Those Eyes! A few of his many eyes flashed a baleful red.
They often flashed red, especially when he felt someone was following him too close.
He was a big guy, but in truth he was also paranoid. Maybe because of his size.
If someone stepped on his shoes, no matter whether he was moving or not, his eyes turned red for quite a while.
His shoes were a possible saving grace. He felt his shoes all the time. Many didn't pay them any attention.
Why are you following me this close? he'd think and his eyes would flash red again.
They were bright red, sometimes the only thing others could see about him in thick fog or other inclement weather.
Some thought him a demon of some sort. Others were just annoyed.
Ignore me at your peril, he thought.
He sometimes wondered if he was a demon, too.
The main thing he knew for sure was that he'd killed people in the past, a nasty business. It might happen again anytime.
That didn't improve his mood at
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
THAT Woman First they said, "No wind chimes outside the cottages. Three warnings will be given, then you are subject to eviction."THAT Woman4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
My Granny said, "Humph. I like my old bamboo windchime. I can't even reach it no more to take it down. It's gonna stay, dammit, and I will too."
I told Granny, "Not if they evict you, you won't. I can take it down."
She looked at me over her reading glasses, with that Look she has.
"If anyone's evicted, you can go with em, Sonny. I'm stayin put. Me and that damn windchime."
I said, "Granny, I don't even live here. C'mon. It's just a windchime."
She said, "And we're just a buncha old senior citizens in a QUOTE retirement community END QUOTE, and I, for one, am gonna keep whatever I want right here. Me included."
I sighed. I know Gran
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
Always the Haunted House On Halloween, young people seem to flock to the dark, in search of either candy or a house to 'trick.' Matt and Sally were no different, except they were a bit older, nearly in their teens. Matt talked Sally into going to the house widely known as haunted.Always the Haunted House1 year ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Sally said, "Are you sure we want to go there? It must be called haunted for a good reason."
Matt laughed. "Sure. Things go bump in the night there. It's just an old house."
"Then they won't have any candy."
"We got enough off Mr. Sterling to rot our teeth already. This'll prove we've got guts too. Wait 'til we get to school and tell everyone where we went! They'll envy us and know how brave we are. C'mon, Sally!"
Sally sighed. "I don't know how you always talk me into these dumb ideas."
"I'm smart. And I know you like to hang out with me anyway."
"You're not as smart as me, and this may be the last straw as far as h
Out of the Ashes He burned down their house by the road. He built a fire in the middle of the living room floor and sat warming himself 'til he saw the fire was out of control. Then he staggered up and walked the path to his mother's house in the middle of the night.Out of the Ashes1 year ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
He told her, "Our house is on fire."
She didn't believe him because he was drunk and, drunk, he was a constant liar.
"Just go to sleep on that couch and leave your baby and wife alone here," she said. She went back to bed and slept, but also checked on him to be sure his little family wasn't bothered by his drunken lies and abuse. She could control him as his mother.
In the morning dawn, a farmer from down the road a piece knocked on her door.
She hurried to answer. People were still sleeping and the knock sounded urgent.
"Missus, that h
Flights of Fancy Nature is best seen through a window. Cars are nice, but televisions give a better view. The important thing is to keep a window, any window, between you and wilderness. This is my strictest maxim, a rule of comfort I put aside only once, years ago. I spend most of my life expressing shock when friends say they're going on a hike or planning to camp out.Flights of Fancy4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
It took two hours for Leon to convince me to accompany him on a short ride to the hills. I thought it would be safe. Leon was a good friend. Though he knew that particular day was my day to hit the mall and hang out with the girls, in the end, I still went with him. He said we'd have plenty of time and I could do both. Hah! I was ignorance personified.
Leon worked for a group of nuts who said they save peregrine falcons. He said they protect wild falcons from other nuts who shoot the birds and that his group "manipulates" falcon nests at the
The Great Water Debate There was a war going on at the senior complex.The Great Water Debate8 months ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
I visited the place to see how my Granny was doing, but she'd left a note on her door that said:
AT REC ROOM - COME SEE ME
That got me worried right there. Granny wasn't your ordinary person. I could think of a million reasons why she'd be evicted, and not one that would make her cheerfully go that close to the office. She had sort of a love/hate relationship with where she lived. As long as things went her way, she was happy. If they didn't, well, she was a force to be reckoned with.
I walked along the cement path between greenery and sent up a little prayer.
"No eviction, please," was all I asked.
I hated the sign beside the office because it said "Welcome Home," and it just didn't have a homey feeling anywhere. Except inside my Granny's apartment and garden. I walked through a mysteriously empty office to the rec room, where I heard
Action and Reaction Secrets are rarely kept between two people. If you have a secret, it's best to tell no one.Action and Reaction5 months ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
I told someone, so mine was no longer a secret, it was just low-key information we tried to keep quiet.
