Writer's BlockThe numbers on my desk calendar started to blend together as my eyes began to close and I dozed off. I regained consciousness with a start, and I involuntarily slammed my hand down to what should have been my desk.
"Wh-where am I?"
"Oh my dear! We certainly weren't expecting you today; we would have cleaned up a bit. Heh, you see, we're having a bit of a well technical difficulty." Said a round, rather pleasant woman wearing a polka-dot dress with a nametag simply saying "Dot."
I looked around; I was in a large, disorganized office with people and papers scrambling with bundles of copy paper. I grabbed a paper from the desk beside and read:
Boy with schizophrenia and his life with his imaginary
The ink faded out and I couldn't read the rest.
I picked up the paper and held it out to the woman demanding an answer.
"What is this? Who are you and what sort of place is this?"
"Well dear, that is an idea, yours actually, we've been having a problem with our machine, we see
When I Think of TeaShe often invited me for tea. I remember muddy tennis shoes or bright pink jellies left at her front step as she opened the world to me behind her faded red door. Her house fascinated me with its intricate paintings and macabre souvenirs stuck in every available space.When I Think of Tea4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
She was amazing, too; of course. Mrs. Pratchett carried a rumor mill around her wherever she walked, leaving bits of herself behind in tantalizing flakes eager tongues lapped up and dished back out to anyone with ears. The town knew her as everything from a rich widow to a voodoo priestess, but I knew her as my neighbor.
She sent out her invitation to tea in autumn more than any other season. Most days I bounded down the bus steps to find her sitting on her porch with a book. A nod and a wink, and we rushed inside for tea. The kettle always whistled just as I set my backpack by the door and slid into my spot at her kitchen table.
There we drank tea and talked about life. Her tea tasted like the autumn days she loved: gol
Piano PlayingI am a pianistPiano Playing4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
And you are my piano, dear.
I play minuets along your ribcage,
Write love songs on your arms,
And press your vertebrae like keys
To let soft chords fill the empty space.
Your hairs are the resounding strings,
Your lips are polished brass pedals
That make everything loud and soft at the same time.
Kissing you makes the whole world shift up an octave.
I am a pianist
And you are my piano, dear
So let's write a duet in the dark.
CalamityI keep expectationsCalamity4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
in my back jean pocket
and i tuck disappointment
into the folds of my shirts
they stay with me always
while confidence makes friends
with the dust bunnies under my bed
I store empty promises
under the weight of my spine
crushed by back bone shoulder blades
turned from fragile bones to wings that will never fly
and there is always anger
hidden beneath my fingernails
flooding my lungs until I can no longer breathe
while pleasure and pride
become the lost love child
of closets and old shoe boxes
frustration sleeps in my veins
accumulating like blood clots
incompetence makes itself at home
in the spaces between bones
and happiness loses itself
in shoes that don't fit
and sweatshirts that no longer hold warmth
I'm finePaint splattered like dying sobs across the wide emptiness,I'm fine4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Running away like ink from bloody fingertips.
It's close enough to midnight not to matter
And these words are written with hands
Shaking from forced apathy.
A voice lingered,
It sounded like yours,
Or else it was the pages falling closed,
A regretful sigh in the early hours of the end of the world.
The television's on repeat; it's crying for help
And I thought it might have been you,
But it was the angels instead.
They circle like carrion
And steal all of what I wanted to tell you
About the meaningless feelings I've been having,
Replacing instead with the poignant:
The lie is beautiful, undeniable, evident
And so firmly established that questioning it
Would be the action of someone who cares.
The light is thick and liquid
And seeping into my veins in order to cut off circulation
To something that's supposed to be important,
But I've forgotten somewhere.
Somewhere in a place where the snow falls black,
The birds are
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
StarsIt isStars4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
when our eyes
I see you
reflected in your eyes
you don't feel
Coffee-Stained LetterDear Stranger,Coffee-Stained Letter4 years ago in Letters More Like This
You don't know me. And I don't know you. Maybe it's better that way. But then again, maybe we would be happier if we did know each other.
Right now, I'm sitting at my desk, with the sunlight streaming in the window, writing this letter for you. Hopefully I'll finish it by tonight, so that tomorrow I can take it to the coffee shop on the corner and drop it on the floor, or in your lap, or maybe in the lap of the person next to you so they can give it to you...because they don't seem like the type to read it, so they'll obviously just pass it on.
