Mark Brazaitis is the author of seven books, including The River of Lost Voices: Stories from Guatemala, winner of the 1998 Iowa Short Fiction Award, The Incurables: Stories, winner of the 2012 Richard Sullivan Prize and the 2013 Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award in Prose, and Julia & Rodrigo, winner of the 2012 Gival Press Novel Award. His latest book, Truth Poker: Stories, won the 2014 Autumn House Press Fiction Competition. He wrote the script for the award-winning Peace Corps film How Far Are You Willing to Go to Make a Difference?
Mark Brazaitis comments on “The Eye Man”—As a Peace Corps Volunteer in Guatemala during the early 1990s, I did act as a translator for a group of visiting doctors and nurses from the States. (After writing a nonfiction piece for theAmerican Medical News, I learned that there is a controversial phenomenon in the field called “medical tourism.”) One of the visitors did indeed specialize in the creation of prosthetic eyes. And, indeed, a mother from a village I worked in brought in her blind son to the clinic, expecting him to be given real eyes. The rest is…fiction. Or is it?