World War I: Two Deaths

A letter, neatly typed, with government postage. “You are hereby called to serve your country.” He marries quickly, promising to return, alive. The trenches are wet and feces-filled. Ready-made graves. The wounded moan, their wounds festering. Rats lap at the seeping rot. The air sits still and cold, clinging to a soldier’s soul. Then, a … More World War I: Two Deaths

Under the Desk

I glance out the window. A man ambles about the playground, whirling the merry-go-round, dangling from the monkey bars. “Bobby, what is twenty-one divided by seven?” The doors slam with a harsh thud. His steps click on the tile floor. He pauses outside the room. I glimpse his face; it’s puckered and drips of sweat. … More Under the Desk

No One Knows

“It’s embarrassing, Mom.” “Then just sit out on the playground.” “You can’t, Mom, you have to go to the lunch room.” Richie is nine, and lives in a hollowed-out school bus that sits on a vacant lot hidden by trees and thick brush. He holds a beat-up Spiderman lunch box in his right hand as … More No One Knows


I take the Yellow Cab, never Uber, Uber is a Germanic word, and, well, right or wrong, it reminds me of the horrors of Auschwitz, and the Holocaust, and genocide, and death in “the showers,” and my parents, and on windless days—if I breathe deep enough—their pungent, burning flesh. Paul Rousseau: Semi-retired physician and writer, … More Uber