I like music - except terrible rap. And I love the written word more than most, it baffles some of my friends sometimes. I wonder, do you like to read? I have the tiniest tattoo I've ever seen, it's a tiny fairy on my ankle, but you can't see her unless you're looking for her and know where to look...like a real fairy, they're good at hiding too you know. I saw a fairy once. She was hiding behind the strawberries in my garden. I t
Dead for YearsToday,Dead for Years4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
You told me you loved me.
I think I stopped believing you a long time ago.
I told you I loved you.
I don't think you ever started.
I lied to you.
I think it was the first time you've trusted me.
You asked me to marry you.
I hesitated saying yes.
You kissed my flesh and told me you wanted a child.
I wasn't ready;
I stopped taking my pills and started fucking you more.
I gave birth to your daughter.
You say she'll have a beautiful mind.
You took her to the museum.
I've never seen you so alive.
I watched your eyes light up.
She'd whispered something into your ear.
I'll pour myself a tall glass of cyanide.
And give a toast to all that's left.
I'll be dead.
But right now in this moment,
I want you to know,
That despite what you've thought;
I've always loved you more.
Faithi.Faith4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I must have lost myself
in the distance between
what was and what is
trying to look towards the future
and towards the past
and instead just getting
confused about forwards and back
I must have taken
a wrong turn between
almost and already there
because this distance is
supposed to be short,
but I've been walking
for miles and miles
and my destination
is nowhere in sight
I must have the knack
for falling into pit holes in the
roads that separate the beginning
and the end
because I never seem to finish anything.
And maybe I'm just too good at quitting,
but I've walked this walk four times too many
and still, I've yet to see the end
I must have walked across
the line between black and white
too many times because
I've found myself in this strange gray area
between truth and lies
but life's too boring with only three colors
so let me leave this maze of mess ups and mistakes
let me step out of this monotone world
so I can search for the other side of the rainbow
Feeding The PigeonsThe new pills were in my pocket, probably getting all linty. Or should I say the new-new-new pills: after all, this was the third try at finding a medication I'm not allergic to. After throwing my guts up on two different meds, I'm not about to swallow another one, only to find it's coming back up too.Feeding The Pigeons4 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
Why do I even have medication? It's not like I'm in horrible pain when I don't take it.
My arms are stuck straight out, and they waver as I try to balance on one metal track. If my foot touches the ground, it's "burned" by lava. Lava is pretty good incentive not to touch the middle of the train tracks: even if in real life, its not lava. Its just rocks.
I stuff my hands in my pockets and feel the oblong pills big enough for a horse to have trouble swallowing. I wrap them in my hands, and as I walk, they "accidentally" fall to the rails below.
"What are you doing?" A voice says behind me. I near jump outta my skin and whip around.
A cop. Great. More specifically, my cop, if you wan
My DaddyWe were a happy family. It was just me, my mommy, and my daddy. We would do lots of fun things together! Sometimes, we would go to the beach or sometimes we would get ice cream together. It was really fun.My Daddy4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Things got bad when Daddy lost his job. He said his job was taken by someone else who could do it for less money than he could. I did not think it was fair. Still, my daddy never gave up and promised me and Mommy he would find another job soon.
Everyday he circled something on the newspaper and left the house to go see if the people in the newspaper needed help. Everyday, he came back with a sad look on his face and sat on the couch. I would sit next to him and hug him. He always smiled and thanked me. That made me happy.
Mommy would tell Daddy that it was okay and that he would get a job soon. But a long time passed and he still could not get a jo
The Angel in the House"Dearest?"The Angel in the House3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
"Dearest, there, did you hear ?" But his voice trailed off with a glance at her blank little face, tilted at him with feline confusion. He rose the paper to the level of his nose and rustled it nervously. "Don't trouble yourself, I'm sure it's nothing "
Yet there it was again, he could feel the vibrations in his chair! His wife's obvious inability to hear it made him loathe to admit this, however, and he slouched lower under the breakfast table, observing her over the top of the business section.
She was an uncanny creature, he had to admit. Their courtship had been brief and perfunctory, more compelled into occurrence through their families than any actual inclination. And yet, he had come to love her in some fashion. The silent way she slid about the breakfast table; the sweep of dark hair against her pale forehead; the classic curve of her nose; her dainty, dexterous hands fluttering as she cleared up the plates. There were times when he wished he could em
Just One Regret"How was your day?" Iris asked. Jackson scrutinized his wife's face over the video screen, mapping out her familiar face and comparing it to his memory. The bags under her eyes were darker, more pronounced then their last call, and her curly brown hair was pulled back in a sloppy bun, allowing several curls free enough to frame her face. In his not-quite professional opinion, Iris looked a just a bit ragged around the edges, but the enthusiasm in her voice hadn't dimmed a bit. He smiled. That was Iris all over.Just One Regret4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
"Same as any other." He shrugged. "Did the shopping for the week, ran a few errands before work. Ms. Grayson actually complimented me after that presentation for our, ahem, foreign investors." Iris laughed and he knew the grin on his face was bordering on maniacal. "Oh, and Rory's mid-semester reports came in today."
