"THE ONE DISCIPLINE WHICH can exercise a favorable influence on such [lazy] minds is reading: quod erat demonstratum, as the geometers say."

Marcel Proust ~ On Reading
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"The best way to be read is posthumously."

Nadine Gordimer ~ 1923 - 2014

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Latest Book Release



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Reviews


THE AUTHOR'S STYLE of writing is excellent, well written and easy to follow. The thoughts and emotions portrayed by our hero, draws the reader in, not knowing what is going to happen next.

The plot is quite different and unique, how would anyone cope after being locked away in an attic for 33 years? The humour of the author is well portrayed and at certain points in the book, you will find yourself laughing, at other points you will feel sorry for the main character. For anyone who likes short stories this will totally appeal, easy to read yet keeps the reader totally enrapt. Overall an enjoyable read. . . .

The other two short stories are really thought provoking and challenge ideas and the way we think, expertly written and enjoyable.

~Beck Valley Book Blog, UK

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ACORN’S CARD is a novella and two accompanying short stories. In the title novella an AWOL soldier returns to the downstairs after thirty-three years of hiding in his mother’s attic to find the old woman dead. But what should he do with her body? He can’t just call an undertaker—he is supposed to have died years ago. And how will he provide for himself, as his mother has left little money in the house?

By chance a pre-approved credit card application arrives in the mail. John Acorn fills it out and a card is issued to him. Now he can buy whatever he wants, with no thought of how he will pay when the statement comes. He decides to buy a used hearse and drive his mother to the cemetery and bury her. But first John will take his mother on a ride, during which he finds the world considerably changed from what he remembered it to be. Meanwhile, the hearse has a plan of its own. You will be surprised by the ending of this strange and fascinating story.

In the first of the short stories a Polish immigrant plumber bribes a policeman into not giving him a traffic ticket with a loaf of bread. While in the other a plastic garbage bag, that has been mistaken for a UFO, flies around the sky looking for a new beginning.

Poleskie’s plots are masterfully conceived, and totally original. He is a skillful writer with a brilliant sense of the language, at times probing, yet glorious and magical, much in the manner of Bruno Schulz and Witold Gombrowicz. If you prefer your reading a bit out of the ordinary, and still understand what a metaphor is, Acorn’s Card is an excellent choice.

~Book Blogs

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Aerial Theater Performance, England, 1989



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Early Paintings - New York


In 1962 Steve Poleskie was living in a small apartment at 284 East 10th. Street on Manhattan's lower east side. The first two paintings were made from the view out his rear window.










Steve Poleskie was a close friend of the painter Raphael Soyer, and posed for several of his pictures. While Soyer was painting him Poleskie made a drawing and later made this portrait.




THE SHEER NUMBER of books published these days makes it impossible for any reader to keep track of what is being written; couple this with bookshops dying on their feet and their reluctance to stock anything but the most popular titles and it's a no-brainer to assume that a few very good reads never leave the publisher's warehouse, let alone pick up a review.

John Crace The Guardian Weekly, 26.03.10

Works

Ivanhoe During Arithmetic
A personal essay about his work that Poleskie wrote for an interview in a 2012 issue of Editions Bibliotekos

WE DIPPED OUR pens in inkwells back then, and wrote properly using the “Palmer Method.” We sat there, upright, endlessly repeating the motions that turned marks into letters: a, b, c, d, e, f, g . . . And if learning to write was boring, learning to read was even more so. We used a book titled “Bob and Judy.” The story was very repetitious: “Bob runs. Judy runs. Bob and Judy run.” As I had already learned how to read at home, I often made up my own plots for these stories. This was my first attempt at being a writer.

Ithaca, NY, 3 June 2012

read the complete essay under Selected Works to your right or click on title above

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Foozler Runs
a novel

About the Story


WHEN HIS FATHER dies, fading rock star John Foozler returns home, with his wife and son, to take care of his mother and run the family golf driving range. Finding life dull in Eastlake after the excitement of LA, John spends most of his time at the range hitting buckets of golf balls. He soon realizes that he has not lost the natural talent he had when, as a teen age phenom, he won the State Junior Golf Championship.

After a few months John’s mother dies, followed shortly by his wife. When his son leaves to join the Marine Corps, and with nothing to keep him in Eastlake, except a few now married old girlfriends, John decides to leave town and follow a dream his father had for him of becoming a professional golfer.

