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Charlie And Mrs. Miller
A very short story about an old woman on her death bed whose last request is to see an old friend, much to the surprise of her daughters and granddaughters.
Richard Koss, other titles
AUTHOR'S E-MAIL ADDRESS
|AUTHOR'S OTHER TITLES (47)
904 North (Poetry) A tale in verse form about a middle-aged musician/writer down on his luck and recently divorced (again) who moves into a high rise apartment on the ninth floor, which happens to be the same suite a yo... [1,479 words]
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Are We There Yet? (Essays) An essay I never thought I'd have to write followed by a question I never thought I would have to ask. [1,013 words]
Asleep At Last (Poetry) A man in a hospital bed is having difficulty falling asleep, but he soon will... [152 words]
Bad Boy (Short Stories) A true story about a bad boy growing up in 1950. Was he just mischievous? Would his behavior be considered bad today? [2,844 words]
Deja Vu (Poetry) In times like these, pacifists come out of the woodwork. This poem was written in anticipation of what we can expect from them. [106 words]
Empty Closets (Poetry) A poem which no doubt, is controversial. I'm sure many will consider it homophobic, (a stupid word) but if liberals are sincere in their belief that everyone is entitled to free speech and opinions, t... [223 words]
Family Genes Considered (Short Stories) A story that is unfortunately, much closer to the truth than not. Although the main character is fictional, the relatives described are quite real, which gives me reason to often ponder my own destin... [1,198 words]
Fatal Perception (Short Stories) An off-beat tale about an aging song writer who perceives he is being stalked by a strange little man. [2,959 words]
Goodbye America (Essays) An essay written by an aging writer who no longer understands the country in which he lives. [662 words]
Hooked (Short Stories) A short short story originally started as a poem, about a man's obsession with a special kind of woman. (Revised June 2001) [323 words] [Fantasy]
How To Fool Most Of The People Most Of The Time (Essays) An essay commenting on the recent election results. [1,530 words]
Know It? - I Wrote It (Short Stories) This is a funny, perhaps silly, outrageous story. I'm not sure of its exact origin, but I must forewarn you. I don't generally make use of extreme vulgarity or profanity in my writing, but in this c... [663 words]
Lost And Found (Poetry) A poem that was originally written as a lyric several years ago for a country western song. [156 words]
Madelaine (Short Stories) An eerie tale set in the modern day Pacific Northwest about a family's nightmarish encounter with a character from a legend with a darkside. [8,451 words]
Moral Values - Who Needs Them? (Essays) An essay. [771 words]
Muriel's Funeral (Short Stories) Imagine yourself dead and observing your own funeral What would you expect to see? You might be surprised. [736 words]
My Three Loves (Poetry) A poem about the three things in life that keep a man going. (At least from one man's perspective.) [101 words]
My Wife Is Missing (Poetry) A poem (well sort of a poem) which raises the question of who is most dear to us. [117 words] [Relationships]
Nostalgic On A Bridge To Nowhere (Poetry) A nostalgic view of the life of a man in his twilight years. [369 words]
Over A Hundred Years Later Nothing New About Progressives (Essays) An essay revealing the fact that progressives haven't progressed much in over a hundred years. [1,317 words]
Please Read My Poem - Again (Poetry) The inspiration for this poem came to me after reading several poems (good and bad) posted on Storymania, as well as their reviews. The poem is directed primarily at the very young, talented writers w... [195 words]
Raindrops (Short Stories) Ever think twice about shopping alone at night. You should - especially if you're a pretty woman. [1,469 words]
Requiem For A Bodybuilder (Poetry) What happens to bodybuilders when they cease pumping iron? [54 words]
Save The Planet – More Fiction Than Fact (Essays) An essay. [1,537 words]
Shirley's Angel (Short Stories) A Christmas story: In the final analysis, we may discover that we love someone because of their vulnerability, rather than in spite of it. [2,228 words]
Still Unsolved (Short Stories) A successful mystery writer returns to his old home town and recalls an unsolved mystery he never wrote about. [2,136 words]
Symbolism Over Substance – The Liberal Manifesto (Essays) A non-fiction essay about liberal ideology and its influence on today's U.S. and world culture. [1,229 words]
The Absolution Of Margaret (Short Stories) A story about life in the confessional booth of a Catholic church. [549 words]
