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Snow Falls in Cambridge by William Doreski

All over North America hydrogen labs make gases required to keep us happy. Of course they affect the weather. That’s why snow falls in Cambridge this rotund June afternoon. The big wet flakes smack and hiss on the streets, kiss the magazines displayed at Out-of-Town News, lick faces of puberty-shocked runaways from the suburbs. We dodge to a Chinese restaurant where I explain my voyage on the canal boat via Kendall and Central Square. Replacing the subway with a canal seemed the economic way to remodel public transport and discourage frivolous travel among imaginary cities no one really inhabits. You disbelieve my account of large women poling the boat up the dizzy current sluicing from Winchester’s reservoirs. I tell you they sang with voices pure as Joan Baez, yet reedy as Coltrane’s spit-clotted sax. The snow has begun to pile up so we’re better off indoors. The restaurant smiles like a wake. We order lunch and recline so acutely in our chairs the world looks edgy despite happy gases falling from the sky to puddle in organs evolved especially for this function.

Somewhere in Central Siberia by William Doreski

A picnic by a tiny lake somewhere in central Siberia. A sausage that sings with garlic, a cheese that makes our eyes run, bread as crusty as lichen and a wine of deep garnet red. A hundred miles from a road or settlement, we eat and drowse in the tall sunlight, the clearing a patch of tundra ringed by old-growth evergreens. We share the last bite of bread and cheese and I explain my famous dream, the one about Wordsworth clinging to the running board of a carful of sheep dogs barking wildly. I drove that car, urged the poet to seat himself among the dogs rather than risk his reputation in the open air. You laugh because you replace Wordsworth with Tolstoy and suddenly the dream makes sense. The lake shudders as Arctic wind dances across it. Did we walk a hundred miles to get here? We can’t remember arriving, can’t imagine leaving, so relax in each other’s grasp and settle into the soft gray tundra, allowing the damp to embalm us. When dark crowds out of the forest to autopsy our simple remains we laugh because the stars laugh overhead, and the picnic we thought we had devoured now respectfully digests us without the faintest hint of pain.

Profile for Burner Magazine

Burner Magazine, issue 01 (September 2010)  

The inaugural issue of Burner Magazine, which aims to take the boring out of the literary and arts scenes.

Burner Magazine, issue 01 (September 2010)  

The inaugural issue of Burner Magazine, which aims to take the boring out of the literary and arts scenes.

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