20090112

Crossword

by Summer Block Kumar

January 2009 "Six of the Month" Nominee

The old man had carried the crossword puzzle folded in his wallet for so long that the paper had gone soft and fine as cotton. He was one clue away from being done. He was too old to hurry. He was waiting for the world to teach him another word for relent. "Slacken," his son-in-law said loudly in the visitors lounge, "seven letters." His son-in-law was right: now nothing else fits.

6S

Summer Block Kumar's essays, short fiction, and poetry have appeared in a wide variety of publications, including artnet.com, McSweeneys, Small Spiral Notebook, Tarpaulin Sky, DIAGRAM, the San Francisco Chronicle, Monkeybicycle, Stirring, ALARM, Identity Theory, January Magazine, Rain Taxi, Newsweek Select, and Tripmaster Monkey. Visit her website here.

14 comments:

Reynolds said...

Excellent.

Glen Binger said...

I 'wowed' out loud.

Kevin Michaels said...

Excellent six.

Nik's Blog said...

Lovely, sad story. Loved it.

Nik

Autumn Heartsong said...

Very nice...concise, evocative, captures something so true and touching about our, "Ooh, Ooh...I know...pick me...pick me!" culture, our need to be publicly right even when it's not our question. Well done!

Terry said...

Pieces like this are what keep me coming back to this site. Great writing, Summer.

Scot said...

killer diller

quin browne said...

this was a delight

Allen said...

Outstanding!

Joe said...

Great allegorical piece and one that is well-written. Reminds me of the old gents sitting around in Brooklyn playing checkers/chess.

paul d brazill said...

Oh, great. I'm very shallow and felt jealous for a monent or two. But, it is smashing and i got over it!Top Ho!

naomirochelle said...

This is a six of art.
Just wonderful.

GeneticsGirl said...

Lovely melancholy feel to it.

Lakin said...

lovely, beautifully crafted, evocative. A gem.