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The Bow, The Bow

by Tania Hershman

Pick me up, said the violin to the twerp in the corner. The twerp was a chicken and the violin was lonely. But the chicken, who demonstrated some mathematical ability, had shown a flair for solving quadratic equations, had no head for music. The bow, the bow, hissed the violin, but the chicken, who was no twerp, no twerp at all, turned away.

In the corner, a small group of piglets watched with interest. We’d pick it up, they whispered, we’d violin, we’d string, we’d bow. But they did not know how, having only trotters, not being musically inclined, nor taken with mathematics either.

At the end, which came soon after, the violin was in a huff; the chicken picked up some chalk and started scribbling on the board. And the piglets? They began to dance, feeling that it was quite right to do so, on this day, in midsummer.


Tania Hershman is the author of two story collections: My Mother Was An Upright Piano: Fictions (Tangent Books, 2012), a collection of 56 very short fictions, and The White Road and Other Stories (Salt, 2008; commended, 2009 Orange Award for New Writers).

Lead image: “Violin” (via Flickr user minm01)

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  1. […] for new and unusual places to submit stuff to, so when I noticed that Tania Hershman had had this typically strange and wonderful piece published by the delightfully-titled Cease, Cows magazine, I knew I had to send something their way […]

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