Her Necklace Now It began as a very small thing.
Junior and his dad disagreed on an item made in their silversmithing shop.
That shop was kept away from the family's houses, set up in an old outbuilding because of noise.
Silversmithing was always too noisy for the dozen homes on the family's half-section of wood and meadow land.
The lapidary equipment alone made a terrible sound.
Allie, Junior's wife, used that equipment to smooth rough turquoise and coral into stones ready for silverwork. She used a spinning grinder of damp and charcoal gray stone for her main work. When Allie put a stone against that, it sounded just like the machine it was. She used a smaller spinning buffer to polish stones.
One Saturday, human voices escalated in the little, old shop about who owned a particular design.
Even Allie, using loud lapidary equipment, heard Junior and his father argue. Naturally, curiosity won and she slowed her work, listening through a thin old wall of warped
Billy's PterodactylsBilly was in what his mother called 'his dinosaur phase'. He'd been firmly ensconced in this phase for the past six months, ever since his Dad had taken him to see the Natural History Museum in Oxford. The first thing he'd seen on entering was the huge bones of the Tyrannosaurus Rex glaring down at him, and that was it; he'd been hooked ever since.Billy's Pterodactyls4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
In the time since then his entire room had been re-decorated with a Jurassic theme. Dinosaurs were on the bedsheets, the curtains, the posters on the walls, and little plastic ones covered his floor to the point where it was dangerous to walk across it. Unless you were Billy, of course. No dinosaur would dare to harm Billy, who reigned supreme among them and controlled their every move. Billy was in his element and entirely at home within his dinosaur-infested room.
Every now and then the dinosaurs would venture outside of Billy's room, in an effort to invade and infest the rest of Billy's house. On one such occasion his mother inadvertently
Tale of the Teller My ignorance no longer gave me bliss.Tale of the Teller6 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
My checkbook had a post-it note on the cover: Dude. It's time to fix this.
The Tale of the Teller then commenced.
Her banker's phone-voice was sweet as honey. I never heard her name.
She introduced herself quickly and I can't be blamed.
I really just wanted to ask about money.
"Please, teller," I said. "Tell me where all my money is spent, down to the last cent. I'm not sure and I have to know now. Bills are due and I might be out of rent."
She said, "Do not worry, Sir. One moment. I can tell you every transaction since... since when, Sir? A date, please, Valued Customer of Our Bank." She spoke with capital letters.
If I had better capital, I would have spoken with them too.
"Please tell me all of it thank you," I said. "Start as far back as you can."
"There are many POS expenditures," she began...
I was in the dark. "What is a POS?" I said.
"A point of sale indicating use of your de
Broken GirlsBeware the Trojan Horse girl,Broken Girls4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
when she rings your doorbell
at 2:57 in the morning.
Dressed in desperation and despair,
she will entice your complacency
with wet eyelashes and quivering lips.
But once she slips through
your door she will invade you
with the plummet of her hips.
It's not her fault that Daddy,
he drinks, and Mama,
she sinks into the sludge of gloom.
She'll flee her prison-room into
the blotted ink of mid-night
and throw herself at your door,
begging you for more,
more, more of your
But if you let her in
--- hold her shaking shoulders,
--- wipe her trembling tears,
--- kiss her lonely lips,
she will swallow you whole.
Beware the Trojan Heart girl,
when she lies in your arms and
speaks of regret. By morning,
she'll only know your name as
Weave me a webWeave me a web5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
weave me a web of terrible sins
so that I may cocoon myself within it
and no more breathe lies upon your brow
is it hot? my breath there on your skin
does it sear the flesh, blister in your heart
horrific that you love the fire inside
feeling my coarseness, my brutality
twisted from inside out and back in again
like a spiral of souls, a hurricane of hurt
scarred hands caress rough wounds
not to sooth, to remind of pleasure filled pain
deep within your woven webs, keep me
not safe, no never safe, but secluded
secreted away to prevent me
stop me from hurting all I find and touch
because inside my fire rages too hot
quick and ferocious my flaws scratch, bite
eventually you will see the agony I bring
and you will leave...
and I will wear my crown of blame
proud and high to warn others of your misfortune
flee from this broken tormented mind
and never fear being burned
weave me into a web and forget me
let me rot from your existence
in all ways forget me
Sacrificial BloodThe scent of bloodSacrificial Blood5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Sets my soul on fire
Life and death
Follow my command
Swirling I dance
Blood and gore
Paints my being
The metallic hint of blood
Hits my tongue
The taste sets alight
My own blood
None shall walk
Their blood is an offering
To gods long oppressed
The earth is their alter
And I their champion
Soon their imprisonment
Set upon them
By heathen gods
Their revenge will be beautiful
Their vengeance won't be merciful
The Spider That Ate Cleveland Steve and Lucy lived in a suburb of Cleveland and liked it very much.The Spider That Ate Cleveland4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Steve liked sitting on the porch every Saturday evening, drinking beer and looking at his neighbors' houses, identical to his, dreaming about ways to make his house different.
