The Hat-Giving Hickory Tree

A slanted story by Brittany Cole

Most days, Rodney never thinks about the baseball hat hickory tree. When Rodney does remember that tree and that period of his boyhood, during which the hickory thrived and blossomed dozens of baseball caps overnight, he still feels somewhat bewildered by its undeniable yet utterly miraculous existence. It seems so long ago now, that he questions his memory—was it all a dream? Something he has misremembered and imagined over the years?

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The Travel Sketches of Ned Theodore Ed

Writers are writers out of spiritual necessity. Like a plant needs to be watered, writers’ musings must be written. Beyond that, some writers lavish in the limelight, while others prefer their privacy; some write rapidly and publish proudly, while others create with careful ease and seldom share stories.

It is the work of those so sensitive and raw maternal for their writing that intrigues me, personally, and so when my most endearing client, Ned Theodore Ed, presented me a copy of his travel sketches for publication, I felt more excited as a fan of his writing than as a publisher of a new business deal. His deliberate and graceful—yet never timid or dull—language is like a steady stream, fluid and fruitful. It’s as though rather than writing of the water at the water’s edge, he is one with the water himself.

Now with a tremendous honor, I would like to present to you the Travel Sketches of Ned Theodore Ed, a gentle soul who is my esteemed client and a writer whose work I absolutely admonish. This silent, poetic skeleton, ironically, is the voice of humanity’s spirit and what it means to have a soul among nature.

B.C. Spines
Editor and Publisher

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The Missing Chair

“Things don’t just disappear; they can always be found if you know where to look,” Leslietta Bernadard had said, rather fatefully, to her boss on Monday, as he was searching the office for his car keys at the end of the workday. Perhaps the universe overheard her and fancied itself a prankster, or perhaps her coworker overheard and fancied himself a cynic, because either way, Leslietta Bernadard walked into Donald Troy Insurance on Tuesday and found herself without a chair.

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Olive and the Slippary Chair

Olive and the Slippary Chair

Written in March 2004

Once upon a time there was a kitten. The kitten was a girl and her name was Olive. Olive was sweet and had soft, smooth fur. She was all black and had a white spot on her back. She was smart and she wasn’t very heavy. Her owner had an office in their house. Olive liked going in the office. The only problem was, she got nervous when people came in. Olive thought to herself, “I must start being brave.” One day, a man walked into the office. He had a cat with him. Olive meowed so loud you could hear her throughout the house. Olive’s owner picked her up and put her down next to his chair. Her owner started petting the cat. Olive jumped on the chair. She slipped on the chair. She thought it was like a slide. That’s it! If she was having fun she forgot about being scared. Olive lived happily ever after.

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