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August 1, 2005

Volume 5, Issue 1

You are standing by a lake.

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Michele: The Stain Remains

I scrub, but the stain does not disappear, or lighten. I rub the cloth on a rock, but the bright splotch of red remains, shaped like an eye that stares at me accusingly.

I throw the shirt into the lake, wait for the wind-ridden current to take it away, to carry it eastward towards the beavers, where it may end up as damn filler.

It catches on a lily pad instead. The bloody eye gapes at me and as the shirt shifts with movement of the water, it folds and wrinkles until the stain is not an eye, but a finger.

I stand at the lake, accused and guilty.

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The Eschatologist: Witness

I can't help coming back to this spot.

There's a boat ramp a quarter mile down - I can see it from here. The water gently laps at the shore, and that old oak with the frayed rope that was so great for swinging still hangs a good thirty feet out over the inlet.

It's quiet here this late into the year, the winter months piling up. No one will come around, not until spring anyway.

That must have been what made it so perfect, I think, as I stare through the icy water down at my tethered lifeless body.

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Ted: Night Fishing

The old man looked out over the water, again. His insomnia was so bad that he slept maybe four hours out of thirty. For the tenth straight night, he cast into the freezing, dark water.

He had no pole, nor a line a hook or bait. But he remembered fishing when he was a boy, so he fished now. He could remember when all he had to have to fish this lake was a worm and a hook.

His daughter found him in the morning on the balcony of their Phoenix apartment . "Come inside Dad. Get to bed. Dad? DAD!"

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