“All I remember,” I pause, heaving a shuddering sigh, “Was walking into the downstairs parlor. It was dark, but I smelled swampland. Continue reading
Impression management. Measured words. Think before you write. Continue reading
Twin-bladed helicopters dumped the bright red slurry (water and fertilizer) on the manically dancing flames, then swooped through the smoky haze to the reservoir, to refill for another drop. Even with no wind, the wildfire gobbled the grassy plain, Continue reading
Wake up. Open your eyes. Or not.
Stretch from the tip of your chilly nose, through the arms and shoulders, down your back, deep into the gluteus max, into the length of your calves and out through the end of each toe. Continue reading
(For Carrot Ranch Rodeo #3–Spellbinding Septolets)
Nora crouched at the edge of Fischer’s Gorge and pulled a braid of human hair from inside her jacket. Each strand in this braid had been woven together from the remainders of uncounted childhood games, battles fought and forgiven, and secrets shared among four friends, over nearly two decades. She pressed it to her face and breathed in their memories, then began the unraveling. Continue reading
She’d climbed down the drainage tunnel, crawling due east, then straight down. That ladder better not end before the tunnel did. Beau had promised, Continue reading
(Response to the second Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Rodeo: Humor)
“There’s a payphone in town. We’ll take you there,” the farmer nodded from under his straw hat as his wife peeked around the edge of her bonnet.
So how’d I land here, sharing the back of an Amish wagon with two piglets, a smelly sheep, and a drooling farm dog? Continue reading
Blat of mule’s bray, and Nanjo rattled into the village square. People grumbled, crowding the buckboard wagon. They’d been waiting since dawn. The stench of unwashed clothes hung heavy in the morning heat. Continue reading
Red shorts, shirtless, she digs tiny toes into the sand. A mutt stretches nearby, ears pricking as the girl narrates the world under her dirty hands. Continue reading
Her fingers paused and flattened on the ridged wood of the screen door. A warm breeze flowed over her fingers, soft promise of the summer day. Springs screeched as she pushed through, concrete floor chill under her bare feet. Continue reading
Godzilla and King Kong sat at the edge of the airfield, munching happily in the sunshine. Fighting was hard work, and they were grateful the film crew had broken for the day. Continue reading
“I’m sorry. What?”
“Like a sweater. Pull! Off! It!”
“Are you having a stroke or something?”
She glared at him, vibrating with rage, and pushed the sleeves of her washed-out taupe cardigan up over her elbows and planted her feet.
He sighed, slid his glasses up his nose. “I have no frikkin’ clue,” he grunted.
It was then that he noticed the linoleum and cinder-black dayroom was empty. Continue reading
She bends over unkempt juniper shrubs and a beetle-laced Japanese plum, scissoring with vigor. with long-bladed hand shears. Down the boulevard, a few trees show tawdry highlights of orange and gold. Continue reading
Boxes lay along the curved perimeter of the silvery dock. A slender figure darted around them, stacking smaller boxes on medium, turning some toward the shoreline. The healer and her intern had placed three large boxes on the further, forested side, long before the observers had arrived. The dock rocked, slapping the water; the beasts were restless.
Twelve boxes total, counting the one in her belly pocket.
The crowd quieted as dawn softened, red to apricot.
She raised her arms. “Z!” The intern unlatched the largest box and stepped back as a silky black panther padded toward the trees.
He turned his head once, flashed his canines in farewell and disappeared into the shadows. Continue reading
And yet. Continue reading