Miller Time

Break-Up (13)

UNITED STATES—Indeed. The different chapter for the world had begun. It was a phone that was the start of definitively breaking relations with the Underground Cities in 2033, Zorba recalled. The Leader “up there” had abolished all phones in a startling degree. Years earlier photography had been abolished. Phones had been thought to make people stupid, to ridicule them...

Break-Up (12)

UNITED STATES—The case ended successfully for Detective Zorba. A trash collector in the magnetic train stations had emptied the contents of a trash can and turned up a wallet tossed out and a vodka bottle, it turned out to belong to the manager of the smoke/payday establishment, so he got his identity and got his cards back. The culprit...

Break-Up (10)

UNITED STATES—The clandestine reports that came from the land "up there" contrasted wildly and that, too, accounted for Detective Zorba's fascination for playing with a cold case "up there." When Robbins, the sergeant, strolled by the luminous desk in the dark office, which naturally served to conceal things, Zorba's instinct was to crouch over the screen where the photos...

Break-Up (8)

UNITED STATES—This was the part of our story where, sunken in the depths of despair over what I had done, I should awake and instantly shed the lead blanket of dread and be flooded by joy, knowing it had been a dream, trailing the Russian from the smoke shop and inexplicably, irresistibly, bludgeoned him with the hammer that kept...

Break-Up (7)

UNITED STATES—There was a mute hum, outside the closed liquor store and the falafel joint. The brick facade of an apartment building confronted me with a riddle in its unyielding silent night, any cue of lives dwelling within absent. Something was different: the peace signs and hearts were gone from the windows, and the curtains were gone, along with...

Break-Up (6)

UNITED STATES—I slipped back into the empty theater of the mind where nobody was living. Some pigeons cooed and rustled in the rafters. There were cold logs from a campfire charred around the edges of the proscenium arch, where the gilded rays shone in sepia darkness. The hammer was back in my callused hand again. How did that happen?...

Break-Up (3)

UNITED STATES—Yes, then and there, after I saw the Slavic blondie beat up the cheeky young Black kid, I vowed never to go back to the smoke shop with the green cross ever again. It actually turned out quite the contrary. The whole unexplained incident with the weight of a mystery. The isolated moments witnessed, taken together, surpassed my...

The Break-Up (2)

UNITED STATES—I did something out of character when I saw the White man chase the Black man into the gutter and out of sight behind the regal truck cab. I broke into a run to see what was going on. Not out of morbid curiosity, mind you. My run was motivated by concern that a person here might be...

Break-Up (Part 1)

UNITED STATES—In a time like this, you get by on your vices. One of mine is ganja. I initially thought this was going to be a three-doobie pandemic, when we began in April. Now it is February and I have lost count. I was going to go Saturday night to pick up a gram or three from the smoke shop...

The Cottage Chronicles: A Million Columns

UNITED STATES—I was just reflecting how wherever human beings are involved, there are contretemps. Now during the height of the demonstrations this cottage was like the house at the corner of the revolution. And the dog got to be taken very seriously as a protector. He got to be let out to yap and snarl as those dogs with...
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