Forgiveness EconomicsGenesisForgiveness Economics3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
But for the small purple stain on its border, the banknote was non-descript.
It had a value but men value things in different ways and by different means. It had a value, but its value is not it's story.
It landed on the church plate face up, coming to rest softly on the flat silver base amongst the loose change like it was tossed to the cloth of a gambling table, soundless but with a small sense of resignation. A man paying for luck, a man asking his God for a favor.
It came from the wallet of a small sad man, who feared the Good Lord daily. The banknote was the weekly price of his penance, the bill of sale for those half-remembered crimes of a misspent youth and other things unmentionable.
The small sad man's hands were fat and white and callouses sat on his thumb and forefingers, the scars of a bank teller, a money counter, a man who knew about value. The hair on his head was grey and his eyes were blue below his wrinkled forehead and tonight would be the last time he
Georgie's CrumbsThe scars lie in zigzags across my throat. I don't remember the knife that made them, and they're not the point of this story; Annie is, and I'm mentioning them because she never asked about them. I loved her for that. Instead, when she found that I always played extras at the drama club because there were days when I couldn't speak in anything but a whisper, she taught me how to mime. I spent hours practicing in their dusty living room, swaying to the clatter of Georgie's nails on the piano keys. Georgie plays piano like Annie rides horses.Georgie's Crumbs2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
I still find the memory of her down by the old dirt road, where he put Georgie's piano. I turn my head and catch the scent of the wind, the way the air felt when she smiled, the way the dirt tasted when I stumbled off the horse and she caught my hand and brought me up beside her, drew me up to the sky.
I sometimes wonder what she'd have done if I'd been on the ground that day. I drew up Rook before the corner because I wasn't bold like Annie, didn'
lemonwe walk down the streetslemon3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
of a city named after the last thousand years.
a breeze floats by
and for a moment your hair lifts off your shoulder.
the way it doesn't touch you,
i want to touch you.
there are traces of lemon in your light,
a vague sense of mint on your fingertips.
the way honey tastes
drifts inside your shirt.
entering the city
walking calmly while the light falls
is like listening to your voice,
like waiting at the bell by the river
for a clamoring to do justice
to the patterns on the water.
the way the bells never end
i want to brush my hand against yours.
the way you drop lemon into your water
i want to live.
just wave goodbye dearest,just wave goodbye3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
today i was
i tried to
could only get
as far as sand before the
cratered moon pulled me back again.
a lie that tells the truthplease don’t write me as a ghost girl,a lie that tells the truth2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
all blurry lines and faded features
that caricature themselves into the minds
of those that think they see me--
i am not a canvas.
my life is not a blank sheet for you
to paint your vision across,
and i have no wires in my bones--
you cannot pose me so i’ll catch the light
like a kaleidoscope of clever quirks
and tragic backstories;
i am written in the words i discard
when i write bad poetry at 3am, and if you look,
you can find me echoed back to you
in my all time top five favorite movies.
i am the way my hands hurt
when i get nervous;
i am the urge to speak italian,
even though after a year of classes, i can barely
i am the calmness that hits
when i smell cigarettes, even though
i’ve never smoked,
and i am the grudges that have lingered
because i forget to let things go,
and i am the passive-aggressive comments
that i should be sorry for, but
never really am.
if you want, you can trace your pen along
Suffocate“I didn’t want him,” she says. “I wanted something, something I saw in the eyes of Libby, Sam, Sandi, and Agnes. Something that would have made our new world, our safe world, a home. Children were a part of that world and so I found myself a child. Perhaps, I thought, I would love him and everything would fall into place. Perhaps with a child I could be content with safety, and normality, and a world without knives taped on mop heads.” A cold smile. “I still catch myself thinking that. I still think that maybe tomorrow will be the day where I can fall asleep with the lights on.”Suffocate3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Carmen’s features are stark and cold; like the chiseled lines of Soviet propaganda etched onto an icy street corner. A straight decided nose, high sharp cheekbones, and thin pinched lips. Her eyes are black. We sit together in a small, bare walled, room on a pair of fold up chairs.
I frown. “You mean off?”
“No. I mean on. During the war
moonhe reads to her, tells her what it was like to be a sailor of the seas on the moon. "don't stop talking," she tells him, dozing off, imagining the seas of zephyr.moon3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
spyglass on the moon a million miles away, the ether shatters by a little girl on her toes, standing on her mattress, clinging to her window above. stain glass eyes in the wake of moon and she breathes as the sea slamming onto the pane, receding and reaching; clouding and clearing. her breaths reach the moon and the moon reaches back with her hands pressed to the girl's eyes.
"one day," she tells the moon, the boy still at her bedside, "you and i will be together."
The art of blacking outHow I wish I could say strangersThe art of blacking out3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
crept inward, night by night,
stealing my medication and
rearranging my furniture.
But I know it's not true.
There are holes inside
my head. Oxidation.
No one unlocks this door
but me. I am just
One of those NightsThe morning sunOne of those Nights3 years ago in Urban & Spoken Word More Like This
beams through the front windshield
like an intruder:
brash and unwelcome, forcing you to wake.
