Mr. LizardI remember when I was finally able to convince my parents to buy me a pet lizard. I was so excited! It lived inside a wooden cage with a wire mesh in front. I named it Mr. Lizard. I wasn't very good at coming up with names.
Everyday, when I came back home from school, I'd go to my room and would feed Mr. Lizard a cricket. I thought that was the neatest part about having a lizard. It was fun to watch as the cricket hopped around inside the cage as Mr. Lizard eyed it. I kept thinking, "Oh man, I wonder when he'll eat the cricket!" Then "Munch!" It was done. I was somewhat disgusted by it, but at the same time fascinated.
One night, I was watching a nature show on TV and the people in it were trying to rescue some animals that were captured illegally and being sold as pets. They managed to save a few and then released them back into the wild. Everyone was hap
Empty skies"Doesn't it look empty to you?"Empty skies5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
What do you mean, little girl? It never looks empty, because in an expanse of sky there can be clouds and rain storms and blue turning to green at the edges. It's a diaphanous green, an almost-there-but-not-really green, and it melts into the ground sometimes. The change in colour has something to do with the atmosphere, I think. There are too many gases in the air and that causes the world to look larger.
And yet here you are, little girl, and you're telling me it looks empty. You're asking me whether I agree. And how can something so full of rockets and stars and a million suns be empty? Well, maybe not completely full of them. But something needs empty space in order to look pretty. Negative space, if you ask the artist.
Why don't you ask the artist, little girl? I'm sure he knows much more of emptiness than a lonely stargazer with a telescope and a cloudy sky. I mean, it does kind of have that charcoal-like quality to it when it's night time and ther
LoverHe couldn't care less about her adoration for philosophy;Lover5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
the way the word 'existentialism' rolled off her tongue
and gave her nostalgia, how solipsism infuriated her,
the way she became fascinated with hail that broke glass.
In fact, he despised how she remembered every bone
in the human body and how she compared them
to other things: "The pelvic girdle is just misshapen wings
and the carpals are like tiny stones you find on beaches."
What he loved was the way her eyes stole his essence,
how his skin would be gnawed on by shivers and tingling,
how she'd masticate potassium and roll her tongue when
she ingested vitamin c.
Quite frankly, she gave him a hard-on.
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 Shop5 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
Grandfather's BirdGrandfather had a pet bird. Just a small, yellow and white parakeet; he named it Georgie, after Grandmother. Every morning, he would wake up at 6 o'clock, make a pot of coffee, grab the newspaper, and feed the small bird a small pile of birdseed. And he would gently carry the birdcage, and place it on the table and talk to her as he drank his coffee and read the newspaper.Grandfather's Bird5 years ago in Scraps More Like This
"Gas prices are up again Georgie, geez, remember when we could pay 20¢ to fill up our car?"
And sometimes the bird almost chirped in response. Years and years went by, and Grandfather grew older, and he could no longer carry the bird off the shelf, but he would still feed and talk to her at 6 o'clock.
One morning, Grandfather found himself barely able to make it out of bed. He still made his way into the kitchen to feed his dear bird. His hand shook and some birdseed fell to the floor as he carefully moved into the tray into the cage. He slowly made his way to the table so that he could sit down.
Blue StarsI learned that the sun was a star a long time ago sitting in an old wooden desk built for second graders that somehow found its way into a fifth grade classroom. I remember decorating it with pencil shavings and permanent marker that turned out to be less permanent than I had hoped.Blue Stars5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
I learned the sun was a star just like the millions and billions of dots I saw every night and never thought about it again until years later. The sun is a star. Our life force comes from the stars.
The distance between the sun and the Earth is 15 x 10^7km. Light travels at 3 x 10^5km/ per second. That means it takes 500 seconds for light to reach Earth. So if some force yet unknown to science were to blow up the sun right now, we wouldn't know for eight minutes and twenty seconds. Which is to say, just enough time to run and buy a bottle of sunscreen.
