Selected Shorts: Mysteries and Wonders

Audio not yet available
Email a Friend

Tales with twists and honoring a mother.

On this edition of SELECTED SHORTS, you’ll hear three tales with a little something unexpected. And Edwidge Danticat secretly follows her mother. The first story, “The Scharz-Metterklume Method,” is an outrageous romp by Saki 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 Heker has fun with the concept proposed by 18th-century philosopher George Berkeley that the world is an imaginary construct. “Berkeley or Mariana of the Universe” starts mildly — with 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 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.”

“The Schartz-Metterklume Method,” by Saki, is performed by Marian Seldes. “Berkeley or Mariana of the Universe,” by Liliana Heker, is performed by Hope Davis. “Cultural Relativity,” by Charles Johnson, is performed by Regina King. “New York Day Women,” by Edwidge Danticat, is performed by Laurine Towler

For additional works featured on SELECTED SHORTS, please click here. We’re interested in your response to these programs. Please comment on this site or visit

And for more thoughts on the stories in SHORTS, check out literary commentator Hannah Tinti’s site at

(This program first aired during our 2010 season.)