The stories in The Soul as Strange Attractor are described by one reader as “literary fiction edged with magic realism elements,” in which, “early stories play out in the background and wings of later,” ones. As the characters speak, their intent is the truth. They take themselves seriously. We need not, but if we share their sincerity, something cardinal may arise, like gravity waves from the edgeless outermost.

The stories occur in the decades after WW II. The characters reside in Mudgap, a village in the Sierra Fangoso Mountains, west of Las Cruces, founded on gold fever and sustained by tourists and government. They have typical interests: blood on the White Sands, the Vietnam war, Dr. Reich’s Orgone Accumulator, Buddy Bolden’s lost recordings, space aliens, the true meaning of Christmas, the Crown of Aleppo, childhood pranks, the mystery of reality, the tedium of infidelity, tall tales, taller tales, ghosts, and, of course, coming of age. Time is a silent character, miming and mugging his way through the scenes, not in the background, but largely unnoticed.

Readers who doubt the existence of places not found on a map might consider: neither maps nor dictionaries were passed out with the Ten Commandments. The Soul as Strange Attractor doesn’t pretend otherwise.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Excerpt from “Crawfish Trails,” a story from “The Soul as Strange Attractor”

   She’d appeared in a blinding glare, the headlight of an onrushing locomotive emerging through the fog….
   “I hear you’re the expert on vibration analysis?”
   “Fourier Transforms? They said you were the expert?”
   … He stared briefly, like a half-sleeping cane-pole fisherman awakening to find Old Whiskers, the dreamt-of denizen of Catfish Hollow, leaping with his bait in its mouth.
And, thus, a man bobbing down the sluiceway of life, ponders the unaccountable differentness of more-of-the-same.

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Goodbye For Now

Goodbye For Now
Ever wonder what the Vietnam War was all about? So does Lydia. Every day. It’s a puzzle unsolved, but she muddles through in her coiling story, “Goodbye for Now,” collected in, “The Soul as Strange Attractor.”