Whiskey eyed, smelling like an ashtray,
parked at the back end
of some ghetto ass neighborhood
wondering what the hell you did the night before.
It's like trying to remember words
you haven’t written yet.
One thing is for certain:
a little bit of rope goes a long way,
but a lot of rope
will hang you.
DivorceBefore that day,Divorce2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Sunday mornings had never occurred to me.
I must have slept through their every summons:
I never knew the time sensitive ritual of finding matching socks,
forcing “nice” shoes over misshapen toes,
the silent pact we would share with the warm cushions of the divan
waiting for Mother to ready us, memories that settle in the guts
like a madstone, which I could then pull out of my old cadaver
to save myself in the next life.
There were a few moments. Like that time, in the garage,
basking in Father’s sunrise sorcery as he fired his magic timing light
into the fluttering lungs of an engine, or when he let me aim
the water at his bucket, poorly, while he carved something
otherworldly into stubborn dirt.
I held nothing near of Sundays, nothing sacred, nothing dreaded,
save for the occasional shameful confusion
I would coax from my belly with dogged chimes
of christmas bells haranguing the church congregation
with their infernal sequence, hanging like nervou
Giusto“N-o-o-o-o!”Giusto2 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
He screamed at me, his goggly eyes opened like a frog’s. His voice was funny, it made me want to laugh - but he also looked scary, so I didn't. I stopped singing and stared at him. I wasn't sure if I had to close my mouth or not so I left it half open.
“No. No! No! That was not a mi sharp!”
I thought it would be good to close my mouth now. The man looked at Papa and pointed his tiny finger at me. He was all tiny, only his head was huge, with a funny mustache and the goggly eyes.
“Why did you bring this to me? Are you trying to mock me? You’re wasting my time.”
Papa was all red by now and not looking at me. I didn't know what was going on but I think Papa wanted to be away from the huge room with the piano.
“He was in the church choir” Papa stuttered. “The choir master told us he was very good – he has a very high voice – good technique -”
“Good technique? Good
Nowadays. Side Ways.thisNowadays. Side Ways.2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
there is more paper here than clothing
my iron is broken
the water leaks onto pages
with their own ink
it boils when it spills
my shirts are ironed dry
they and I
crave the water
the paper is indifferent
Time Traveller's EngagementExactly ten years from tomorrow, we'll be married here. My wife doesn't know that, of course. In a certain sense, neither do I.Time Traveller's Engagement5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
It's a beautiful spot, now. Now meaning today, when the sunlight is still pure, and the sky is still blue. The ivy still climbs in green snakes up the side of her father's chateau, the pennants of the House of Renard are snapping gaily over the towers.
I hear a lilting laugh that even now sends my heart into my throat. Euryale Renard. She is only a girl today, no older than my little sister is in the days I left behind. Even at twelve, my Ury's curls catch the sun like molten amber, with a flower basket flung wide as she runs. Behind her tumble the Twins, her best friends, their giggles almost as musical as my Ury's, their golden hair belying the poison in their hearts. I remember the snarl on Cassandra's lips as she spilled out her wine glass on the floor after Ury's father toasted our engagement. I remember wiping Chloe's spit from my eye on the same
stars only die from drug overdoses.there's a boy i knowstars only die from drug overdoses.2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
who used to swallow coins
like hard candy;
stuck to his chin
from my own hands,
lucid in our lungs
and the road
a blur from our sadistic words.
he doesn't believe in hell
neither do i.
but i believe in the stars
and i want to know what happens to them
when they die.
State of MindThey buried her today.State of Mind4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
I stood in the crowd, all of us dressed in blacks. I straightened my tie nervously as ladies I didn't know in big, veiled hats exchanged soft, sad words about what a shame it was. How she'd been so brilliant, how she'd had such a full life ahead of her. Ladies that didn't even know her.
There was a coffin, but there wasn't much in it. They didn't open the casket either, like they did sometimes. The man at the funeral home had said there was a limit to how much they could make fit for viewing, and I didn't really blame him for not even trying.
"This sucks," Cindy told me. We were sat at one of the cheap metal tables they roll out for occasions like this, both of us with a glass of alcohol in our hands. I hadn't asked if it was wine or something else. Didn't care.
"Yeah," I agreed, tone muted. We exchanged a look, Cindy's eyes heavy and ringed, her face lined in stress like a mirror of my own. Together, we drank. It was white wine, dry, about a 4. She would have li
TattooHear me read itTattoo3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I splashed black ink onto your spine;
unintentional as I frenzied and fawned
to try and catch the elusive thought.
You patiently waited for me to return,
out of breath and triumphant, with my trophy.
We hung it on wood next to the elk.
In my haste to write of the love of you,
I'd written in you. I'd marked you as mine,
as my words intoxicated your weak heart.
The ink had permeated your flesh, your blood,
until it silted, deep inside you,
a permanent, unedited, tattoo of our love.
Save YourselfDear mommy…Save Yourself2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I could have saved you.
I know you promised me you’d save yourself,
But I should have known you were lying.
I could have protected you.
