Potpourri


ORIGINAL SHORT STORIES by Ed Newman

Creating a work of art, whether it be a poem or story, etching or watercolor, is a personal experience that is valid in and of itself and, in one sense, needs no audience. The meaning of that experience is for the creator himself to grasp -- or grapple with -- alone.

Yet, absurd as it seems, nearly every artist goes on to wrestle with the next problem of how to share these personal works with a wider audience.

The wonder of a web site is that the work can remain dynamic, can grow as one contributes to it, shapes it, adds brush strokes of color here, highlights there. Unlike a book, which must remain static and permanent (at least until the second edition) web sites take on a life of their own, reflecting more fully the qualities of personality, the heart and mind of their creators.

As the world you discover here evolves, it is my hope that with each return you shall find new rewards. As in all great adventures, one never knows where a path will lead until it is explored.


The M Zone

The revelation came suddenly. Like an "Aha!"... only it was an "Oh no!."


Two Acts That Changed the World

Of the dozen or so German physicists who had been assigned the task of building a super-bomb for Germany, Wilhelm Kurtweil more than any knew the consequences for humanity should the Nazis succeed in being the first to achieve this ultimate quest.



The Unfinished Stories of Richard Allen Garston

How impossible to know what is real and what is not.



The Nose

The crammed little bar sizzled with energy. So much was happening in the room that it began to unsettle him. He wondered why he ever said he would meet his friends here.

[Story inspired by an incident that happened to Italo Calvino's Mr. Palomar]



An Unremembered History of the World

This story begins slow, does not follow modern conventions of quick exciting hook etc. It is old fashioned. It exists because the author believed the story was worth the work and the reader who worked at it would be rewarded. I would not have it on this site if it were not important to me.



A Poem About Truth

The opening lines are derivative. The story is original. The message is timeless.


Terrorists Preying

Although I'd been an art major in college -- mostly painting and drawing -- I became discouraged with it shortly after graduation and gave it up. I was living with my family on Long Island at the time and for some while afterwards I still visited the New York art galleries, making regular tours of the Whitney, the Guggenheim and the Modern.

What finally got me out of art was the whole directionlessness of it all....


The Breaking Point

It was a Wednesday when the bill arrived. Cassie Hedberg's birthday was the following Monday, so it wasn't too difficult to put one and one together to make two.

Winner of the 1991 Arrowhead Regional Arts Fiction Competition



A Brief Transaction

Untitled Excerpt From a Longer Story
Standing outside in the misty dark, Jess felt unusually quiet. A rusty pipe propped open the door of the tin shed, its butt end digging into the gravel driveway. The single dim bulb in the shed revealed a green John Deere and the dusty clutter of four decades -- old car bumpers, boxes of paper, pitchfork, rusted garden tools and engine parts. The haze made the whole scene appear fuzzy and colorless as if draped in a shroud of gauze.



The Empty Space

I heard this story from Stuart M----, caretaker of an apartment complex on Stevens Square in South Minneapolis in the early 80's when I made my living as a painting contractor....



Liz Mills

"Will you remember me
when you're famous? I know you won't."


Duel of the Poets

There is a little known principle - a secret law of the universe, as it were - that where two identical things simultaneously come into existence, one of them must cease to be, for there can be no two things exactly alike. This principle, like many spiritual laws, has been lost to our rational, mechanistic minds, though ancient philosophers and alchemists were aware of it and respected its power...


Lu Lee & the Magic Cat

Once upon a time there was a lonely man named Lu Lee. He was a poor man. He lived in a small one room house by himself, and he was often sad because he had no friends. He had no friends because he was different from other people and he lived in a land where people who are different are often made to feel unwelcome...


Yuzmin's Folly

In the fifteenth century A.D., during the reign of Yuzmin, King of Mullah-Banin (a now forgotten territory situated near the mountains of Attain in the Middle East) a famous decree was made. The young king who made it had a well-established reputation for his lavish parties and bacchanalian orgies. Incredibly wealthy, King Yuzmin took such pride in exceeding the renowned festivities of his forebears that at the height of one of his most outrageous annual spectacles, the week long Homage to Attis, the Phrygian god of fertility, Yuzmin declared that the rest of his reign would be a perpetual revelry....


The Nonsense Room

For Greg and Leslie Moore, finding a home in Stillwater was more problematic than originally imagined, but at the last they discovered the Shatterly Place, an enormous hodgepodge of competing architectural motifs ambitiously stapled together with Victorian pretensions. Marketed as a handyman's special, the price was most appealing. Only later did they learn of the strange history of the house. "People get deranged in that house," the grocer told Leslie at Thanksgiving. "The place either finds 'em cracked or leaves 'em that way."



Samson and Delilah

From my earliest youth I have wondered - not in these exact words, of course, but with an earnestness as perpetual as consciousness itself - how can God, who is perfect, work through man, who is imperfect, to achieve His immutable purposes?


For One Night of Love ~~~~~~~~~NEW

Part One and Part Two.... Tell me what you think. Is it a good story, or only a good beginning?



When Eutychus Fell

A moment in time with timeless importance.


Episode on South Street

It was close to ten o'clock when the thought first struck me: Something terrible is going to happen tonight, and the dread surged through me. I was painting in my studio late that night with two deadlines to meet and I didn't have time to work myself through another episode. No doubt the deadlines set it off.


Enno

We discover ourselves as we interact with others. Through friendships our true selves find the courage to emerge. Through bitter feuds we discover our capacity for conflict, or lack of capacity. Through struggle we define our strength, or -- to our dismay -- learn of our weakness.


An Unremembered History of the World

When we speak of history, we must always remind ourselves that we are speaking only of "history as we know it." The task of historians to document, revise and debate the events and meanings of events in human history is a daunting one, even when simplified to contain only that which is known.....


Blue

Blue began when the world was new, but not so new as the very beginning. The original world was black and white. Eventually, God decided that color should be added to His wonderful creation.

[a very short story]


A Remarkable Tale from the Land of Podd

[a poem with a message]


How Eye One the Wore


I herd a wrap on the door. "Come inn," I said. It was a navel man.

[originally published in The Northern Reader]





If you are a writer yourself, or you want to become a writer, check out my page of Quotes for Writers.