Very Slight Stories | Like short stories, only shorter.

'Darcy and O'Mara' is a novel by Arthur Cronin.
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Tuesday, January 26, 2010


To Germany

   Jill was upset after hearing about a horse who was marooned on a small island in the middle of a lake. It doesn't take much to cause her distress. Last week she was upset because a fortune teller told her she'd be upset because of something a fortune teller told her. After hearing about the horse, Theo decided to cheer her up by playing his guitar in her garden. The last thing she wanted was someone playing the guitar in front of her window at night, but his heart was in the right place, thanks to an operation.
   I live next door to Jill so I got the benefit of his performance as well, if 'benefit' is the right word. 'Benefit' is not the right word. He played so loudly he could be heard in the future. I was able to confirm this three days later when I could still hear him. My ears are normally happy ears. They delight in simple things. They thrive at night when interference from the eyes is reduced to a minimum, when the sounds of simple things stand out in the silence. They love nothing more than the sound of water trickling from a water feature in a garden at night. Interference from the sight of the water feature would ruin the experience. My ears were deeply disturbed by Theo's performance. I found their regular reports distressing. Most of the neighbours were getting similar feedback from their ears. After discussing the matter with them, we decided to visit Paul.
   He invited us all into his study. We told him about the objections of our ears and our concern about the possibility of a repeat performance. He said he'd almost definitely play in Jill's garden again at some point in the future. He suggested that we go to Germany if we wanted to protect our ears. After giving the matter considerable thought, we found that this plan was faultless.
   To Germany we'll go! We'll go there with bells on, and the bells will have bells on them, and the bells on the bells will be embellished with bluebells and tulips. Celebrations will be held to mark our departure. Fattened calves will be killed, or else just threatened with golf clubs. Innocent by-standers will be threatened with golf. Birds will sing songs of farewell and brass bands will play music specially composed for the occasion by a man specially created for the purpose of composing music to mark the beginnings of long journeys or the marriages of short farmers to women they met while engaging in the perilous practise of sticking their heads into every open window they come across. People will adorn our path with rose petals until we despise them. We'll set forth with sprightly feet that will carry us over the hills, out of sight of our homes, out of earshot of the brass bands and the birds, with nothing to counteract the magnetic charm of Germany enticing us into its embrace.
   Someone suggested that we don't actually need to go all the way to Germany, that we really only need to go to Lisdoonvarna, but I think we'll definitely need to go further than Lisdoonvarna, or else not quite that far.

The Tree and the Horse
Henry Seaward-Shannon
A Walk in the Rain
The East Cork Patents Office
Words are my favourite noises




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very slight stories

They Met a Bear
  They stopped in a small seaside town and they went for a walk. They met a bear.
  This is one version of the story. In another version, they met a sailor, and in this one they ended up being held at gunpoint on a speedboat and becoming unwilling participants in a diamond robbery while disguised as a cow, and sharing in the proceeds of that crime.
  So when they tell the story they just say, "We met a bear. He waved at us."

The Story of the Fortune Teller and the Alarm Clock
  A fortune teller threw an alarm clock at me. This story is deliberately lacking in details to mock the predictions of the fortune teller. Although she was right when she said she'd throw an alarm clock at me.

  One. Two. Three, the study. Four, a candle stick. Five. Six...
  Seven is missing, presumed dead. One has taken up the case, and two is helping him in his investigations. They both suspect six. Seven was last seen next to six in the garden.
  But seven isn't really dead. He's consumed half a bottle of whiskey and he's currently in the orchard, talking to a rabbit. "One of us is as boring as a gate post," he says, "and it's not..." He stops to count on his fingers. "No, actually it is me."
  Eight nine ten.

Debbie and his dog
  Debbie was sick of people mistaking her for a man.
  "Is your dog my parole officer?"
  She was sick of people asking her that too.

Very Slight Stories: like short stories, only shorter

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