>As we near the end of Short Story Month, it seems fitting that we return to Alex Mindt, whose story collection The Male of the Species, began the festivities 30 days ago. The June 2007 issue of The Sun arrived yesterday and I was pleased to see that the fiction in the issue is Mindt’s “In the Near Dark.” It’s an emotional story and one that seems to be going over the familiar territory of what stress on a marriage is created, or exacerbated, by a miscarriage. It first takes that theme and makes it disturbingly real—ironic, given that the wife in the story feels that nothing she’s experiencing is real, that all she wants is to be real.
‘Nothing’s real.’ She lies back on the bed, puts her hands on her stomach, and looks up at the ceiling. ‘Like us talking. Talk, talk, talk. It’s not real. You know what’s real? Sex. Sex is real.’
And then the story takes a turn that I won’t reveal. But it’s another fine story from Mindt and let this serve as a reminder that you’ll love his collection, which I talked about here.