Lucy liked spending weekday afternoons watching soap operas on TV, dreaming about ways to spend her afternoons like the people did on TV.
Steve liked going to work in Cleveland on weekdays, not so much for his job but for the drive, during which he dreamt about other places the freeway could take him.
Lucy liked a little house-cleaning and a lot of going-to-the-mall, where she dreamt about what she could buy with soap opera money.
But both were too content, and never changed a thing.
Occasionally they talked about one TV program that show
The Black Bag The problem was simple, really. I was a little too drunk. Me and my buddy Jake though, we found it simple to walk with a stagger and laugh a little too loud, a simple problem. The day was pretty good, pretty drunk.The Black Bag5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
The hours passed easy until Max came out of his pawnshop. Max never leaves his pawnshop. He looked so worried and strange I had to squint to be sure it was him. He got us interested, walking toward my buddy and me with trouble written all over his face. Trouble is something a man can relate to from time to time, somehow.
Max walked right up to us and put his hand on my shoulder, thowing me off balance for his remark.
"I need your help, boys," he said.
Jake laughed. "Hey, Max needs our help!"
I nodded and tried to look serious to hide the surprise that made me want to laugh too. I thought it could b
FabricThe fabric of you,Fabric6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
in brilliant threads,
and the almost
divine thrill of silk
that bruises my fingertips
when I unbutton you
and turn you inside out.
I wear you
like my favorite jacket -
suede patched sleeves
and velvet cuffs,
lapels that whisper
your secrets to my skin
and seem to pull the night
into your pockets
as I watch your colors run,
long and singing in the dark
As I WriteThe trees swayedAs I Write4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Gently in the breeze
That Sunday night
As I wrote silently
About my triumphs,
About my failures,
And my wishes.
Like those trees swaying,
I go on
And never stop
Until I have reached
That last page.
The Man in the Coffee ShopThe man who works at the coffee shop looks like you. I noticed this some time ago and have since frequented the place. He recognizes me now. He smiles at me when I come in. His smile even looks like yours. He doesn't say hey though- you always said hey.The Man in the Coffee Shop4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
I still work at the library even though you're not there.
Sometimes I look over to your desk and expect to see you typing at your computer, but someone else is there now. It's not you.
Sometimes someone will come in who looks like you. Maybe he will have the same hair, same stature, same profile, same laugh, same voice. It's never been you.
Sometimes I drive myself crazy. I pull at my hair and scream 'till my lungs burst. I scream for and at you. I ask how you could have left me here.
Sometimes I allow myself to believe that I will see you again. By chance we will run into each other in a Wal-Mart far away.
I go to the coffee shop on Tuesday afternoons. I order a small chai tea with milk.
Sometimes the man is working at th
Caught in Battleby LJCaught in Battle5 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
Lately I've been doing a lot of not sleeping at night.
That is to say, I fall asleep fine, but about one in the morning the dreams turn to thoughts and I'm not asleep anymore.
I just lie there, thinking too much to even close my eyes.
My eyes feel bad in the red mornings, so tonight I light the oil lamp and sit up.
I might as well write what was requested by a friend a few days ago, at dinner together.
It doesn't kill dream memories, though.
At that dinner, my friend said, "They're nice stories and nice paintings you do, but they're not you, you know."
I protested. "They certainly are."
But she protested last.
"No, they aren't. They're other people's. You should write or paint yourself, for once."
I made a joke then, and said I'd do a self-portrait of me asleep. I'll write now instead.
The dream tonight was about the time I sketched a picture of him in the hospital. It was the last time I sketched him or was in a hospital wi
Diversionary Tactics "And would you care to buy a gram, sir? Great price on coke today," the girl smiled.Diversionary Tactics4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Lucas never saw that girl work here before.
He immediately said, "Are you kidding?!" and used his uppity Mercedes power to get away from that drive-through bank as quickly as possible. Man. That never happened to Lucas before. Was it the case of Old Forrester on the passenger seat?
