I Saw Blood and then Everything Went Black contains sixteen visions of the future experienced during periods of blackout. The stories arrived, one at a time, sometimes in pairs with arms linked. They were led by muses. When this book was empty, when this book had nothing, the muses filled it with these stories. Now the muses are gone and, incredibly, the book is filled with something ambiguous, something other than what they deposited. It has a life of its own, it swells and recedes, but never disappears completely. It possesses seed-like qualities, a husk, a hypocotyl, the potential to grow. It makes one suspect, with a hint of nostalgia, that it was left here intentionally, without one’s knowledge, by someone who had a clearer perception of things to come than did you or I.
"I Saw Blood and then Everything Went Black" presents sixteen fables from the future, bearing titles such as Blackhole, Blackjack, Blackstrap, Blackeye, Blackmarket, Blacksheep, etc. Each story contains characters identified only by symbolic names and described only by their actions, resulting in fables posing as amoral if not obscene allegories, from which lessons can be drawn that, as likely as not, abuse rather than enlighten the intellect of the sensitive reader. That it should be this way is not so much the fault of the author, who is long gone, as it is evidence that time tampers with the inanimate when they are abandoned. Metal rusts. Plastics sag and age. Stones are weathered and rounded. Books mutate, evolve and devolve then evolve again into something else. Electrons on hard drives change their states. Words are altered. Paragraphs jumbled and reformed. These stories sat on a hard drive for twenty years untouched by the hand of man, unseen by any eye. When they were resurrected, they had lost their form and content, but they retained the memory of the inanimate. They remembered the darkness that had been poured into them and they now vehemently regurgitate it, bruised and bloodied, back into the world.
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About the Author
David J. Keffer was born in Kansas City, MO. He pursued a technical education earning a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Florida and a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Minnesota. After a year as a post-doctoral scholar at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C., he began his career as an engineering professor at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, where he remains today. He has published about 90 technical papers in archival journals. Outside of engineering, David Keffer studied world literature and creative writing. He has published analytical articles on the works of Primo Levi and Kobo Abé located in the Scriptorium of The Modern Word site (http://www.themodernword.com/). He created various reading aids to several classical Chinese novels (http://tinyurl.com/3k8n9qm). Over the past two decades, David Keffer has been active writing novels, poetry and stories. Several novels and illustrated stories are available on the web at http://www.poisonpie.com. David Keffer lives in Knoxville, Tennessee with his wife, Lynn, and two children. As a family, they enjoy hiking through the local mountains and are always on the look out for poison pie and other ambivalent mushrooms that dot the landscape.