Dreams of a Robot Dancing Bee: 44 Stories
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The 44 stories of Dreams of a Robot Dancing Bee—long-awaited by fans of Tate’s poetry—will come as a welcome surprise to readers unfamiliar with his previous work. Tate seems both awed and bemused by small town life, with its legends, flights of fancy, heightened emotions, tragedies and small ruptures in the fabric of ordinary existence.
was Nadine and she was about six foot three. She looked like she could find herself around an aisle full of cleaning products real handily. “You’d disappear in her,” I told Rita rather cruelly. “She’s more my type.” “I bet she threw the javelin in high school,” Rita said. “That suits me just fine,” I said. “Useful.” “What?” “I mean, if I get laid oﬀ. At work. She could throw the javelin.” “Frieda pole-vaulted to glory,” Rita said. “Who the hell is Frieda?” I asked. Nadine really was about the
every second than it was worth in the long run. About Arthur Tomten he had mixed thoughts. The little guy certainly knew something about films, and he wasn’t sure if this was an asset or a bother. Arthur was always trying to advise him on what the store needed, what kinds of films, and this partly annoyed Earl, though it was just possible that he needed someone like that, some film nut. 121 THE TORQUE-MASTER OF ADVANCED VIDEO He didn’t even remember the names of the others, just the managers.
pin in his eye” he told Leslie and Don at the store.) “If you’re going to be a capitalist, then do yourself a favor and don’t be such a wimpy, pitiful one. Your little protest earrings are really a big statement. You’re going to change the world with amusing buttons, I suppose?” Arthur worked late every night now, he had to, he had no choice. The shelves of the store were crammed with films nobody cared about, How to Make Your Head Explode films, films about insect life in Asia, How to Raise a
rabble. He liked that and always walked the few respectable streets of the town with his chin up and a spring in his gait. It was quite a laughable sight to the old folks rocking on their porches in the summer. Such a little button-nosed arrogance in one so small. And he would never condescend to play with the children of the millworkers. And there were no other lawyers in town. Which left Franklin III all to himself to parade the neighborhoods as if he were destined for a great mission in this
nonetheless, that’s what she’s doing. And the board of directors hired a new head librarian who thinks I’m some kind of marginal eccentric who’s mainly obsessed with the esoteric, and therefore put limits on my freedom.” “The Soul in a jar.” “Yes, that is it.” “What are we to do?” It was almost dusk outside. Either I called home and lied about working late, or I gave myself over to Valerie for a few more hours, which, by now, clearly was the deepest lie bifurcated by the deepest truth I could