The Universal Library by Kurd Lasswitz

Translated from the German by Erik Born Publication Note As far as we are aware, the source for this translation is in the public domain, since the text was originally published in Germany in 1904 and the author passed away in 1910. Translator’s Preface Kurd...

Stories We Carry On The Back Of The Night

Sam’s father tells him bedtime stories about the people by the lake. Or, better to call them one bedtime story, repeated so often, it takes a different shape each time, a shadow puppet morphing in the penumbra of a flashlight. Sam’s father calls it his earliest...

Excerpts: Half of What I Say

“Who’s the most beautiful woman of all?” asked Padma, with satisfaction. He smiled. He was glad to be her truth-telling mirror. He was glad Padma had pressured him to attend the 10th Annual IAPTA Fashion Show party. He was glad Eshwar Pillai was in town. He was glad...

Partition

I started smuggling things at an early age: ice-cream for the chowkidar, cold drink for the sweating gardener and chocolate for the maid’s kid. There was a sense of adventure in sneaking things out of the kitchen — basic things that were available...

Blonde

“When did you go bald?” Only Clarice would ask such a forthright question. “Leave her alone,” Jake drains his beer. Only he would dare contradict his sister. The clock hands have gone from late at night to early in the morning. Jake’s bar is empty of customers. The...

Thorns In My Throat

“You worship idols! Ooh, you’re going to hell!” I was so young when they took my tongue away. They needed no scalpel to silence me, only the sharp edge of their judgment. The worst part was, I let them. — “Where are you from? No, where are you really from?” We’ve all...