Every Tuesday, Atticus Review publishes a few pieces of literature. The December 11th issue features the work of William Reese Hamilton, Marko Fong, and M. C. Allan. This issue, as the editors say, is about rejection.
Hamilton’s short fiction piece “Awe” tells the tale of a fifteen-year-old boy’s infatuation and lust for a Manhattan/Chilean young woman who he sees at the beach:
I watched her from a distance, sometimes by herself, sometimes tossing a Frisbee with some boy, but most often with other girls, then with her father, his handsome body long-muscled and burned a deep Mediterranean gold, his black hair slicked back in the Italian style. She hung on his arm, ran off into the water, danced around him, flirting. Their voices rose in a dull murmur above the waves.
Fong’s flash fiction piece “Cirque” weaves the rejection of an adopted Chinese baby with humor and absurd details. The parents whom Lucky helped have decided they can no longer handle the baby that they have adopted. “She stands on the back of her high chair balancing her bottle on her forehead,” the mother says. “She’s going to hurt herself.” When she falls, she never cries. Toward the end of the story, “The baby squirmed out of Lucky’s arms, then executed a perfect twisting-front handspring over the stroller. Her head cleared the steel bar by less than an inch before she landed on the diapers where she gurgled contentedly.”
And lastly, Allan’s “Slips” is a spiteful and entertaining poem with various “letters” in response to submissions, all letters of rejection. Here is a sample:
Thank you for your collection of short stories
Upon which our client, Norman Mailer, would piss contemptuously
And possibly then stab you with a butterknife
Even while still zipping back up.
His is a talent one can only call monstrous
Which is why he would be able
To multitask thus.
Henceforth, when you think of publishing,
Please do not think of us.
Atticus Review is a weekly dose of literature, just enough to get you geared and ready for the week ahead.