"And how's he doing?" She straightened in her chair and leaned closer to the screen, as if that would improve the hearing or the news.
"Not as well as we'd hoped."
SolitudeHe is now an old man (a very old man), and he is now very lonely (so very, very lonely). His wife is fifteen years dead. His children are grown, with their own families and jobs and small catastrophes. They don't bother to see him much. Some call, short little spaces in time. Hi Dad, how are you and meaningless chatter about the weather. It is a simple life he lives, filled with memories of dancing girls and root beer floats and high school dances. He sits in his empty house and paints visions before his eyes.Solitude3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Anna comes the most, stopping by every week or so with her small daughter trailing behind her like a lost puppy. Her name is Lucy and she looks like his late wife, all blonde curls and gangly limbs, though Anna's dark eyes and thin mouth are after his own. Lucy plays with old toys while Anna putters around, washing dishes and folding wrinkled laundry and berating him for not taking better care of the place, of himself. She never could sit still, that girl, always a flurry of moti
Every Dog Has Its DayThere once was a dog who wandered the streets. He was a kindly dog who did not have a home.Every Dog Has Its Day4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Sometimes, he would see families at the park playing with their dogs. How he wished he were one of those dogs. After a time, he decided that he would try to befriend one of the children that played in the park. He was overcome with excitement and haphazardly ran toward a child while yelling "Hello!" over and over again. He had almost reached the child when, suddenly, he felt a sharp pain in his side. A man had kicked him causing him to yelp in pain. He never went back to the park again.
Despite that incident, it did not deter him from trying to find someone who wanted him. The dog promised himself that if he should ever find someone to love him, he would return that love a hundredfold.
One rainy morning, as he was searching for food, he happened to come across a pet store. Inside, he saw dozens of
The FallThe fall was terrifying. She tumbled from such a height, rolling head-over-foot and side-to-side. She lost track of what was up, what was down. Her head felt like it might explode from the pressure of the air swirling around her, catching her limbs and making them thrash in various directions as she continued the descent...The Fall4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
The landing was worse than the fall. When she hit, the impact jarred through her entire being. She tried to scream, agony ripping through her, but found she could no longer catch her breath. She could not breathe at all. The complete, horrifying sensation of being unable to take a breath caused her to shudder.
She was dying, fallen from glory and shattered upon the ground like she had never mattered, not once. She wondered, in the last moments she knew she had, if her family would miss her. Her siblings, her mother. Her father. Would her friends wonder where she'd gone? She had to believe they would miss her. She had to believe, because dying with the fear that no o
FatherThe skin becomes blotted with age. A swollen, red face (he needs to lose weight), bags under his eyes, crevices in the creases of his face that were never there before (creates a permanent tiredness).Father3 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
He sits in front of the television all day long.
The volume is loud (you could hear it outside the screen door) because working on planes in the Air Force gave him a jump start on hearing loss. It was only a few years, but those B-52s...
He leans back in his favorite chair, his potbelly floats above the rest of his body and continues to swell by the year. There's a perfect curve between belly and chest that creates the resting place for his folded hands. Probably because of all the alcohol, the shots taken to take a break from the memories, his belly doesn't shrink with the pills.
He sits in front of the television all day long.
He could have been a cop. Drugs and a haggard first wife led him astray, so he has to settle for imagination. He watches the show Cops (guns pointed, s
Italo's Goldfish "Juliet! Juliet's dead!" I heard the shout of my son, Italo. I ran downstairs. I found Italo crying, facing his fishbowl. Inside the fishbowl were two fishes, the other is motionless, floating in the water, upside down. The other fish is still alive, circling round and round its dead mate.Italo's Goldfish4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
"Juliet's dead, mama." Italo cried still. "What will happen to Romeo without her?"
"He'll live, honey."
I stared at the dead fish again. It was my gift for Italo's fourth birthday. I had asked him what he wanted and he had said, "Buy dinosaur, mama."
"They're all dead, dear."
"Okay, just a lion then."
"How about a goldfish?"
