Paul A. Toth

Everything is Political

Everything is political, she used to say. She was pretty smart. She took a lot of classes. She studied studying. She made metaphors of metaphors until everything was so meta I didn't know what it was for.

We had a difficult marriage. Marriage is difficult in and of itself, she often said.

We argued. We split the vantagepoints between us. Eventually the splits started splitting until the overarching argument became infinite, stretching beyond the horizon of any marriage counselor. No cease fire could be arranged, no peace agreement reached.

I moved to the other side of the country.

One day I learned through an acquaintance she had obtained tenure at a university not sixty miles from my house. If I simply drove north on the interstate, we could meet again. And she knew the same.

Like North and South Korea, we lived near each other for many years, always knowing we could reconcile.

One day I saw her at the grocery store. When she saw me, she dropped a pineapple.

"Everything is political," I said.

"I forgot to add," she said, "all politics are local."

The next morning, I noticed she had pulled the comforter all the way to her side of the bed. I rolled close, warming myself against the body of the enemy.

Paul A. Toth lives in the United States. His novel Fizz is now available from Bleak House Books. Toth's short fiction has appeared in The Barcelona Review, Iowa Review Web, Mississippi Review Online and many others, with nominations for the Pushcart prize and Best American Mystery Stories. Please see for further details.



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