No. It couldn't have been.
As it was, Lucas had more cocaine at his house than any one gram delivered in a pneumatic tube at some bank. He was returning from R-and-R at Yellowstone when he stopped for his bourbon and some cash. The Mercedes was dirty from his travels and he hadn't shaved for two weeks, but he still couldn't guess why that girl would think he was an idiot.
Lucas kept his coke in a steel suitcase, bags of it, even when he was gone. W
Grandmother's HouseHe hated his grandmother's houseGrandmother's House4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
with its heavy curtains
of the postman's tardy shoes,
and how the maid
rescued the newspaper
and poured the thin sherry
into tiny glasses
every night at six.
He loathed the claw foot sofas
with their cushions
shrinking from his trousers,
each plush thread recoiling
how unkempt he looked
and why his brother left.
He despised the birchwood beds
carved into sarcophagi
that flanked the radiators,
their pencil posts
poking the bodies of the willing
and how the bookcases groaned knowingly,
waiting for ominous words
to echo from the hallway
and beat down the keyholes.
But most of all
he hated the dining table
with its sallow wood
gleaming his reflection,
the china left
to fend for itself
and the cutlery
swallowing up the family
like a feast lost at noon.
The Neighbors Strange things began to happen when the Garcias moved into the ramshackle house next door. Or, at least people were implying that they were the cause of all the odd phenomena. I mainly did what I was told and stayed clear of the couple's territory.The Neighbors5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Rural life, as I experienced it, had its advantages and disadvantages. The good part was that we didn't have the luxuries of mobile phones or cable television and this made life more exciting. Children weren't cooped up at home watching DVDs or playing video games; we were always outside, running amok under the sun.
As for the bad parts, well, we would never even say them out loud. There were just things in the countryside that we simply couldn't understand, like how my best friend's father once burned half of an old acacia tree accidentally and woke up the next day with half of his body searing with blisters, or how wandering little boys suddenly vanis
StoneI don't want to dieStone4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
I don't want to die.
I don't want to die!
These thoughts accelerated in my jumbled psyche. My breathing had become short rasps, as if my lungs were desperately trying to take in all the air they could before it all ended before my very existence was erased. My heart rate was probably off the scale by then, threatening to end me before Death did. All the sadness, disappointment, and regret in my life rose up and choked me with their razor-sharp fingers.
The masked young man in front of me stood unfazed, seeming to taste my fear. I could almost picture the sinister smile on his lips the expression of a predator after having cornered his prey. He cocked the gun in his hand, steadily pointing the instrument just a few inches from the space between my eyes. The click of the gun as it echoed in the windowless whitewashed room sent a palpable shock throughout my body. Am I really going to die? I could not breathe nor blink. How could I, wh
Jaycee and All She Knows Lettie dreamt. She didn't know she was hooked to monitors to show her faltering heartbeat. She didn't know she was in a coma. Lettie dreamt. Lettie saw her beloved lover in a dream, the very handsome and unreliable man who gave her that first baby, now ten years old and wanted. Lettie dreamt a second baby, a boy playing with the first one, the girl Jaycee.Jaycee and All She Knows5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
How happy Jaycee looked! Jaycee taught her brother everything from how to hold a little cup to how to climb a tree.
Lettie didn't know her own role in the dream. She didn't see herself anywhere. But she certainly felt surrounded by love and a little family. Vague idea that Jaycee said there were two brothers, but that wasn't even possible.
Jaycee often said outlandish things. Lettie liked that about her daughter.
Lettie dreamt. She didn't know her nourishment came from tubes and left th
ThirstyThe evening sweatsThirsty4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
small feet drags
to swig the moon
Please Take Away My Coffee"Oh, unquestionably," Mathieu said, "unquestionably. She's beautiful." And for once his eyes lingered on something long enough to truly take it in before returning to the blue canvas-bound volume of Keats dangling idly from his left hand. "Not my type, though."Please Take Away My Coffee5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
The three of them sat around the plaza, three green uniforms idle in the middle of the flow of Paris life. With drill over, they had grown bored of the barracks gone into town where they settled in to watch the lives of unfamiliar people with their unfamiliar patterns unfold in front of them. Marc, who wasn't listening to his friends any longer, was watching one in particular.
"Hell if you even know your type," said Lucky.
