Archive for May, 2013

Submit a poem or short story of 100 words or less, inspired by a weekly photo in this fun, flash fiction group. You can read submissions or add your work HERE, or click on the little blue guy at the bottom. Writing tips, typo alerts and comments welcome, as long as they are respectful and helpful, not hateful.

Category: Macbre

Words: 99

Rating: PG-13

Janet Webb

Janet Webb

Hang dress outside, check. Light sage and light candles, check. Now the incantation that would create his perfect woman. With trembling hands, Stu opened the brittle paper from the ancient, mysterious woman and began to read.

He read faster and faster as a blue light filled his balcony. The dress moved, slowly at first then it filled like a balloon as a tuft of auburn hair sprung from the neck. Then came the scream.

“Damn, I should have hung the dress closer to the ground!” He growled, peering at the broken body below.

 

 


Submit a poem or short story of 100 words or less, inspired by a weekly photo in this fun, flash fiction group. You can read submissions or add your work HERE, or click on the little blue guy at the bottom. Writing tips, typo alerts and comments welcome, as long as they are respectful and helpful, not hateful.

Category: Drama

Words: 95

Rating: ?

danny-bowmanCopyright – Danny Bowman

Bursting out the door she searched for her lighter, the hospital was bad enough, but enduring it without smokes was akin to torture. Leaning into the wall she inhaled, noticing the payphone.

That scarred blast from the past captured her emotional turmoil. It was her childhood, no longer relevant, yet not forgotten. It was broken and abused, yet it stood, scars and all. She wanted that strength. Flinging the butt to the ground, she returned to her father’s room, perhaps forgiveness would be the first step.



Submit a poem or short story of 100 words or less, inspired by a weekly photo in this fun, flash fiction group. You can read submissions or add your work HERE, or click on the little blue guy at the bottom.

Writing tips, typo alerts and comments welcome, as long as they are respectful and helpful, not hateful.

Category: Fantasy
Words: 100
Rating: PG

aqueduct-sarah-ann-hall

sarah-ann-hall

Wow, a field of stone art, not what she expected when she set out with her camera. Some were plain, others resembled men or horses. Checking her settings, she found the best light and starting shooting. Someone would buy these shots, it could interest magazines catering to art, gardening, architecture or history?

She screamed as a giant hand pierced the clouds, blotting out the sun as it moved a sculpture. Scrambling on her hands and knees, her dropped camera forgotten, she screamed as a voice fell from the clouds.

“Check mate!”  It boomed.

“Damn!” A voice replied, “another game?”

I already released two kids into the world. One is gone, and one is near with his spouse and kids. Now I am raising three grand kids. It doesn’t get any easier. The oldest has turned eighteen, he was dragged through high school kicking and screaming, but we pulled him through. He is done with all high school classes and all that is left is the graduation ceremony. He attends the local vocational school, specializing in Aviation and Aeronautics. He is a math and engineering whiz who thinks far beyond my capabilities. He will graduate from there in less than three weeks.

However, he is still young!  Even though he is eighteen and almost done with school, I could pull out the  “it’s a school night” excuse to enforce a curfew, but he was always home at least an hour before his curfew.  As a parent, I LOVED this! He was home and all was right with the world. Time after time I would give him permission to stay out late on a Friday or Saturday night, but he would be home by ten or eleven.

He works flight simulators like some of us breathe. His brain is a human calculator. He doesn’t drive, smoke or drink. He is home after school each day and is here until bed. He has friends over and they work on computers, listen to music and eat. He is a good kid with little world experience. I tried to push him out of the nest, urged him to join clubs, go to friends houses or get a job, but he was happiest at home. I know that I have to shove him into the world. He has to drive , get a job, a place to live, form relationships.

But, the mommy in me was pleased that he was home safe and I didn’t have to worry. Then today came! He left here at 7 pm with a friend and at midnight he still wasn’t home. I was thrilled and nervous at the same time. He is over eighteen and able to stay out as late as he wants, but you can’t turn off the worry or desire to have your chickens in the coop before bed. I had to. He is a hard-working man, with above average intelligence who was taught core values.

He came home, later than usual tonight, and I found out why. In the late 1970’s a “friend” stole a large portion of my vinyl record collection. I know they sold them for drugs but didn’t have valid proof, I let it go, but I have always mourned the loss of those albums. Many were gifts from friends, my mom, aunts and cousins. Turns out, my boy was out scouring second-hand shops and music outlets for these records. He purchased many for mother’s day! He only gave me three as a teaser, but he left my mouth-watering!

This encounter left me a greater gift. I know that his heart, and head are in the right place. He is ready to enter the world, meet women and pursue a career. He is green, but he is well armed. My conversations with him have shown me that he is an intelligent man. He is open-minded and tolerant. He has a strong work ethic. He embraces music and the written word. He has a soft spot for animals and children. He is a computer geek and math whiz who talks about aeronautics as easy as as I take a breath. He is good with people and adjusts to each circumstance. He will make mistakes,and ask for help and I will stand by and let him, it’s my job.

Once again, I have to release the hand of a boy and let the world have the man. I can still see him running over the yard, his golden curls bouncing in the sun.  He will do great things and I have to back away and let him do it.

Submit a poem or short story of 100 words or less, inspired by a weekly photo in this fun, flash fiction group. You can read submissions or add your work HERE, or click on the little blue guy at the bottom.

