Last year I had a story published in Oakwood magazine. Apparently I failed to mention that here, as I was waiting on a link to the issue, so here’s my atonement. Read it here.
For fans of my first novel, Kings of Broken Things, some of these characters will look familiar. Notably, Jake Strauss. This is part of the story of why Jake had to leave his farm home Jackson County and ended up in Tom Dennison’s Omaha. The story printed in Oakwood is excerpted from a novella that tells that story, along with the story of Jake’s mother Ella. This excerpt tells part of Ella’s story.
Submitted for your indulgence: “What is Foolish, What is Weak.”
She worried that she’d asked too much of God over the years. That there was a limit to love, to clemency, to indulgence, in God as there was in man. All she wanted was to have this one and she could be done.
Ever since she was a girl she’d planned to name a daughter Emma. A name similar to her own, with double-ems instead of double-ells. And how clever that em followed ell in the alphabet, just as Emma would come after Ella. Even after her first daughter was lost, she didn’t budge from the idea. Her first girl was named Emma Helena (Ella’s given name was Helena) and this one was to be Emma Marie. She would have this one. It would be a girl. Then she would be done with the business of bearing and naming and burying kids.