She was Marc's type. Up til now Marc hadn't even had a type, didn't know what it was. But just now, he knew he was looking at it. Slender hands and a waist that sloped and rounded out in the hips, blue ruffles and a high-waist skirt, hair like darkwood; black but catching strains of ma
eucalyptusthey tell me i am writing confessionaleucalyptus4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
poetry and i tell them, no, i am not,
i am writing my world.
i did not burrow in guilt's throat
and choose to spell out the softness,
no, i screamed out my soul and it was then
that i remembered how i used to pray.
i wanted to tell stories
but instead i sat and wrote:
about rain, and sorrow,
and the greek gods,
and pain, and the greek gods,
over and over, and dionysus, dionysus:
i plunged and dived dolphin-beaked.
i want you know
that death is a responsibility
and saltwater immersion
a fierce talent we cannot escape
so this is a confession for you:
i am not selfish
i am self only
and sometimes self is all i am
and you are not-self, you are nothing
and i am softly silent
and i am unashamed. i am condemned.
Another Take The human I live with calls me "Tommy Gun." Or "Kitty." Sometimes "Cat." Yeah "cat," but I'm really an alien. Though we got here first and are highly evolved, humans insist on calling us all these names. I think it's because they're unable to call us what we call each other. They can't hear us talk most of the time. We usually use what humans call "telepathy," except in extreme cases. We try other ways to talk to humans. Use "meow" umpteen ways and you'll see how hard it is.Another Take4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
I like my human. She's a beautiful girl calls herself "Mimi" when she's on stage. Yeah "Mimi," and she's definitely human. She's a belly dancer and an excellent one. She can enchant a room full of old humans without even a drum, without even taking off any of her very many veils. She sort of undulates, like a wonderful snake might. But snakes I can eat. Mimi is way bigger than me, plus I want her to live. I won't kill her. She feeds me so I won't bring a dead sn
lullabycricket solo endslullaby4 years ago in Haiku & Eastern More Like This
the choir begins
A Drink Further"Don't you dare."A Drink Further5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
I grin, weighing the snowball in one hand, then the other. It's inconsistent and flaky the kind of freshly fallen snow that's little more than frozen mist and air packed loosely around a soggy liquid core. It'd probably break apart before it flew the few paces between Lisa and myself. But she doesn't know that.
"Don't I dare what?"
She gives me a look that touches on withering, but I know better. I've known Lisa for quite some time, and I doubt she's ever been capable of violence. Nevertheless, I drop the messy ball with a chuckle and wipe the remains on the sleeve of my jacket.
Another moonlit winter night in Neriem, a town nestled high in the mountains off the coast of Antioch. Snow falls in thick sheets here, coating the city in delicate white powder. It's thick stuff, enough to muffle the sound of our footsteps as we cross campus, yet falling lightly enough that it doesn't m
GrimTime hiccupped while Sasha was nursing a cup of coffee in the lunchroom of the office complex where she worked. It was a brief flicker but she knew what it meant all the same. She’d been gazing idly in Gary Piedmont’s direction -- Gary with his perennial tan and cobra-like grace -- when suddenly in his place was a bloodied and burnt apparition with bugs caught in its smile.Grim6 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
She watched, wide-eyed, fingers tightening spasmodically around the cup of coffee she held as the thing walked across the room in Gary’s well-tailored suit and sat down. Then she blinked and the ghastly image was gone.
Sasha took a deep breath and let it out slowly, fighting the wave of nausea and pity that rose up in her throat. Gary from marketing was going to die, sometime soon, and there wasn’t a damn thing she could do about it. She could try to warn him to be careful, not to take any unnecessary risks but as she didn’t know exactly how or when he would die, his fate was as g
in the middle of a gun fightoh mother, i am not even the perfect imperfect that good men fall in love with. i am the imperfect scabbing on wrists and stuck under school desks that is fantasized in the minds of ex-bad boys who still love murder.in the middle of a gun fight5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
mother i am losing myself, pulling my eyelids shut pullingthemshutshuttingthemi'mshutting and when i open my fists they are full of wishes that i will blow. i am screeching my throat apart for help, 'cause i don't know when i'll be back again, dear god, will i be back again?
like every other greedy man, this god, writing his name on everything. good men tell me god is good and he is lenient and that faith is love so we should make it. oh mother, will i be renamed some day, or is god going to throw me away?
i am i am losing myself,
i am still in love with murder, will they hang me, mother? how much farther will i fall, will i finally touch the ground, will the momentum stretch me tall?
my bones are rattling like when i slam against the walls, oh mother, my hands are