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calvino

CLASSICS | The Distance of the Moon

Original text by Italo Calvino and reading by Liev Schreiber | How well I know! — old Qfwfq cried,– the rest of you can’t remember, but I can. We had her on top of us all the time, that enormous Moon: when she was full — nights as bright as day, but with a butter-colored light — it looked as if she were going to crush us; when she was new, she rolled around the sky like a black umbrella blown by the wind; and when she was waxing, she came forward with her horns so low she seemed about to stick into the peak of a promontory and get caught there. But the whole business of the Moon’s phases worked in a different way then: because the distances from the Sun were different, and the orbits, and the angle of something or other, I forget what; as for eclipses, with Earth and Moon stuck together the way they were, why, we had eclipses every minute: naturally, those two big monsters managed to put each other in the shade constantly, first one, then the other.

flapphil

The Offshore Pirate by F. Scott Fitzgerald

F. Scott Fitzgerald | This unlikely story begins on a sea that was a blue dream, as colorful as blue-silk stockings, and beneath a sky as blue as the irises of children’s eyes.

Virginia Woolf

The Great Frost (from Orlando)

from Orlando
by Virginia Woolf

The Great Frost was, historians tell us, the most severe that has ever visited these islands. Birds froze in mid-air and fell like stones to the ground.

Charlotte Perkins Gilman

The Yellow Wallpaper

by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

I lie here on this great immovable bed—it is nailed down, I believe—and follow that pattern about by the hour. It is as good as gymnastics, I assure you. I start, we’ll say, at the bottom, down in the corner over there where it has not been touched, and I determine for the thousandth time that I WILL follow that pointless pattern to some sort of a conclusion.

CLASSICS | The Tell Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe

TRUE!—nervous—very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am; but why will you say that I am mad? The disease had sharpened my senses—not destroyed—not dulled them. Above all was the sense of hearing acute. I heard all things in the heaven and in the earth. I heard many things in hell. How, then, am I mad? Hearken! and observe how healthily—how calmly I can tell you the whole story.

Kafka

CLASSICS | A Little Fable by Franz Kafka

by Franz Kafka

“Alas,” said the mouse, “the whole world is growing smaller every day. At the beginning it was so big that I was afraid. I kept running and running, and I was glad when I saw walls far away to the right and left, but these long walls have narrowed so quickly that I am in the last chamber already, and there in the corner stands the trap that I must run into.”

Nikolai Gogol

CLASSICS | The Nose by Nikolai Gogol

The Nose
by Nikolai Gogol (1809-1852)

I

On 25 March an unusually strange event occurred in St. Petersburg. For that morning Barber Ivan Yakovlevitch, a dweller on the Vozkresensky Prospekt (his name is lost now–it no longer figures on a signboard bearing a portrait of a gentleman with a soaped cheek, and the words: “Also, Blood Let Here”)–for that morning Barber Ivan Yakovlevitch awoke early, and caught the smell of newly baked bread. Raising himself a little, he perceived his wife (a most respectable dame, and one especially fond of coffee) to be just in the act of drawing newly baked rolls from the oven.