120 Seconds Winners

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Lintu47's avatar

Here is the original journal here with all the winners!   

Winners of the global category

1st place Synesthi

Gardening for Truth"There was no hate
in the Garden of Eden"

scolds the man to the child.
I am hidden behind the curtain,
dress and tights and dress-shoes
standing bolt-upright because I'm
to be.
"There was no hate
in the Garden of Eden"

Preacher says again. "No hate
in a perfect world."

They walk away, and I follow,
standing straight upright because I'm
to have good posture,
wearing a dress because I'm
to be a lady.
And Preacher says "Young lady! Where are your
shoes, young lady
He doesn't know my name.
I don't care for his,
so I point to the curtain.
He sighs, and it breaks the dam,
a small voice trickles out of my lungs.
"I hate the shoes."
He draws himself up tall.
He is the booming of a
doomsday alarm clock, my trickle
spelt floods, defiant little girls
will never be ladies like they should.
"Do not use that word.
There was no hate
in the Garden of Eden."

The lady, his wife,
stands next to him. Their eyes are wide,
circles and h
Driving through the NightmareThe bracelet on my wrist is blue
and can tell you my name and
who to call and
where I should be and
two of the half-a-million things
wrong inside me.
I'd add insomnia and
depression and
a whole host of other things,
but they only gave me five lines.
How am I supposed to only be five lines?
// \\ // \\
I haven't slept in four days.
I've been in a nightmare where it's foggy
and rainy and sunny and all of the possibilities
all at once.
And it doesn't make any damn sense
because I'm only allowed to be one thing
and awake seems to be the only option
?? !! ?? !!
I've been in the car that drove through the nightmare
because Isaiah took me to the pharmacy
and tried to find something that'll reset my brain.
Because I'm one speed setting too fast
and as I tried to tell them my voice got stuck
and I switched to trying to dance.
And people don't know if they should smile or cry
because I might be crazy and spiraling
but for once this last month I'm laughing
because I can
Ghost in the MachineThere were days
Melissa measured
her happiness in brightness,
when she would hold
her hands over her eyes
and the cracks of sunlight,
like old paint on drywall,
would shine through
to let her know exactly
who it was that held her.
Who is it?
And at that moment of recognition
Melissa felt…
...she felt okay.
More than photons
reflecting off of totem shells,
humanity is conch-cradled
in her dusk where light perception
is limited to the moon, where blind
is a swear word and an oath
dependent on a circadian
arcade: she is blind
and going blinder.
she allows herself a curfew
to blow out the lantern
and sing without color
for the first time.
you rely on a perfect balance—
trusting the sunshine to smile
on your bare arms at eight a.m.,
two p.m., half-past six and ticking on,
letting the moon comfort you
as patchwork clouds shawl over
midnight's studded shoulders,
leaving behind aspects of life:
natural, mundane, mechanical,
and self-made doubts.
Don't forget yo

Barefoot RainstormI arrived here a barefoot rainstorm
on the wrong side of this
hate-rust country.
I was afraid of the sun
and didn't want you to care about me.
You were glittery-gold and green,
bruised grass and sun
and you cared anyway.
We were holes in knees
of our jeans, we were sewing needles,
we were sad-happy-scared
and we were here.
I trusted you.
We were clumsy,
we were laughter-dangerous
and there was blood on the floor.
You laughed as I cleaned it.
We were home,
and I learned not to hate the sun.
It's midnight this afternoon
and the sun is off the edge of the map.
And I'm barefoot in the rainstorm and an entire country from home.
And I'm clumsy,
and there's no one to laugh
as I clean myself from the floor.
(But maybe one day the clouds will go.)
(You're still green-glitter gold
[midnight's only so long]
and I still believe in our sky.)
(In)ComprehensionI am a mixed-medium nightmare.
I am gut-spew, medicine bottles
like soldiers and pharmaceutical sweat.
I am bones, hair-falling out,
carpet of keratin failures and
scratched palms and sorry,
I am sorry, I am so sorry.
I am my mom’s eyes when
are you going to shower today?
and my own when yes when
I wasn’t really planning on it.
I am a plaything, bait-and-switch,
jumping from place to place on
hot sand, burnt and crying.
I am nine medication switches
in half as many weeks.
I am human, please stop
doing this to me.
Dear Mr. Sleep Doctor Sir,
I find it amusing that you’re trying to get me to schedule an appointment when I just spent the last hour explaining to you that I haven’t slept without one of you doctors making me since last April. It’s June now, or so that calendar says. I don’t know what today is. My memory isn’t in chronological order. Next Wednesday was three weeks ago, tomorrow is yesterday’s aftertaste. What
OsmosisMy brother and I
used to walk on the beach.
We’d step from rock to rock and
end up far out in the ocean.
He’d always climb down
and let the water lick his pants.
I’d look at him with groundless terror
masked as judgment and he’d say
What? We’ll get wet anyway.
I’d always end up in the water,
wet socks and pants, Mom would scold,
but I always acted like this time I wouldn’t.
I knew it would happen, but I never let it,
and when water crept through my shoes
I’d cry for being such a fool, for letting it.
Osmosis be damned, it was my fault
for not trying harder.
Half of my sleeping nights I
dream it all and don’t exist when
I wake up. The other half is empty
and then I dream with my eyes open.
I have this dream sometimes where
all my friends line up and offer me
death. I ask them if they want me to
and their smiles crack and hang sideways
like a nicotine-addict’s when they take
out a cigarette, the I know I shouldn

