For the short story reader. Updated every Monday.

The Short Form


Patrick Somerville


What’s a thing you can say about Greenland? Icy.

After the library, he knows a few facts, more than he knew before. He is in the air, on his way. But really. What can you say? Mining. Nickel mining and Wild West boomtowns. 57,000 people in all, but enough space for a billion. Oil, they say, a lot, and they are ready, all of them, and others, but the glaciers still block them, they need to melt, the Earth must die slightly more before it can be scavenged. How about that?

His father, the lawyer, the strong man, the stoic—Rob went through his house before he left. Went through everything, searched drawers, went through boxes, forced open locked file cabinets, read all that he could find. Started to guess. Started to build it. Read reports of his father’s last two trips to a place called Upernavik, both within the last year. His father’s terse analysis of the legal roadblocks. His father urging The Client, only ever called The Client, to lay the proper groundwork now, today, immediately, while the markets remain virgin and untouched.

We read it in Guernica.