Summer/Fall 1999 • Vol. XXI No. 3/4 FictionJuly 1, 1999 |

Five Short Prose Pieces

From the Russian "A Fly Struck . . ." A fly struck a citizen, who was running by, in the forehead, passed through his head, and exited in the rear. The citizen, whose name was Dernyatin, was quite surprised. It seemed to him that something had whistled in his brain, and in the rear of his head, the skin burst and it began to tickle. Dernyatin stopped and pondered: "What could such a thing mean? You see it's absolutely clear I heard a whistle in my brain. I can think of nothing that enables me to understand what this is all about. In any case, it's a rare sensation, a sort of headache. But I will not think about this anymore, and will continue my run." With these thoughts, citizen Dernyatin ran farther, but no matter how he ran, it was not the same. On a sky-blue road Dernyatin stumbled on one leg and almost fell, and he even had to wave his arms in the air. "I'm lucky I didn't fall," thought Dernyatin, "otherwise, I would have smashed my glasses and been unable to s

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