The Art of Tetman Callis

Some of the stories and poems may be inappropriate for persons under 16

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Entries from September 2013

Mopping Up

September 12th, 2013 · No Comments

Wounded people, injured, sick, they sit out front of the Rehab Shoppe on stone benches and in wheelchairs. People with no legs and with tumors and one guy who’s lost his hands in one of the wars. They smoke their cigarettes, cigars, and pipes and say, What does it matter? That we smoke, what we […]

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Tags: Oniontown · Poems · Words

What’s the forecast? And over there?

September 12th, 2013 · No Comments

“At a certain level, prose simply makes statements. There are times when all you need to know is that it is raining, but a hell of a lot more is going on. And there are other times when you’ve got to get into every raindrop. And sometimes the sentence has to do that.” — William […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William H. Gass

Supermarket

September 11th, 2013 · No Comments

There was only one cashier on duty and she wasn’t there. The manager was pissed off and pushed the restocking cart into one of the customers, careful to avoid eye contact. The automatic change dispenser didn’t dispense any change. The cashier arrived and told the manager, You put it on backwards. She unlocked her register, […]

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Tags: Economics · Oniontown · Poems · Politics & Law · Words

That’ll do for this

September 11th, 2013 · No Comments

“History does not abide by traditional narrative explanations. It isn’t that narrative explanation doesn’t have its place—it is a great instrument—but uncritically examined, its assumptions about the world are, well, unlikely. Within a specific human realm, when we are busy giving meaning to human events selecting, choosing, arranging a story at a dinner party—we may […]

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Tags: Economics · Lit & Crit · Politics & Law · William H. Gass

Climbing the north face of Sugar Mountain

September 10th, 2013 · No Comments

“The artist is working with dangerous materials because he is making something that’s got reality in it, and reality is something that the human race flees from. Every culture is busy building some sort of false environment. I am increasingly impressed by how nature permits human beings to make fools of themselves in vast numbers. […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William H. Gass

Clubs

September 9th, 2013 · 4 Comments

Foggy morning along a beach populated by shadows. Two in the shallows, man and woman, she giggles, No, it’s not…. His voice low rumbling, she says, Because, it’s because, that’s all…. Atop each breakwater a solo shadow, one taking morning exercise in front of a small jumble of bikes, two others sitting, legs dangling over […]

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Tags: Economics · Oniontown · Poems · Words

The parsimony of information

September 9th, 2013 · No Comments

“You can spend paragraphs describing an old mill under the cloud-streaked moon, Chekhov writes somewhere, how the water rushes over the wheel, how heavy and dank its stones are, and nobody will actually see it; merely mention, however, how the moonlight catches on a bit of broken glass lying on a mossy flag atop the […]

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Tags: Economics · Lit & Crit · Samuel R. Delany

Backswing

September 8th, 2013 · No Comments

Out back of the main building in the hard-packed khaki dirt there’s a long and narrow tin awning supported on slender steel poles painted a nubby industrial beige. Young people wearing jeans or cargo pants and white t-shirts and protective helemts swing baseball bats at each other, not attempting to make contact and do each […]

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Tags: Oniontown · Poems · Words

Well-thought

September 8th, 2013 · 2 Comments

“I’m a writer. My thoughts are formed by writing. When I want to think with any seriousness about a topic, I write about it. Writing slows the thought processes down to where one can follow them—and elaborate on them—more efficiently. Writing is how I do my thinking.” — Samuel R. Delany (from interview by K. […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Samuel R. Delany

Tormented and tormenting

September 7th, 2013 · No Comments

“What a mad, unhappy animal is man!  What strange notions occur to him; what perversities, what paroxysms of nonsense, what bestialities of idea burst from him, the moment he is prevented ever so little from being a beast of action!” – Friedrich Nietzsche, On the Genealogy of Morals (trans. Golffing) Share this…FacebookPinterestTwitterLinkedinemailPrint

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Tags: Friedrich Nietzsche · Lit & Crit

The Teens

September 6th, 2013 · No Comments

Families gather in the small lakeside park every evening. The parents and aunts and uncles sit in folding chairs and talk. Someone grills meats on a portable grill. Children play on the beach and in the shallows. They squeal and scream and laugh and shout and run around and dig holes in the sand with […]