Writing tips, typo alerts and comments welcome, as long as they are respectful and helpful, not hateful.

Category: Mystery/Sci-fi
Words: 100
Rating: PG

Copyright - Ted Stutz

Copyright – Ted Stutz

The scene had been the same at the last twelve buildings. Half eaten dinners, smoldering cigars, blaring T.V.’s, churning washing machines, but no people. It began with a sound, like God hooked his bass guitar to the largest amplifier in the universe. That single, core shaking chord changed her world.

Peering into the tavern she noticed the woman, one of two humans she found on a street usually filled with thousands.  Why were they spared? And for what? Taking a stool, she downed an abandoned shot to gather her thoughts, and courage.


For almost ten years, I have come face to face with the image of Gina DeJesus, her face, and that of Amanda Berry peered at me in grocery stores, post offices, drug stores and on telephone poles. My heart broke over her families pain. I never foresaw the Michelle Knight aspect, she was written off as an adult who ran away to start a new life.

I teared up watching interviews with the mothers, holding out hope that their daughters were alive,  fearing they would experience an awful truth down the road. We invested in these girls, their names, and faces were indelibly etched in our minds. Each lead held us on the edge of our seat, years later, hoping for an answer, or at the worst, some closure for the families. One of the mothers died before ever learning her daughter’s fate, with  a broken heart, we mourned as a community.

Shock, disbelief, joy,  horror and more joy filled our minds today when the three girls, now women, were found alive in a house, mere miles from their childhood homes. Thanks to Amanda’s phone call and the bravery of  at least two men and caring neighbors with a phone, the girls were freed.

We don’t know why they didn’t reach out sooner, or maybe we do. They were beat down, brainwashed and fearing for not only their own life, but that of their family, and a six year old child. But this embodiment of evil, this man named Ariel didn’t win! Amanda took action, others responded with help and they are all safe tonight. Facing a long road of healing and reintegration into society.

I will no longer see Gina and Amanda in my grocery store, for they are where they belong, in the arms of their family. My heart goes out to Michele who was an unknown, watching tv and wondering if anyone would look for her again. A lesson learned here, a run away may not always be a run away. All three girls need to be shielded. They need to stay off the TV, out of the papers and out of view of public eyes. Their despair, terror, pain and details of the ordeal belongs to them. They will only grow past it with time, understanding and support.

They don’t owe us an interview, a tv blurb, photos or a quote in the newspaper. Details are nice, we all want answers, a way to make a change, but not at the expense of victims, or in this case, brave survivors. They don’t owe us anything, we owe them privacy and a shot at a normal life.

It is up to us to convict the degenerative slime that stole their life. It is up to us to give the girls, or young women the room to learn how to live in society and bond with family. They don’t owe us a darn thing! Our reward is knowing they are safe and home. The reward is the cheers of neighbors and friends gathered to watch them return to their home. The reward is the face of their parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, grandparents and friends. We can’t return their stolen years, but we can make sure their time left is theirs, and theirs alone. They need to learn how to feel comfortable without shackles, locked doors and boarded up windows.  Life for them now is foreign and far from what they were initially taught. It will take time, patience and guidance. They need to relearn how to choose the food they eat and not just eat what was handed to them. They need to learn when to take a shower, sleep, go outside or make a call. All things taken from them. This man didn’t steal just their bodies, he stole their minds. Let’s back away and let them relearn how to live and connect with family. This is the one small thing we can do to make a difference!

 

 

Does an ugly man, commit ugly deeds? Or does the ugly reflect the inner man? He aimed to find out. Clutching the matchbook with Dr. Turn’s address he scanned the houses lining Elm Street. He would find the good doctor and force him to fix his face, right the wrongs and make it so he could walk down the street without people backing away.  He only did ugly things when provoked, perhaps that could change.

When the banker kicked him away from his door, claiming he would scare the customers, he grabbed his throat. When he remembered to release the gasping man, he was no longer breathing. The same went for the girl who threw rocks, the old man claiming he was “too ugly to live” and the father who shooed him from the park, afraid that he would scare the children. They all met the same, unfortunate end. Dr. Turn was his last hope. If the doctor could turn his face into a thing of beauty, the ugly would be erased from his life.

Faced with a mad man and a gun, the good doctor promised to work on the man, knowing he could end his life with a simple slip of the knife. But he had taken an oath and wasn’t ready to wander down that path. Months passed as he wrestled with his conscience and plied his skills.

He trembled the day he opened the door to let his patient walk among his fellow-man. Following close behind, a sweaty hand clutching the scalpel hidden in his pocket he watched and waited. His patient seemed to have a new view of the world. He nodded and exchanged pleasantries with everyone he passed. He opened doors for the ladies and apologized if he bumped into a preoccupied worker. Feeling a bit relaxed, the Dr. pulled his hand away from the scalpel. His patient had gone almost ten blocks and was doing fine. He smiled as a beautiful girl stepped around the corner to shower attention on his patient. He never heard what was said, he only saw her moving mouth and the anger that gripped the man’s face. His patient reached out like a cat, gripping her throat as he forced her into the alley. Grabbing the scalpel Dr. Turn followed, stopping the heartbeat of the man he tried so hard to help. Sometimes, ugly is just ugly, inside or out, he thought. Somethings can’t be cut out.