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
Think"So. You started exhibiting abilities…?"Think2 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
"Um… three years ago? Yeah, three years, and it was May I think. Fourteenth or maybe sixteenth, I don't remember exactly – I just remember that it was my last semester. Yeah, three years ago, May."
"Fourteenth or sixteenth?"
"Yeah, one or the other. I remember that because I has these huge goddamn exams, you know, one was on fourteenth and other on sixteenth and it was during one of them I heard it for the first time. Can't remember which one though, just remember being a nervous wreck. I studied of course, I mean, hello, you know? But test's a test."
"Right. It started during an exam then? In a large crowd."
"Well, large enough. I didn't go to a big school – hell you should know, you probably have my files and everything. Don't you? I mean, don't people like you have files on everything, even someone like me? Or should that be especially someone like me…"
"How large was the crowd?"
"I don't know. Twenty f
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'
One of those NightsThe morning sunOne of those Nights2 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.
the science of sleep.i don't sleep anymore. or at least i don't think i do. it's one of those things i stopped keeping track of like the number of words that make my mother cry (cancer, lists). if i'm being honest, i stopped sleeping (maybe) around the time i started thinking in a series of parentheses.the science of sleep.4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
because i don't sleep, my arteries demand too much air (oxygen, clean) from the space outside my window. i make my room my heart, cold. it fills with a wind only bricks can breathe, an ice only soil is willing to withstand. i am winter's soul.
the world becomes a different place when you stop noticing sound (mute, black and white film) and start noticing every movement your bones, your muscles and the acid in your organs make. you start twisting your spine to imitate the birds spreading through the branches like cancer and you force your fingers to bend in unnatural angles to stop the shaking. but aren't we all just mocking birds (mockingbirds)?
when you stop sleeping, your body becomes the experiment and y
A Note on DrowningI am writing this letter for myself. If you have found this letter, please give it to me. If you find that I lack the will to read, if my mind is gone, if my hands are bloodied, tell me at least, that the song is near its end. If I am dead [indistinguishable]A Note on Drowning3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
[Written in the margin: IF I AM DEAD THROW ME TO THE SEA]
In laying out the bones of my terrors, a solution may be found.
I’ll start before the beginning, when Mother took me for walks on the beach and told stories. Together we missed my father, who sailed the sea. These are my earliest memories, but I remember things had always been this way. We walked together, and I counted my many steps and Mother’s few. When I stretched my legs, I could make it so my path went over only her footprints.
The sand was soft where she had stepped. Elsewhere was gritty, and unclean.
I was young for all of Mother’s stories. Here I will write the relevant one as best I remember.
“A sailor was on a ship. This ship was far of
how to move mountainsthe mountains came down to listenhow to move mountains2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
or was it
that I went up to tell them
of these winter snows
that hit early spring
as if they couldn't
those mountains, shake it off
themselves. ink on my quill is
a thought not yet written.
a simple stick in snow could
write the same questions
and the answer too, along with
the snow's fading presence.
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
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.
lemonwe walk down the streetslemon2 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.
StillHe was waking or he was falling asleep, neither, both at once. This was a dream. This was the only thing he had ever known. It made no difference, he trailed his own body like ripples after a rock, smoothing and breaking and smoothing again.Still3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
His feet moved tirelessly, without thought. No longer human, only the Walk was real. For minutes, or for months; time was fluid and distant. Walk.
He broke and a low mountain pulled him forward. Smoothed. Broke into flatlands, into shallow water. Into the evening, into the weak dawn.
Smoothed, back into the soft yellow lights behind his eyes. Walk.
He was not alone. This thought came from his bones, the heavy vibrations that shook them. It was something known, not something learned. It was like becoming aware of his own breath.
After a moment, without any real intent, his head raised. The yellow lights flickered. He could see three trees surrounding him. No, three hills. No. Three monstrous beasts. No. Three brothers.
He was waking after
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
JackMy grandmother fell in love with my grandfather when his skin was still yellow with malaria.Jack3 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
At twenty-four, he had just returned from war, his pockets heavy as his heart, weighed down with souvenir scars and unspent bullets. Gaping trenches hung beneath each of his dark eyes like open, sore wounds, or sorer memories. At nineteen, she had not known the taste of oranges. The first time she held one, she bit straight into the pasty skin, expecting sweetness and coming up with shell-fragments.
In the pictures, my grandmother, radiant in her gray wedding dress, stands before my grandfather. Those trenches are still there, still yawning beneath each eye like caskets, but they are beginning to fold under, to fill themselves in. Standing together, they are joined by out-stretched hands, his free fingers reaching up to hold her cheek in his palm, the pale skin there blushing the softest pink: a single petal, unfolding, held erect in his hewn hands. In the pictures, it is there in the space lef
paper hearts. Theres a crevice in the wall where she hides her little baby girl, all plastic smiles and mechanical giggles. She cuddles it like it has a soul and speaks to it like it has a name. Its soft rubber skin has been covered with paper hearts and marker stars, and its little plastic ears have been filled with whispers of adoration and love. Its wiry blonde hair has been crossed into braids, twisted up above its head, and she has pulled a dress onto its synthetic body with the brightest little smile. She reminds it that its beautiful, even though it cant hear. She fastens it tight into the beaten pink stroller and skips behind it as it rolls across the pavement, dancing in the sun like there is no tomorrow and yesterday is only a dream.paper hearts.6 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
And maybe she's only six years old, but she knows how babies are made. Not the ones you buy in the store, the ones you have to tear out of the cru
Nothing Lives Foreveri.Nothing Lives Forever2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
When you were a child, we would sit on the porch to talk about your day. And sometimes, we would find a dead bird, or a frog on there. And you would ask me about death and why it happens, looking at the poor creature in my hands, its life cut short and touch it tenderly. I would always say the same thing.
