KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 4: Fall 2015
Haibun: 192 words

After 9-11

by Dan Gilmore

I took a plane from Tucson to Los Angeles. A man of Arab descent sat next to me. When the plane was in the air, he started rocking and praying. I squeezed past him and walked back toward the bathroom. A woman next to the emergency exit was reading the Bible. Behind her a man in a white turban had his eyes closed. In the rear a Buddhist monk clad in orange seemed suspiciously serene. I returned to my seat. The air was smooth. The Arab had stopped rocking. Then we hit an air pocket. He started rocking again. I said my own silent prayer to counter his in case he was praying for us to crash. It worked. The air was smooth again. Later the man turned to me and said something that sounded like, killing crowds. Startled, I said, “What the hell...?” He said, “Sorry. I was speaking about the billowing clouds.” My heart raced. I couldn’t think of anything to say. The Arab was humming, now. I took a quick glance at the clouds.

two soldiers scream “peace”—
in war the clearest voices
are muffled by fear.

—From New Shoes, the working title of Gilmore’s collection-in-progress of haibun and haibun stories to be released by KYSO Flash Press next spring

Dan Gilmore
Issue 4, Fall 2015

is the author of a novel, A Howl for Mayflower (Imago Press, 2006), a chapbook of haibun stories, Just Before Sleep (KYSO Flash, 2015), and three collections of poetry and monologues, Season Tickets, Love Takes a Bow, and Panning for Gold. He has won the Raymond Carver Fiction Contest, the Martindale Fiction Award, and multiple Sandscript Awards for Short Stories. His poems have appeared in Atlanta Review, San Diego Reader, Aethlon, Blue Collar Review, The Carolina Review, Sandscript, Loft and Range, KYSO Flash, and Serving House Journal.

“Happiest Black White Man Alive,” one of Gilmore’s flash fictions, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and was chosen by novelist Robert Olen Butler as one of the winning stories to appear in the 2015 Best Small Fictions Anthology.

In his time, Gilmore has been:

  • a fry cook,
  • a jazz musician,
  • a draft dodger,
  • a soldier,
  • an actor,
  • a minister in a Reno wedding chapel,
  • a psychologist,
  • a single parent of two children,
  • a college professor,
  • a dean, and
  • a consultant to business.

Currently, he lives in Tucson, Arizona and divides his time between playing jazz, writing, and loving his grandchildren, his life partner JoAn, and his cat.

More on the Web: By, About, and Beyond

Just Before Sleep, Gilmore’s chapbook of haibun stories reviewed by Duff Brenna in KYSO Flash (Issue 4, Fall 2015)

Dan Gilmore Poetry Reading at The Rogue Theater in Tucson, Arizona; in addition to Gilmore reading from his poetry collections, also includes readings of his poems by actors such as David Greenwood (“Semper Fi” and “Prayer Wars”)

Consternation and two other prose poems in Serving House Journal (Issue 9, Spring 2014)

The Hyperbolist and three other poems in Serving House Journal (Issue 8, Fall 2013)

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