Sweet mother Mary, boy, think about what you’re doing! Clumsy. Relax, child. “Suppose he does it,” said the Father of Rabbits. She has written a number of children’s books, short stories, and comics, and writes for adults under the name T. Kingfisher. “Not the right sort of place.” He considered. In the trees. And the jackalope wife had one thought only and pulled on the burning hide —. Thank you for this story. Nine pages in all. She exhaled very slowly. Her grandson caught the edge of the door and hauled it open. Pretty and useless and charming when he set out to be. Because I had a new husband and a little bitty baby girl and all I could think about was leaving them both behind and go dance.”. The jackalope wife let out another sob and tried to curl back into a ball. The air was cool and gray. And on the half–moon, when new and full were balanced across the saguaro’s thorns, they’d come down to the desert and dance. The wind tugged at them and sent them spinning off the side of the bluff. If it was loose I could fix it up, maybe, but I couldn’t get it off her now with a knife.” He took another drag on the cigarette. Saw this story recommended on io9 (I think), and mistook it for Ursula LeGuin at first, marking it to read later. Grandma Harkness is one of the best characters I have come across in a long time. by jackalope. Nebula Award winner, WSFA winner, World Fantasy Award finalist, Cóyotl Award winner, Welcome to Your Authentic Indian Experience™, A Witch’s Guide to Escape: A Practical Compendium of…, each thing i show you is a piece of my death, Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Memphis Minnie Sing the…, Bonus 2021 International Fantasists Issue, https://apex-magazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/apex07.mp3, https://www.unz.org/Pub/Forum-1936jan-00027, https://www.unz.org/Pub/Forum-1936jan-00054. It went on like it had been made for her, like it was her own. Well. Specifically, closer to the end where Harken quotes “It’s different when you got a choice,” (Vernon 2014). “Not them either,” she said to the jackalope wife. Between Grandma’s hands, the pulse beat steady and strong. Well written, which is rare, and engaging. The jackalope wife lay still in the shadows, with only her thin ribs going up and down. Too many stones in your belly now.” He shook his head regretfully. The jackalope wife looked up at him, recoiled, and Grandma laid a hand on her arm. The desert chews its secrets right down to the bone.). “Wasn’t trying to call you up.”, “Oh, I know.” The Father of Rabbits grinned. He scrambled to his feet and ran for the door. “You were a hell of a dancer,” said the Father of Rabbits. Jackalope Wives And Other Stories. “Where’d you get that?” asked Grandma Harken, suspicious. Analysis: Jackalope, as the name suggests, is thought to be a mysterious animal with jack rabbit's body and an antelope's or deer's antlers. “He’ll kill you,” the old woman said. Her children scraped their tusks together and grunted. * Bookmarked . More likely he’d dithered and looked for a stick and didn’t want to grab for it with his bare hands. Her pulse went fast then slow. Now, it happened there was a young man in town who had a touch of magic on him. “You think you can have your skin and your freedom burned away in front of you and not scream? I’m glad to read a good American faerytale. Top industry topics by social Engagement ... jackalope wives… “Father of Rabbits,” she said sourly. He looked like an old Mexican man, wearing a button–down shirt without any buttons. The moonbeams went shattering down to the ground and the jackalope wives took off their skins and danced. Does anyone have the themes of this story? Pizza break. The last stretch was cruelly hard, up the side of a bluff. I sometimes wonder if Yankees or easterners feel it the same. Stories about it are said to be centuries old, but nonetheless, there are questions about the existence of this strange and scary creature. by jackalope. Other young men eyed him with dislike. I’d been — we’d — I watched her, and she knew I was out there, and she let me get up close — I thought we could talk —”. Don’t suppose you can fix her up?” It cost Grandma a lot of pride to say that, and the Father of Rabbits tipped his chin in acknowledgment. “They’ll talk the legs off a wooden sheep. *THANK YOU. Chibi Witch- October $1 Patreon only base. Poetic, moving and utterly bizarre. She was calm. She danced farther out from the others and her horns were short and sharp as sickles. Or better yet, left her alone and never gone out in the desert at all.”