Nothing is meant to live forever, my dear.
The school called me in on your twelfth birthday and asked if I had known how clever you were, that your test scores were the best in the state. They asked me if I knew I had a genius child on my hands who grew bored easily in class and tended to distract others in his classroom, sometimes causing arguments, fistfights and could manipulate his classmates into doing anything.
We don't think this is the school for him. He needs to be challenged appropriately.
You fell in love at seventeen and she was lovely. Kind, caring and beautiful, I couldn't ask for a better girl for you. She was our neighbour
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
Puddle-jumpingShe looks through a puddle to the hole on the other side.Puddle-jumping2 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Some dreams fell down there a while ago, and if she can just snag a little of the bright ribbon at their tails, perhaps she could follow them in there.
I mean, it looks quite nice, what with all the blue glowing back at her pigtails, and the
clouds seem quite friendly. I wonder if they know hide and seek?
So in she jumps, wellies and all, but somehow only manages a splash and a splutter, and a muddy pattern over her socks.
But it doesn't matter - there's always tomorrow. She'll try again then.
For it's sad, really, when others look into puddles and all they expect to see is the ground.
PilotI woke in a nest of wires, my arms pulled off to either side, my head back and my eyes fixed at the ceiling. There was a man standing above me, straddling my form, perched precariously at the mouth of the recess I was tucked away in, one hand gripping the frame, the other feeling around the back of my neck. He moved by touch alone, certain in his movements, and his fingers closed over the knot of the wires that resided at the base of my skull and pulled, steadily, drawing it out of the socket and I inhaled sharply at the sensation. Like something had been taken from me, or that I'd lost sight of something important. A piece of me gone. It was a keen sense of loss and my eyes went wet with moisture even as he dropped his hand lower along my neck, almost to the shoulders, and pulled out another plug. The wires by my eyes were thinner, and when he pulled these out my vision went black for a moment and when it returned I felt the world was less clear, like a gray haze had been pulledPilot2 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
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 Engagement4 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
for frost: we need not live in vigilwe don't have to split a forkfor frost: we need not live in vigil2 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
in two (or ten or six); may then diverge
our Paths along the path
not finite, un-impossible? you
may have rule and road, miles and
sir. the Hoarfrost gathers great
on you, like winter on the words
you forged from wood and wakeful spurs
remainders); like ornaments
that decorate dull
in any other season.
you are boxed and labeled, kept
in the murky & foreclosed adjunct space
that borders the heart but never enters
a tease of a tease to touch
the lives of those who happen by
i've left minds more open and
know travels- even in the way
everyone travels- that will carry me
for miles until i sleep.
Obsessive Compulsive DisorderWhen I was little, it use to amaze me how colors were made. In art class I would sit and mix paint because blue and red didn't stay the same when they fell in love. Every single color found its match and danced beautifully as I swirled them together. Black and white were my favorites. I'd pour the creamy paint into a bowl and watch as black and white swirls, turned into grey swirls and owned the container holding it captive. Grey was amazing to me. Because black and white are nothing alike, and grey is in the middle. Black is dark and scary and demanding. And white is graceful, and trusting, and clean. Grey is nothing. Grey is bland. And safe. Grey is careful. And I would do anything to be grey.Obsessive Compulsive Disorder4 years ago in Emotional More Like This
Friendship is black and turns to ash in my hands. It is dust, so hard to hold. I am keeping still so none escapes, but it feels like at any moment, the wind will kick up and steal it all away. Every move I make is monitored and judged. I am wary about my words and am second guessing everything.
Rapunzel, Rapunzel, Let Down Your Trust IssuesI. (Set the stage)Rapunzel, Rapunzel, Let Down Your Trust Issues3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
"The color of my bra is called Flirt," the girl says, popping a bubble in Amelia's face and winking. The sickly sweet scent of chemicals and sugar mixes with the chemicals and the sugar of the bar, hags low and heavy about their faces. The girl slides closer, beaming, her eyelids low. She's wearing too much mascara. Amelia grips her drink tighter and pulls her elbows in collapsing, she fills less space than she did before. Volume stays the same, the number of atoms composing her stays constant, but she appears to be smaller. Could this be expressed mathematically, or with a computer simulation, she wonders, and sips at her drink. She says nothing.
"See here." The girl tugs down her shirt sleeve and shows Amelia the thin bra strap pressing into the moon pale skin of her shoulder. The orange lighting makes her seem healthier than she is. "Flirt." She wiggles her eyebrows in a way that would be suggestive, if her makeup wasn't so dark that it made her look
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.”Suffocate2 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
Cretaceous YardThe call came in at 1500 hours, exactly twenty minutes after Leviner returned from his break. He picked up the phone and listened.Cretaceous Yard4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
"We'll be there right away, sir."
On the other side of the desk, his partner looked at him. "A homicide?"
"If only we could be so lucky," Leviner snorted, making Ellsie wince.
It was just another case of illegal dumping. Once the 'cera crew had cleared away the overgrowth of ferns, Leviner stalked his way in. "What do you see?" Ellsie called. Although the entrance to the small shed was large enough to easily accommodate Leviner, there was no way Ellsie was fitting inside. Not that it was her fault. Maiasaurs were designed to be out grazing in the fields, not solving crimes. Leviner tried desperately not to think of her as delicious, delicious cattle. If he even so much rumbled his stomach at her, she would turn him into a raptor pancake with one large foot.
Tromping over the carpet of flattened leaves, Leviner swatted a small dragonfly out of the way, deftl