Having sold the range to an old high school buddy who wants to build a shopping mall on what now is a valuable piece of land, John Foozler bundles all his possessions into his old car and heads south for tour qualifying school. He hopes to make the cut and be allowed to play on The Senior Tour.

Unfortunately John’s fondness for attractive older women slows his progress down the East Coast considerably. In South Carolina he meets a lonely female at a mini-golf course. He thinks that he has found true love, until he discovers that she is already married to a local politician believed to have ties to the mob.

Always a jokester, a prank John plays at a military parade has him hunted, at the orders of the politician, as a suspected terrorist. But John evades the chase and manages to hide out, taken in by a woman who is an art teacher at the local college. This time John is sure it is true love. But he can’t stay hidden forever as the woman’s landlord is becoming suspicious of his presence.


to read chapters One and Eight click on Foozler Runs title above

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Sconto Walaa
a novel

CHAPTER ONE

WHY SCONTO WALAA HAD decided that today was the day he would murder Walter Whitman, the former Philadelphia Eagles football player who owned the used car lot at the far end of his block, he could not say. It was 10 o’clock and Sconto had awoken for the second time this morning. Outside his window the activities of the town were well underway. After a week of excessively hot and oppressive weather, today had begun strangely refreshing and tart. A warm sun filled the quiet streets of New Simole, bringing a smile to the faces of the few passersby. It was certainly not the kind of day that might fill anyone with the intention of killing someone.

Sconto had been planning this event for the past thirteen years now, which was long before the dealership had even been there. More accurately, the used car lot was not on the end of his block, but in the no-man’s-land between the now closed road to the old Wilbender Bridge and the road that led to the new Wilbender Bridge.

The old bridge, a beautiful iron-girder span, built in 1920 and rechristened The War Veterans Memorial Bridge in 1946, was scheduled to be torn down—more accurately it was to be blown up. A Hollywood film company had discovered that the unwanted bridge looked very much like a bridge over the Rhine River that the U. S. Air Force had bombed in World War Two during a major battle, and so they had purchased the span and were planning to dynamite it for a scene in a movie they were making called Battle of the Bridge II. The film was being made by FantasyWorks Studios and would be starring the popular action picture star Hi Octane.

Sconto Walaa lived on East Main Street, a half block away from the approach road to the old bridge in a ground floor apartment, with his wife of thirteen years, and his thirteen year old daughter. Mr. Walaa ran a small business, Sconto’s Discount Dry Goods Store, which he had inherited from his father, a half mile west on Main Street in that three block section of store fronts and four story buildings that passed for New Simole’s downtown.

As today was Sunday, Sconto Walaa’s wife had gone off to church and, ostensibly, to do committee work afterwards. She had deposited their daughter and her friend at the mall on the way. They would be gone most of the day.

With his family out of the house, Walaa had lain down and taken a short nap, even though he had only woken up a few hours earlier. He was sleeping a great deal lately. It was a good nap. Sconto had not experienced any nightmares, as he usually did when he slept at night; a recurrent dream of his body being pulled out of a dark hole by his big toe. A glimpse Sconto believed of his birth, as he had been told by his father that he was breech born, a story which his mother denied. But he knew that his father was always right.

To read the complete Chapters One and Nine click the Sconto Wala title above

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Acorn's Card
a novella and two short stories

From Chapter One of the Title Story, Acorn's Card

ABOVE THE DESERTED STREET the red cloak of evening was slowly giving way to a starless night, the dying sun throwing down its last bands of fire onto a retreating landscape. A light wind swept the empty pavement clean, as if preparing for someone’s anticipated, yet uncertain, arrival. A lone man of slight build and stature, seeming perhaps unsure of himself, paced up and down on the narrow front porch of a two-story frame house. In the shaded darkness his face revealed no expression. His behavior, on the other hand, suggested that he could be someone who was walking that thin line between nothingness and death. He shook his head—eager to expel the sound of the helicopter that was presently passing through his brain, a flying machine which had been with him for years, and one that did not just make ordinary rotor noises, but produced a medley of tunes as it went on its never-ending way.

The house in the picture was not a fine structure, but in fact rather modest and old, in the bungalow style, built in the 1930s perhaps, its wooden siding worn thin by the winds of passing years. Unlike the other houses on the street, it had not been covered over with aluminum siding when that conversion was popular back in the 1950s. It had also been spared the modernization of having its front porch disappear in favor of the flag-stone steps and wrought-iron rails that had infected the neighboring houses. But where were the other houses that the pacing man recalled as having once lined this street? They apparently were no longer there—he had recently been surprised to discover. Had they once truly stood on both sides of this road or were they merely the vestiges of his dreams, a fiction of the time when he last walked through the front door of this house many years ago, and into the hidden alcove of his lost youth?