. Grandma wasn’t fooled for a minute. But she screamed — she wasn’t supposed to scream — nobody said they screamed — and I thought she was dying, and I didn’t want to hurt her — I pulled it back out —”, He looked up at her with his feverish eyes, that useless, beautiful boy, and said “I didn’t want to hurt her. That’s just what we need.”. And the jackalope wife danced, out past the circle of the music and the firelight, in the light of the fierce desert stars. Cigarettes and dead mouse and a scrap of burnt fur from the jackalope’s breast. You can find more of her work at. She could just see his teeth flash white in the dark. “Now I see why you wanted one of the Patterned People.”, The Father of Rabbits shook his head. They had faces like no mortal woman and they moved like quicksilver and they played music that got down into your bones and thrummed like a sickness. best of luck to ms. vernon, this story deserves all the recognition it can get. Grandma Harken stepped forward. Just one nitpick: Harkness vs. Harken. You should have let it burn. “Why does she look like that?” whispered her grandson, huddled into his chair. What did you do, you damned young fool? Winner of the Nebula and WSFA Short Fiction Awards. “What have you done?” she said. Description. At least this one has a real ending, not like some other published stories that I wouldn’t pay 5 cents to read. One minute you’d see them kicking their heels up and hear them laugh, then the music would freeze and they’d all look at you with their eyes wide and their ears upswept. The only person she didn’t hide from was Eva, Grandma’s daughter. But if you can you might want to read this story first. “No. She lit her cigarette off his. They were set too wide apart in a human face, with a cleft lip and long rabbit ears. The ravens laughed to themselves at the bottom of the wash. Then he dipped his head and bowed to Grandma Harken and a rattlesnake as long as a man slithered away into the evening. Now I have finished reading, this is awesome! “What did you do to her, Maggie?”, “I didn’t do a damn thing, except not let her die when I should have.”. A little magic is worse than none, for it draws the wrong sort of attention. “She’s gotten good with the crutch,” said Eva. A jackalope is a cryptid from North American folklore. “You’re supposed to. He set her down gently and picked up one of the cigarettes. Jackalope easily meets the 25% occupancy requirement even on our busiest day. “He thinks you’re mad at him,” said Eva mildly. She jerked her chin in the direction of the jackalope wife. “Get lonely down there in your town, Maggie?” he asked. An Analysis of Dialogue Tag Use by Marcus Vance Some writers will tell you that “said” is all you need—that your dialogue itself should answer any questions as to how the character speaks, and their tone. And the second one was better.”. “I never did like your first husband much,” said the Father of Rabbits. Grandma sat down beside her and held her wrist between her own callused palms. “Suppose he sheds that skin right off her. Suppose she might as well have it… Unless you want it?”. Grandma had to half–carry the jackalope wife at the end. Down in the desert, the music played and the jackalope wives danced. It was first published in Apex Magazine and has been reprinted in the collection Jackalope Wives and Other Stories. “Let me in, let me in, oh god, Grandma, you have to help me, it’s all gone wrong —”, Grandma took two steps back, while he half–dragged the jackalope into the house. Really well told in the fairy tale format, but with that extra grit in the characters of the desert. I read it…then read it again. “He’s one of the Patterned People, and they only know the one way.”. A coyote watched them from up on the hillside. Good catch, Lenora! I look forward to reading Ms. Vernon’s other work! Maybe he wasn’t hungry. Jackalope Wives. Our specialty is dance recitals and competitions as well as musicals and theatre events. In Santa Fe, Jackalope is a home and garden shopping destination that is considered one of the top-twenty shopping locations in all of Santa Fe. by T. Kingfisher | May 2, 2017. Gorgeous. Thank you Ursula, as always. The jackalope wife stirred on the hearth and made a sound between a whimper and a sob. There couldn’t have been more than few scraps of fur left unburnt. Stars: Bill Switzer, Daniel Clark, Deborah Odell, Lindy Booth. It reads very much like a myth of some pre-industrial