Beginnings, it’s said, are apt to be shadowy. So it is with this story, which starts with the emergence of a new species maybe two hundred thousand years ago. The species does not yet have a name—nothing does—but it has the capacity to name things.

Tears flowed out of me from a walled-off place, from another time, from a little boy who couldn’t cry.

Usually people cried when they came here for the first time, and this girl looked as if she’d be no exception.

It’s funny what being held at gunpoint will do to you. And being held at gunpoint by a megalomaniacal rock star? Well, that doesn’t feel very good at all.

Poems are bullshit. Unless they are screamed or howled or thrown in your face.

I am making this statement as an act of wilful defiance of military authority, because I believe the war is being deliberately prolonged by those who have the power to end it.

My mother tells me to fix my hair. And by “fix” she means straighten. She means whiten.

Dear You, The body you are wearing used to be mine. The scar on the inner left thigh is there because I fell out of a tree and impaled my leg at the age of nine.

“There are women who men fall in love with,” I tell him. “And then there are the rest of us.”

I don’t know if my story is grand enough to be a tragedy, although a lot of shitty stuff did happen.

I can’t believe
no one else can hear
I am screaming
inside my head.

I am a lawyer, and I am in prison. It’s a long story.

You tell me, “Loosen your tongue. Make it lighter.”
As if I ever complained about carrying my history in my mouth.

The two fingers were found along the main road that borders the Camilo Torres barrio, in the Valley of Cauca, port of Buenaventura, in southwest Colombia. At least, that’s what the girl told the police.

It’s not romantic. It’s not the first time. It isn’t magic. It isn’t soulful. It won’t be true for me or you. But it’ll do.

Archie Sheridan had a paper birthday hat on his head and six bullets in his front pocket. The bullets rattled when he moved, making a clinking sound that no one else seemed able to hear.

No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man’s and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinised and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man with a microscope might scrutinise the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water.

The forest was black and Darko was afraid to enter.

“So how was it? How was…the moon?” You have no further questions. Because he went to the moon. And now he’s sitting here, at your table in a dark and crowded D.C. restaurant.

Every summer Lin Kong returned to Goose Village to divorce his wife, Shuyu.

Being a mistress on the side, it might not appeal to fools like you.

It was Mum who kept trying to make a lady of me through all my growing-up years but it was Grams who taught me her magic tricks and how to be a pickpocket, and of the two of them I have to say that Grams’ lessons certainly proved the more valuable to me in my life.

My suffering left me sad and gloomy.

When I was born, people in our village commiserated with my mother and nobody congratulated my father.

I’m gettin’ tired of your shit
You don’t never buy me nothin’.