JOHN DUNCAN TALBIRD
The Rusty Toque | Issue 4 | Fiction | February 15, 2013
It will just be a way to start your day, living up there on that mountaintop with that guy, throwing all your beautiful toasters and wine glasses and televisions over the side, joyful at the sound of it crashing down on the people here who live below. But on the morning that you go back and realize that he’s had the locks changed in your absence, you won’t have anything else to throw over but yourself, and by then we’ll all have moved away so the only one to catch you will be the rocks in the valley.
BEFORE THE FAIRYTALE BEGINS
The men will be here soon, weaving down the narrow road through the woods toward my cabin in the moonlight. Nishime has betrayed my location. Furthermore, she has stolen my car so that if I were inclined to leave before their arrival, I would have to do so on foot, moving further into the forest. Instead, I have carefully collected all the commonplace items of my life which might serve as a weapon should I need them: the knives, the knitting needles, the axe for chopping wood, the garden shears and hammers, the ice pick still cold at the tip. They expect to find me waiting helplessly in virginal white for whatever it is they plan to do to me. What that might be, I can only imagine, something from an old German story or perhaps a horror film. I had hoped for so much from life, but we do what we can with what we are given.
JOHN DUNCAN TALBIRD'S fiction is forthcoming or has recently appeared in Ploughshares, South Carolina Review, New Walk, Grain and REAL among others. An English professor at Queensborough Community College, he has held writing residencies at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. He is on the editorial board of Green Hills Literary Lantern and a frequent contributor to Quarterly Review of Film and Video. He lives in Brooklyn.