You can die happy with your perfect tan at least.
But then there are blue stars. Blue stars are a million times more powerful than the sun. That's not hyperb
Hollow SuicideI love this world.Hollow Suicide5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
I love it even when it's so beautifully achingly lonely that I can feel the drum of my pulse throbbing just under my skin, a constant reminder of the hollow center the veins connect back to.
Sometimes I think I want to build my future in the forest because the trees are so lovely but then I realize that I would be missing out on the vast, limitless blue expanses of oceanwater and the sound of the waves lapping at the shoreline. And then I think of the view from the mountains, or the honey-golden tones of the desert at sunset, the neon lights of the great cities, all the beautiful places in the world I have to choose from, but which one is the most beautiful in the end?
I think about the end of the world, how the forests would burn and the seas would dry up and the mountains would crumble and the cities would fall, and the destruction would still be hauntingly beautiful because it's a reminder of our own impermanence. A gentle memory of that faint
lemongrass girlSlipping through rainlemongrass girl5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
spicy like saffron
I'm the lazy lacy tumbleweed
hooked to the undercarriage of your car
i'm a lemongrass girl
I turn cartwheels and smile at trees
and keep memories in a suitcase
next to a sandalwood fan
i like the sun
i like yellow
i like to smile
until my eyes crinkle
can I be your friend?
because sometimes i feel lonely
outside and removed
will you take this tumbleweed inside your car?
i would like to ride shotgun
Man the stereo so you can drive
open the windows -- see my hair is curly
and i like ice cream
i like to smile
until my eyes crinkle
but I want to make you laugh
i can be funny.
but can i be your friend?
This is a desperate plea
(did you know that i write?)
I feel like the smiling child
three feet below you
but my eyes are grey,
and I am your equal
so can we be friends?
I am sweet and we should be friends.
I like writing inductively.
that's how i wrote this
to get to this end
steel heart.i. he has a heart made of steel.steel heart.5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
ii. he meets a six foot tall, awkward and lanky boy in a quaint little coffee shop, and the wires inside his steel heart twitch. large doe eyes stare straight into his shell and he thinks his brain has begun to malfunction. he finds himself asking the name of the boy, and his steel heart begins to hum maxmaxmax.
iii. hands run softly through his hair and he's pretty sure the heat in his chest cavity isn't a good thing. he records the touch of max's fingers in his hair and stores it as a file worth a few hearty gigabytes. he begins to save everything that max does, and replays them over and over again when he's alone on the rooftop, under the lights of the stars.
iv. when max kisses the edge of his eye, he realizes that he's run out of memory space, and he feels a little despair creeping into his heart in the form of rust. but it's okay, he tells himself, as max kisses him again, as long as he's got the warmth of the boy next to him, computerized
Unchangedi. keep breathing?Unchanged5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
life is just a constant battle between good and evil. it's a story, with a setting, with characters: billions of people, each with their own agendas. it's a tapestry with thousands of interwoven threads, colours, lives. there's laughter, tears, lovepeople who pass through and move on. there are sunrises, sunsets, beginnings, ends.
we try so hard to learn what comes before, what comes after. we yearn for some form of understanding, some way to know everything. struggling to discover life after death, life before birth, we never think of the little things. simple things. the tiny, beautiful things that give everything meaning.
we never stop and ask ourselves to just keep breathing.
there's a ship, and it's disappearing on the horizon. you're looking at itwe're all looking at itand we want to know where it will take us. we want to know what happens if we choose this ship, specifically; we wonder if it will go some
HumanI dream.Human5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Well what do you expect from someone so young?
Someone who's only hope lies within her mind,
and only arrives well into the night.
Well what do you expect from someone so broken?
Someone who's weak and fragile inside,
who shouldn't have to grin and bear it all the time.
Well what do you expect from someone so blamed?
Someone who's been walked all over,
who will crumble without defense.