The Better Man (Poetry) A poem about a lonely, young, soldier wating for a train to take him back to base. He becomes enamored with a lovely young girl sitting across from him. Although they never speak to each other, the ... [238 words]
The Diversity Mystique (Essays) The ultimate hype of political correctness. [1,083 words]
The Dowry (Short Stories) The Dowry is a story set in or around the year 2020, so I suppose you should consider it science fiction. But it is also a story of romance with the ending more than a mere possibility. [2,448 words]
The Farnsworth Affair (Short Stories) An innocent man becomes trapped in a web of circumstance from which there is no escape. A somewhat more lengthy story than I usually write. This is a suspense story in the mold of the English mystery... [5,045 words]
The Girl In The Taxi (Short Stories) A shy, young man has an erotic encounter with a strange girl. Is it real or just a dream? [1,493 words] [Erotic]
The Incurable Cynic (Poetry) A man reflects upon his life of cynicism. [143 words]
The Perfect Ending (Short Stories) A tale about a wanna-be writer trying to create a story with the perfect ending. With unsuspecting help from his wife, he succeds, but pays the ultimate price. [642 words]
The Price Of Freedom (2) (Short Stories) A short story. [396 words]
The Rhyme Of Eternal Triangles (Poetry) A poem that describes in a silly, funny way, the futility of wanting someone who doesn't want you. [223 words]
The Song That Failed (Short Stories) A somewhat dubious account of an amateur song writer's ill-fated chance at success. [156 words] [Humor]
The Waitress Fom Hell (Short Stories) The story of a patron's ongoing feud with an over-the-hill waitress. [750 words]
Think Before You Write (Essays) My observations, after reading the work of many aspiring young writers, prompted me to write this. It merely offers some common sense advice to any aspiring writer (including myself) and should not b... [988 words]
Tomorrow's Here (Poetry) The recent death of a friend inspired me to write a poem, which salutes this somewhat hapless, but likeable character. [114 words]
Victims (Poetry) A satirical poem that tells it like it is. The poem confronts a disturbing trend in our society - transferring blame to others instead of placing it squarely where it belongs. [255 words]
What A Pair (Ex-Husbands And Old Shoes) (Poetry) A symbolic poem comparing ex-husbands and old shoes. Some women divorce their husbands, expecting to find something better, only to realize eventually, that the grass is not always greener. [326 words]
What’S Wrong With Assimilation? (Essays) This essay was originally written in 2006 when the Senate was considering an Immigration reform bill, which of course, was not passed. [453 words]
While The Iron's Hot (Short Stories) The story of a woman, a victim of spousal abuse, and her solution to the problem. [774 words] [Relationships]
Wisdom - Lost With Tradition (Essays) An essay which compares the concept of traditional wisdom with the minds of today's intellectual elitists. [500 words]
Charlie And Mrs. Miller
Sandy entered the backyard through the open gate and Charlie acknowledged her presence but remained silent. He stood on the freshly cut lawn, staring at the garden and probably thinking about the old woman and the last thirteen years he had been with her.
That was her pride and joy. How many afternoons he watched her plant and dig and hoe, nurturing the garden she loved so much. She would not see it again. Sandy watched Charlie’s eyes, telling her he wondered who would take care of it after she was gone.
Now Sandy approached him as if to speak. Their eyes met and she knew his thoughts were of old Mrs. Miller and he was in no mood to share them with her at this moment. Without uttering a sound, Sandy quietly left the yard through the open gate she had entered.
Another car pulled into the driveway. It was the young priest from Mrs. Miller’s parish. That was not a good sign. The old woman’s granddaughter, Lisa, opened the side door to greet the priest and let him in. “You can come in too Charlie.” Lisa was the nicest of Mrs. Miller’s grandchildren. At least Charlie always felt she liked him and was nicer to him than any of Mrs. Miller’s daughters and other grandchildren.
The three of them entered the house and Charlie went into the kitchen to get a drink of water while the priest and Lisa went upstairs to the old lady’s room. Charlie decided to stay downstairs in the living room after getting his drink of water. He wouldn’t dare go upstairs with all the rest of her family gathered around her death bed. There was no doubt in his mind that most of them were jealous of his relationship with the old lady, as if she were going to leave him all her money.