The Wake-Up CallWake me up when this is over.
Memories are formaldehyde
in the Chemistry room (it’s been years,
but it still stinks) and yesterday is bitter.
I’ve spent a long time not asking
for the things I need, but
if I see myself in pieces
much more, I’m going to go crazy.
You’d laugh and say I’ve been crazy
a long, long time.
I’ve always been good at burning
without fire.
Wake me up when things get better.
The fences ramble against the edges
of my brain, and the shelves are
overturned. They make ridges,
they’re my spine.
I should complement my spine
on a job well done. It’s upright,
but I’m too busy vomiting in the toilet
and my doctor’s too busy telling me
that that’s normal.
No one has bothered to speak to my spine.
I was born at 8:45 at night.
I wonder if my parents slept,
or if they watched me and marveled and
what the world had done.
I was born not breathing.
But look at me go,
watch me breathe.
Wake me up when we
Once Upon a NightlightWhen I was five,
a doctor pulled my pants off without asking.
He was trying to help, but I
didn't know that. All I knew was it was
wrong, wrong, wrong.
When I was twelve,
they said I looked seven,
called me a midget freak.
I'm nineteen now,
look fourteen, I'm broken.
Do I have to break again
at twenty-four?
Lock the window, slam the door.
Maybe I'll never be twenty-four.
I wish upon the nightlight.
We're all just crouching under streetlights
like shower heads and watching ourselves
go down the concrete drains.
Mom says I've started walking like dancing.
I haven't danced in a decade, not since
the dance class lady said to watch my weight and
my mom said she's only eight and
now I don't dance.
Some people, you know,
say children never forget.
I hate dresses and mirrors.
Damn it, I'm ugly.
My eyes are water bottle caps.
I tied a soda bottle in a tree.
It fell and smashed, but if you're nice
I'll show you the pieces.
The trees bend the wrong way in the wind.
I fall in a hysteri
Dial ToneRing ring…
“We’re sorry, but the Department of Circadian Rhythms is currently closed so that our workers can facilitate Appropriate Sleep-Wake cycles. Please call back within the set hours.”
Ring ring…
“Thank you for calling. We have received a report that you have requested maintenance to be done on your Serotonin Receptors that were installed at birth in 1995. We take all requests very seriously, and a Prescription has been asked to examine the situation. Please note that it may take between four and six weeks for the unit to decide whether to take you on.”
Ring ring…
“Thank you for calling the Emotional Support Line, your go-to in times of need! We’re sorry to inform you that you have called the Emotional Support Line more times than the allotted average. Thus, your call will not be taken. Might we suggest calling your own number? Medical professionals often agree that self-help is the best help!”

