Rupprecht Mayer was born near Salzburg. After some twenty years living and working in Taiwan, Beijing, and Shanghai, he recently resettled in Bavaria. He translates Chinese literature and writes short prose. English versions appeared in Bicycle Review, Connotation Press, Frostwriting, Gravel, Hobart, Mikrokosmos/Mojo, NAP, NANO Fiction, Ninth Letter, Postcard Shorts, Prick of the Spindle, Radius, The Newer York, Word Riot, Washington Square, and Watershed Review. See chinablaetter.info/rupprechtmayer/.
For centuries people had looked down shuddering from the edge of the steep coast to the rocks in the surf. But then, on a full moon night, the coast changed its mind and welcomed the ocean from then on with a sandy beach. Now the water between the legs of children baking sand cakes seeped into the ground, washing the hinterland. Tourism boomed, but the fear of falling was always present. Not a single smoker dared to jump from the sidewalk onto the tarmac to reach the cigarette-seller on the other side of the road. Farmers resumed yoking draft animals to plow their fields. They preferred sacrificing an ox to plunging down with their tractor when suddenly a crater opened in the soil.