Island In The Sand, Part XV

Island In The Sand, Part XV

   ISLAND IN THE SANDPart XV  Star stopped what she was doing and stood still. After a few seconds, she began to get control of both her emotions and her breathing. It was ridiculous to get mad at machines, no matter how sentient they might seem. It was like getting...
Island In The Sand, Part XIV

Island In The Sand, Part XIV

ISLAND IN THE SANDPart XIV Star was leaning against the back door to the operations center, when it opened. Star fell backwards, but her flipping body never hit the floor, as many small hands caught her and brought her to a halt in mid-air. Star didn’t hesitate or...
The Hustle, The Escalator of Life

The Hustle, The Escalator of Life

The Hustle, The Escalator, The Rush of Life. When you put the brakes on, by going on vacation somewhere far away, traveling abroad for a while, or simply holing up and pulling the cords out of the walls with respect to electronic equipment, you discover that life...
Island In The Sand, Part XIII

Island In The Sand, Part XIII

 Island In The Sand Part XIII  Star flipped in mid-air, brought her body around in a twist to land face down, her hands and knees ready to take the impact on the hard flooring. Her mind raced, but like a fast blinking strobe seemed to give her only brief shots of what...
Reflections From Hawaii, 2018, Whales Again

Reflections From Hawaii, 2018, Whales Again

Dateline: Oahu, Hawaii Aprile 12, 2018 The whales. They are dropping off the brats. I have worked out from the early morning calls and crying of the whales, between four a.m. and dawn, that the big pod of parents and relatives have some close-in pool not far from me...
Reflections From Hawaii, 2018, Off the Grid

Reflections From Hawaii, 2018, Off the Grid

Dateline Oahu, Hawaii April 12, 2018 Off the grid. The constant communications grid, that is. I have electricity, cards, gas, water and the rest, but no television and the newspaper available like some sort of grade school thing. It is night once again. Night for you...
Reflections From Hawaii, 2018, Eeyore

Reflections From Hawaii, 2018, Eeyore

Dateline: Ohau, Hawaii April 11, 2018 Eeyore Eeyore of the Forty Acre Woods, of Winnie the Pooh fame, has nothing on the character that has appeared across from my pool at the abode. There’s a bush over there and it looks every bit like Eeyore, either that or I...
Reflections from Hawaii, 2018, More Whales

Reflections from Hawaii, 2018, More Whales

Dateline: Oahu, Hawaii April 10, 2018 A whale.  Just one single whale spume, flying up at 6:52 am about half a mile out or a little bit less. What does that mean? That means the whole whale thing is not the figment of my imagination. So, the adventure of the whales...
Reflections from Hawaii, 2018, Nightfall

Reflections from Hawaii, 2018, Nightfall

Dateline: Oahu, Hawaii April 9, 2018 Last night I was up late.  I go to bed late and I get up early. What is that? Going all the way back to after I got home from Vietnam. Now, I’m not up looking for some enemy who can’t possibly be out in the night....
Reflections from Hawaii, 2018, Whales

Reflections from Hawaii, 2018, Whales

Dateline: Oahu, Hawaii April 7, 2018 Do whales cry at night, or sing, or whatever? I am a couple of miles from pods of passing whales, as they do in large numbers in this part of the world. A beaten rock shore sits right at the edge of my principal abode where I am...
Island In The Sand, Part XII

Island In The Sand, Part XII

ISLAND IN THE SANDPart XII  The draw of the storage room was so magnetic and great that Star could not stop herself from surging forward, down the extended steps and into the near end of the giant cavern. “Wren, go and get the kids,” Star ordered, the idea of having...
The Island In The Sand, Part XI

The Island In The Sand, Part XI

ISLAND IN THE SAND Part XI   Star pulled the remains of the arrow shaft from Val’s wound gently, but steadily. There was little blood, which surprised her. The boy grimaced with pain but only after she used the alcohol and Kleenex to swab the area clean of...
The Island In The Sand, Part X