people. “Suppose we’ll find out,” said the Father of Rabbits, and nodded. The Patterned Man stood up and nodded to the jackalope wife. He dropped her down in front of the hearth and grabbed for his grandmother’s hands. Sure, maybe it isn't a perfect jackalope, but pretty similar. She and Eva sat on the porch together, shelling beans, while the jackalope wife limped around the garden. Didn’t expect what we discovered about Grandma. It's a little standard, featuring attractive nubile mythical beasties (the jackalope wives) and brooding young men ( Twilight ) and wise old grandmas (ubiquitous). The Father of Rabbits exhaled slowly in the dark. “Better for her, or better for you?” asked Eva, who was only a fool about her son and knew her mother well. He sat down beside her on his heels. He’d waited through at least one scream — or no, that was unkind. Jackalope Wives contains the titular award-winning short story as well as another Grandma Harken short which I love, the Tomato Thief, and a host of tales and wry poems about wily, stubborn women and wondrous (& sometimes moderately horrific) circumstances. 17: The Deluge" by, "I Live With You" by Carol Emshwiller (2006), "Welcome to Your Authentic Indian Experience™" by Rebecca Roanhorse (2018), This page was last edited on 19 July 2020, at 15:04. The jackalope wife had tried, once, and the noises she’d made were so terrible that it had reduced them both to weeping. Grandma Harken got up before dawn the next morning and went rummaging around the house. “I found where he hid it after he died and I burned it myself. To keep them changing.”. Thank you. Damn, Ursula. There were burnt patches on her arms and legs, a long red weal down her face. Thank you for this. At the top was a high fractured stone that cast a finger of shadow like the wedge of a sundial. The door slammed shut, and left her alone with the wreckage of the jackalope wife. “It’ll do.”. On the threshold, he paused, and looked back. Oh, Eva, Eva, my dear, what a useless son you’ve raised. There’s always one who learned how to brood early and often, and always girls who think they can heal him. It's Eerie's annual Jackalope festival. Everybody knows. She likes fairy-tale retellings, gardening, and has strong opinions about heirloom beans. Absolutely magnificent. We will be charitable. “How long you going to wait?” asked the Father of Rabbits. by jackalope. (And now you will ask me about the musicians that played for the jackalope wives. My kin did it, it’s up to me to put it right.” It occurred to her that she should have left Eva a note, telling her to send the fool boy back East, away from the desert. This sort of thing happens often enough, even with boys as mortal as dirt. You could go your whole life and see no more of them than the flash of a tail vanishing around the backside of a boulder. All I can do is pick up the pieces.”. He looked at her and the Father of Rabbits and the jackalope wife. It was half–full, half–new, halfway between one thing and the other. “He taught me how to swear. She filled three water bottles and strapped them around her waist. You just get better and better. New issues are released every two months. The sun came up and the cicadas burnt the air with their wings. Jackalope Wives. We may limit the number of people we allow into our buildings if there is a sudden spike of visitors. If you didn’t look directly at her, she might almost have been human. Favorite poems include Godmother and This Vote Is Legally Binding. They swung their hips and pranced and drank their fill of cactus–fruit wine. Jackalope Wives, by Ursula Vernon Jackalope Wives is the first pure fantasy story nominee for the Nebula that I have read this year. “Sweet Saint Anthony,” she muttered, “let him not have gotten some fool girl in a family way. But in this town at this time, the girls hadn’t learned and the boy hadn’t yet worn out his interest. “He didn’t ask for a life.”, The Father of Rabbits grinned. “You get over what you can’t have faster then you get over what you could. wow. And we shouldn’t always get what we think we want.”. Ursula, you have quite the way with words. The fur across her breasts and belly was singed. “Yes, that’s the way of it, right enough.” She took the jackalope wife’s shoulders and turned her toward the lamp light. She leapt up and darted away, circled back once and bumped Grandma’s hand with her nose — and then she was bounding down the path from the top of the bluff. When somebody called, she lay flat in the garden, down among the beans, and nobody saw her at all. And it’s got to be better than that.”