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We sit at a table in The Glade—a room named for the sappy paintings of pastoral scenes on its walls. Their grasses and trees are carefully balanced and in them nothing lurks or lives. Read the rest of this entry »

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We are the family of everyone who means us no harm, whatever the results of what they do. We love Pizza Friday, snow days, and getting into pajamas in the afternoon when we’ve spent the day at the beach. Read the rest of this entry »

—Nevertheless you did kill him?
—I was present at his death.
—Present with a knife.
—Mine was not the only hand on that knife.
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I had no magic as a child. I would have used it if I had, to stop the Boots from kicking me where I hid. Flat against the bedroom floor with the floor of the sky just inches above my nose, I knew no safer, more anonymous place to be, Read the rest of this entry »

In photos of my daughter’s wedding, I look thinner than I was and not at all as if I wanted to strangle the groom. There stands Sheila, radiant as always against a bank of pallbearer suits. Read the rest of this entry »

A simple man named Abraham Kosofsky watched his tiny town of Berezovka grow tinier every day. Fannie, he asked his wife, What will become of us when all our neighbors are carried away by this coughing fit and buried? Read the rest of this entry »

—Dad, are you trying to trade me?
—What would make you say that?
—Mister Moyer said you offered me for his daughter.
—Not just his daughter, son. That was a package deal.
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Had they been a less practical couple, my parents might have had children by accident. Instead, one night, before I was born, at the wobbly table in the breakfast nook, Dad drew a line down a page of yellow paper Read the rest of this entry »

She was never my girl until you took her and now that I will never get her back, I have reclaimed her. Read the rest of this entry »

On the roof of our apartment building my son waited for his father to arrive so he could jump. Meanwhile I, the attending parent, persuaded the police chief not to upset, by storming the roof, what balance our child still clung to Read the rest of this entry »

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299-WORD NOVELS

Character, conflict, emotional impact. And sentences! Everything you want in a novel, without one extra syllable.

Behind the Pseudonym

The pen name David B Dale honors my parents Beatrice and Dale. David+B+Dale = davidbdale

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