The Heat of Us

It started with Dorothy Gale. Well, not quite Dorothy, not really, but the person she played in the life many call real. The girl who stared into the eye of a twister while piloting a farmhouse into a land over the rainbow, turned Garland, and on her forty-seventh summer she flew high, high, high… and never came back to smile into the hearts of those who loved her from afar.

Her last trip burst dams and fed flames. In Sam J. Miller’s “The Heat of Us: Notes Towards an Oral History”, Garland’s one-way journey seemed to have started a fantastical riot.

Law enforcers, a stenotype operator, a news reporter gone human, a librarian, a halved twin… told the tale of a 1969 in their history when Stonewall, a concealed place of revelations, was ignited by the rage of people who were tired—too damn tired!—of dancing in the dark, for the obscene comfort of a society that cared only about their own selves.

“The Heat of Us” is alternative history that evokes well known emotions. Through the voice of C.S.E. Cooney, the tale gains trueness that can be felt through the ears of the soul.

dancing and burning,
their identities stonewalled;
joy puts out sad fires

- haibun mini-review of “The Heat of Us: Notes Toward an Oral History”, by Sam J. Miller
- read or listen to the short story at Uncanny Magazine

Note: This is an experiment, my Wicked Luvs, so I would really love to know what you think. If you’ve been around here for a while, you already know that I’m not crazy about writing “traditional” short story or book reviews. I enjoy exploring the feast of emotions written works rip out of my witchy heart, and tend to focus on them. The haibun, a prose-haiku combination, seems like the perfect form for me to share with you what I think and feel about a story. So… what do you think?

This flyer isn’t directly related to “The Heat of Us”. I just love the image. A lot. 

21 comments:

  1. I like it! And, if that is what you want to do, then, go for it!

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    1. I'm happy you like the format, Sharon. I think you will love the story even more. It's a real soul-shaker.

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  2. "the tale gains trueness that can be felt through the ears of the soul." Oh my stars.....can't you just taste the emotion of this statement??????????? Wow.
    What do I think of the haibun? Well darling, if you wanna, then by all means, do. Actually I was gonna say I always like my hiabun with traditional sugar frosting but if you wanna use cream cheese, who am I to bicker about it.....but that would be cheeky. Oma Linda

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    1. My words fed right from the story. Really. Oh my goodness, Oma, you need to read it. I've read so many "historical" accounts of Stonewall, but the alternative history portrayed by this story is more alive and "true" than any of them. Pure yum with bite in it!

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    2. That was great read. Thanks for pointing me in the right direction. You were so very right.

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    3. Hooray! You know how I love to share the yum. So glad you enjoyed it!

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  3. Well, it made me want to read The Heat of Us.
    So my sleepy self is heading over to amazon...
    Excellent post, Magaly. I love the fire in your words.

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    1. It's a short story, and you can read it free online. Just follow the link to Uncanny Magazine. You can hear it, too. It's deliciously inspiring, Katy.

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    2. I will jump to Facebook and post the direct link to the tale. ♥

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  4. I like the idea of book and story reviews! Love to learn what other people are reading!

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  5. There are a couple of things here:
    1. This is your blog. So I think it is okay for you to do whatever kind of review you want.
    2. Those who really follow your blog are following because they like your writing style, so if you don't normally write traditional, then chances are your reader is expecting nothing less.

    I personally think that reviewing in haiku would be a nice twist. It is unique. And I like stuff that is unique and original.

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  6. Hey, I took a seminar once on how to write haibun! Your concluding haiku is excellent. I've been meaning to write a series of posts on haiku for the longest time i.e. years -- maybe I'll get around to it eventually!

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    1. That must've been a wonderful class and learning environment. I'm ashamed to say that I know little about haiku and haibun. I wonder if you'd ever post a delicious how-to post about haibun? That might get you started... perhaps after you finish Moby-Dick; or, The Whale *cough*.

      But seriously, I mean the bit about a class about how to write haibun. I would love to read it (and consume it).

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  7. A review in the form of a Haibun--I love it! So unique, it frames things in a whole new perspective. Please do more!

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    1. It was fun to write. My haibun abilities are limited, but hey, learning is the fun part of the battle. ;-) I enjoy the emotion that can be spilled into the form. There shall be more!

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  8. I like this style of review. Some reviews are longer than the story itself. This gives insight with passion :D XXX

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    1. I never thought of that... but yes, I've read some reviews (especially of short stories) that go on and on...

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