Well what do you expect from someone so ignored?
Someone who might fade from the world
should she be forgotten for too long.
Well what do you expect from someone so lonely?
Someone who just wants somebody to confide in,
to kiss, to hug, to hold, and to cherish.
Well what do you expect from someone one so betrayed?
Someone who's been stabbed in the back so many times
that she has permanent blood stains that will never come clean.
stay.tonight,stay.5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
more than chemicals and cognition,
higher than concrete constellations,
and we hold the fire of the stars
on the tips of our tongues.
there may be hell to pay
for stealing the moon from the night
and the thoughts from our minds.
just stay with me
a little while.
stay and count our heartbeats
like the measures of a lullaby
between twilight and sunrise.
stay with me
just a whisper below the atmosphere,
and let us forget
how to die.
stay with me
for just a moment
of eternal life.
KeystrokeThe keys feel nice under my fingers, soft and indented from manufacturing supplies and my own abuse. I like to type moreso than writing with a pencil or pen. It brings me comfort to spill words onto a nonexistent page and be able to erase them just as easily. No eraser shavings or crumpled paper to serve as evidence of my musings. The keys are like home. They call to me even when I have nothing to say. I'll spend hours typing nonsense logic into a word processor only to delete it because I didn't really want the words so much as I wanted the comfort. It's like holding my father's hand or leaning on my mother's shoulder as she wraps me in her embrace.Keystroke5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Their thin constructs are so fragile under my deft pads, and the feel of the push and give as I press on them brings life to the inanimate things. Each one is separate, an individual with a personality all their own.
J and F are my homing beacons when I rest my hands on the keyboard; their indents merely physical attributes so that
Seeds.Holding onto memories of those terrible nights within your grasp is beginning engrave words in your skin and in your thoughts. You can let it all follow around you in the clouds you inhale and the stomach acid you release after those long secluded nights because after all everything is a memory someday.Seeds.4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Holding onto your deteriorating past denies it the chance to decay and bloom from the remnants that are leftover.
Your hands don't seem quite so soft and your fears not so subtle. They're rising to the surface along with all the other baggage you deny holding because you're terrified to let it out. Its scratching at your skin from the inside, tearing apart your soul and dancing through your veins. It's tearing up your heart with the claws you just let grow and its holding onto your lungs tightly until there isn't enough room for a last breath.
This could have meant something special and delicate. Like the feeling of skin on skin and when you can hear their heartbeat as your h
And So Ii.And So I5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
I wrote our love story on the Internet for the world to read. The bored teenagers with their witty usernames commented on every sappy blog post, wishing me luck and cuddles through a combination of punctuation marks and letters that was supposed to resemble a face.
And it was glorious.
I reveled in you like my dog reveled in the snow that sometimes fell at the beginning of January excited, but too small. And so I sank.
Come to think of it, I never particularly liked snow. It makes the world cold and is only pretty until people mess it up. Plus, the snow that we get around here is never more than slush, and the only reason to cancel school is the black ice on the roads.
And, come to think of it, I never really needed you.
Who are you? I suppose I'll never know. I do not even think that I want to. I never even knew you back then you were a fantasy, something my disillusioned teenage mind conjured up from a tangle of hormones and a misplaced compliment.
All I knew was
Schizophrenia is an awful nameShe ran.Schizophrenia is an awful name5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
She ran through the maze of dark corridors that her sick and twisted mind (as she described it) represented.
She felt so lost feeling the anger taking control over her sanity. If she ever was sane, she couldn't remember it, and she probably didn't like it either. Even though all this madness was killing her slowly there was a part of her twisted self that enjoyed it, the pain, the fear, the anger
I'm bad she told herself, and the sweet and enchanting (and bad, really really bad) voices inside her head approved.
All this people telling her what to and what not to do, society reduced to do's and don'ts. A society where don'ts were the only thing that kept her happy, or alive, but she couldn't contradict society. No, nobody contradicts society.