To read the complete Chapter One click on Acorn's Card title above

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A Loaf of Bread
a short story
from the book Acorn's Card

A SINKING ORANGE SUN was slowly giving way to a late-summer full moon, whose magical beams now rummaged about weakly in the courtyard below, drawing long shadows underneath the abandoned bicycles, trash cans and prowling stray cats. A tall, angular woman, wearing droll accessories that he could not make out, a peasant costume perhaps assembled at a thrift shop, tap-danced down the hall, stomping her feet ecstatically, and twirling a lasso made of light. The sudden and rather discordant beeping of Jan Lesnachevski’s alarm clock pulled him from his sleep. It was nine o’clock—as they say here in America—in the evening not the morning. The sky was beginning to get dark, not bright.

to read complete story click on title above, or link below

FOR YEARS, MY FAVORITE ficiton writer has been Isaac Bashevis Singer, the author of Enemies, A Love Story and a couple hundred of the best short stories written in the 20th Century. What I love most about those stories is the fable-like mix of realism and magic, coal dust and fairy dust.

I've recently started reading Stephen Poleskie, a Polish-American short-story writer who brings some of that same magic to the page.

John Guzlowski in Writing the Polish Diaspora


Reviews



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PERSPECTIVE CAN BRING A WHOLE NEW UNDERSTANDING TO IT ALL. Acorn's Card is a collection or three stories from Stephen Poleskie who tells of coming to know the world around you, after being so used to something else, and finding the power to understand and find your path in it. Moving with many intriguing concepts and characters, Acorn's Card is a choice fiction collection. Recommended.

Midwest Book Review:
Small Press Bookwatch, July 2011

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Poleskie on the Internet


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Vigilia's Tempest
a novel

The Plot:

WHEN JOHN VIGILIA, a well-known American stunt pilot, and university professor, lands at an abandoned air base in Canada to avoid a thunderstorm he meets a strange old man named Caliban who tells him the story of his twin brother who as a young boy flew with Charles Lindbergh as his secret copilot on his famous solo trans-Atlantic flight. The copilot was supposedly picked up in Nova Scotia and dropped off on a beach in Ireland, while Lindberg went on to Paris alone. John travels to Europe to explore the truth behind the story he has been told and finds himself in the middle of a decades-old international intrigue. Has John discovered the conspiracy of the century, or is it just the old man’s hoax? And why is John Vigilia now being followed everywhere, and has had an attempt made on his life?

After tracing him through Ireland, Rome, Como, and
Munich, Vigilia finally catches up with the alleged copilot, Ariel Angelucci, in Locarno, Switzerland, where he reveals that he was indeed in the airplane with Lindbergh when he flew across the Atlantic. Not sure if he believes Ariel’s story, Vigilia takes the man up for a flight in a biplane to see if he really knows how to fly. The old man wants to do some “stunts,” but has a heart attack at the top of a loop, jamming the controls and causing John to crash.

John Vigilia wakes up confined in a private clinic on an island in the Lago Maggiore. He is told that, despite what he believes, there was no one in the airplane with him when he crashed. His injuries heal, but when he is not released, John realizes that he is being held prisoner at the clinic because of what he now knows.

Miranda, a woman John Vigilia had a brief affair with when he was in Como, and who has fallen in love with John comes to visit him at the clinic. He convinces her to come for him at night in a boat and take him off the island. The two motor to the airport at Magadino, where they steal an airplane and attempt to flee over the mountains before an approaching thunderstorm. They run out of gas and crash land in a field, but are never found and believed to be dead.

Three years later Vigilia’s nephew, also named John Vigilia, comes to Europe looking for his uncle. A search for him by the Italian authorities and the FBI has not turned up anything. The nephew stands to inherit his uncle’s estate, but needs proof that the man is dead. He goes to Rome and looks up the Italian count who, according to letters the stunt pilot Vigilia sent back to himself at his home, was the son of the man behind the conspiracy, and is continuing to keep the matter a secret. The count tells the young John Vigilia a completely different story about Ariel Angelucci, and the nephew goes away wondering which of the two stories is true, but determined more than ever to get to the bottom of the mystery.