Italo thought about it for a minute, then he nodded. I then drove my car to the nearest pet st
contemplating lyricismShe contemplated lyricism on the subway.contemplating lyricism3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
It started slowly each stop with an underbuzz of the p.a. speakers after the announcement of the closing doors: a discordant issuance of electrical interference from a bad ground wire- long neglected in maintenance yard priority. It sheltered the human burble of muttered and cellular tones, soothing their jumbled nature to a flow of disagreeing choruses all traveling to the same destination.
The electrohum of each massive motor, wound up towards a final, subtle pitch, laid a tenor line beneath the living chatter melody. It held a fine, strong frequency that never wavered in the support of progress.
Rolling weight on ancient tracks brought forth cyclical rhythm: ba-da-da ba-da-da repeating, clacking and etching each joint of steel that wound the community together below streets, steam lines and sub-basements.
Crescendo at each curve, the pressure of the turn pushed the rhythm, strained the tenor and ra
Helloit's time for goodbyeHello4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
but I scream, "hello"
for every time I was silent.
you don't know how badly I ache
to change all our exchanges
into long conversations.
I stayed away but now find
we're out of time without warning.
even now I can't speak
afterall, how can you say "goodbye"
without saying "hello"?
I'll always dream of what could have been
while you'll never know.
so let this be my first and final
BrothersWhen he saw his older brother pull up into the parking lot, Evan felt his stomach twist, and he had the sudden urge to puke his lunch out all over the sidewalk. The little green car sidled up to the curb slow as a turtle, and his brother's arm rested leisurely on the edge of the open window. After some time, the man eventually spotted Evan and gave him a lopsided grin followed by a wave so uncertain it was almost like he hadn't recognized the young boy at first.Brothers3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
The heat was bearing down on Evan's shoulders hard; he felt the pits of his white t-shirt becoming soaked through with sweat and he knew that despite his feelings about the situation there was no choice but to get into the car. A few girls from his class passed by, their dark shoes clicking against the pavement like a metronome. They hid their laughter beneath cupped hands and giggled in each other's ears.
Evan headed straight for the passenger's side before anyone else happened to see his brother. As soon as he got inside, he
Monochrome Dream EaterA lone girl stared out her window late one night, hugging herself tightly. A lamp lit up her room, despite the fact that it was well after midnight. She wished she could sleep, but she couldn't. She shuddered, recalling her horrifying nightmare of a young blonde girl sawing off her arms.Monochrome Dream Eater4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
She whipped around. Standing in her bedroom was what looked like a teenage blonde boy. He wore unusual clothes and carried a white cane.
"W-Who are you?" She stammered. "H-How are you in my room?"
He didn't reply. Instead, he walked over and gently cupped a hand under her chin. "Did you have a nightmare?"
The girl's eyes widened. "H-How did you ?"
He smiled, showing off perfectly white teeth. "Shall I cast a spell on you, my lady?"
"A-A spell?" She asked fearfully.
He removed his hand from her chin. "Let's make a contract. I'll eat your dreams-"
"Eat my dreams?"
"Yes. Eat your dreams. I am a dream eater. Anyways, I will eat your dreams. No more nightmares. However, I must ask your p
instead, instead, insteadi can't remember the last time i saw you.instead, instead, instead4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
instead, i trace your name
along my arm:
goosebumps like braille, raw
the soft side of my wrist
you've never touched.
i know me better than i know you
and i don't know me at all.
i can't remember the last time i spoke to you.
instead, i erased your number
from my phone:
i'll miss your static, my poor
pretending to have nothing to say.
you never guessed that i was penning novels
beneath my tongue.
what i do remember is
the last time i was whole:
my hand and yours
now i'm left with splintered palms and
ghosts between my fingers.
The Things We Leave Unsaid Common wisdom dictates that meaningful feelings for another ought to be expressed directly and honestly. However, advice is given to be neglected and so too often we are poisoned by our own silence -- the things we leave unsaid.The Things We Leave Unsaid3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
We are fortuitous that the opportunity for the lesson to be followed by the illustration presents itself. Let us use our discretion and semi-omniscience to observe the conversation between the two young men before us.
"Oh hi. How are you?" It's him.
"I'm good. You?"
"Good." I've been better, but there's no way I'm going to tell him that. "Man, it's been a long time." I haven't seen her in forever. Almost three years.
"Yeah man, I haven't seen you in forever."
"Yeah, so I hear you're dating Rachel now?" He is taller than me, and I know she must like his red-rimmed wayfarers. Family's rich too. Must be nice.
"Good for you. How's she doing?" I know she's fine.
"She's doing just fine."