Mysteries and Wonders

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Tales with twists, and honoring a mother.

On this edition of SELECTED SHORTS, you’ll hear three tales with a little something unexpected, along with a fourth in which Edwidge Danticat secretly follows her mother. 

The first story is an outrageous romp by Saki, “The Scharz-Metterklume Method,” in which a mischievous aristocrat masquerades as a governess—with hilarious results. The reader is the great American actress Marian Seldes.

In our next story, the Argentine writer and novelist Liliana Hecker has fun with the concept proposed by 18th-century philosopher George Berkeley that the world is an imaginary construct. “Berkeley or Marina of the Universe” starts mildly—two sisters waiting for their mother—and escalates into a debate about our very existence. The reader is Hope Davis.

The heroine of the next story, Charles Johnson’s “Cultural Relativity,” thinks she’s met Mr. Right. But there’s one little problem. The reader is Regina King.

Our final piece is Haitian born Edwidge Danticat’s affectionate tribute to Haitian women working in New York City—including her own mother. “New York Day Women” is read performed by Laurine Towler.

The musical interludes are Grant Green’s “Besame Mucho Latin,” on The Latin Bit, Besame and “Suction,” from Aalborg Ambient Soundtracks. The SELECTED SHORTS theme is Roger Kellaway’s “Come to the Meadow.”

For additional works featured on SELECTED SHORTS, please click here.

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Announcing the 2011 Stella Kupferberg Memorial Short Story Prize.  This year's theme is stories set in restaurants and bars.  The judge is the author Jennifer Egan and the deadline is March 1, 2011.