It was quiet upstairs but Charlie could faintly hear the priest saying prayers. Then he heard Lisa call downstairs to him. “Charlie! … Charlie come up here. Grandma wants to see you.”
Charlie ascended the long stairs and went directly into Mrs. Miller’s bedroom. Her daughters and granddaughters who had surrounded the bed now moved back so that she could see Charlie standing there at her bedside. Only the priest remained kneeling on the floor next to Charlie.
Mrs. Miller’s half opened eyes met Charlie’s and faintly moving her left hand, she motioned for him to sit on the bed beside her. Lisa’s mother started to discourage Charlie from sitting on the bed but Lisa gently interceded and he was now next to the old woman.
Charlie bowed his head slightly and Mrs. Miller used what remaining strength she had left to lovingly stroke the back of his neck. Charlie put his face next to hers and she smiled faintly, as she felt his cold, moist, nose against her cheek. Then she sighed and elegantly breathed her last breath.
The silence was broken by the soft sobs of the women and Charlie slowly got down from the bed. Lisa knelt down next to Charlie and put her face against his, her tears wetting his collar and shiny brown fur. “You’re gonna miss your old girlfriend aren’t you Charlie.”
Charlie moved away from Lisa and stopped at the bedroom doorway. His mouth was partially open; his long, pink tongue quivering, and he began whimpering as he looked up at the old woman lying on the bed. Then he turned and started down the stairs.
|READER'S REVIEWS (10)
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"Great twist at the end! Good job!" -- Meg.
"R.L. Stine used the same damn twist in a goosebumps book, and I'll assume it's been done before that, too, so you get no brownie points from me on originality. Your style is pretty good and descriptive, so I can tell if you put your mind to it, you could write fairly tightly. " -- Tyrant.
"Oh ok, so we have Tyrant, who trashes peoples' work on a daily basis, for reasons such as "no originality". He read Goosebumps. Riiight. THAT makes sense." -- Meg.
"Thank you Meg - I appreciate your kind words. As for our young and gifted Tyrant, there are hardly any themes or plots that are completely original. I found R. L. Stine's works in the children's section of the library. I think it is quite acceptable for a fourteen year-old to read his stuff.- D.K." -- Dick Koss.
"There may not be any topics that are completely original but there are original stories, and judging by your work I'm sure that each of yours are ripped off from somewhere, it just takes time to find them. Know it - I wrote it...no you didn't you cock jockey...Old Joke. This one, I'm not sure but Tyrant is probably on the ball, then there's that Farnsworth Affair thing, probably a cross between the Murders in the Rue Morgue and The Fall of the House of Usher, that Fatal Perception thing...Paranoia in the Laundrette...clearly...like this one, I'm not sure about the others but I'll keep you posted. Shame on you Dick, you really are a butt conducting, hole mastering, tin can, tic tac, cracker degenerate copying lonely man with no mates and no imagination. Do everyone a favour and fuck off. Take "your" work with you." -- Phil, Dublin.
"Phil, I really have better things to do than get into a pissing contest with a young twit, but you are really full of shit. Who the hell are you to question my originality? You probably never read a full novel unless it was via Cliff's Notes. How you could find any correlation between my Farnsworth Affair and Murders in the Rue Morgue or The Fall of the House of Usher,(both of which I have read several times) proves to me you don't know what the hell you're talking about. You might as well say that anyone who writes a story about vampires is ripping off Brahm Stoker. Go do what you do best. Make some bombs. " -- D K.
"cute" -- Jenny.
"Hi my name is Eric de Leon, I'm from Guatemala (If you don't know where is my country, let me tell that is the first one in Central America).I'm studing english at IGA, right now I am in the advanced courses. I decide to take a course of reading and I had the oportunity to read three of your stories in my english class. I am glad to tell you that all the stories that I've been reading, your stories are the most intrestings, because you have a special way to wrote, and the endings allways are a such surprise. In this story you put to work the mind of the readers because we expect that Charlie were a person and that was fabiulos 'cause is a diferent story. Thannks for making laugh for a while and for enjoy the reading " -- Eric de Leon, Guatemala, Guatemala, Guatemala.
"Eric, I want you to know how much I appreciate your comments. I don't ever expect to make any money from my writing. But as long as I know there is even one person in this world like yourself, who enjoys reading my stories - I will continue to write. " -- Richard.
"fun" -- Anns.
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© 2000 Richard Koss
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