I know you said you were fine,
But I should have been able to see all the tears behind your eyes…
The lies, I should have seen straight through them,
I should have known better than to believe you,
I should have known better.
I should have known.
I should have saved you...
I'm sorry Mommy.
I shouldn't have let you save yourself.
Jonahdeep in the meadow, there is a box.Jonah3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
it contains a letter.
the letter is from a man who never had a name. i like to think he was not a handsome man, but gorgeous in ways undetected by the path of average society. his eyes were always puffy from crying and his lips were always swollen from chewing but his heart was always locked away like only the heart of a beautiful man could be.
deep in the meadow, past the rotting remains of an oxen cart that maybe used to carry turnips from the mountains to the valley towns for market selling. or maybe it was goat milk. or hawks' eggs. past the rotting cart and past the abandoned house with no chimney, the box can be found in the tree stump of a huge old maple among termites and ants and wasps that have overtaken the old tree as a way of reclaiming the earth. it's funny how life has a circularity that way. what once belonged to only the tree itself was taken by man, and once man passes by onto the next land, insects and birds move in to benefit from
for riley i think i have forgotten how to dreamfor riley2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
for the last time it happened
i smiled and ran my palms through your hair
sifting out sand and fumbling at the
buried shards of sea glass
that bite at my calloused fingers.
your frothy eyes threaten to drown me
but instead i inhale dopamine and
carefully trace the thin boardwalks
that wrap around your skull
where the hair is missing.
you ask me if i cried
and i said that i
didn’t think i knew
once when i was young
i saw a baby cardinal
huddled and bleeding in the grass.
i watched the ants and the flies skim over the contours
of its closed eyelids
until i scooped it up and held
twentywe killtwenty2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
and then ask
why the world
is full of monsters
Sonnet to Breathabout the rib. it makes sense. at Out-Sonnet to Breath2 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
back my father picks it up, gets it stuck in
his teeth, and like a brutish harpist plucks it out,
lets it settle. smoking preference? menthol. in-
door seat? the closest waterfall. they knife out
flower from vegetable. “the game” drags students in
collectively, like how a yawn moves-- uncoils out--
humanity starts rippling. how much of school was in
a herd like this? how much was ringworm? out
here is lonelier; my romance is silent. in
time I think of him and am bothered by it. out
the window steeps a sunrise. it’s five in
the morning. can he sleep? my laptop’s out
and holy Book! he’s up, but then— that rib again.
A Guide On How To Shop In The Pias UndergrowthSo, ye need some groceries and things from the shops. But ye live in the undergrowth of Pias, so it ain’t a case of just popping to some omni-mall. What are ye going to do? Ye can’t farm cos’ the ground here ain’t gonna get enough sun, and there’s nae way in hell ye can just experiment with all the fruits of the jungle, cos’ ye value your life too much. Whatcha gonna do?A Guide On How To Shop In The Pias Undergrowth2 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Well, good ol’ Cygno here can help ye wi’ this trusty guide! Available in all the shady places over the Kairos galaxy. This guide here’ll tell ye all about how to find the best markets in Pias and how tae not get scammed by some scoundrel.
First off, terribly sorry for ye bein’ here. I dunno if ye were forced tae run from the gangs or police in Canopy City or whatever other tragedy befell ye, but sorry. Pias ain’t a holiday site once yer under the leaves, I can tell ye that fer sure.
By the time yer readin’ this, y’l
InnocenceIt was a time of love, a time of hate, the era of justice and immorality, the season of both insanity and clarity of mind. Sound familiar, don't it? Me wife used to love Dickens. Read him to me all the time, she did. That Jane what's-her-face woman, too: it is a truth universally acknowledged that a criminal who committed a crime is in want of a good hanging. Ring a bell?Innocence3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Yes, I like me literary allusions. I do, you know. Remind me of sweet Elaine. She was a messy death, but worth it. Oh boy, was she worth it. Crying and begging right up to the end. She had it coming to her, bet your arse she did, mate.
Why am I here anyway? I've already confessed. I'm a doomed son of a gun. Don't I get any last whatchamacallits? Can't I have a coldie, before I go up there and have me neck snapped back? Any beer will do I drink 'em all, so long as it's not that light crap.
Answer me, goddammit! What the bloody hell am I doing here? Kill me already. Inject me with the needle or string me up like
Burning Out, and Falling FastYou're sitting in your parents' old corvette (if you had bothered to check, you'd know it was older than you), flicking your eyes between a lighter in one hand, and a box of matches in the other. You forget when fire became such a need, a distraction.Burning Out, and Falling Fast4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Spencer is right beside you in the car, his fingers stroking idly at your forearm, watching you with hooded green eyes.
"If you want to die," he says, "then just kill yourself, but do it with style."
You met The Boy Under the Sycamore Tree when you were four. Your mom encouraged you to go see the lonely boy, and when you first went over to him, he ignored you. The Boy Under the Tree, that's what you called him for the first day you knew him, was a little older than you with dark hair and smoky green eyes.
With encouraging looks from your folks, you walked right next to him and sat down, pressing your back against the tree's rough trunk.