The Island In The Sand, Part X

ISLAND IN THE SANDPart X  Star and Jameson stepped carefully away from the end of the plank, slightly distancing themselves from one another. Slowly, they circled the power plant until they could see the tunnel entrance in the distance. They moved together toward the...
Island In The Sand, Part IX

Island In The Sand, Part IX

Island In The SandPart IX  Star awakened at the beckoning of a soft, distant, voice. “Only Star Black, Administrator, please attend,” flowed softly across the floor to her ears. She turned her head, trying to figure out what ‘attend’ meant. “Oh, Jordan,” she answered,...
THE TWENTY-FIRST DAY, 30 Days Has September

THE TWENTY-FIRST DAY, 30 Days Has September

The sounds of the Bong Song’s nearby rushing waters, the whap whap whap of the descending chopper’s supersonic blade-tips rotating, and the rest of the valley background sounds all faded into non-existence, as four Skyraiders came down the valley from the north, no...
Island In The Sand, Part  VIII

Island In The Sand, Part VIII

Island In The SandPart VIII Star stared at the complex design of the underground railroad and power station. She wondered if it was even more than that, but her imagination could barely take in what they’d found already, much less even more. There was one question she...
Island in the Sand, PartVII

Island in the Sand, PartVII

ISLAND IN THE SANDPart VII Star’s eyes popped open and with a start, she sat up. Something had awakened her, but nothing she could identify by glancing in every direction around her. The band had hiked deep into the dark tunnel to avoid the bright light shining down...
Island In The Sand, Part VI

Island In The Sand, Part VI

ISLAND IN THE SAND Part VI   Star continued to move ever downward, feeling more secure with each order of “one step” she called down to the kids roped together below her. The rungs were made of smooth hard metal, but after so many hard grasps of their surface and...
March To A Different Drummer…

March To A Different Drummer…

MARCH TO A DIFFERENT DRUMMER Dateline: Lake Geneva February 21, 2018   You cannot hear my drummer and I don’t always either. My drummer beats two snare drums, one of fiction and one of fact. I cannot tell the difference between the beats and I think the drummer...
Island In The Sand, Part V

Island In The Sand, Part V

ISLAND IN THE SANDPart VStar motioned behind her to keep the children back. The chamber they’d discovered was stunning, not so much for its huge size but even more than that because it had obviously been built by the men and women who’d preceded the impact of the...
Honor Off The Glory of Russia Cape, Part Two

Honor Off The Glory of Russia Cape, Part Two

HONOR OFF THE GLORY Of RUSSIA CAPE Part Two Donald injected the morphine into the muscle of his left thigh, making sure not to hit a vein. It was called skin-popping, and using only muscle penetration he could float like a butterfly instead of passing out and losing...
Honor Off The Glory of Russia Cape, Part One

Honor Off The Glory of Russia Cape, Part One

HONOR OFF THE  GLORY OF RUSSIA CAPE Part One The ship ran hard into the arctic night, beating solidly into each steeply bent swell before being forced up and over, its double steel hull built more for pushing through broken ice than cutting through raging ocean seas....
Island In The Sand, Part IV

Island In The Sand, Part IV

ISLAND IN THE SAND Part IV The tunnel was like nothing Star had ever experienced before, not even close. None of the children had been exposed to anything like it either. When they stood before the black hole of the opening at the railhead, Jameson tripped a switch...
Island in the Sand, Part III

Island in the Sand, Part III

ISLAND IN THE SANDPart IIIStar awoke in complete darkness. Opening her eyes was exactly the same as keeping them closed. She felt the embers of a still warm fire nearby, but no light came from them. Star realized that when they had eaten jar after jar of the shelved...
Island in the Sand, Part II

Island in the Sand, Part II

There was no place on earth. The remnants of humanity so decreed, each tribe following in suit, as the proposition in favor of admitting outsider children, no matter their age, fell into unanimous opposition. No orphan, wandering, or strange children of any sort would be allowed entry to any tribe.

