Rash, inspired by the classic Pygmalion myth, is a story of love, revenge, perversion, vanity, and the supernatural. Jack Mahler, a painter and sculptor, befriends Margaux Howland at the local gym. Margaux is in a loveless marriage with a powerful judge, Leland Howland. The judge commissions Jack to make a portrait statue of his wife. Margaux and Jack begin a love affair. When the Judge discovers the affair, he sends Margaux to their Santa Fe home. The gardener at the Santa Fe home, Carlos, is a well-regarded shaman. Observing the unhappy Margaux, Carlos uses his powers to bedevil the judge. He also gives the statue magical properties. The vanity of human behavior clashes with the power of the paranormal as the story unfolds in unexpected ways.
Fifteen years ago, my wife and I watched planes fly into the World Trade Center from our Park Slope, Brooklyn apartment. We spent most of the day assisting refugees from lower Manhattan trudging past our building. The image of people fleeing the collapsing North Tower remained in my head.
In the late 60’s, I lived on West 71st Street in Manhattan and borrowed books from a store. It was a stationary/news store. In the back of the store were books for purchase and a big section of books available to borrow. It was located on West 72nd Street between West End and Broadway, next to where I had my shirts laundered. There was a five-dollar membership fee. Books were free for three days and ten cents a week afterward.
The yellow taxi pulled up to 5555 Palm Avenue. A tall, slender woman dressed in a mauve Chanel suit exited the cab and walked into the building. Her heels made staccato clacks as she hurried across the terrazzo lobby floor to the elevator.