Short stories

Read ‘Truth’ from LOVE SEX DEATH by Howard Evans

LOVE (inspired by Truth) from LOVE SEX DEATH

“Oh, it is you!” She said. “I so hoped it would be, and I was afraid this moment might never come. Please come in but prepare yourself for a surprise.”

The photographer’s wife opened the door to the apartment and bade her enter first. She followed her in, waiting close behind, perhaps afraid she might faint and be in need of catching.

She faced herself across the hall, twelve years younger, stepping ashore from an old Greek ferry. It was an amazing photograph, taken from a distance, capturing a moment of extraordinary aliveness in the life of a young women. She was walking down the ramp alone, but all eyes were on her: the boat crew, the stevedores, all the passengers waiting for permission to board. He was there too, hidden in the crowd, as mesmerised as anyone, yet still able to raise a lens and capture that moment before he disappeared.

Even though she knew who it was, even if she knew the details, still the picture had an amazing effect – uplifting, filled with happiness, radiating love. As she turned to face the photographer’s wife, tears streaming down her joyful cheeks, she heard a truth she never knew.

“You changed his life. You changed so many lives. Something happened on that boat and a wave of love flowed out into the world. Come, follow me.”

From LOVE SEX DEATH, a collection of short stories by Howard Evans


winter worm summer grass

read a longer extract here

Marianne left me a book. She kept it in the pantry just to the right of the door, on a shelf with a small selection of books on cooking, herbs and healing. It was leather bound, closed with a button and a leather lace. Under the bookshelf was a small wooden table with an oilcloth cover and two wooden stools. This little room was Marianne’s study and parlour as much as it was her pantry.

Marianne didn’t show me the book, just pointed to it as we chatted. “Open it when you feel the need,” she said.

I unwound the lace from the buffalo horn button, opened the soft leather cover and felt Marianne’s presence spill out into the room.

The fine writing in Indian ink, the sketches in soft pencil coloured with aquarelles – recipes, formulae, memories and aphorisms. I turned to a page at random and found a quote written in Indian ink: “Know that this house can be useful only to those who have recognized their nothingness and who believe in the possibility of changing.”

Written beneath it: “Better washed down with a glass of wine.”

I took the bottle of rice wine from the shelf, and a tall shot glass that I filled to the brim. The wine had taken on some of the colour of the caterpillars – late summer wheat, flavours of earth and grass, mountains and mushroom, Marianne, Dorje and Kali. I felt their presences touch me.

From winter worm summer grass, a meditation on the first year of the pandemic of 2020


The cell – reading from LOVE SEX DEATH