Click on Vigilia's Tempest above to read first chapter.


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Review

DID LINDBERGH HAVE A SECRET COPILOT?
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In his latest novel, “Vigilia’s Tempest,” author Stephen Poleskie confronts history as it has been written by posing the question: What if Charles Lindbergh had a secret copilot with him to keep him from falling asleep on his famous flight from New York to Paris, and what if the man who flew with him was still alive? If he could be found, what would he tell us? And why has he kept hidden all these years? Poleskie, an aviator himself, constructs this complicated and perplexing story with a virtuoso display of practical expertise, compassion, and poetic vibrancy.

When John Vigilia, a well-known American stunt pilot, and university professor, lands at an abandoned air base in Canada to avoid a thunderstorm he meets a strange old man named Caliban who tells him the story of his twin brother, Ariel, who as a young boy flew with Charles Lindbergh as his secret copilot on his famous solo trans-Atlantic flight. The copilot was supposedly picked up in Nova Scotia and dropped off on a beach in Ireland, while Lindberg went on to Paris, and to fame, alone. Seeking a diversion after his wife’s sudden death, John Vigilia travels to Europe to explore the truth behind the Lindbergh story he had heard. Unexpectedly, John finds himself in the middle of a decades-old international intrigue. Has John discovered the conspiracy of the century, or is it just the old man’s hoax? And why is John Vigilia now being followed everywhere, and has had an attempt made on his life? One might be tempted to call “Vigilia’s Tempest” a “literary thriller.”

Poleskie takes Vigilia through a series of adventures in Ireland, Rome, Como, and Munich, before finally allowing him to catch up with the alleged copilot, Ariel Angelucci, in Locarno, Switzerland. Ariel reveals that he was indeed in the airplane with Lindbergh when he flew across the Atlantic. Not sure if he believes Ariel’s story, Vigilia takes the man up for a flight in a biplane to see if he really knows how to fly. The old man wants to do some “stunts,” but has a heart attack at the top of a loop, jamming the controls and causing John to crash.

John Vigilia wakes up confined in a private clinic on an island in the Lago Maggiore. He is told that, despite what he believes, there was no one in the airplane with him when he crashed. When his injuries heal, but he is not released, John realizes that he is being held prisoner at the clinic because of what he now knows.

Does Vigilia ever get off the island? I am not going to spoil it by telling you. Suffice it to say that he has a few more adventures, and even a love affair, yet to go before the end of the book. The conclusion is both tragic and uplifting, as are all Poleskie’s endings, confirming the author’s strong sense of the continuity of life.

Poleskie, who writes with a rich and full vocabulary, in the manner of such European authors as Bruno Schulz and Witold Gombrowicz, and with the dark praise of obscurity and failure found in Fernando Pessoa, also manages a tip of the hat to William Shakespeare. “Vigilia’s Tempest” is filled with numerous storms, an island, and character names and chapter quotes from Shakespeare’s play “The Tempest.” At 500 pages this is the longest of Poleskie’s novels to date, but the plot’s many characters and interesting twists will keep the reader engrossed until the very end, and then even wanting more.

OE a Literary Blog - 9 April 2010


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Grater Life
a novel in stories

A THOROUGLY ENGAGING COLLECTION of short stories, brilliantly interwoven into a dialog between a volunteer hospital visitor and an apparently friendless patient afflicted with AIDS. Reluctant at first, the patient opens up to his visitor and they begin telling each other their stories; witty, delightful, and sometimes violent and tragic. As the months pass we learn of the patients life, and how he acquired the disease from which he is dying. The visitor also reveals his own past, and the two soon discover that they are only different sides of the same coin. Or are they?

to read first three pages click on title above


Review

ESCAPED FROM GOGOL'S OVERCOAT

Anthony Di Renzo

“The more we examine a joke,” observed Russian satirist and fabulist Nicolai Gogol, “the sadder it becomes.” Gogol’s maxim could serve as an epigraph to Steve Poleskie’s short story collection Grater Life. As its title implies, this bleakly funny book grinds hope into bigos, a Polish stew often served at Christmas. Bigos also means “confusion,” “trouble,” “mess,” and Poleskie serves up all three like a melancholy babushka.

