She was Our Mother, so she cried

Juli Kearns Art of Fiction, Everyday Stories, Uncategorized Leave a Comment

My sinuses are exploding, I’m fuzzed with heavy duty Benadryl but can’t sleep, can’t think to do anything marginally useful or productive, and so here I am ready to talk about George Alec Effinger’s “What Entropy Means to Me”. Jennifer at Saying Yes picked it up as I’d good things to say about it and because it features giant people-terrorizing vegetables.

No, I’m actually up to read it again. I just read the first chapter. It’s been at least 15 years since I last read this book, maybe longer. I was probably 17 when I first read it. And I still love it.

She was Our Mother, so she cried. She used to sit out there, under that micha tree, all day as we worked cursing in her field. She sat there during the freezing nights, and we pretended that we could see her through the windows in the house, by the light of the moons and the hard, fast stars. She sat there before most of us were born; she sat there until she died. And all that time she shed her tears. She was Our Mother, so she cried.

She cried from our yard, and the chairs that had been put there. We had many chairs on the scrubby lawn between the house and the chata fields. Some of the other estates have iron and stone statues placed around, but none of them have chairs. We have quite a few. Our Mother taught us that she got the idea from reading one of the plays that Our Father brought with him from Earth. We still have many of those books. Sometimes we thrown them into the River when it looks like it might flood. But we still have most of them.

How can you not love a book that begins like that?

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