By Camille Meyer

Love Snails

Q took a personal day from work. She took the love letters out of the box in her closet and reread them all. Afterwards Q concluded she'd really loved lots of men and not one of them was especially to blame for her dying of a broken heart so Q phoned the office that she'd work from home the following day. She sat down at once and separated the letters, arranging her lovers in like-minded piles on through the night. In the morning Q sat at her desk and folded the appropriate piles into spirals, spheres and cones. Then she sighed one at a time into every shape she'd folded because Q still felt she was dying of a broken heart.

The shapes inflated into shells. Q flicked them off her desk and because she lived at the end of the world, they all fell right out of giant land. The shells hardened as they fell through the skies and landed in the dirt way down below. Those land snails in Matty's garden climbed inside those shells and only then the giant Q got over her broken heart.

Twentysomething Lovers

This is how it all went. Q and Jug broke up and there was nothing left to save because they weren't friends before they were lovers anyways.

They sat on stools in the kitchen. Q told Jug not to speak to her again, which upset Jug greatly. He struck his chest with his right fist and broke himself wide open. Jug grabbed each side of the fissure. Q stood up on her chair and jumped inside his chest. Jug pulled the hole closed. Q curled up and went to sleep. Q slept soundly through the friends, the women and parties because Jug was only in his twenties. Eventually he settled down and had two children. Jug outlived his wife but the day he joined her his corpse split in two. Q pushed back her covers and rubbed the sleep from her eyes. She stepped out of Jug's chest and immediately met his youngest son. They lived happily ever after.


The smallest giant had the largest hands and they called her Jug. She always had something to carry. Jug picked giant Cook's potatoes. She filled up his three-walled storage room with two hands. Afterwards Jug helped the giant Q carry her groceries. It was always the same things in the same way home. Milk and medjool dates up the high road home. But then Q got old and so they took the low road round and round the hill.

Jug passed the bush first. Q stopped and peered into the buzzing bush. Bumblebees covered every bit of the rose cane. Q wanted them all but Jug did not have enough room in her hands. Q seized the milk and date bag from her and asked Jug to hold out her empty hands. Q swung her grocery bag and beat each of Jug's empty hands into half a jar. Milk and dates went everywhere. Then Q sweet talked those bumblebees into Jug's hands and told her to make a fist. Jug closed up that jar.

They proceeded on down the low road round and round the hill. The bumblebees stung Jug's jar hands so when they got back Q invited Jug in and, in no time at all, tweezed all the stingers out of Jug's hands. The bee holes let all the air out of Jug's jar until her hands were proportionally sized. It was then that Q discovered that the smallest giant was just a human. She pushed Jug out of the sky.

Given the time of year, the water was releasing its summer heat. Jug's shirt inflated from the steam off the water letting her down gently to mankind below. Up top, Q swept up the bumblebee stingers and put them in her toothless gums.

Bag the Wind

Jug was the only one to uproot the old stump where a lovely tree once stood with one hand while with the other, fish the old spider out of its hole. Even though the poor thing was quite hungry for being underground so long, the spider compromised with Jug and wove three large blankets. Jug fed and put the spider back down the hole and covered her up with the stump for the next person's ordeal to solicit the spider.

Jug took the blankets to New Shoreham. She staked three groups of sticks in the earth and stood on her tip toes with the first blanket over her head. The blanket caught the wind as it came around New Shoreham and Jug pulled it at once down over the sticks and pinned the edges to the ground. Jug repeated the process for the other blankets. Jug put her bunny on the floor while she hid in the top of the teepee.

The giants leaned down over the island of New Shoreham. They loved the shell game and picked up one of the teepees but there was nothing there. They threw the empty shell into the ocean and chose another. Much to their delight, the giants picked the teepee with the bunny. They picked up their treat and threw the teepee over their shoulders and that is how Jug, the smallest giant with the largest hands, got back into giant land where she belonged.


And autumn came and spread the leaves on the ground to make the giants think everyone was dying but the humans were actually sleeping beneath the leaves. The giant Jug parted the clouds and looked down on human land yet there were so many it was like finding no leaf in particular.

There wasn't anyone in giant land interested in dating the littlest giant with the biggest hands so Jug had gone looking for a lover under the leaf cover. She'd parted the clouds in a few different places before so this time wasn't any different and the holes always filled right back up when Jug let go.

Jug knew precisely what she was looking for down below. She had a picture of the giant she liked best even though he didn't like her back. He was famous so pretty much all the giants had his picture. Anyways, Jug parted the skies that day with the picture of what she was looking for in her back pocket. Leaves were everywhere so, even though she was the littlest giant with the biggest hands, Jug had to assess the range of her reach first. With that in mind, Jug reached down to human land and turned over a leaf. A woman was sleeping beneath it so Jug put the leaf right back. She'd have to remember that one. Jug immediately turned over another. The man wasn't famous looking at all so Jug would have to remember that leaf as well.