I was easily embarrassed, and wished it hadn't happened in front of him, my new husband. Our bed was a futon, with walls on two sides and a dresser at the foot. I got up early and opened the drawer where my clothes were, and something leapt out at me. I ran for the door to the other room. My husband was laughing so hard when I returned, I wanted to pour cold water on him.
He said, "You and that mouse was both runnin neck and neck for the door. Funniest thing I ever seen!"
"It was awful. Please don't tell anyone. Keep it secret. Promise?"
"Okay, I promise. It's still the funniest thing I ever seen!"
"What's a mouse doing in the dresser anyway?"
"Makin a nest, probly," he said. "Look.
Penned or Released?Writers write,Penned or Released?4 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
but not always right.
On the Northside of TimeOn the Northside of Time6 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
It was a good day for the dogs and a bad one for the rabbits. I heard the big black dog howl his chase call through most of the afternoon, sometimes near and sometimes far. His little white shadow yipped along behind him. There were long pauses between yips heard. That little dog had short legs and needed extra wind and effort just to keep up.
The air outside was cool and sharp. The dogs ran under the last autumn leaves I could spot out there, out past the meadow. Some of those old trees in the grove stayed green the whole winter long. Most never did. The hunt through the big grove must have been exciting for the dogs. Not for smaller and younger animals.
The dogs came back when the setting sun put sof
Grandma Rose's Story: OneOral TraditionGrandma Rose's Story: One6 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
She told this story one day while she did beadwork and a few of her grandchildren played nearby. She remembered her own grandmother, the one who raised her as a little girl. She talked about a time many years ago, the last time she saw her grandmother.
"My grandmother lived on a place where she had a barn and grain holders and chickens and horses. She used to let me help her take care of the chickens. The horses roamed out to pasture, coming in sometimes for hay she always had ready for them. She and I lived there together. My older cousin, a young man then, stayed with us from time to time.
"My grandmother had adopted my mother a long time ago, see, and then when my mother died, just thirty-four years old, my grandmother took me to live with her. My sisters and brother went to my other grandmother but my grandmother wanted me with her. I was just a little girl then, not even old en
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
It Can Be So ElusiveOn the reservationIt Can Be So Elusive3 years ago in Visual & Found Poetry More Like This
and all that jazz
I am always hot inside,
a dinosaur in the garden.
But life, like a tunnel
if out at night,
in a whisper
I remember the good things.
Not the machine evangelist.
A Long End to a Brief Life I didn't know it was illegal to move a person's ashes from the spot you said they'd be (my garage) to multiple others. I put Mom-in-ashes in the trunk of my car because I thought we'd find a place for her soon, but Mom and I went hither and yon while my sister looked for a real "resting place."A Long End to a Brief Life2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
I even forgot Mom was there, and we went shopping, to the movies, out to eat. Was it disrespectful? It didn't feel illegal.
When I thought about it, it seemed kind of cozy.
There came the day though, when my sister Jocelyn found a good mausoleum to put Mom at a full stop, the final resting place. I went with Jo, and that's how I found out it was illegal to move Mom beyond the shelf in the garage to the mausoleum -- it was supposed to be a direct line between the two places. Of course I didn't tell the man Mom had been all over town with me.
We had to pick out an urn to put at least part of Mom in (the whole of her was too big,
Storm Music They say when I was first laid in my mother's arms, she gave me back to the nurse and said, "No. This is not a child of mine."Storm Music4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
My father is the "they" I mean, the only one I heard tell that story. I guess he figured she meant it, because right away he took me as far from the Zuni reservation and my mother as we could get.
I don't remember being a little baby. I mean, who does? But I know my father drove his old car, with him and me and supplies, for miles and miles and miles. I hated that car. And he talked a lot, my Dad. He'd say, "Hey, freak. We're gonna cross a state line again. Mark it on the map." Or, "Hey, ghost boy. I gotta stop here for a few days. I'll set you up in a motel."
When my father said "set you up in a motel," he meant he'd get some half-drunk Indian to watch me, or more likely, to watch TV. He always went somewhere else. Some of those Indians fed me and some didn't, just like my father. I mean, it's like when I
Three in Five MinutesDream one was a bright white flashThree in Five Minutes3 years ago in Urban & Spoken Word More Like This
and sounds of things breaking
I opened my eyes and saw it all.
Now I think that it was me.
Dream two was my child yelling
"Where are you? Where are you?"
I opened my ears and heard it all.
Now I think that it was me.
Dream three was a sudden knocking
on the door in deepest dark.
I opened the door and saw nothing.
Now I think that it was me.
