The Fear of Monkeys - The Best E-Zine on the Web for Politically Conscious WritingMyanmar Snub-Nosed Monkey - Issue Thirty-Two
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Purple-faced Langur from Shaohua Dong The Myanmar Snub-Nosed Monkey is mostly black, with protruding white ear tufts, a mostly naked face with pale pink skin, a "moustache" of whitish hairs above the upper lip, and a distinct white chin beard. The lips are prominent, and the nose upturned, allegedly causing the animal to sneeze in rainy weather. As an adult male, it has a length of 55.5 centimetres, and a tail 78 cm long. They spend their summer months in northern Burma and China in temperate mixed forests at upper altitudes of their range, and descend to lower ground in the winter to escape snow. The species is known in local dialects of Lisu people as mey nwoah and Law Waw people as myuk na tok te, both of which mean "monkey with an upturned face," and when first discovered in 2010, they only were known to live in three or four groups of 260 to 330 individuals within a 270 square kilometres range at 1,700 to 3,200 metres above sea level in the eastern Himalayas, in the north-eastern section of Kachin State, the northernmost part of Burma. In 2011, a small population of a hundred was discovered in Lushui County, Yunnan, China in the Gaoligongshan National Nature Reserve. The species is isolated from other snub-nosed Rhinopithecus by the Mekong and the Salween rivers; the other 4 species, golden, black, gray and Tonkin snub-nosed monkeys, are found in China and Vietnam. The snub-nosed group of monkeys diverged from other Asian monkeys about 6.8-6 million years ago, and from Nasalis and Simia clade about 1.2 Ma. Various species of the snub-nosed group split from each other about 730,000-400,000 years ago. It is recognized as critically endangered by the IUCN; its unique appearance, behaviour and vulnerability make it outstanding in conservation issues, but it is seriously threatened by hunting and wildlife trade, illegal logging and forest destruction linked to hydropower schemes and associated infrastructure development.


Grandpa's Not Feeling Well


Karen Schauber

Grandpa has been sighing a lot lately. He sits at the kitchen table tap tapping the checkered cloth, twisting salt and pepper shakers, brushing off non-existent crumbs, trying to make things right.

Grandma makes tea, lets the bag float till the water turns crusty. He doesn't touch it.

The news is on all day now. Times have changed he keeps saying. Grandma can't console him. If only he was younger he says. He would do something.

His vacant stare lets me know he is listening intently to the reports. I don't dare interrupt. He's told me he can't miss a thing; that it can change from minute to minute. There is no telling what can happen. He whispers 'no one will be safe'.

The lump in my throat does not want to go away. I can feel his pain, his deep disappointment. His worry.

I have never seen my Grampa like this before. I can't tell if he's aging before my eyes, going downhill fast, or what.

I look at Grandma hoping she can do something. Maybe she knows what he needs. She is starting to sigh too. I'm not sure if it's because of what is happening with Grandpa or if it's about what Grampa is so upset about.

I pretend to do my homework, but I am really too distracted to study. I am starting to sigh too. It's all very unpleasant, even a little scary. It feels like my family has been taken hostage, but I can't figure out by who.

He keeps repeating 'I feel the Bern' but it doesn't seem to be changing the situation. I'll keep watching, and waiting, with him.


Karen Schauber’s flash fiction is published or forthcoming in twenty-five literary magazines and anthologies including AdHoc Fiction, Ariel Chart, Bending Genres, Blood Puddles: An Anthology, Brave New Word, Brilliant Flash Fiction, CafeLit, CarpeArte, Commuter Lit, Danse Macabre, Down in the Dirt, Ekphrastic Review, Ellipsis Zine, Fear of Monkeys, Fiction Southeast Flash Boulevard, Mercurial Stories, Natural Light: An Anthology, Poems for the Writing: A Textbook, Postcard Shorts, SpillWords, Stereo Stories, Wilderness House Literary Review, Windows of Remembrance: An Anthology, Writing in a Woman’s Voice, and Yellow Mama. In her obsession with flash fiction, Karen also runs
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