Coming Soon! A collection of nonfiction works by Stephanie Harrison: Men from a Broken Country

Bereft

At night, and sometimes during the day, the phone rings and it's him, and his voice sounds so far away, but no longer in pain, and the people in her support group tell her these are ADCs (After-Death Communications), and that it's normal, or at least she's not crazy, but what she really wants to know is why, if he's going to bother to call at all, he doesn't say something more important, why, for example, he calls to tell her he hates her shoes, or that she doesn't really need another set of candlesticks; and these calls are particularly annoying when she hears, at her Wednesday night meeting, that other men are calling to report on the whereabouts of missing documents, or to confess to hidden bank accounts, and so lately, when she sees on the caller ID that it's him, she's tempted not to pick up.

©Stephanie Harrison, first appeared in Quarterly West

Selected Works

You crossed the line, my friend Ann tells me. Iím visiting her in California. Weíve borrowed a trailer perched on a small mountain so that we can have a quiet place to write. Now Iím trying to explain why I canít focus, why my nerves are so jangly. Why I can only take short, shallow breaths ...
He reads Ragtime while being poisoned by a nurse with a woodpecker tattooed on her ankle, and afterwards he describes this to Lily over hamburgers and beer--he is ravenous (go figure)--and she chuckles...
Effortless, like floating in the Great Salt Lake. Forty years ago, as a boy, Zach McKenna did this while on vacation in Utah, and he's never forgotten the sensation of lying still on the surface of the water, arms and legs spread wide, perfectly buoyant. Lately he's been thinking that in the span of a lifetime, these moments are too...
This is how I remember it: I'm ten or eleven, lounging with my cousins and Aunt Corinne on her sun porch. She's wearing a pink Chanel-style dress, like Jackie Kennedy, and she's sipping iced tea from a hot-pink metal tumbler. She's just discovered, she tells usthat someone is living in her house while she and my uncle are at work. Her crossed legs are bare and one of them jiggles up and down while she talks. As she grows more excited--telling us about her strange feeling, the little things she couldn't put her finger on...