Retired sculptor Janus Klossowski, whose varicose veins resemble a map of the Mississippi Delta, daydreams about the past while dying of AIDS in a squalid Pennsylvania nursing home. His two pastimes are identifying the plane engines droning from the nearby airport and baiting his do-gooder visitor John Klaus, a former Peace Corps volunteer turned jingle writer, whose claim to fame was designing a best-selling Easter card. (Q: “How does the Easter Bunny keep his fur clean?” A: “He uses hare shampoo!”)

At the beginning of the collection, Janus dominates, reminiscing about his hard-scrabble childhood in Anthracite Country, his Henry Milleresque escapades, and his futile struggles with the academy, the art world, and the health care system. But as these twelve stories unfold with the corresponding months, the focus shifts to John, who is more kinked than he admits. What else can you expect from a schmuck who has been cavity-searched by the Sierra Leone police and humiliated by two blowsy dominatrixes?

The two men mirror each other until they seem to trade places. The narrative becomes more feverish and absurd. Bureaucratic errors cause patients to disappear, microwaves turn Frankenstein, and hunting guides apologize for the lack of big game in a dying Africa. Finally, language breaks down into the cacophonous cawing of crows. All that survives are the rambling of the senile and the natter of a hospital television.

Poleskie subtly draws on his Eastern European heritage. His work echoes Karel Kapek’s Stories of a Pocket, Milan Kundera’s Laughable Loves, Jerzy Kosinski’s Steps, and of course Anton Chekhov’s Ward Six. But its style and vision are grittier and bawdier. Insulted and injured, his characters have shed Gogol’s overcoat and are loitering buck naked on Main Street.


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The Balloonist, The Story of T.S.C. Lowe, Inventor, Scientist, Magician, and Father of the U.S. Air Force.
a novel

Lowe was a showman, scientist, and starry-eyed dreamer. After the outbreak of the Civil War, he went to the federal government with the hope of convincing the authorities to use balloons for observation purposes. He eventually was made chief of the aeronautic department and rendered valuable service to the Army.

to read the edited prologue click on title above

Review

"The first full-scale biography of Thaddeus Lowe (1832-1913) makes fascinating reading for aviation buffs and students of nineteenth-century eccentricity. . . . Aviation and history collections may acquire this seemingly tangential book with clear consciences."
--Jay Freeman, Booklist


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The Third Candidate
a novel

Review

During a primary marked by bowling fiascos, flag-pin debates, and assassination sweepstakes, Stephen Poleskie's "The Third Candidate" could not be timelier. By turns funny and frightening, this book explores the moldy underside of American politics. In a bankrupt democracy that considers thinking elitist and irony treason, this is risky business, partly because no satire can fully do justice to current events....

to read the complete review click on title above

for book's first three pages click on excerpt in header

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Reasons for Aerial Theatre
Stephen Poleskie

An essay that appeared in several journals and anthologies, in whole or in part, during the 1980s including: Leonardo, in the USA, Dars in Italy, and Himmelsschreiber in Geremany

IN THE AENEID, VIRGIL RECOUNTS one of the earliest attempts to convey information through the sky. This is the story of the goddess Fama (Rumour), who spreads reports by flying at night on wings midway between the earth and sky. The motto, "Fama super aethera notus" (I am known by my fame in the heavens above) is from a speech by Aeneas to Venus.

For more than a decade now I have been using an airplane, flown by me and trailing smoke, to communicate through the sky. My activity differs from commercial skywriting and from military precision teams in intent and therefore in result. A marching band and a ballet company are both engaged in the same practice, that of moving bodies in some sort of order across a space on the ground. However, as their purposes differ so do their results. The analogy that can be applied to my Aerial Theatre as the only similarity between this and skywriters or military precision teams is the use of an airplane to move a person through space in the sky.

The purpose of Aerial Theatre is to create an artistic event in the sky. The action of my airplane lays down lines which can momentarily be observed. This action, however, does not create a tangible art object, a fact which presents difficulty to the viewer accustomed to equating artistic activity with a resulting product. The product of my flight then exists like a dance only as a remembrance of something seen.

to read the complete essay click on the title above

Flyer Bag
a short story

THURSDAY, WHICH HAD BEGUN without much promise, had somehow become one of those rare golden days, so few in a spring filled with wind and rain. J and I both were suffering from a flu that wouldn’t heal itself despite acupuncture, herbs, and over the counter remedies. We sat on a bench in our garden enjoying the sun with a resigned calmness, the way older people often do. Not that we would admit to being “older people” even though Medicare now paid my doctor bills. We were tired from having just carried all the hanging baskets, and heavy potted plants, back outside. It was the sixth time this May that a frost advisory had caused us to pack all the expensive annuals in the house overnight. Two actual frosts had made us feel our efforts were worthwhile, but the four false alarms had just left us feeling frustrated. All this even though my wife had not planted anything until after May 15, the official last day for frost in our area.