All she had where the voices telling her to go for it, but don'ts were don'ts for a reason or two. They hurt other people.
Oh, but the voices, those sweet voices that claimed to love her so much were selfish, as
Penniless and Brokeni.Penniless and Broken6 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Stitch me up nice and tight,
Sew my left, then my right.
Nothing left but needle and thread.
Sew me up, buttons and all.
Start with my feet, end with my head.
I wish I was a burlap sack doll so I could sit on the corner of your dusty shelf and see the world behind corduroy buttoned eyes. You could fill my head up with all your plans in life and tell me about that girl you met at school today, knowing I'll always keep your secrets safe because my lips are stitched together and filled with cotton. You have no idea how dry my mouth gets and how scratchy my throat is but I suffer through it for you. It's always been for you.
We used to be such good friends,
Similar beginnings, different ends.
I'm not sure where I went wrong,
I knew you were too good all along.
I wish I had a ship so we could sail from port to port and we could pretend we were pirates because I know you've always liked pretend more than reality. You once told me that you loved dreaming more than anything because your
Take Me For a RideDarling:Take Me For a Ride5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Take me for a ride. Let me sit in your passenger seat, your partner in crime. Give me control of the radio, and let me find something we both can tolerate; or else something we both hate, and can laugh at, blasting it while we go. Let me be your navigator, getting us lost in the middle of nowhere. We can fight and yell and blame each other before we forgive and take it all as the grand adventure it's supposed to be. Let me get up to crazy shenanigans, making faces and distracting you. We'll be causing all sorts of trouble in the name of fun. And when it gets dark, let me sleep in the passenger seat, in my slumber entrusting you with my safety. Let me feed you food while you drive; holding your burger and soda while you keep your hands on the wheel and eyes on the roads ahead.
And when the ride is over dear heart, do to me as others have done. Push the pedal till we're going over a hundred kilometres an hour. Without warning push open that passenger side door, unbuckle my belt,
The starsThe stars are not allowedThe stars4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
to wander around.
The stars have vowed
to remain bound together
tightly wound within their energies
The stars are not allowed
to wander around
However hard the game
you have to play it,
tightly wound with the other stars.
The greedy stars
only have one game,
Constellations have their own game:
to love the sky.
Somewhere in its infinity Death is lurking.
Why is Death watching the stars?
The game is too hard.
Time: its sole imperfection
is Death, although
it never dies,
Death is always a matter
In this game,
as hard, as it is absurd,
the stars have
only one kind of magic on their side:
Often, where a leaf dies,
a bud appears.
Often, where a star is falling,
lovers make a wish,
to love each other for eternity.
Love is not a matter of Time,
it blossoms and buds in all Space
since the birth of the first atom.
It is the only game that we wish
it would never end.
I love you infinitely
I will love you forever
HomelessIt's got to be said, that using a cardboard box, with its sides split, as a shelter from the rain isn't the best idea ever. After receiving so much moisture, it begins to sag and raps around you in your sleep, often without you realising. When you wake up, and you push away the sodden remains of your temporary home, your entire body shakes. Often, certainly half a dozen times in my case, this will later be followed by a severe cold, or on two occasions for myself, pneumonia. After going through the ritual of checking you're still alive, it's off to work. If you've ever been so unfortunate as to lose everything, except the clothes on your back thankfully, you'd understand just how soul destroying it is when those with so much refuse to give you anything, not even a moment of their time for a chat.Homeless5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Of course, it's entirely my fault I'm in this situation. The recession was my fault. My wife having an affair and leaving me for Richard, with his flashy car and crisp tie, was also entirely m
The Architect's DaughterGrowing up, the drafting table was a strange contraption lording over the basement and over the crown of her then small head. As she slowly came to understand the table's function, it came to teach her that A) work and home are inseparable, and B) the world is flat. Skyscrapers collapse into thin piles of layered printer paper and torn, pen-marked transparency sheets. Mountains and forests reduce to stacked shapes. Fathers compile into cramped calendars.The Architect's Daughter5 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
Now the early lessons are thoroughly embedded. Art and architecture are inseparable in her mind. The easel is her own table, similar to a draughtsman's and yet completely different in the ways that matter. She is not a draughtswoman or a designer. Instead, exactly like children imitate their parents naïvely, she plays at being an architect, mimicking the actions but doing them backwards. Architects use flat means to create real objec
Why I Am HappyThe boy sitting on the park bench had eyes like sandpaper melancholy.Why I Am Happy5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
I think I noticed because I am a poet. I don't think anyone else but a poet could look at his eyes and think, "sandpaper melancholy." But they were that color. A fair brown. And grainy. I liked them in the way I like bitter baking chocolate -- because it has an interesting flavor, not because it is sweet. Unadulterated chocolate is almost unpalatable.
