victor schwartzman | literary delusions and a slave of property

Literary Delusions

An author laboured under a delusion: that he knew how readers understood his writing. He knew he had a Delusion, being an insightful author, but resented having any delusions at all (which was in itself a delusion, of course, but then he had delusions about his delusions). In any event, as it bruised his ego to have a delusion, he decided one day to ask it to leave.

“Leave? Certainly not,” the Delusion replied. “I’ve got quite the solitaire game going. Unlike you, I know what I have and am quite comfortable.”

Worried, the author decided to try Education. He enrolled in Universities and after being awarded Degrees asked if he had not Education enough to rid himself of his delusion.

Responded the Delusion, “Thanks for the friend! I love Cribbage.”

Even more concerned, the author decided to try Religion. He studied various religions, attended churches and mosques and synagogues, and when he believed he had improved his soul sufficiently he asked if he had not Religion enough to rid himself of his delusion.

To which the Delusion replied, “Now we can play Hearts!”

Now growing desperate, the author decided to try Love. He found a woman and listened to her when he had to and had sex with her and did his share of the housework, and then asked if he had not Love enough to rid himself of his delusion.

“Bridge at last!”

Published in Defenestration | Published in anthology of TRA/No Record Stranger Than Fiction Press, December 2007


A Slave Of Property

Harriet wasted her invaluable time on earth at a job. The only reason she stuck with the job was because it enabled her to buy possessions to help her recover from the job. This circular nature of her life worried her, so one evening she pushed all of her possessions into a big pile in the living room and set them on fire.

She then moved away from the big city and built a hut in the woods. Water came from a nearby stream, food from her garden, clothes from the plants around her. It was not an easy life, but she enjoyed it.

Word eventually got out about the wonderfully strange woman who lived in the woods without possessions. Soon people began to visit. They sought her advice on life. Harriet told them to burn all their possessions. No one followed her advice but they all felt better just thinking about it.

Over the years, Harriet became a tourist attraction.

Thousands visited her, seeking answers. To answer their questions, she raised money to publish books about the dangers of consumerism by starting a gift shop, Natural Harriet’s, where she sold collectables.

Published in Cherry Bleeds

more on Victor Schwartzman here on Adventures in Hypertension and Outsider Writers.

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