to read the complete story click on title above

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Love and Janus Zyvka
a short story that appeared in The Book of Love

LOW CUMULI RACED ALONG IN THE OTHERWISE CLEAR SKY, chasing their shadows across the green of the Topiary Garden. An energetic south wind briskly rocked the leaves of the carefully trimmed figures, giving them a life that contrasted dramatically with their sentient observers, whose only movement at present was the scribbling of our pens across open notebooks. All in all, it was a lovely day to be out of the classroom.

‘I have a question, Professor Zyvka,’ I said.

‘Yes. . . .’

‘Why would anyone want to spend their time shaping plants into human forms?’

‘There are many reasons,’ the professor replied. ‘Perhaps the simplest answer is that it is something they love to do. Sometimes you must do things for love, no matter where it takes you.’

to read the complete story click on the title above

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The Banquet
a short story

NOVEMBER HAD BEEN A GRAY MONTH to arrive in the vast hollows of the city, a period when the dark clouds that hung constantly overhead shut out what little daylight managed to filter into its deep concrete, crevasses. The tops of the buildings seemed to be a division in time, as well as a division in matter. The artist, looking upwards, wondered what had drawn him to this saddened, heartless place.

to read the complete story click on the title above

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Airport Beacon
a short story

WHEN I WAS A YOUNG BOY I grew up on the side of a hill that overlooked the local airport.

From my bedroom window, in the back of the small white house where I lived with my father, mother, and uncle, I could clearly see the airfield in the valley below. As it was only a grass strip, the comings and goings of the aircraft had worn a huge brown cross in the middle of the green sod. When I was not in school I liked to sit, sometimes all day long, at my window watching the airplanes take off and land.

‘Weirdo! Weirdo! Johnny is a weirdo!’ I can still hear my schoolmates shouting up at me, taunting me from the alley behind our house. They all thought me odd because I would rather stay inside, at my window observing the airplanes, than be outside playing games with them.

to read the entire story click on title above

Fragile Things
a short story

THE RACCOON DANCES PLAYFULLY on the evening grass. Its secret betrayed, you watch from one of your upstairs windows, wondering if this is the same raccoon that has been lately raiding your bird feeder. On other nights you have chased it away with noise and flashing lights, but now it’s back. Or is it? This masked creature appears somewhat smaller. Or is it a trick of the fading light on your fading eyes?

to read the complete story click on the title above

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Aristotle Thinking
a short story

A BRIGHT, YELLOW AND ORANGE FALL DAY was rapidly sinking into the grayness of dusk when Aristotle arrived home with an arrow through his backside. He tried to go into the house, but couldn’t get in by way of his cat door as the shaft, which was sticking out of both sides of his body, was too wide. A good cat, Aristotle sat on the porch in the lengthening shadows, licking his wounds, waiting for Josa to return to let him in. But she was away getting things from the old house. Aristotle didn’t know that.

click on title above to read entire story

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My Son the Philosopher
a short story

RIDING ON THE EARLY TRAIN, Jean-Paul Riposte, a wine merchant from a fashionable section of Paris, was traveling to the southern town of Toulouse to visit his mother. Never married, Monsieur Riposte spent his holidays with the woman who had raised him, his father having died when Jean-Paul was only three. Monday was Bastille Day; his shop closed, Jean-Paul would spend the extra day in Toulouse, and return home in the evening.

to read the entire story click on title above

Marta's White Painting
a short story

I WASN'T MARTA'S PAINTING TEACHER, only her academic adviser. In fact I had never had her as a student. Marta came to see me because she was having trouble with her other professors; she brought along one of her paintings to show me.
When she unwrapped the small canvas I was taken aback. I had seen many student paintings in my thirty years of teaching, but I had never seen anything like this before. In truth I cannot describe it to you, as I have nothing to reference it to. All I can say is that while it had very little color, appearing mostly white, it had all the colors within it, the way snow is not really white. The painting was pink or gray or blue or lavender or green. The painting was winter, yet it encompassed all the seasons. The work was a landscape and a figure painting at the same time. If you stared at it long enough, images appeared faintly, reminding me of the Shroud of Turin.

