Don Shea Don Shea, Writer & Editor
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Microfiction anthology, WW Norton & Co. 2018
Fast Fiction Story Press
America West April 1998
Crescent Review 13.2

     It started as a low, sweet jumble of sound, whiny and country, from the far end of the subway car. Then you could make out a small, pale man of middle years and thinning hair shuffling forward through the passengers with a dog by his side and a sack on his back containing a radio or tape player from which this strangely sweet country sound — a voice, a guitar and fiddle — was spilling out and he was singing along with it, singing along with his own voice or whoever's, singing softly in a nasal tenor as clear as spring water, and then you recognized the song, one of John Denver's impossibly sentimental ballads about home and hearth and supper on the stove that you were always ashamed of liking, but you would not be taken that easily — street smart New Yorker — and you searched his bowed head for fraud, searched out his eyes even as you reached for your loose change, and just then the small pale man drew abreast of you and threw back his head, and as his eyes came up milky and twisted and wrong, his face fused ecstatically and the purest sound came forth from him and struck something inside you that came undone, and you would have given great value at that moment to see what he saw, to see what lay beyond embarrassment.



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