We like sugary chocolate because it has been changed. Adulterated. Oh.
Could tears clean out the roughness in his eyes?
That is why I am happy. I cry the Sorrow out, since poets are not afraid to do that sort of thing. The hunger of starving artists makes us sensitive.
He seemed like one of the people that can be Happy while Sorrow constantly nags on their heartstrings. Like, "Ha, ha, that film was funny!" but after the film is over there is nothing to distract you so tugtug! you remember being sad. They're always sad, but they can't always remember. He seemed ok
One LoveI'm not enough.One Love5 years ago in Emotional More Like This
I'm not super-human, not a hero either. I'm just me. Me. And what I am might not be what you need.
But I'll try.
I can promise you as much. I can try to be what you need and I can do it for the rest of my life. If I could just nearly be what you need, what he was, it'll be enough. It has to be enough because I'm not the perfect piece, I'm misshaped and confused and so madly in love with you.
Yet I'm not him.
I'll never be.
You loved him. And part of you, the one he took, always will. I can only hope the small part left can learn not to long after the one missing. I can only hope it'll learn to move on and someday - perhaps who knows? will notice me.
Sometimes I just I I just want to be everything to you.
People don't call me a fool for no reason, you know? Though I prefer to think of myself as an idealist and show them wrong. I know... I know they're wrong. I can be everything to somebody else; I can fulfil my lover's every need
A Year Spent DeadSeptemberA Year Spent Dead5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Glowing, laughing, living, breathing. Beneath the falling autumn leaves I walk and just think. I think about how wonderful life is. Because it's great.
There's a new kid in school but everybody picks on him. I don't know what to do because I myself have never been picked on.
So, after much contemplation, I stand forward and say, 'Hey. Stop that.'
After having defended the new boy I now know how it feels to be bullied. Only no one comes to my rescue. That other boy left weeks ago.
But the abuse is just verbal. I can cope with verbal.
Once it was verbal, however now it is not. But they only batter me lightly, we're all boys, it won't kill me. They won't kill me.
Or will they? They nearly did, I think. I may already be dead. I do not know. Not anymore. One day, after school whilst walking across the field, it happened.
First the names.
Shooting star to perfectionShe always wondered what it would be like to have no stupid gravity pushing you down. Depressing you and boring you and having to make an effort to smile because gravity always wanted you to frown.Shooting star to perfection5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
She always wanted to escape but she wouldn't stand to be so far away from you, so she'll ask you to come with her and you'll say yes because you love her to death.
You'll both fly and float and think and be and eventually you'll be so far away that earth will only sound like a metaphor to you.
You'll go through the milky way riding a shooting star. Shooting stars always scared her, they were way too fast and she liked things to go slow because she felt time was going quicker if things were fast, and time was no good friend of hers.
But in space, with you the silence the darkness and nothing else she loved it, she could almost feel the inexistent wind through her face and her pitch black hair (just like space, you see. Shiny and yet the darkest black you'll ever see.)
You'll float away throug