SmokeLong Quarterly

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Paper Mouse

Story by Bob Arter (Read author interview) June 16, 2008

Art by Robinson Accola

A paper mouse, Das Fliedermaus, was in the mood for beer on tap. Steins of it! Liters of it! The Flyer was a German mouse and Germany is drunk and metric.

He filled a tub for one good scrub, then dressed himself in velveteen—ach! deep and green was his true hue—a loden green, that made his eyes his ears his teeth shine all the sharper.

He stood beside der Autobahn, the better to extend his thumb, the better to procure a ride, a rocking rolling hitchenmaus. A snowman (Peter) in a truck—und barrelstein, und kinderkastle—picked him up. They toured a mountain, curve by swerve: der Kleiner Feldberg, frosty tundra melten all das springerwassen.

They found a dive a dump a bar with whores and gamblers, high-noon gunmen bodies stacked like cordwood.

Peter and the paper mouse found chairs and table, dove beneath it when air-raid sirens shrieked.

I really want that beer, said Peter.

About the Author

Bob Arter lives and writes in Southern California. His stuff has appeared, or soon will, in Zoetrope All-Story Extra, The Absinthe Literary Review, Painted Moon Review, Lit Pot, Ink Pot, Night Train, and elsewhere.

About the Artist

Robinson Accola creates artwork for SmokeLong Quarterly as needed.

This story appeared in Issue Twenty-One of SmokeLong Quarterly.
SmokeLong Quarterly Issue Twenty-One

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