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Articles tagged "Adolescence"

from “The Boys”

It was a balmy night, spring had started to slip into early summer, the trees’ leaves were thick and bright green. We didn’t speak, we only looked each other in the eyes and received the paper bags that Momo ceremoniously handed to us. And when I opened my bag in Bella’s room, my heart started beating so fast it hammered in my ears. She had made me a tiger costume. There was a hooded coat and a pair of elbow-length gloves, the tip of each finger adorned with a golden...

The Art of Falling

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How can anyone predict the future if it's not already mapped out?


Counting Out

I’ve got a surprise for you, she said. We came out onto the main road, the empty main road. I gave a blank reply: a surprise? Get a move on! Nintso sounded impatient. We’ve got stuff to do and I want to show you my surprise. OK, I said. But on one condition. Fine, she said, tell me later. Why are you going this way, I asked. They’ll see us. The other way takes longer. Nintso, I said, they’ll see us. Fine. Nintso looked at me wide-eyed. Fine. We went round the other...

Gob

I saw her again today. She came out from the liquor store in Majorstua, the bottles pushed down into a worn brown bag, and I sensed shame, shame is the only word I can use—shame. It was twenty years since I’d seen her last. Georg and I had been to the Frogner Baths. We’d taken the plunge from the tenth board for the first time and were a bit sore. But we were walking on air—by heck were we—we were world champs. Some girls from the same year at school had been standing by the...

A Car Trip

After Nikolaj slams the car door shut they realize that Tobias isn't in the car. “Damnit,” he says, and looks at Mie, who unbuckles her seatbelt and gets out. He watches her walk back to the house, he sees her fumble with the key. “When are we there?” Signe asks, and Little Brother begins to cry. Nikolaj turns and reaches down to grab the pacifier, but it scoots away underneath the front seat. “Give him the pacifier,” he says to Andreas, who is...

The May Crowning

For five years, Berenice waited for a chance to dematerialize her cousin, an objective she almost fulfilled the first time Dorotéia took part in the May Crowning, in the church on the square. It was an event staged on several tiers of wooden bleachers, where blue, pink, and white angels were arranged according to the vicar’s whim. The latter were the elite. Only elegant, fair-skinned, well-behaved girls got to wear white. On the top tier, suspended only by the Virgin...

from “Such Small Hands”

Everything was different at the zoo. It all started at the zoo: the smell of the zoo, the nervous excitability as we stepped off the minibus. All that was new: the zoo. All that was violent: the zoo. And to think that the whole world can be contained in one fang, and that that fang can be seen in an animal’s mouth, and it’s white, and made to sink into flesh, and that the wolf, who is bad in real life, looks good when he’s in his cage…And to sense that they were made for each...

Damned Spring

Before Vanessa, I had other girlfriends, but none of them was memorable or worthy of appearing in my scrapbook. Actually, I never needed a confidante because I had an imaginary one. Sometimes I talked to Tatum O'Neal, a redheaded actress I admired for her role as a precocious adolescent capable of falling in love with Richard Burton, who was old enough to be her grandfather. Vanessa was the first girl, and possibly the last, who earned the right to be a part of my world. She began to...

from “Dukla”

One Saturday the summer vacationers appeared. The village was slowly becoming a tourist spot. A few cabins, a woebegone hostel, a kiosk selling Wyszków beer in its special bottles. The locals were used to it, and nothing special was going on. The Tonette was playing “Seven Girls on the Albatross.” The guys hadn’t gotten into the swing of things yet. They were standing huddled in groups, smoking Start cigarettes. A few girls were milling about in pairs. In the...

from “Broken Glass Park”

I hate men. Anna says good men do exist. Nice, friendly men who cook and help clean up and who earn money. Men who want to have children and give gifts and book vacations. Who wear clean clothes, don’t drink, and even look halfway decent. Where on earth are they, I ask. She says they’re out there—if not in our town then in Frankfurt. But she doesn’t know any personally, unless you count people she’s seen on TV. That’s why I always repeat the words...

Heading South

At the age of twelve I realized that I could do whatever I wanted with women. That's just the way it is. I can't do anything about it. My sister's friends are always making eyes at me, some are bolder than others. But I'm not interested in girls. I prefer more mature women. I like to see them lose their heads. Especially the serious ones. For some time now, I've been hunting a choice prey: the headmistress at my sister's school. I always make sure I'm here when...

Puberty

     was it at the Palace of Sport in 1952? a whole school class                            disappeared into the green water they don’t surface again...

Chlorine

I have been weighed and found wanting. It's nearly two o'clock, the last lesson of the day, and I am standing at the back of the diving board, right on its edge, and in front of me are the others, others who are going to dive, and soon it will be my turn. But it's impossible. Come what may. I know it. But I've got to do it. This is the final dress rehearsal. The last chance but one. I must walk out onto the diving board, bend my knees and push out with all my strength,...

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