Island in the Sand, Part I

Island in the Sand, Part I

Star floated over the top of the packed needle beds, her bobbed ponytail bouncing just beneath the lowest of the dense green branches. Her lope was long practiced, and her gait one of such easy flow she had to continually slow for the other children following in a trance. Running was like breathing to her.

I Don’t Know…

I Don’t Know…

Dateline: Lake Geneva, WI January 21, 2018 I don’t know.  That sentence is so much more important in my life than it was when I was younger. My own inability to know or understand some things is so important to me. I live in a world where such self-analysis and...
THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE, Part IV

THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE, Part IV

THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE, PART IV Short Story by James Strauss   Christmas had come and gone, and then New Years, too. There was nothing to New Years, not even on the television, except for the fact that the ball in New York came down a blessed one hour before...
THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE, PART III

THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE, PART III

THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE Part III The damned kitten was more than a handful. It was up at all hours, would not sleep in its bed, would not get used to using the cat little box and would only eat one kind of Fancy Feast cat food, that cost almost a dollar each. Oly...
THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE, PART II

THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE, PART II

THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE Part II The old man sat, enjoying the heat radiating out from the half-burned wood in his fireplace. It played hell to find real dry stuff in the summer because people in Wisconsin who sell it don’t ever cover it. Pond-dried it was called,...
THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE

THE OLD MAN’S CHRISTMAS TREE

The Old Man’s Christmas Tree A Short Story by James Strauss   The time passed slowly since he’d lost the ability to drive. His daughters had come a month earlier to take the keys and the old car. It had been a classic automobile his eldest daughter said was...
THE TWENTIETH DAY, 30 Days Has September

THE TWENTIETH DAY, 30 Days Has September

I came awake to the creaking rumble of the tracks working unlubricated against one another as they carried the Ontos atop the mud alongside the Bong Song River. I blinked my eyes rapidly and tried to straighten out against the cramping pain of what seemed to be my...
Reproducing Dumb Bunnies…..

Reproducing Dumb Bunnies…..

Are we growing a nation of Dumb Bunnies?   Did you know that only seven states require civics or any kind of study of how the U.S. government works of their elementary school students? Did you know that only seven liberal arts universities in the U.S. require any...
Where is God?

Where is God?

It’s not easy. It’s not a road fraught with simply easy decisions. The search for meaning in my or your very tiny universe of things you or I control is very complex and constantly threaded through like a bad plaid blanket with beautiful and awful strains...
THE NINETEENTH DAY, 30 Days Has September

THE NINETEENTH DAY, 30 Days Has September

I tried to relax for a few seconds, so I could get the Heart of Darkness Plan organized in my mind. The night and rain were everything, along with our speed of movement. It had taken me almost three weeks to figure out that the Vietnamese were slow, compared to...
THE EIGHTEENTH NIGHT, 30 Days Has September

THE EIGHTEENTH NIGHT, 30 Days Has September

I moved back down the river bank, my mind spinning in contemplation of executing the Gunny’s plan, and feeling a bit sick to my stomach at the idea of it. Zippo and Fusner took their E-Tools and dutifully began to dig holes near where the other radio operators worked,...
Arch Patton, Thunder Marine, Chapter Eight

Arch Patton, Thunder Marine, Chapter Eight

Arch Patton Adventures THUNDER MARINE Chapter Eight Arch sat in front of the coffee table on the couch, with David at his side and Ilke in an easy chair across from him. He glanced uneasily out the window to where Thunder was moored, barely visible and unmoving, at...
Arch Patton, Thunder Marine, Chapter Seven

Arch Patton, Thunder Marine, Chapter Seven

Arch Patton Adventure THUNDER MARINE Chapter Seven Arch got up from the table, where the team was gathered, and headed for the front door of the restaurant. The DEA crowd was still present and obnoxious because they felt their turf was being violated, and they weren’t...