So you can read my books

Tuesday, July 4, 2017


 “The world is a parable, 
the habitation of symbols,
the phantoms of 
spiritual things immortal 
shown in material shape.” 
– Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu

One of the reasons I love writing historical fantasy is 
that I can intersect historical figures who never really met.

I play fair: 
I use mostly their exact words recorded elsewhere to stay true to their natures.

Only 99 cents

{It is July 4th, 1867, aboard the flying steamship, Xanadu, on its way to Paris ...

The Texas Ranger, Sam McCord, saved Lincoln's life at Ford's Theater though the president's wife was killed by a stray bullet ...

Lincoln hates McCord ...

not for his wife's death but for the relief he feels for being freed from an intolerable marriage.

Not being able to admit to himself the shame of that relief, Lincoln sublimates it into hate for the well-meaning McCord.

Lincoln has boarded the Xanadu with General Sherman who hates McCord for stopping his bloody march through Georgia.

The two are there to enact a terrible revenge against the honeymooning McCord. 

Ralph Waldo Emerson has joined his Texican friend to celebrate the man's marriage.

See a bit of the 4th's proceedings through the sad, cynical eyes of McCord.}

In the afternoon the ship's company assembled aft, on deck, under the awnings; the flute, the asthmatic melodeon, and the consumptive clarinet crippled "The Star-Spangled Banner."   

The choir, aided and abetted by NikolaTesla, chased it to cover, with the boy coming in with a peculiarly lacerating screech on the final note and slaughtering it.

Nobody mourned.

We carried out the corpse on three cheers.  

And then former President Lincoln, arm in a sling and enthroned behind a cable locker with the American flag spread over it, rose up and read the Declaration of Independence 

which politicians have all listened to so often without paying any attention to what it really meant.   

After that, the President made a hollow-sounding speech about America’s greatness 

which he so religiously attested to and so fervently ignored in his actions when president.

In came the choir into court again, with the complaining instruments, and assaulted "Hail Columbia"; 

and when victory hung wavering in the scale, Nikola returned with his dreadful wild-goose screech turned on and the choir won, of course.

Emerson walked to the podium and replaced Lincoln to pronounce the benediction, 

“Mr. Clemens said to me earlier that which distinguishes this day from all others is that both orators and artillerymen shoot blank cartridges.”

Amidst the scattering of polite laughter, Emerson sighed, “Let it not be so this July 4th. 
Freedom has its life in the hearts, the actions, the spirits of men and so it must be daily earned and refreshed, else like a flower cut from its life-giving roots, it will wither and die.”

He stared somberly at Lincoln and Sherman.  “Do not let the flower of liberty die, gentlemen.”

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