Mother wears her sorrow like a wet fur coat. As the days pass, every step she takes weighs her down. Each rancid choice she makes pushes us further apart.
She asks why I stay away from her.
I worry she’ll bequeath the coat to me and I’ll repeat the cycle.
Yong Takahashi won the Chattahoochee Valley Writers National Short Story Contest and the Writer’s Digest’s Write It Your Way Contest. She also was a finalist in The Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing, and runner up in the Gemini Magazine Short Story Contest and Georgia Writers Association Flash Fiction Contest. Some of her works appear in Cactus Heart, Crab Fat Magazine, Emerge Literary Journal, Flash Fiction Magazine, Gemini Magazine, Hamilton Stone Review, Meat For Tea, River & South Review, Rusty Nail Magazine, Spilt Infinitive, and Twisted Vines.
“It won’t reach us up here, love. We’ll be fine. We just need to wait for it to pass, and then everything will go back to normal. You’ll see.”
But the water level continued to rise, and Annabel realized, perhaps for the first time, that her mother was absolutely wrong.
Karen lives in South West London, England, quite near the River Thames, which floods fairly often.
It’s so far up the beach, her first sandcastle. The bucket is too full. She stumbles. Water sloshes over the rim.
It’s scalding. Her leg blooms with pain.
A nurse prises the teacup from her knotted hand. He leads her slowly to a chair. It’s so far up the ward.
Tamsin wrote this story during quite a long walk.
She has to have her cigarettes. Buys them with the baby food money. Buys a six-pack, too. She lights up; first drag is always the best. She drops it in the sand, crushes it. She chugs the beer, staggers, falls into the moonlit surf.
She gave the baby up today.
poetry, prose, and photographs have appeared in Melancholy Hyperbole
, When Women Waken
, and Blotterature
. She travels the scenic route between St. Pete, Florida and the Off Campus Writers Workshop (OCWW) in Winnetka, Illinois. When she’s not writing, she’s listening, picking up slices of life or shells on a beach.
In the shallows of the gently lapping waves, the girl, dress tucked in knickers, had played.
The sun, low in the sky, casts an orange glow.
Shops long closed. Curlews, in flight, send out their cry.
A mother comes out to call her daughter home.
There’s no one to hear.
Jean lives in Bath in the UK and loves reading 50-word stories. She has a go whenever she gets the time.
Ummm, my favorite part of the day is when I colored on the table.
I touch things with my yucky hands.
I spill milk on my sister’s bed.
Listen to your Mom and Dad and listen to policemans or else they’re gonna put you in jail and don’t get cavities.
This story was written by three-year-old Chase Sciacchitano. He told his mother that he will win and she will not. (Mommy hasn’t submitted yet. She’s not sure she can compete!)
He likes listening to music, so the choice was easy for his birthday: a Bluetooth speaker!
Right now, I regret it. The music is way too loud! I can’t handle it anymore.
I go to his bedroom, open the door, and shout: “Please, dad, can you turn the volume down?!”
Noé Colle is a 17-year-old student from Chimay, a town in the French part of Belgium. He saw the website 50WS during his English lesson and wanted to give it a try. Noé is a composer and a DJ: music is his passion.
Last night, Dad came round to introduce us to his latest bride to be. “There’s life in the old dog yet,” he said.
She said nothing.
This must be his third engagement since Mum died, or his fourth including Carol.
“Who’s counting, anyway?” he asked with a grin.
David is remarkably immature about these things. He finds that writing about it does help a bit.
Sarah couldn’t bear to look out the back window. She hated the garden. Peter had been promising to remove the yard toys since January, but he didn’t have the heart to do it. They fought about that. They fought about everything.
Tina was only four. Perhaps heaven has yard toys.
Paul Laughsend is a previously unpublished writer, always looking for support and guidance.
The tiny hand was lost within its father’s. Each gripped tightly, softly to the other. Within that touch, free from language or misinterpretation, resided the very essence of love.
The small hand slowly went limp; the larger paused, then released. One now free; the other chained eternally to that moment.
Adam Mitchell is a teacher, mostly, and a learner always. Current published work can be accessed in his dreams.