April Texas Short Stories, Week 2

This month is dedicated to Texas short stories, many of which came from anthologies (Literary Houston, Lone Star Literature, and Unknown Texas primarily).

“The   Last of the Caddoes” William Humphrey His father was a renegade, and so without futher ado Jimmy drummed him out of their tribe-whichever that might prove to be.
“I   Bought a Little City” Donald Barthelme So I bought a little city (it was Galveston, Texas) and told everybody that nobody had to move, we were going to do it just gradually, very relaxed, no big changes overnight.
“Whores” James Crumley On long summer afternoons   when our idle times lay as heavily upon our minds and lives as the torpid  South Texas air, often my friend and colleage, Lacy Harris, and I would happen to glance across our narrow office into each other’s eyes.
“The   School Bus” Mary Ladd Gavell The two teachers who had   taught at the Rancho went away, and the little schoolhouse was boarded up, it’s windows looking blind the way everybody’s windows did late in August  when the radio said that a hurricane was seeping up the Gulf of Mexico.
“Tongues   of Men and Angels” William Goyen “His big wells which he  gave to his young bride (she was nineteen) as a wedding present, Inex No. 1 and Inex No. 2, had come   in like earthquakes and explosions bursting open the eart and splattering   with thick oil mud a countryside of fields and grazing cows and blooming   cottong fields and tomato and pea famrs, and bringing overnight power and   riches to Inex Melendrez McNamara.
Crane,   Stephen “The Bride Comes to Yellow   Sky” “It means, my friend,” he   answered, as he came into the saloon, “that for the next two hours this town  won’t be a health resort.”
“Leaping   Leo” Pat Ellis Taylor The store sits at the end of a horse-shoe mall, but the dimestores and baby-knitting-fabric shops which  once must have lined the other two sides of the parking lot are long gone,   windows boarded up, one corner ex-drugstore now mario’s lounge, black plywood across the window glass, low-riders parked in front, young chicanos lounging   against the chrome-nosed hoods at night, mario’s door open and loud music coming out.
“Tomorrow   We Smile” Naomi Shihab Nye Though the job paid decently, other factors kept me sobered: bank tellers asking if I were   “born again” before they would cash my checks, and the general   terrifying sense that all the best things–porches, grandmothers, independent  cafes-were swiftly vanishing from the earth.
“The   Death Mask of Pancho Villa” Dagoberto Gilb
“Return” Donald Barthelme I subscribed to two of our  great city newspapers, the American one and the Canadian one, and I bought an  Old Smoky barbecut pit.
“An   El Paso Idyll” Pat Carr Winter is an abortive season in El Paso with the scant snow barely covering the whitewashed block   high school letters cut into the El Paso mountains, lying in horizontal  patches like a worn brown and white striped blanket across the Mexican  mountains.
“Holiday” Katerine Anne Porter A dozen miles away, where   Texas and Louisiana melted together in a rotting swamp whose sluggish   under-tow of decay nourished the roots of pine and cedar, a colonly of French   emigrants had lived out two hundred years of exile, not wholly incorruptible,  but mystically faithful to the marrow of their bones, obstinately speaking their old French, by then as strange to the French as it was to the   English.
“Eminent   Domain” Antonya Nelson The church was being  destroyed to accommodate a new freeway, and a ramp jutted raggedly into the   sky above it, a road to nowhere: eminent domain.
“The   Emergency Room” Lionel Garcia “Poor people enjoy each other’s pain,” the orderly said.
“Juggernaut” Rick Bass You cannot imagine how smooth life was for you, if you were in high school, that one spring, when  oil was $42 a barrel, and everyone’s father was employed by the petroleum industry, and a hero for finding oil when the Arabs wouldn’t sell us any.
“Almost   Barcelona” Tracy Daugherty At night a lighthouse beam cut through thick orange oil-refinery steam gathering in boxlike clouds over the Gulf; foghorns called in brief, sad bursts out at sea.
“The First Henley” Brian Allen Carr I don’t know who Sally Scull shot, but she shot him just moments after the first Henley lost his finger, and the entire saloon had   emptied to see the aftermath, as Scull was famous, and as it was rare for a   woman to shoot a man, and they had taken their numbers to another saloon,   following Scull, who wasn’t so much as even detained by the law, on account   of her innocence being unquestionable.

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