. “Shit,” said the Father of Rabbits. They danced like young deer pawing the ground, they danced like devils let out of hell for the evening. Took some doing to fix it up again, but some people owed me favors. In " Jackalope Wives," there's something so seductive about the dance of the skin-changers in the desert. “She put on a half–burnt skin. I’ve made the correction. Caught up her skin and hid it from her to keep her changing?”. He should have left well enough alone, and if he couldn’t do that, he should have finished what he started.” She scowled down at the beans. Loved it. He was so still that it made Grandma’s eyes water, and she had to look away. I grew up Texan and that kind of yarn-spinning, out-west style is in my bones, I guess. Great story. I really need the themes for my study. Audience analysis; Website traffic statistics; Start Your Free Trial. The Father of Rabbits let out a long sigh. “Give her yours.”, “I burned it,” said Grandma Harken, sitting up ramrod straight. Includes The Tomato Thief winner of 2017 Hugo Award - Best Novelette From award-winning author T. Kingfisher comes a collection of short stories, including Jackalope Wives, The Tomato Thief, Pocosin, and many others. Great images and description. Held my interest. The cigarettes he ignored. Jackalope Wives and Other Stories by T. Kingfisher is a collection of short stories by the author (real name Ursula Vernon). The sun went overhead and the level in the water bottle went down. by jackalope. There ought to have been one, at least, smart enough to know that you didn’t put on a half–burnt rabbit skin. “Oh, you goddamn stupid fool. A hummingbird zipped inches from her head, dabbing its bill into the flowers, and the jackalope’s face turned, unsmiling, to follow it. Then she saw what was huddled in the circle of her grandson’s arms, and her worst fears were stomped flat and replaced by far greater ones. He understood about deserts.”, Grandma’s lips twisted. “I threw it in the fire,” he said. She pulled a dead mouse out of a mousetrap and took a half–dozen cigarettes down from behind the clock. “I’ve seen you kill chickens. They were beautiful creatures, with their long brown legs and their bodies splashed orange by the firelight. And when my internet was flickering out, I read it twice more. “Oh no,” said Grandma. It was her own grandson, her daughter Eva’s boy. The next second, they’d snatch up their skins and there’d be nothing left but a dozen skinny she–rabbits running off in all directions, and a campfire left that wouldn’t burn out ’til morning. “Grandma —”, She ignored him and dropped to her knees. What marketing strategies does Abyssapexzine use? Her first impulse was to slam the door and lock the sight away. by jackalope. How The Sad Puppies Won — By Losing A group of conservative sci-fi fans and writers took over the Hugo Award nominations this year, then lost … Very entertaining. found this story thanks to this year’s list of nebula nominees. Every word slammed like a shutter in the wind. Votes: 8 “You make do. It doesn’t matter what he meant to do. All the stories have a common theme of the fae, folklore and magic, about things like wood cuttings coming to life, shape-shifters, birds acting unlike birds, and Jackalopes - half woman, half rabbit beings (the titular story, and Nebula award winner). Oh blessed Saint Anthony, you’ve caught a jackalope wife.”. This is a great story. You don’t have to do it. Tue Feb 11, 2014 12:00pm. Nobody makes you feel a mythology in your bones quite like Ursula Vernon. The 2014 Cóyotl Awards has selected “Jackalope Wives” for Best Short Story. Buyer Keywords. I can’t believe this is the first thing I’ve read by you. “You — you can fix her, right?”, Grandma let out a high bark, like a bitch–fox, barely a laugh at all. It’s part of a dance as old as the jackalopes themselves. We have scrapped large sales and promotions. Though the author has little sympathy for the boy with which the thing begins, “Jackalope Wives” is an extraordinary short story with a captivating protagonist in … “You could have finished it, too,” said Eva softly. So the young man with the touch of magic watched the jackalope wife dancing and you know as well as I do what young men dream about. I n Albuquerque, visitors and local residents enjoy the centrally located shopping gem which is only a minute off the I-25 Highway. “Did you come out here for a little wild company?”