People had stopped coming to see Elsa. She couldn’t imagine why.
This new home had even less space and light than before.
Then the van stopped moving. Blue sky and the smell of savanna burst through the open door.
“Just hope you still remember how to hunt,” said her zookeeper.
Gaining a Masters degree from University of South Wales in Scriptwriting, storyteller Peter Gaskell’s screenplay ‘Pigs in Muck’ featured in the Lockdown Monologue Film Festival recently. His poems have been published in the Atlanta Review and Places of Poetry as well as reviews of theatre, books, film, and concerts in Wales Arts Review. As a commissioned ghost writer his work as a novelist has been published while he is currently seeking an agent for his own novel ‘Shaman’s Blues’.
“April ’68, I was cooking in a dive in Dubuque.
“The boss put up a sign: “Closed in Memory”. We all sat in the back, cursing, crying, hugging each other. Someone found a bottle, rum, to make the coffee go down better. He paid us regular for that day, too.”
Tony Press tries to pay attention. Sometimes. His collection CROSSING THE LINES (Big Table) can be found; indeed, he has several copies ready for mailing.
I gaze overhead into the blue and white swirls of ethereal mist.
I long to be there.
Dreaming; wishing; trying to find a way.
I abandon my responsibilities.
Now my magic carpet is at the runway’s end.
I advance the throttle and point the airplane’s nose skyward.
I am free.
Armand Vilches is an aviation enthusiast and flight instructor who has been flying since he was a teen. Unfortunately, his day job tends to get in the way of being at the controls of an airplane.
I ran into a ghost the other day. I think it was a ghost. It moaned a lot, and rattled chains like old Marley did when he visited Scrooge. I blinked and the vision cleared.
The ghost was me, twenty years into the future, chained to a gray, corporate desk.
Jenise Cook lives with her husband in the north-central highlands of Arizona where it snows. Jenise enjoys visitors to @jenisecook on Twitter, and at JeniseCook.com where you can find a list of her published works.
The child’s hopes are dashed as the balloon rises higher and further out of reach.
The question remains: is this what the balloon is seeking?
At the higher altitude, the rarer air and the heating sun cause the balloon to expand until it bursts.
Be careful what you wish for.
Ed N. White has recent stories accepted by The Scarlet Leaf Review and Wordgatherings (Dec. issue).
The skinny cat slinks through damp alleyways with hunger in her eyes, desperation sharpening her senses to a degree that she never thought possible. She’s found freedom in starvation, purpose in the chase, salvation in the feeling of blood between her teeth.
She will never be a house pet again.
Ethan Noll writes short stories and poems. He hopes to write something longer someday.
The wasp finds itself trapped inside a water glass held up against a window. It repeatedly slams itself against the window, rebounding off the water glass. Spent, it finally surrenders.
I slide paper between window and water glass, and free the wasp outside.
Surrender is not always what it seems.
Ellen Hansen is a writer and fiddle player living in Helvetia, Oregon. She recently retired from leading international tours. Her story “Surrender” just received first place in the 2019 Oregon Writers Colony 50 word story contest.
Crows waddle about pecking at the grass and dirt. He, in his black security guard uniform, waddles along too—arthritic knees splaying his legs. On the nearby street, tires squeal and horns honk, sending the crows skyward. He stops, turns his head, watches them, surely with a twinge of green.
Louella Lester writes in Winnipeg, Canada. Her flash writing has appeared in Spelk, Reflex Fiction, Flash Fiction North, Microfiction Monday Magazine, Fewer Than 500, and Flash: The International Short-Short Story Magazine.
Her heavy legs had stood and waited. Her aching arms had pushed through the crowds.
A salty tear rolled down onto her tattered jacket as she watched the doors of salvation thud closed. The city was full.
Now she had nothing left to do but head back into the sand.
After graduating university with a degree in Drama and Theater Arts, Jennifer Kennett somehow began writing speculative fiction. She has had work published in Mad Scientist Journal (fall 2016), Longshot Island (Spring 2017), The Weird Reader (Winter 2017) and Astounding Outpost (Winter 2017). Follow her on Twitter at @Jen_Kennett.
sits on a park bench.
Pigeons know her.
They cluster… fight… peck.
The children recognize her too:
the one who feeds the pigeons.
Lily giggles, opens her purse,
sets it on the ground.
“She’s crazy,” the children taunt.
Pigeons though, coo, bob…
fly into her purse
filled with sky.
Judy DeCroce is a poet / flash fiction writer and animal lover. She has been published in Pilcrow & Dagger, Amethyst Review, The Sunlight Press, Cherry House Press- Dreamscape:An Anthology, and many others. Judy is a professional storyteller and teacher and lives and works in upstate New York with her husband, writer/artist Antoni Ooto.