On the Way Down: A Story for Ray Bradbury

A man jumps off a cliff.

I’m gonna need some wings, he thinks.

He reaches into his backpack to get some things — wood, nails, a hammer, some string — and then gets down to work building.

That ground is coming up awful fast, he thinks, I’d better work a little quicker.

The wings he’s building just begin to flap —

When the man suddenly slams into the ground.

Little bits of the man go everywhere.

It’s a mess.

Really, it’s awful.

But then, lo, the angel rises up — effortlessly, out of the wreckage.

You know, it says, these actually work quite well!

And it whizzes off to find breakfast.



Ben Loory lives in Los Angeles. His fiction was a finalist in the Glimmer Train Short Story Award for New Writers Contest and his story, “The TV,” appeared in The New Yorker. Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day coming soon from Penguin Books. As a screenwriter, Ben Loory has worked for Jodie Foster, Alex Proyas and Mark Johnson. He is a graduate of Harvard College, holds an MFA from the American Film institute, and is a member of the Writers Guild of America west. Interviews at The New Yorker and The Emprise Review. Non-fiction at TheNervousBreakdown.

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Ben Loory
Ben Loory is the author of two collections: Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day and Tales of Falling and Flying, as well as a picture book for children, The Baseball Player and the Walrus. His fables and tales have appeared in The New Yorker, Tin House, READ Magazine, and Fairy Tale Review, been heard on This American Life and Selected Shorts, and performed live at WordTheatre in Los Angeles and London. Loory is a graduate of Harvard University and holds an MFA in Screenwriting from the American Film Institute. He lives in Los Angeles, where he is an Instructor for the UCLA Extension Writers’ Program.

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