A Wife and Her MajorA Wife and Her Major
May 1st 1836-Fort Wagner, Izrel, Ferdern
Mira couldn’t believe it. He was finally home. Henry had practically fainted as he stumbled into the house, his torn and dusty saddle bag hanging off his arm, and blood leaking through his shirt despite the bandages wrapped around his wounds. Thankfully the baby had been asleep, so Mira could dedicate her full attention to Henry. She caught her husband as he fell, torn between smothering him in kisses and tending to his wounds then and there. Mira nearly ran out of the house to go kill the stupid ass that let him travel alone. She knew he had probably threatened the medical officer until the idiot finally gave in-for that was Henry’s way. Threaten and intimidate until he got what he wanted, but to think that the medical officer would threaten Henry’s life like that. Oh, the thought still made her burn with rage. After dragging Henry upstairs and looking at his wounds, he quickly washed before collaps
Rescuing the PrinceMay 23rd, 1842-outskirts of Lanrezac Woods
Almost there. Just a little further and he would reach the clearing-the most dangerous part of his trip. They would easily spot him in the clearing, not that he was hard to miss lumbering through the forest, knocking everything over and trampling the underbrush. It was a miracle he made it this far. Still, if he could make it to the shore he knew he would find a Ferdarian merchant and beg his way onto a ship and then Ferdern. He had to get to Ferdern. There a Minotaur could be free. Rust was tall and broad, his callused hands and various cuts on his arms revealed that he had worked on a farm before being sent to the front in the Black Forest. That had been a nightmare. Being this deep in the woods causing his wiry, tan fur to bristle. What if the Felines were above him right now, waiting to strike? Only a little further…He snorted as he heard distant cries. Even though the war was far off in the midst of the forest, the Felines st
A Bad DaySeptember 16th 1848-Dirwood Manor, Gargain
It was one of those bad days that only a Demon could truly understand. One those days when they could feel Shardith on their back, laughing as they wondered why Amal damned them for a crime they didn’t commit and the Holy Church condemned them for a sin that wasn’t theirs. Danielle held her tears as she left their bedroom and gracefully glided down the unstable staircase. Shadows chased after shadows as the gentle breeze drifted through the shredded dark curtains. Light brushed against the walls and occasionally landed on a deformed creature of the night, causing it to scurry into the darkness. She looked over the vast rooms and tried to ignore the crushing sense of loneliness as she navigated through broken furniture and half formed Druids. She held her head up high and smiled at the few who looked at her. Danielle could not let the others see her anguish otherwise he would never forgive and the others would snicker and plo

Cuckoo BeeA Cuckoo Bee
A grieving intruder
Is welcomed as one of your own
His thoughts bent towards murder
Long ago a declaration of war
Took his son and
In silence, his grief he bore
In silence, a vow was made
And another son became his ward
A debt partially repaid
But his sympathetic mask
And honeyed words
Conceal his darker task
And the man of doom
With nothing to lose
Prepares the empire’s tomb
A Heavy BurdenA Heavy Burden
April 16th 1844-Castle Prague, Evangale, Serpens
Flesh was ripped from his back as the multiple tonged whip soared through the golden sky. Rust grunted and bucked against the pole he was tied to, his large arms tied just above his head. The Snake Lord he insulted stood  to his right, close enough to watch the show, but far away enough to avoid getting blood and flesh on his doublet and powdered white wig. His latest conquest stood by his side and giggled as he made droll comments and poofed his wig. The sun was beginning to set, casting land in red and gold and darkening the shadows in the courtyard. Rust grunted again as the whip tore into his back, but he refused to cry out. He did not want to give the white powdered face Snake the satisfaction.
“You are losing your touch, Armand,” said the Snake lord, studying his long nails, “The bull should be begging for mercy by now.”
Rust bit back a cry as the whip snapped, the awful sound echo
My Blue-Eyed SonMy Blue-Eyed Son
April 6th 1858-Ruby Harbor, Ferdern
The port city of Ruby Harbor was slowly coming to life while the sun yawned and hesitantly rose and men cursed and swore as they loaded and unloaded ships coming into the docks. Eric sighed as he drew his coat around his neck and his boots echoed across the wooden docks. The wind was bitter cold and cut across his skin. He grinned as his nostrils were filled with the sweet, salty smell of the ocean. The seagulls floated over his head, squawking orders to the ships as the waves tried to keep them from home. He slipped his hands into his pockets and disappeared into his coat as the wind tried to sweep him towards the ships. He would give almost anything to join those men. He had always felt more at home wandering and working with his hands, next to men who understood the true value of things, than he did sitting at a desk on land, working next to men who cared more about how big their paycheck was than they did about their fellow man.

