About Red Tales

Here's an evolving electronic collection of short prose pieces, with a poem contributed occasionally. Brevity guides. Although sometimes a piece will run to 900 words, most pieces are much shorter. Here one may find erotica, flash fiction, brief observations, and modest improvisations. Another rule is that each piece must have something to do with"red"; at least the word has to appear in each piece functionally. . . . All pieces are numbered and titled, so there's a de facto table of contents running down the rail below, under "Labels" (scroll down a bit). Browse for titles that look interesting, if you like. Thank you for stopping by. Look for some red today, tonight.

"Flaming June," by Frederick Lord Leighton

"Flaming June," by Frederick Lord Leighton

Monday, November 10, 2008

45. Salamander

I saw another miracle today.

During a rainstorm, a salamander adhered intself to the outside of a basement-pane.

Its orange underside was almost read. Its throat pulsed against a flattened water-droplet caught between throat and glass. Its shiny small black eyes blinked. Once.

Its four-digit hands and/or feet were perfectly original, delicate, serviceable, and real.

The texture of its wet black back, on the spectrum of roughness, lay between that of lizard and cat's tongue.

The salamander chose not to speak. It interrupted my life, having launched a surprise-attack. The salamander, except for the pulsing and blinking, remained immobile, calm; it was non-violent and awfully actual, demonstrating once and for all that words can refer to things. The salamander had defeated Jacques Derrida without even trying. Indeed, the salamander existed, and Derrida did not.

Sight of the salamander made me by turns giddy, astonished, reverent, calm, curious, wistful, covetous, and sad.

A salamander stuck itself to a window where I live. Its underside was almost red, its digits delicate. What a day. What a very good day indeed.

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