Rooks on Sundays – Jack Neel Waddell

“You never liked to play chess with me,” she says. The board lies on a tray across her bed. Pillows prop her up slightly, just enough to see the pieces. She reaches out a wrinkled hand, skin both pale and blotched brown, like the flesh of an apple left out too long. She grabs a rook that she carved, perhaps twenty-five years ago, from purpleheart wood. Today she remembers how it moves. “I know how …

A question for Jack Neel Waddell

Q: What would your animal totem be?

A: Do you choose your totem, or does it choose you? I suspect the latter, in which case the answer is a raccoon. I have unintentionally shared too many a backwoods meal with these little beasts to say any different. I am defeated; they are smarter than me. I will aspire to their cunning, and when I one day pass beyond the veil, perhaps they will allow me to join them as the least of their number.

Jack Neel Waddell’s story “Rooks on Sundays
in Metaphorosis Friday, 1 November 2019.
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