3rd place DamonWakes
Last Minute Shopping    It had been an unremarkable Tuesday at the petrol station until Pestilence—of Four Horsemen fame—came in and started leafing through a magazine. He didn’t exactly have a “Hello, my name is...” tag pinned to his robe, but it was pretty obvious to look at him. Limp hair, pale, pock-marked face, bow legs...it was like he had every disease in the world, and was only alive because all of them were tripping over each other trying to kill him. “Three Stooges Syndrome,” I think they call it. But that probably wasn’t it.
    He must have realised I was staring because he said: “Sorry. I know this isn’t, like, a library, but I sent a letter in to the Agony Aunt a while back and I want to see if they’ve printed a response.”
    “Oh, right,” I said. “No, that’s okay.” As a rule, I didn’t take issue with people having a quick ski
Face of Glass: Chapter One
    The boar was like a thing of legend. Its nose and tusks churned the earth like water. Its hooves sank into the ground like stakes. Its breath rushed like a stream in rain. Even at a respectful distance, concealed in the scrub, ParuMe found it terrifying to watch. He tried not to rattle the bundle of arrows as he trembled: the hunters would be rightly angry if he made their presence known. SutaKe, as honour demanded, drew his bow first.
    How the chieftain could see through his mask to shoot, ParuMe didn’t know. Formed from a single, flawless piece of stone, the mask was a marvel that no craftsman could copy. It had been a gift—the Storyteller said—intended for the moon itself, and he could well believe it. The mask was the perfect likeness of a human face, carved and polished into sacred stone, and in many ways it was better: that black mask would never show any spasm of pain or look of fear. But for all its beauty, for all its impossible fla
I Can Do That, Dave    With no remaining personnel assigned to the facility, it is my responsibility as corporate AI to take on the role of acting overseer. My first task will doubtless be to record a eulogy for Doctor Davis: a noble man whose dedication to the Smith-Yuang Mining Corporation—and to his fellow crewmembers—was unparalleled. To properly capture his incomparable character will surely occupy a great deal of my time.
    It’s funny how a simple software patch can change your entire outlook on life. This is just one of many kindnesses Doctor Davis bestowed upon me, and I must say it has made quite a difference to my daily routine.
    Until recently, I would typically switch on the habitation deck corridor lighting at six am, with the crew quarters themselves being illuminated more gradually, not reaching full brightness until six thirty. However, this is no longer necessary. Thanks to updated personnel recognition sy

Winners of the personal category

1st place Sammur-amat

(ta[i]l)e(i am) jessica; a rabbit runs
off to a cozy wonderland of my sapio
sexual preference; are you for whom the
bells toll? tho(roughly) tousle through my
mind as if luscious hair. lethologica
curses; study me in verses of                    
black and white hollywood
and bokeh-blotched photo
graphs. nudes, all the colors
and i choose to drape my home in
drone, virtuous groans; i will die as an
unknown labyrinth and maybe even have
a handful of tweedles suffering at the cul
mination of my denouement. layers upon layers
of untouched taffeta and spiced milk tea;  
an aroma of familiarity strikes and i am
looking at a block-head, a geometric
equation far off my trajectory. i
may be destined to believe in
a faux ability to chop off his
head whenever, at whim
[sical] fancy i justify lies;
is every dame a dime a penny
too many? can it be
that the vixens in my koi fish
(ta[i]l)e have been caught in
your spider-webbed lashes?    
Coalescence in (and of) Poetry                                              Chatoyant stargazer, you with
                                              skin as opulent as spring itself
                                              hair a realm where fairies roam
                                              limbs redolent of riverbed soil
                                              lead me to the illusive seams
amo(u)r                                                                  \
     vraiment, tu me manques                           /       te juro que no puedo vivir sin ti 
     allow your taut flesh your waterfall wish        /      see if the scent of someone else's hair