Changing of the Guard I sat pouting and alone in the first meadow when I saw a deer run out of the woods on my right, cross the meadow at top speed, then go into the woods on my left. A moment later, I heard the dogs bark. It made me angry, but there wasn't a thing I could do to get those dogs away from the deer. So I was pouting, alone and mad when the first dog ran across the meadow.Changing of the Guard8 months ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
It was the Afghan, head up and silent. Afghans hunt by sight, I knew that much. The other dogs hunted by scent, and they appeared soon after, noses to the ground when they weren't barking. What a racket they made! And I thought I felt low before! I couldn't even sit quietly and feel sorry for myself. Now I had to worry about the deer.
I walked back to the dome and asked Diane if she'd seen her dog lately. She hadn't. Hers was the Afghan. She had a toy poodle as well, but it didn't count. That little bundle of neuroses rarely left her side. Neither the Afghan nor the poodle were well-t
Fight in a Hospital They said she was too old to have a baby.Fight in a Hospital5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Doctors said she'd die if she had a second one.
Lettie thought different about that. Lettie thought different about a lot of things other folks said and thought.
Doctors said she'd die when she had her girl Jaycee ten years ago too, but Lettie was still very much alive.
Well, she almost died, but 'almost' didn't count with Lettie.
She did as she pleased and she had since a young age. That didn't do a world of wonder for her health, but she was happy with Jaycee. Her daughter was a good one, as smart and independent as her mom.
Now Lettie wanted a son because Jaycee wished for a brother.
Jaycee never mentioned a wish before. Lettie thought one wish was the least she could do for her girl.
1. The True Journal of a Fake 'Communist'Keep up, we'll gallop through this introduction, written directly in my true journal, just as I see it open in front of me now.1. The True Journal of a Fake 'Communist'3 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
It's in faded cursive handwriting, in a black leather-bound book.
This is the 'Cast of Characters' who form a commune at Red Rocks Canyon:
Vicki - Peter's sister: A dark-haired, dark-eyed Hungarian beauty, who thinks her hair's too thin (it is, but who cares?). It took her weeks of country living to realize she did not need to wear false eyelashes daily. Funny! Such a gorgeous woman. An artist.
Mary - Initially with Terry: Lots of thick, wavy brown hair (short, unusual for the anyone then) with a smile that's a (de)light, who often thinks about Vicki's appearance and hers as a competition (no way!). A writer and [later] a teacher.
Winnie - Peter's brother: His name is a nickname for "Winston." Like they all were, he's a good-looking man, shorter than the others, with a stiff neck from a bout
It Was The Burglar's Idea The worst people hired him because he was the best burglar around. No one knew his given name, not even him. As a child, he'd grown and fed himself by stealing what he needed on the streets. He had no name. But since many people called him- "That one!" -the growing and adept burglar decided to call himself "Thone." He knew he needed at least a name, if not food, home, clothes -- and why not some kind of fame and fortune? Yes, he decided, he'd have both infamy and fortune. He was certain he was a clever, quiet, sneaky, and nice young man, fully deserving of both. Soon he had both.It Was The Burglar's Idea5 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Late one night, a very rich man hired Thone for a new job and asked him the usual questions. Thone was as silent with the rich as he was with the poor. For that matter, he was more silent with the rich. Thone never explained his work to anyone, and it was always the rich who hired him. Thone was the most expensive burglar ever known to o
2. The True Journal of a Fake 'Communist' If you just began reading this, part one tells you who's who.2. The True Journal of a Fake 'Communist'3 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
I was a very young writer--don't expect good writing, but perhaps interesting storytelling.
John and Mary, me and Larry and Pat went to Libre today to pick up records and a drum. We had a very pleasant time talking to the people there. We were all quite happy, and it could be felt clearly all the way up there, because it seemed the people there saw it well, and showed it back to us through their own pleasure. There was a lot of interest, good will and affection. The visits to their various houses were very comfortable.
We did our thing with our usual style: jokes, spirit, talk, getting mud on their carpets and a car in their mud, and they with their style: talk, jokes, stories and questions about rumoured "orgies" we supposedly had. Mary answered most of those questions. Peter Rabbit asked how the sex was going and if we into Tantra yet, and Mary, laughing, said "Oh no. It's all the regular
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
After Memorial DayHer casket was pink with many metal roses.After Memorial Day1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
Her grandmother's was gray with the Last Supper.
Who knows what the mother's will be?
She hasn't quit this life's many poses.
My father went with the Neptune Society.
My mother went into a mausoleum.
I want ashes scattered on the mountains.
Nobody knows where we'll end our journeys,
It's the road we follow while alive that counts.
Religion is good for some.
I think spirituality is best for everyone.
Please define spirituality you say.
"Random acts of kindness" is one way.
We can all do that, come what may.