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The Cold

The Cold - story

Ryūnosuke Akutagawa

 One morning, after a fall of snow. Yasukichi sat on a chair in the physics teachers’ lounge, watching the flames in the heating stove. The flames licked up yellow one moment, then fell to sooty…

The Picture Horse

The Picture Horse - story

Pu Sung-ling

A certain Mr. Ts’ui, of Lin-ch’ing, was too poor to keep his garden walls in repair, and used often to find a strange horse lying down on the grass inside. It was a black horse…

The Universe of Things

The Universe of Things - story

Gwyneth Jones

The alien parked its car across the street and came and sat down in the waiting room. He must have seen this happen, peripherally. But he was busy settling the bill with a middle-aged woman…

Mortimer Gray’s History of Death

Mortimer Gray’s History of Death - story

Brian Stableford

1   I was an utterly unexceptional child of the twenty-ninth century, comprehensively engineered for emortality while I was still a more-or-less inchoate blastula and decanted from an artificial womb in Naburn Hatchery in the…

Its Name is ‘Bird’

Its Name is ‘Bird’ - story

Kamal Riahi

Jalal wasn’t happy unless he was wreaking havoc. He was the village’s fearsome little devil. At any time he might raid the neighbours’ chicken coops and rabbit hutches. Then we’d see him grilling the meat…

The Treasure

The Treasure - story

Yusuf Idris

Abdul Aal was a tall, dark-skinned plain-clothes policeman. On the back of his right hand he had an open-mouthed fish with a cleft tail and a spot on its eye. Abdul Aal was a detective….

The Policeman and the Horse

The Policeman and the Horse - story

Zakaria Tamer

Abu Mustafa parked his carriage next to the sidewalk. With a large, gnarled hand he patted his horse’s head, then headed into the nearby shop. He began hoisting bags of firewood on his back and…

A Meditation Upon a Broomstick

A Meditation Upon a Broomstick - story

Jonathan Swift

According to the Style and Manner of the Hon. Robert Boyle’s Meditations. This single stick, which you now behold ingloriously lying in that neglected corner, I once knew in a flourishing state in a forest….

John-Paul Finnegan, Paltry Realist

John-Paul Finnegan, Paltry Realist - story

Rob Doyle

When I think of Ireland, John-Paul Finnegan said as we stood on the deck of the ferry while it pulled out of Holyhead, I think of a limitless ignorance. And not just an ignorance, but…

The Man Who No Longer Wanted to Know Anything

The Man Who No Longer Wanted to Know Anything - story

Peter Bichsel

‘From now on, I don’t want to know anything,’ said the man who no longer wanted to know anything. ‘I don’t want to know a thing.’ That’s easily said. It is easily said. And hardly…