Clay Head

MJG Featured Story, Stories, Surreal, Writing 2 Comments

by Michael John Grist There’s a giant head in my living room. It’s made of grey clay and it sings through the night. It sings songs about America. Sometimes boogie-woogie or the Big Bopper. It sings Buddy Holly. It sings about the plane that crashed and sometimes the song about the crash. It sings about whiskey and rye. I don’t …

Gutterman

MJG Stories, Surreal 6 Comments

gutterman 1601by Michael John Grist.
I found him one mad marsh-walking night. I was out in the bogs, I don’t know why, crossing wet rivers and wading through peat mulberry patches, dashings of filth worming their way into the cuffs of my suit turn-ups, smidgeons of muck smudging up and under my fingernails.

Waterfall

MJG Stories, Surreal 3 Comments

by Michael John Grist I cut open his brain because he needed help. “Help me,” he’d whispered, banging at my fly screen in the middle of the night, his wet shirtsleeves slapping against the cracked glass of my back porch slide door. “I need help.” So I’d let him in. Set him down. Listened to him talk. “There’s a waterfall,” …

The Sphinx

MJG Stories, Surreal 2 Comments

by Michael John Grist The Sphinx asked me its questions. I ignored the Sphinx. It had the head of a lion, and the body of a man and woman combined. “Where are you from?” it asked. “Why are you here?” The Sphinx touched me with its hips.  It edged closer to me. “Stroke my hair,” it said. “Then you may …

Pendolino Lane

MJG Stories, Surreal 1 Comment

by Michael John Grist Despite Cray Upson’s best efforts, Milo Pendolino refused to sell him a home on Moresca hill. He always claimed the homes were already full, but Cray knew better, so he plotted out a plan. He knew Milo owed the bank thousands for his construction costs as well as the mortgage on the land itself. Plus he …

The Squinching of Ricky Shay

MJG Stories, Surreal 4 Comments

When the orders came down that all the gold was to be digested by the end of the day, Efren couldn’t believe his ears, despite their unusual and rather floppy size. “All the gold?” he asked his co-consumer Ricky Shay, the fattest stupidest pig in the sty. “I mean, that’s some heavy stuff right there.” Ricky Shay ignored him, mostly. …

Brand New Day

MJG Stories, Surreal 3 Comments

TODAY She wakes up slow, opens her dull eyes expecting the new day to glow in, but no. It’s still night. She blinks, yawns into her pillow, stretches beneath the duvet. It’s the pig bedspread, the one her mother made. Her dozy palms bobble over the linen pigs stitched onto the cotton, sleep-weakened fingers catching in the felt swirls of …

Two Hearts

MJG Stories, Surreal 6 Comments

He held the FridgePak plastic bag close up to his eyes, but he couldn’t see anything special. He saw no spark of life, no memory of love, nor any trace of meaning. He just saw the pulp of a heart. Liquidized. Red and purple, twisted through with fragments of yellow fat, white sinew, the strings and cords that held the …

Isidro’s Furnace

MJG Stories, Surreal 0 Comments

Isidro’s furnace demanded FBI agents, but he only fed it limestone and coke, sometimes Rice Crispies if it was good. In return, it fed his insanity. Neither got exactly what they wanted, but it was a happy enough arrangement for the both of them. “FBI agents!” it would roar down the phone at Isidro, who often held a towel to …

On the Raft

MJG Stories, Surreal 6 Comments

I know you remember this. I woke up on the raft. I’d been sick. I’d been sick for weeks. Everything before was a delirious nightmare. The murders. The container. You. It was all merged into one with her singing lullabies over the top. Her spoon-feeding me. Her weeping at night and stroking my face and telling me everything was going …

Leanna Drew the Moon

MJG Stories, Surreal 2 Comments

Leanna knew she was a special little girl, because the moon spoke to her. She knew that it shouldn’t, and that she shouldn’t listen, but none of that stopped it from happening. She drew pictures at school of her talking to a big moon face, and the moon saying things like “try eating those soap suds, Leanna,” or “that dog …

Storm Watcher

MJG Stories, Surreal 2 Comments

The storm-post was made of crumbling old red brick. Ragged weeds grew up its chipped and tattered sides, through its paving stones and round the observation platform binoculars on its roof. The grindstone railings that once prevented tourists from falling over the edge had collapsed inwards in a landslide a long time ago. Its windows were all broken or cracked. …

The People in the Walls

MJG Stories, Surreal 4 Comments

The people in the walls are an infestation. They crowd around the living room in their inch-thin insulation space and watch me while I go about my life. Some of them have drilled peep-holes. I cover the holes with paintings I paint myself, and vases full of flowers which they sometimes steal and eat. I paint paintings of the people …

Clay Head @ A Fly in Amber

MJG Books, Stories, Surreal 4 Comments

My story Clay Head published at A Fly in Amber! There’s a giant head in my living room. It’s made of grey clay, and it sings through the night. It sings songs about America. Sometimes boogie-woogie or the Big Bopper. It sings Buddy Holly. It sings about the plane that crashed and sometimes the song about the crash. It sings …