Marking the 10th anniversary of being published

Uploaded October 2011 • As of December 5, 2011: 34 views

I used to write. I started a number of short stories but I managed to finish only one. It was published in the Winter 2001–2002 issue of Lilith Magazine (a Jewish Feminist publication). To mark the 10th anniversary of my one claim to fame as a published author, I thought I’d share the story on Red Bubble.

About the story . . .

When I was a teenager (about a thousand years ago) I left my home in Toronto to find myself. I traveled through Europe, then I lived in Israel for six months, volunteering on a kibbutz. What happens in this story pretty much happened, with a few tweaks here and there to make it more readable. Back then, I had never really written anything (except for a few poems I kept in a duo-tang folder hidden in my desk). But the fellow on whom Andy is based liked to write, so I suggested that he write about what happened.

“You know, that would make a good story. You should write that story.”

He looked at me like I was nuts. “What are you talking about?”

“And what you said, you know — ‘Have you ever lied to me?’ — yeah, that would be a great opening line! It would grab the reader’s attention, create a bit of a mystery right off the bat.”

He was annoyed with me. “Everyone’s always telling me me what I should write. I’ve got my own ideas. You think it’s such a good idea for a story, YOU write it!”

So I did.

And as for finding myself — boy, was that a wild goose chase!

Peels (a short story)

by Shani R. Sohn

“Have you ever lied to me?”

They were walking without speaking before he asked the question. He had absent-mindedly got ahead of her on the cement path, so he slowed and turned, walking backward until she caught up. Her blue eyes looked up at him.

“Careful,” she pointed.

He turned again, side-stepping the break in the cement where the muddy earth had escaped. It was March and the ground was freshly thawed after a chilly winter in Israel. It was a Saturday, about three months since they had arrived — he from the United States and she from Canada — to volunteer temporarily on this kibbutz.

Saturday was their day off, and they had slept in. When she had finally opened her eyes that morning, he was already awake, sitting up in bed beside her, peeling a grapefruit. A pale thread of the inner rind fell to his chest, into the dark curls.

Lynn stopped blinking and, puffy with sleep, smiled up at his silhouette, the familiar shape of hair and beard lit at the edges by the window behind him. She pushed the curls off her face with one hand, stretching and turning on her side. A hint of damp soil breezed through the window, mingling with the scent of the fruit.

Andy held a segment in front of her mouth and as she took it between her lips, she tasted his fingers and remembered them inside her the night before.


© Shani Rama Sohn. All rights reserved. My writing and images of my paintings may not be used or published anywhere else without my permission. My art and writing does not belong to the public domain. Materials may not be reproduced, uploaded, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted, copied, edited or published in any form or by any means without my permission.

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