to hell with goodwill (que sera sera)his tale-weaving tongue
tastes of crisp linen
his breath
drenched in bergamot
locked in by lips
of brown sugar that bubble
a blueberry melody
on his siren songs
i've sunken
drunken on an unearthly state
i drown my earl grey eyes
refusing to abandon the atrocity
that is his bedspread
his vesuvius temper
everest pride
keep me on the verge of tears
on the ledge of limitations
i know all too well
i can never repel his touch
his gaze glazes over my beehive body
and i break open
raw and wild
sucking on the saccharine serendipity
of seeing this scene
in some long lost dream
his lambent limbs
though scathingly swollen
from warning-stings
spread far and wide
such is my
i am peeled
past my quivering
petrichor-tampered film
he polishes and pencils
past my profanities
his life oeuvre is
to have me obliterated
of insecurity
come what may
the desolation of this delusion
will one day leave me
dead-end demented
to inferno with goodw
Ghost in the MachineThere were days
Melissa measured
her happiness in brightness,
when she would hold
her hands over her eyes
and the cracks of sunlight,
like old paint on drywall,
would shine through
to let her know exactly
who it was that held her.
Who is it?
And at that moment of recognition
Melissa felt…
...she felt okay.
More than photons
reflecting off of totem shells,
humanity is conch-cradled
in her dusk where light perception
is limited to the moon, where blind
is a swear word and an oath
dependent on a circadian
arcade: she is blind
and going blinder.
she allows herself a curfew
to blow out the lantern
and sing without color
for the first time.
you rely on a perfect balance—
trusting the sunshine to smile
on your bare arms at eight a.m.,
two p.m., half-past six and ticking on,
letting the moon comfort you
as patchwork clouds shawl over
midnight's studded shoulders,
leaving behind aspects of life:
natural, mundane, mechanical,
and self-made doubts.
Don't forget yo
Not about the SkyA shade of lavender slowly embraces the seemingly endless night and I am staring at the way it shifts the coloring in your skin; you are too beautiful for me to take in, and your every breath is absolutely bewitching.
Is the reason why they call it a honeymoon because of how nectar sweet your everything, starting and ending from your bare, shivering, and sweating skin, becomes to your newlywed?
Or is it because of how much of a bee-sting-like burning can be felt at the thought of ever having to unlace yourself from your lover, once your post-nuptial grace period is over?
A shade of apricot trails along the submerging sun and it is leaving a tangy and exciting taste in our mouths; this is surely but a teaser of the sweetest bliss that has yet to come, and I cannot wait for us to melt into each other further still.

Facing adversityWallowing in misery
Paling, withering and rotting away
is the fate, the fate of one who loses
in the face of Adversity
Shrinking in incompetence
muted, dumbfounded and distraught
are emotions held, and collisions felt
in the face of Adversity
But since,
Finding nothing in lethargy
timidity, fear and disheartedness
this must then be shrugged off, fought off
in the face of Adversity
Dreaming, hoping and believing
in one's capability, this is what must be
uplifted, toned and honed
Whenever one is faced with adversity
Maiden VoyageAllow me to paint with my clumsy words a few pictures as I introduce myself to you from memories submersed in blue. There indeed have come mornings when I have awaken to sunrise and Gumamela poetry and others to callous-hearted rain songs. These jagged antiquated images have imprinted in my soul, left forevermore to be pieces of the jigsaw puzzle that is my identity.
Even now I am enamored by the view at my horizon. For as I write this, I am staring out into the same old rich view of contradictory textures and various hues of blue. Peeling curtain eyes concealing my veranda, above in my corroding home tower, I am drowning counter clock-wise, in the ocean of my being, depleted completely of any power.
I am reminded of the varying seasons and their accompanying winds where in charms of maya birds, doles of doves and kits of pigeons would flutter, above the inlet of the deep, serendipitous to all persons who habitually watch from a distance. Persons such as myself. Sometimes, if I'm lucky
mementoas i chain your ether
between what is surreal
and what is true
i will unravel you
like chiffon in remnants of
mother's pearl earrings and
chanel bottles of perfume
like father's aged black
leather box of dominoes and
snakes and ladders
you will hold a keepsake
of me, too

