It was 1918. Grandpa loved his 9 grandchildren, but the Flu was deadly, so whenever a grandchild approached, he held up his hand, and shouted, “Hey!”
His grandkids still loved him, but they never hugged.
They started calling him “Heypappy”, and that’s how it was for his remaining 25 years.
Harry Demarest wrote this true story about his great grandfather, Franklin Conklin.
Three years had passed since the virus lockdown, and she ached to go outside.
Every morning she put on her shoes, only to turn back at the doorstep.
Still not safe, she thought, though the media said otherwise. What if she walked into a deep cough or an explosive sneeze?
Debbi Antebi (@debbisland) lives in London, UK, with her husband and books.
George sits in his pitch-black room, his pallid face lit by the flickering computer screen. He runs his left hand along his right forearm to remember the feel of human touch on his skin. He smiles at the person who touches his heart on the screen. It’s okay. It’s enough.
Lisa is a Tokyo-based writer who loves coffee, dogs, and talking about Terrace House.
I give him a teddy bear and tell him it will keep him company, someone to talk to, while I work.
He returns him minutes later, saying the bear won’t stop talking about scratching his bum on trees and digging for bugs.
Such is life in quarantine with my husband.
Sharon Gerger loves to write and play more than she likes to work.
A year later, we give thanks—
that it was then, not now,
that we could be there
in the hospital with him, for days,
that so many friends could come and go,
give last goodbyes, lean close,
and not once did any of us worry
about sharing the same air.
Jennifer L Freed mostly writes poems, which have appeared in various
journals and anthologies. See more on her website: jfreed.weebly.com.
A previously loud planet is now silent. Its people—including myself—are isolated.
Quietly, I sit at my desk, where my old stories rest. Grabbing a pencil, I add layers to their clothing. Then I create new journeys, with paths that test one’s courage.
Suddenly, I find myself exploring the universe again.
Cristina Marie Pagan has appeared in 50-Word Stories, Glimpse, the Mystic Blue Review, and Seshat Literary Magazine.
Sunlight creeps through my bedroom window on the morning’s shoulders. Roosters crow and crickets chirp against the cargo train’s fading whistle. Cardinals dash from nandina berry bushes to plush dogwood blooms. Squirrels pose like monuments within towering blades of grass.
Our world has changed, but morning’s familiarity brings great comfort.
Vernae is new to the world of publishing, but is enjoying every moment of it. She began submitting her work for publication in 2018 and has been published several times. Her unpublished Children’s Book “Teddy Wet My Bed” was recently selected as one of five Finalists by Eyelands 2019 Book Awards in the Unpublished Books Category. Vernae prays for the health and safety of our families, nation, and world.
The eyes have it, above the masks, in a store less crowded, a town away. No one I know here, but recognizable–the eyes wide and searching and sometimes scared–because I see those same eyes in the mirror when I try on the mask, to see how I look.
Jon Fain wrote this story.
Lights left burning.
No cat or dog to blame,
the son has long gone
to his own lighted place.
No lecture necessary on waste of power.
Just three words,
Lights off, please,
or maybe those other three words
we should be saying more often
in our lighted and darkened places.
Laurie Kuntz is an award-winning poet and film producer. She taught creative writing and poetry in Japan, Thailand and the Philippines. Many of her poetic themes are a result of her working with Southeast Asian refugees for over a decade after the Vietnam War years. She has published one poetry collection (Somewhere in the Telling, Mellen Press) and two chapbooks (Simple Gestures, Texas Review Press and Women at the Onsen, Blue Light Press), as well as an ESL reader (The New Arrival, Books 1 & 2, Prentice Hall Publishers). Her poetry has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and her chapbook, Simple Gestures, won the Texas Review Poetry Chapbook Contest. She was editor in chief of Blue Muse Magazine and a guest editor of Hunger Mountain Magazine. She has produced documentaries on the repeal of the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Law, and currently is producing a documentary on the peace process and reintegration of guerrilla soldiers in Colombia. She is the executive producer of an Emmy winning short narrative film, Posthumous. Recently retired, she lives in an endless summer state of mind. See more at lauriekuntz.myportfolio.com
We don’t know who will be “It” next. No one screams, freezes, then pivots.
Paramedics ushered Mr. Steensaver out in his bathrobe last night, Greta from two doors over today.
Pushing the elevator button could be our downfall. Meeting the FedEx man. How to become invisible from an invisible enemy?
Shoshauna Shy relies on stories and poetry to get through the pandemic. More of her work can be found online at Literary Orphans, 100WordStory, Fiction Southeast, Brilliant Flash Fiction, and lots of other places.