Short Stories

Patron saint No. 3: Flannery O'Connor, right.

Patron saint No. 3: Flannery O'Connor, right.

“Lady, he said, and turned, and gave her his full attention, “lemme tell you something. There’s one of these doctors in Atlanta that’s taken a knife and cut the human heart – the human heart,” he repeated, leaning forward, “out of  a man’s chest and held it in his hand,” and he held his hand out, palm up, as if it were slightly weighted with the human heart, “and studied it like it was a day-old chicken, and lady,” he said, allowing a long significant pause in which his head slid forward and his clay-colored eyes brightened, “he don’t know more about it than you or me.” – Flannery O’Connor, from “The Life You Save May Be Your Own”


Questions and Answers with Jeff

Q: I’m having a barbecue tomorrow. What’s the weather report?

A: “A few light taps upon the pane made him turn to the window. It had begun to snow again. He watched sleepily the flakes, silver and dark, falling obliquely against the lamplight. The time had come for him to set out on his journey westward. Yes, the newspapers were right: snow was general all over Ireland. It was falling on every part of the dark central plain, on the treeless hills, falling softly upon the Bog of Allen and, farther westward, softly falling into the dark mutinous Shannon waves. It was falling, too, upon every part of the lonely churchyard on the hill where Michael Furey lay buried. It lay thickly drifted on the crooked crosses and headstones, on the spears of the little gate, on the barren thorns. His soul swooned slowly as he heard the snow falling faintly through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and the dead.” That’s from James Joyce’s The Dead.