So passed the day much like all the others. Jug was very practiced by now at remembering what was beneath the leaves she'd already overturned so Jug never turned over a leaf twice though in the very beginning she had.

Now winter was setting in on giant land and all the giants felt it in their bones. Jug knew she only had a few more days of this before the clouds would be too cold to part. So great was her ache for company through the winter that Jug reached for another leaf. Even with the biggest hands, it was still a little too far for her and Jug should have known better. She should have moved on ahead and opened up a new hole in the clouds but Jug went for that leaf anyways. As a result, Jug lost her balance and fell through the skies. She put out her giant hands on the way down to human land and it was those giant parts of her that broke her fall. She stood among the leaves and suddenly all the humans woke up because winter was over. They overturned their leaves and stood up and Jug found herself fitting in nicely next to the man of her giant dreams.

Bum Lake

It was just terrible what happened to those bumblebees. The giant just threw out them out the window after she put their stingers in her gums. The bumblebees fell right out of giant land and because it all happened so quickly their bottoms were still wet where their stingers used to be and they got stuck to the two trees when they landed down below.

Q and Jug lived underneath those trees and so they were there when the bumblebees fell from down from the sky. Q leaned against her tree and watched Jug's while Jug leaned against her tree and watched Q's. They passed the time watching the bees clump together on those trees.

Now, those old hobos were thirsty on account of the drought, which also hardened the bumblebees into burrs. Q and Jug reasoned with one another that those burrs would be sturdy footholds for climbing the trees so Q climbed Jug's and Jug climbed Q's to catch the rain that was sure to come in their mouths once they were higher up. There in the treetops the two waited for the weather to change. The rain came but no matter how many times Q and Jug tasted it, the water was very bad so they never quenched their thirst. They tried over and over and a lake filled up around them but they kept on catching and spitting out mouthfuls of rain even as Q went down with the tree because her hobo jacket snagged on a branch. By that time the lake grew up to the crown of Jug's tree and filled up all the lands except for a small island where the bunnies and the grasshoppers were trapped together. All the other creatures that didn't make it to safety became fish. They ate the bees as the waters dissolved the burrs while Hobo Q haunted the lake waters.

Weed Season

There is a small window of time every now and again when the sorrel grows among the roses. It is a bugger: the giant Gardener could never quite get all of it and so totally loathed doing it and besides, giants have to be careful not to pull through the soil lest they fall through the clouds below.

Well anyways, the giant Gardener finally got to weed those roses. By then and quite unbeknownst to the Gardener, the sorrel had grown down, way down through the ground and past the cloud layer to mankind below. That day the giant pulled so long that he didn't know he was falling through the dirt. He just kept after that sorrel. Hand over hand, the Gardener sheared the root and it withered behind him. There was plenty more ahead so the Gardener weeded himself right on through the clouds. Blue sky was all around but the giant paid no mind until he grabbed the very end of the sorrel and touched down on earth. The sorrel fell out of the sky. He looked at the rotten ends on the ground and the big sky between. The Gardener was the first giant on earth.

Home was so high he couldn't even see it so the giant gave the end of the root to a bird. It flew out of sight and the giant started to climb home. The Gardener was about halfway up in the sky when the root snapped. The giant learned the hard way that sorrel doesn't go both ways: chiefly down.

The Gardener spied some vines nearby. He climbed far higher than with the bird but the vines just ended about three quarters the way up in the sky. They swayed under his weight and he fell for a second time that day. Grapes were scattered round when the giant came to on the ground. He tasted one and it was delicious. They all were, in fact, so the Gardener stuffed his pockets, which was just enough for a giant, and went to find something else to climb.

The Gardener didn't want to go too far because home was directly up and, once he got there, he didn't want to overshoot his arrival. He scarcely had to worry for he found the giant sequoias nearby and climbed home with no trouble at all. All the other giants fell for the Gardener's pocket grapes.

He studied the fruit for a year and named the small window when the grapes were ripe fall for this is when the giants went down the sorrel and back up the sequoias to pick the grapes. And they all did for a while but that was a long time ago. The giant parents, to this day, tell all of their children not to pull out the sorrel lest it steal them away. The humans were so distracted the whole time by the war between the grasshoppers and bunnies that they missed the giants entirely.


Good granny Jug pushed Q on the swing in the park. Q delighted as she swung higher than her young legs could pump. Then the swing came back down and Jug pinched her bottom.

Granny Jug pushed Q back up in the sky. This time she squeezed harder and, by doing so, wore away at Q's buttocks. Jug kept pushing and pinching until she'd made some holes. As the swing came back down, Q's youth ran out her buttocks onto good granny Jug. Q washed all Jug's old age away. Q pumped her swing and swung up as high as her legs could go. It wasn't much but it was high enough for Jug to run under. Jug never came back to the park and Q swung back down an old lady so she took her turn on the bench and waited for the next child to ride the swing.