Honestly Kid

by Daniel Damkoehler


premature fiction - Part 1 archive


Luke’s Last Friend

William tried to remember the last time he had seen Luke. High school graduation? Did Luke even graduate? Yes, he remembered the way Luke smirked his way to the podium. To his own surprise, the smartass soccer jock had made it. And his adult life began the next day. No college. Straight to work at the tomato cannery. William spent the first half of the summer traveling with his ... +more+

September 22, 2006 | Part 1,premature fiction

Luke Bettis

"First off, I didn't do it. I don't need none of that. I'm a screw up, but I'm not some kinda sicko. They're gonna say all kinds of bullshit about my record and whatever, but I didn't do it." "Do what?" Luke looked up from the place where the stucco met the cement floor of the porch. "Nobody told you?" "Told me what?" William drank from his coffee mug, hoping it would clear ... +more+

September 20, 2006 | Part 1,People,premature fiction

Old Voices, Old Ghosts

The phone rang again. William still hadn't finished his coffee or shaken the drippy sweet flirtations of Sherri Sneed's voice. He pulled himself out of the wicker porch chair and went to the phone in the living room. His father's phone. The one he used to speak with, or rather, listen to the troubles of the locals. William didn't want to pick it up. It had that sound. The ... +more+

September 18, 2006 | Part 1,premature fiction

More About William

William couldn't remember the last time he liked himself. Sometime during college, maybe. After getting that first A in Anthropology. A scrappy, budding young intellectual. Not yet cynical, not yet tired, merely intimidated. No, he did not like himself even then. He was too fearful, too compromising, too obedient, too good. He ducked out of the bathroom mirror before it could do any more damage and headed to the kitchen. He ... +more+

September 15, 2006 | Part 1,People,premature fiction

Ass Kicking Eyes

Looking Hernandez in the eyes is taking a risk. Stop there a moment too long and his dark pupils loose mortality on you and kick your ass. For some it is a high cliff, others a predator, and still others simply that knife from their nightmares. He could never intend this. He does not know why he makes people uncomfortable when they look into his eyes. How could he? In ... +more+

September 13, 2006 | Part 1,People,premature fiction

Mable Sneed Makes Breakfast

Mable Sneed had come to appreciate her husband's failed efforts to start his days quietly. If it wasn't the sound of his rough breathing, his dresser drawers opening and closing, his footsteps to the kitchen, the clang of the spoon against the coffee can, the water filling the percolator, or the scrape of a chair leg against the kitchen linoleum, then it was the screen door squeeling shut that ... +more+

September 11, 2006 | Part 1,premature fiction

Good For Your People

"I'm glad it's you who come. Boy needs one of his own." Officer Hernandez wanted to tell old Mr. Sneed that the boy couldn't tell the difference between Hispanic or sun browned American. Not now. Instead, "Anyone who cares might just as well be one of his own right now, Mr. Sneed." The old man still seemed lost, unable to orient himself to the boy's dusty, rumpled body. Eventually he replied, "That's ... +more+

September 8, 2006 | Part 1,premature fiction

Mr. Sneed Fails To Pray

Pickem Sneed picked. First he picked Arkansas cotton, then he picked Washington apples and pears, and in California he picked all manner of crop, apricots, peaches, plums, apples, pears, oranges, grapes, berries, tomatoes and later, picked his own land, picked his own crops, and picked his own pickers. Pickem said, "My Daddy named me Pickem, my Mama made me strong, and I just tried to keep up." So it was that ... +more+

September 6, 2006 | Part 1,People,premature fiction