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Tags: Oniontown · Poems · Words

Inquisitive buggers, too

September 6th, 2013 · No Comments

“Priests are the most evil enemies to have—why should this be so?  Because they are the most impotent.  It is their impotence which makes their hate so violent and sinister, so cerebral and poisonous.  The greatest haters in history—but also the most intelligent haters—have been priests.  Beside the brilliance of priestly vengeance all other brilliance […]

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Tags: Friedrich Nietzsche · Lit & Crit

The Cost of Living

September 5th, 2013 · No Comments

Eight dollars is the cost of admission to Greenwood Beach. Seven dollars and a quarter is the federal minimum wage for hourly workers under certain circumstances.  The state’s minimum is eight and a quarter.  These are the wages beneath which it is considered no worker could be justly paid, unless that worker is a tipped […]

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Tags: Economics · Oniontown · Poems · Politics & Law · Words

Easy-peasy

September 5th, 2013 · No Comments

“As soon as you get away from actual poetic forms, rhyme, meter, etc., there is no line between prose and poetry. From my way of thinking, many poets are simply lazy prose writers. I can take a page of descriptive prose and break it into lines, as I’ve done in Exterminator!, and then you’ve got […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William S. Burroughs

Canute the Ninja

September 4th, 2013 · 2 Comments

A slender boy of about twelve wears a black t-shirt and black exercise pants with a silver stripe up each leg like a cavalry trooper’s pants. He has a stick about as long and curved as a cutlass.  He stands lakeside at the water’s edge.  Waves that reach to his knees and sometimes up his […]

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Tags: Oniontown · Poems · Words

How novel is it?

September 4th, 2013 · No Comments

“What we call the ‘novel’ is a highly artificial form, which came in the nineteenth century. It’s quite as arbitrary as the sonnet. And that form had a beginning, a middle, and an end; it has a plot, and it has this chapter structure where you have one chapter, and then you try to leave […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William S. Burroughs

Supper

September 3rd, 2013 · No Comments

The gulls circle above the lake, searching for supper.  They eye the clear waters below, spot fish, pause, turn, empty the air from under their wings in a fall that looks as if their wings have suddenly broken, hit the water beak-first, dive to catch their meal, come back up and beat their way back […]

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Tags: Economics · Oniontown · Poems · Words

So much for love and friendship

September 3rd, 2013 · No Comments

“A human being who strives for something great regards everybody he meets on his way either as a means or as a delay and hindrance—or as a temporary resting-place.  The lofty goodness towards his fellow men which is proper to him becomes possible only when he has reached his height and he rules.  Impatience and […]

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Tags: Friedrich Nietzsche · Lit & Crit

Hey, Mister

September 2nd, 2013 · No Comments

It rained last night. (This is not the weather report.) Current conditions: the sun is soon to rise and the cardinals chirp their high, metallic, scrapy chirp that sounds like an effect from German techno-pop of a generation ago (Trans-Europe Express!  First In, First Out!) There is a man who goes every morning and every […]

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Tags: Oniontown · Poems · Words

So much for twittering instagrammatically over the tumbling linked-in facebook

September 2nd, 2013 · No Comments

“He shall be the greatest who can be the most solitary, the most concealed, the most divergent, the man beyond good and evil, the master of his virtues, the superabundant of will; this shall be called greatness; the ability to be as manifold as whole, as vast as full.” – Friedrich Nietzsche, Beyond Good and […]

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Tags: Friedrich Nietzsche · Lit & Crit

Lost Things and Missing Persons

September 1st, 2013 · 6 Comments

The British litmag Litro published my short story, “Lost Things and Missing Persons,” at the end of April this year.  I’ve added it to the Previously Published Stories sidebar to the right.   Share this…FacebookPinterestTwitterLinkedinemailPrint

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Tags: Previously Published Stories · Words

But he had such a rough childhood

September 1st, 2013 · No Comments

“There comes a point of morbid mellowing and over-tenderness in the history of society at which it takes the side even of him who harms it, the criminal, and does so honestly and wholeheartedly.  Punishment: that seems to it somehow unfair—certainly the idea of ‘being punished’ and ‘having to punish’ is unpleasant to it, makes […]

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Tags: Friedrich Nietzsche · Lit & Crit · Politics & Law