Bell Canyon, by Colin Rowe (micro-fiction)

 

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Through the fog of Bell Canyon, up the twisting forest roads, the smugglers’ oxen pulled their wagons. They came with barrels of powder under barrels of fish; pikes stacked in lumber; swords wrapped in cloth. Tools of killing hidden within the tools of living.

Every Sunday the peasants of Bell Canyon were awoken by the ringing of silver bells gifted to a string of village churches in the canyon by the benevolent Lord Carro. On Sunday morning, they echoed up the canyon to his loving ears. When the people heard the bells, they trod into church in holey shoes to be told of the dignity of poverty.

“The Lord rewards the honest, the pious, and the hardworking” says the fat priest. The Lord lives above them, in a castle, full of luxury and free from want or fear.

“Do the bells sound different to you?” asks Lord Carro of his valet. “Not as clear of a ring as there used to be.”

“Probably just the weather” says the valet. “The fog muffles the sound.”

On Sunday the peasants go to church and on Monday the wagons come. They come with barrels of powder under barrels of fish; pikes stacked in lumber; swords wrapped in cloth. They come with church bells made of tin and leave with silver by the pound.


Colin Rowe has been published by Cracked.com, The Eunoia Review, The Boston Literary Magazine, Pure Slush, Beyond Imagination Literary Magazine, and The Santa Fe Literary Review. He lives in the desert with a talking cat and tweets under the handle @lowericon.

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Posted on July 19, 2016, in Issue 18: Mark My Words: Prophesy Signs & Portents and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. This is so freaking cool. Love the bit about the tools of killing wrapped within the tools of living–that gave me shivers 🙂

  2. Very interesting Colin! Enjoyable.

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