Natives & Transplants

Featuring stories by writers Lowrey Brown, Vanessa McKiel, Dan Coxon, Evelyn Sharenov and Hamish Rickett; performed by actors Karen Farley, Reema Zaman, Gabriella Kirby, Kim Bogus and Karen J. Moore. This event was hosted at Literary Arts on February 18th, 2017.
We are excited and honored that some of the stories were chosen to air on the radio as part of The Archive Project, a collaboration between Literary Arts and Oregon Public Broadcasting. The full event was included in The Archive Project podcast and aired on OPB radio. Enjoy!


Saguaro Song
by Lowrey Brown

I was waiting when the Cactus Cradle truck arrived at my parents’ now-vacant house. The realtor wanted the saguaro moved before showing the house, saying that prospective buyers cool when they see something eye-catching and then learn it isn’t included. There was no leaving it behind, despite the realtor’s hinting, and I was having it transplanted at my house, farther out of town where the nights were still dark and the air clear.

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Invasive Species
by Dan Coxon

During the first week at the house I spent as much time on the Internet as in the garden. We had been living on the Peninsula for only three months, so the plants were all strange to me, their foliage familiar yet unknown, distant cousins of the greenery I’d grown up with. I spent hours comparing leaves with the photos on websites, holding them up to the pale glow of the screen to find a perfect match. 

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In the Services of Love and Chicken
by Hamish Rickett

She asked Hades—she called him Harold in public, he hated that—to concoct her another rub—#9 she’d call it—for line cutters. He obliged her, happy to be needed, to have a project, having been lonely for an eternity prior to her abduction. Of course he got on her nerves like an itch, but he was happy for her company and so humored her with favors of this sort. It hadn’t always been so.

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The Invisible Immigrant
by Vanessa McKiel

We’re at the border. My heart quickens. I feel light-headed. My mouth suddenly feels parched. There is that prickly hot feeling of panic seeping outward from the very center of my stomach as we wait in line for the next immigration official. But I am a citizen now, I remind myself. They cannot deny me entry. This knowledge does not assuage the raw fear that I still feel. What if my children can enter but they deny me? 

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Bent Trees
by Evelyn Sharenov

I knew my neighbors by their dogs. I knew Martin’s dog before I learned Martin’s name. Each morning he’d jump into the cab of Martin’s red pickup and ride off with him. Each evening Martin dropped the dog off and drove away.

This was how I adjusted to life in a small town outside of Portland and far from New York City.

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