. Grandma Harken had settled in for the evening with a shawl on her shoulders and a cat on her lap when somebody started hammering on the door. “You weren’t there! The sun was overhead and the sky turned turquoise, a color so hard you could bash your knuckles on it. I thought I was supposed to — I gave her the skin back, she put it on, but then she fell down — it wasn’t supposed to work like that!”. “But I’m a damn fool as well.”, Her daughter smiled. She looked at Grandma, who met her too–wide eyes. When the wild music came through town, a couple of notes skittering on the sand, then people knew the jackalope wives were out. The story is pretty good, but it was the writing that snagged me. The sun started to sink and the wind hissed and the jackalope wife was asleep or dead. The mouse he scooped up in two fingers and dropped into his mouth. A javelina looked up at them from the edge and stamped her hooved feet. The closest naturally occurring equivalent is a rabbit infected with the Shope papilloma virus which causes horn-like protrusions to appear from the animal. Get traffic statistics, SEO keyword opportunities, audience insights, and competitive analytics for Abyssapexzine. This story read like a poem. Founded in 1976 by Darby McQuade, Jackalope has been in operation in New Mexico for nearly 45 years. And the fans rejected the attempt of a small minority to impose its ideology on the nominations via slate-voting. He picked up the cigarettes that the Patterned Man had left behind and offered one to Grandma. We are from the arts, not television or film. They’d maybe fix you up but we’d both be stuck in a tale past telling, and I’m too old for that. “Or cure you. You’ve got a human left over, not a jackalope wife.”, Grandma stared down at her bony hands. The word jackalope is a portmanteau of jackrabbit and antelope.Many jackalope taxidermy mounts, including the original, are made with deer antlers.. “Still are,” he agreed. It was as soft as it had been fifty years ago. He’d been crying and there was dust on his face, stuck to the tracks of tears. a creature that is thought to be a strange jackrabbit and deer or antelope hybrid But there was nothing to be done for the shape of the jackalope’s face, or the too–wide eyes, or the horns shaped like a sickle moon. “But you know I’ve always had a soft spot for you, Maggie Harken.”. “Never seen that before.” He lit a cigarette and blew the smoke into the air. The small sickle horns were hard weights in her hands. Nox Q&A Goals. But then it’s just the right thing and I’ll have to go read everything else.  As well, an analysis at Io9 indicated that, if not for the Sad Puppies ballot-manipulation campaign, "Jackalope Wives" would have been a finalist for the 2015 Hugo Award for Best Short Story. The smart ones heave themselves back to shore and the slower ones wake up married with a husband who lies around and suffers in their direction. If you pleased. “Ah, you know. “It’s not so bad, being a human,” she said. She looked up at them both with wide, uncomprehending eyes. She hadn’t tried again. It was uncanny, sure, but they never did anybody any harm. Paperback $12.95 $ 12. The jackalope wife’s eyes went wide and her body shook with longing, but it was human longing and a human body shaking. She could see it now, as clear as if she’d been standing there. Latest Posts. You know.”, “I do indeed,” she said grimly. Either the hurts are petty little things and they get tired of whining or the hurt’s so deep and wide that they drown in it. Well done! This is the bit where you get a choice. It’s a glorious tale. Psychotic professional hunter Buck Corona III, who caught every mythical animal out there, believes that jackalopes are real and plans to catch one. by jackalope. 3.1 k. Keyword Opportunities . Long after the music had stopped, she danced to the rhythm of her own long feet on the sand. And there was one — he’d seen her. In Tomato Thief Grandma Harken talks about something incredibly stupid her grandson did. Mitchell and Stanley try to stop him. Be cruel or be kind, but don’t be both, because now you’ve made a mess you can’t clean up in a hurry.”, She stood up, breathing hard, and looked down at the wreck on her hearth. At first, Grandma worried that the townspeople would see her, and lord knew what would happen then. * I have been trying to find that story again for *ages. Ursula Vernon is the winner of the Hugo, Nebula, and Mythopoeic Awards.
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