>LitMag Wave: One Story Number 81

One Story Number 81 is “Blood” by Matthew Cheney. It’s a fine plot-driven story with characters we don’t get to see very clearly. Nor do we need to, really, although actions are taken and it might help to understand what’s behind those actions. But other than that, it’s a completely credible story about a family completely dominated by a paranoid anti-government gun-worshiping man raising his children to be some kind of armed militia. Choice of point of view is always interesting to me and the author here tells the story from Jill’s point of view, the only girl in the family of four sons. Like her brothers, she lives partly in fear of her father and partly in awe:

“The first memory I have of my father is of him planting a sapling and then standing next to it, watching it. He was tall, and he towered above the little tree. I probably remember this because he seemed so powerful there, and perhaps I was scared, or awed. The memory is a still picture in my mind, and almost colorless: my father’s tallness, his big hands and dark beard, and the tree with only a few small green leaves dangling from its grey branches.”

Next up Gettysburg Review

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