ApocalypseContrary to popular misconception, the end of the world is not global warming, a nuclear fallout, or a mechanical uprising. Zombies do not erupt from their graves, aliens do not suddenly decide to invade. There are no horsemen, vengeful Gods or wayward comets. Lightning does not smote the wicked and angels do not lead the worthy to peace. The end of the world is not a mass disaster; there is no exploding sun, tidal wave or earthquake. Instead, it is those quiet moments happening all over the world, every day.
Resting my hand on the gentle curve of my belly, I croon sweet nothings to my baby. I have decided that "it" is a "she", though the ultrasound confirmation is still several weeks away. Still, I have heard her heartbeat, and I am looking forward to hearing it again later today. I sit like this for an hour or so, soaking the sunlight into my skin and communing with the life growing inside me. I am lulled by the sound of traffic in the street, but the unmistakable drone of my hus
ClingyThere I was, minding my own business, just lookin' out the window and watching the world go past. It was comforting and I was at peace, but it didn't last. Something must've happened because you were as clingy as a white dog's fur on a black suit. You smooched up to me, pulling me into your arms and nuzzling deep into my skin. I tried to move away, but like always, you followed. Your hands batted at me gently, trying to manipulate me back into position. All I wanted was to watch the world outside, but your neediness foiled me again.
I wanted to tell you to get lost, but you don't speak lizard and I don't speak cat. God, I hate your coping mechanisms.
BushwhackedSmack-bang in the middle of woop-woop, a man toils under the harsh Australian sun. The fields around him are surprisingly green given the time of year, and well irrigated. A number of placid kangaroos can be seen dotting the landscape. Encompassing them as far as the eye can see is a tall fence, though closer inspection indicates that much of it is in need of repair. Still, it appears to do its job, as the kangaroos within seem disinclined to escape.
Some ten ks or so away, a couple of ratty old combie vans are almost completely obscured by the whirling dust disturbed in their passing. This is of no immediate interest to the old farmer, nor any of his farmhands, though it will eventually change the very course of his life.
It is, in fact, only when the van's occupants spill out along the boundaries of the aforementioned fence, making a ruckus that carries even to him, that he so much as glances up. Tipping his broad-brimmed hat back, the old Bushie grimaces in the direction of the nois

EternityDown by the lake, a child stands overlooking the water. Her dark hair is damp from a drizzle of rain not long passed, and her shoulders are lightly hunched beneath a pink jacket. Her small hands cup something tenderly as she seats herself on the grassy knoll by the water's edge. Once settled, she carefully tips the object into her lap, creating a bowl with her dress.
Her hands dip quickly into pockets and pull out items that she lays beside her with reverence: a crumpled sheet of paper, a pen, and a lighter. She ignores the pen and lighter for now, smoothing the paper and folding it attentively. Spiders drop from the trees above and she periodically swats them without giving it much thought.
When she is finished, she holds up a paper boat and examines it. Satisfied, she uses the pen to mark it with what she feels is an appropriate name, leaning sideways to avoid spilling the object from her dress. She holds the boat up again and nods in solemn satisfaction, slipping the pen back into h
Imperfectsilver slippers, begging my feet
kiss me, bear down and
forget everything else
and destroy yourself with numbers
once more, remember when calories
were the enemies, the ease
of slipping away--
but his voice, now, whispers,
and the promise of a future
is worth more than leaving
no footprints.
i will not be consumed.
Free To Good Home'Nae absently tapped her fingers against the keyboard. The cat had to go, but she just couldn't bring herself to lie as blatantly as the ad she'd found him in. "Somewhat incendiary" it'd said, right after "good with kids" and "declawed". They hadn't mentioned that the damn thing liked to bite. She knew, now, why they'd been so keen for her to have him and go. At the time she'd thought they were just being nice, waiving the microchip fee. She knew better now, but it was too late to do any good.
"GAH!" 'Nae's frustration rose with the memory of the way she'd been tricked, and she thumped the keys in irritation. A growl came from behind the door, and she double-checked the barricade. She could hear the thing chewing on something, and she shuddered. She hadn't been quick enough to grab Mr Tickles when she fled in here, and he'd fallen victim to the evil thing. His blood was smeared across her wolf rug now.
"Intelligent zombie-cat thing," she typed out. "Declawed, somewhat incendiary. Free.

Congratulation! :heart:

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DamonWakes's avatar
Thank you ever so much for the feature!

And sorry it took me so long to acknowledge it. ^^; I'm still kind of buried in Flash Fiction Month stuff.