assisted living apartment sounding like a frog with a sore throat.  I asked how his appointment had gone with the doctor but couldn’t understand his croaking answer. 

Did Danny Kill Sandy?

My Uncle Jim passed away in Michigan on the same day as his oldest daughter died in Kentucky. Sandy was killed exactly one year earlier to the day.

Ever Fly A Bomber Over Clark Lake?

I turned my head to see who had tapped me on the shoulder. “Would you or Bob like a ride in that B-17 parked outside the Richmond Brothers hangar?” 

How Herbie Won At Westminster

You don’t have to come in first to win at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog show. I felt as if a lucky cloud hovered over us during our entire adventure at this world-wide televised sporting event.

I Was A Clark Lake Terrorist

“Business class guests leaving for Pittsburgh are now boarding at Keflavik Gate 26.” It all started as we stepped to the front of the long line waiting to board WOW Airline flight 902. I felt entitled. 

Ottawa Chief Pontiac, The Native American General

I can imagine 12 year-old Obwandiyag stopping for a swim in Clark Lake. This future military strategist would have jogged along North Stoney Lake Road, and then turned south towards what is now the Beach Bar and a Jackson County Park. 

Our Architect From Argentina

Our old cottage had been gone for two years. We had this beautiful piece of lake-front property we weren’t using. My husband and I had interviewed four major Michigan architects over a two year period, and even paid for a set of preliminary drawings which we later rejected. 

Pastor Azzam’s Rabbit Hunting Dog

Pastor Azzam was a good preacher. He delivered teaching sermons each Sunday at the country church on Johnsfield Road. Congregants often left the white clapboard-sided building arguing the meaning of his message. 

Persian Rice

“Boil two cups of water, add a cup of rice and a quarter teaspoon of salt. Stir. Cover the pot and turn the gas down until two separate blue flames keep the simmer.