to read the complete story click on title above

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Cemetery Watcher
a short story

LAST SUMMER I BOUGHT cemetery plots for my wife and me; even though we didn't need them. Now I don't mean I think we are not going to die, but we already owned three plots. These had been given to me by my father when he decided he and Mom should be buried in a vault. He reasoned that since my wife and I lived 125 miles away, and my sister was 3200 miles farther, no one was about to come around regularly to put flowers on their graves and to see they were taken care of, especially since the service the diocese provided was rather remiss; that is except when it came to putting around the little American flags, which I shall refer to later.

to read the complete story click on title above

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Fishkill
a short story

THE TELEPHONE RINGS, interrupting our dinner, the tense, jarring sound phones make when you are waiting for a message; perhaps word that someone close has died.
"Hello! How's your father doing?" "Hello! Who's this?"
"John . . . ."
"John?"
"I'm at my nephew's house. We went fishing.... "
"Dad's still in intensive care . . . .” I say, in answer to John's question that he had not asked.

to read the complete story click on title above

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Victory Parade
a short story published in WordWrights!

RED, WHITE, AND BLUE CONFETTI was Falling, Falling everywhere, thrown from the windows of Tall and Taller buildings by Joyful people on the heads of the Joyful Sea of people below. On Broadway, a young Sailor recently returned from the Sea, and Milling among the Milling crowd, caught sight of a Pretty Girl. Catching her in his arms, the Sailor SPONTANEOUSLY gave the girl a kiss.

to read the entire story click on title above


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THERE ARE SO MANY STORIES yet remaining in my heart and never enough time. Who will write them down for me when I am gone?

SP

Selected Works

Essays
A personal essay about his work that Poleskie wrote for an interview in a 2012 issue of Editions Bibliotekos
An essay that appeared in several journals and anthologies during the 1980s, including: Leonardo in the USA, Dars in Italy, and Himmelsschreiber in Germany
Novels
When his father dies, fading rock star John Foozler returns home, with his wife and son, to take care of his mother and run the family golf driving range. After a few months John’s mother dies, followed shortly by his wife. When his son leaves to join the Marine Corps, and with nothing to keep him in Eastlake, except a few now married old girlfriends, John decides to leave town and follow a dream his father had for him of becoming a professional golfer.
A National Guard corporal returned from deployment in the Middle East and suffering from undiagnosed PTSD descides to murder a man who he believe raped his wife thirteen years ago, and may be the father of his daughter.
A well-known American stunt pilot, and university professor, meets a strange old man named Caliban who tells him the story of his twin brother who as a young boy flew with Charles Lindbergh as his secret copilot on his famous solo trans-Atlantic flight.
Thaddeus Sobieski Coulincourt Lowe (1823−1913) was called by Carl Sandburg "the most shot-at man of the Civil War."
An unemployed actor answers an ad for a rent-free apartment and finds himself involved in a bizarre scheme to rig an election.
Novella and Stories
An AWOL soldier returns to the world after thirty-three years of hiding in his mother’s attic. An immigrant plumber bribes a policeman with a loaf of bread. And a plastic garbage bag flies around the sky looking for a new beginning, in these three out of the ordinary tales of living in America.
Selected Short Stories
A short story that appeared in the collection Acorn's Card, and on the blog Writing the Polish Diaspora
A short story that appeared in the collection Acorn's Card, 2011 and on Goodreads
A short story that appeared in the anthology The Book of Love, published by W. W. Norton, 1998 and in the collection Grater Life, 2009
A short story published in a shorter version in the 1995-6 issue of the magazine American Writing
A story published in the Spring 1996 issue of the west coast magazine Pangolin Papers and also in the collection Grater Life, 2009
This story appeared in the Spring 2009 print issue of SN Review
This story appeared in Essays & Fictions, Summer 2010, and in Fiction Daily
A short story that appeared in SATIRE magazine in 1997 under the title TGV
A story that appeared in Imago, the Australian literary magazine in October, 2001
A short story published in the Sulphur River Literary Review, Austin, TX
A short story in the Print Annual of Many Mountains Moving, a Literary Journal, 2008-9, nominated for a Pushcart Prize
A short story published in WordWrights!, a literary magazine from Washington, D. C. under the title For Eisenstaedt Spontaneously
Novel in Stories
A collection of short stories, interwoven into a dialog between a volunteer hospital visitor and a patient afflicted with AIDS.

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