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About Face

CECILE ROSSANT

Publication Year: 2004

About Face is a collection of short stories by Cecile Rossant.

Published by: Red Hen Press

Frontmatter

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pp. 3-6

Contents

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pp. 7-10

Mandarin

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pp. 1-11

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About Face

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pp. 2-6

I loved a man. We made love on the f loor and fell asleep. When I woke, he was nearly dead. In a frenzy, unfamiliar with the faces of death, I tried to nurse him back, but it was too late. He met the day ...

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Infatuation

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pp. 7-9

Ma is her name. She is at the end—standing at the end of the hall or seated beside his bed watching the TV screen until the last of the ...

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Plans and Elevations

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pp. 10-11

Awoken by an already awoken body, one already sweaty from some unknown exertion in a shared bed beside a nondescript huddle of quilt and head, I drew my finger across the pooled moisture between ...

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The Tuna Club

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pp. 12-16

Kang was one of those f lowers with thin susceptible petals. Trembling white, yellow to snowy white petals, easily plucked from a center button, leave behind a whorl of empty horns around a slowly drying ...

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An Overheard

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pp. 17-27

Voice of diminished virility from one who had fully exercised his power of seduction year after year, era to era, climate to climate, ...

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Real Estate

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pp. 18-19

She arrived at the table and sat down with her flavored gelatin dessert and mug of coffee. She had chosen the one with a dollop of ...

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Today’s Performance

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pp. 20-30

She arrived at the table and sat down with her flavored gelatin dessert and mug of coffee. She had chosen the one with a dollop of ...

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On My Way Home

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pp. 21-27

I’m 21. Button-down blouse, tight fitting to a trim figure. Black jeans—black ankle boots, well polished. My perfume is Indian-rose, lightly applied. It’s 4:50 p.m. and I’m on my way home. I enter the ...

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The Appointment

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pp. 28-29

“Your arms—should go back there. That’s right. Do you feel the handle? Do you feel that thing sticking out? There are four holes for your fingers, and your thumb wraps ...

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Leila’s Friends

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pp. 30-34

She is a child of 23 who wants to make worldly ripples in the big sea. Leila is familiar enough with geography to say: the Mediterranean Sea is lukewarm and has a gentle surf, and innocent enough ...

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Once and Again

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pp. 35-45

When he strikes I become numb. I see the area of our contact as separate from myself: colorful, unusual and inattentive to my ...

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The Knoll

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pp. 36-46

I noticed that she pulled away from him slightly, holding back the usual chorus of adoring caresses and kisses. She resisted the pressure ...

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Officer P

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pp. 37-39

The law officer makes his way across the maze, way ahead of the effects that may be caused by his penetrating search of the perpetrator of the crime. He is undaunted by any crime, this crime, for ...

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Untitled

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pp. 40-50

(Someone is speaking French—is she speaking to me? Sh! How beautiful—I love that ...

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The Woman

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pp. 41-51

The pulse held diagonally in the muscular wrap of her throat is unusually prominent. It could be a signal. I’m quite worried. What will happen next? There are many things in the room that are in ...

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She Twists to Position Her Face

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pp. 42-54

She twists to position her face supported by her entire heavy upper body into the scene. What leads her face? The eyes? But not in isolation. It is something with more skin and more point. Undereye ...

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Escape

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pp. 55-65

“I’m going to escape,” she said turning toward me and away from me at one and the same time. Escape from a needy, clinging child and from habit. Escape a daily repeating series of mirror-studded ...

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I Was Sitting Alone

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pp. 56-66

I was sitting alone in the late afternoon, reading, concentrating on receiving what it was I felt offered, there on the page, when he started talking to me. He cajoled, coaxed, teased and provoked, insisting ...

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Monopoly

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pp. 57-60

We were playing Monopoly and big fat Mama Maria was shaking the dice in her hand. I don’t know how she did it but she could make the dice click louder than any of us. The thin guy with the chisel ...

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Child

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pp. 61-71

A woman is putting her child to sleep. The room is dark. The child will not settle down. Despite the woman’s reassuring words, the child ...

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Suburban Rodeo

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pp. 62-65

Suburban Rodeo is a franchise operation. Versions exist in Tokyo and most major cities in Japan. One was also recently built beside the Ch’yongdok Palace and the Olympic Hilton in ...

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Baby Beckett

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pp. 66-76

The foaming, growling mouth snagged on a thorn bites the bit at its stem. The mouth bites its way through complication. So too did Beckett, the baby, gnaw at his mother’s supple breast, his still little ...

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Horizontal Drainage

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pp. 67-73

Jannis invents her mother and her mother’s mother. The two older women stem from her younger body and feed off her urgent inquiry. Jannis cannot believe that her mother and the ghost of her mother’s ...

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An Open Mouth

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pp. 74-84

This is in memory of a particular execution. Someone’s slipping down the stairs: racing down the stairs—No! They threw her down: guns pinned to their hands, barrel sliding out of its skin-lined pocket, guns ...

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Earthworms

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pp. 75-85

The executioner orders his victims to stand in the pit shooting dead each fresh fleeting installation of condemned persons. He acts on the imperative to work efficiently. He believes that once dirt covers ...

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It Comes with the Job

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pp. 76-86

It comes with the job. Cleaning up other people’s vomit: all that has someone’s unintelligible signature on it: a smell, a color, the ...

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Viewfinder

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pp. 77-79

It is a warm sunny midsummer day. Without plan or destination I go street walking. Downtown East New York everyone is selling supplies on the street. This is no quaint rural scene of an old woman ...

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Sequence

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pp. 80-90

After he had already died, his father brought me to the train ...

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Heavenly Bodies

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pp. 81-82

I must admit I become actually anxious for those who have little footing. I am a light weight. I have simply learned that I am capable ...

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The Face

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pp. 83-93

If I am capable of making a face just as I am becoming dead all ...

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The Daughter Wakes Up From the Dream of Emerging from Her Father’s Head

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pp. 84-94

With the site’s surface entirely gridded, the architect can perform an act of extrusion. It makes a familiar sound—a comical aural ...

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The Head

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pp. 85-95

The head of an adult has a different feel than that of a child. A child moves his head very freely and often; he shakes, tilts it side ...

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The Belly of a Bird

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pp. 86-108

He ran the bath, sitting on the toilet as the water rushed out of the faucet. All day, Javier had washed the cook’s tools—large encrusted pots that banged against the thin metal walls of the sink. For a while ...

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She Hisses ’til He Kisses Her ’air

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pp. 109-111

Every morning a young woman, wearing loose clothing she slips into upon waking, leaves her house, crosses the street, enters the ...

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The Identity Card

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pp. 112-124

. . . that’s the title of this next story. It’s about the man who keeps his pants from falling down by gathering the waist in his hand as ....


E-ISBN-13: 9781597092173
Print-ISBN-13: 9781888996203

Page Count: 114
Publication Year: 2004

Edition: First

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