Lawyer as well as fiction writer, Corrington brings a judicial, philosophical calm to these stories--and it works mostly in their favor. A young New York attorney, warned by one coronary already, relocates down South with the idea of slowing down only to find himself involved with a case that limns concepts as large as history and grace. A priest, his brain blasted by a stroke, begins on his death bed to speak miraculously', unfortunately what he's spewing is 40 years of remembered confessions. Corrington's dominant style is modest, crafted, and low-key, as in ""Keep Them Cards and Letters Comin' In"" (a country-and-western D.J. in Los Angeles, issuing useless nostalgia) and ""Old Men Dream Dreams, Young Men See Visions""--first date in your father's car, keeping the girl out too late, achieving symbolic victory over her father. But he really brings himself to bear in ""Pleadings,"" which concerns a divorce revolving around a defective, institutionalized child: its rich intelligence and sympathy are very moving, even if it does come down on its points a little heavily. In fact, all these pieces are slightly too head-on, the beliefs that spur them popping up at the end, in bold print or capital letters. But, if not great fiction, these five stories do work satisfyingly as kinds of fictional essays, carried along by Corrington's voice and authority and seriousness.