______to see whether the cancer
has also leapt to his brain,
my husband drives wintery roads,
bringing one of our daughters
to a birthday party. The dog
wags at the door, eager
for his walk, and the plow
leaves another ridge of icy snow
at the end of our driveway.
Jennifer L Freed mostly writes poems, which have appeared in various journals and anthologies. See more at her website, jfreed.weebly.com.
You say they’re a beautiful sky blue—
that may slow your tumors.
You take the sky
into your body
with your morning tea.
I imagine you
in today’s snow, making angels
as we did when small—
____ice-crusted fringe of tree-tops,
____glint of winter sun, the dazzling
Jennifer L. Freed mostly writes poems, which have appeared in various journals and anthologies. The above was originally published in The Worcester Review (at 57 words), but someone inspired her to see if she could trim it and send it here. The above-mentioned pills worked for about ten months. See more at jfreed.weebly.com.
I would rather look at the sky than at a screen. I would rather walk than drive. I would rather drive tree-lined roads than highways. I would rather be alone than at a party. I would rather meet someone one-on-one than try to tell in 50 words who I am.
Jennifer L. Freed was recently irritated by a form that asked too many such questions. She mostly writes poems, sometimes writes short fiction, and always wishes she had more time to write anything at all.
when my daughter finally left
that I’d be free
could go back
to my old self.
Nobody told me
my breasts would ache
for her hunger,
or that her heat, her scent,
her fierce little grip
would hold me
even after I’d given her away.
Jennifer L. Freed likes inventing characters but doesn’t have enough time to write. The narrator of this story did not exist until a prompt (“Write something on the theme of independence”) brought her to life.
I dreamed we were still in my kitchen, laughing
at the dog, who kept trotting to the door, then not
going out, lest he miss a single scrap
of whatever we might offer.
When I woke, the dog comforted me.
It was you inside the door, poised
to go through.
Jennifer L Freed has a friend whose tumors keep outrunning the chemo. Her website is jfreed.weebly.com.
I am middle aged when you mention
that as a child at Christmastime
you were chased around your neighborhood
by big blond boys shouting
I’ve known you all my life,
yet you are distant land,
and few years remain for me to touch that soil.
Jennifer usually writes poetry, occasionally writes short fiction. See more at her website.
“One barn cat’s enough,” Ma answered. “More, they’ll steal the chicks.”
Pa fetched an old grain sack.
At the pond, he paused a moment, still as stone, before turning away. Seeing I’d followed, he squatted, blocking my view, big hands wiping my cheeks.
Then he stood. “Best milk those cows.”
Jennifer L Freed writes mostly poetry, and sometimes micro-fiction. This story previously appeared in The Binnacle’s ultra-short edition, Fall, 2016. If you’d like to know more, please visit jfreed.weebly.com.
I didn’t know what it meant—
my father washing dishes,
or carrying a heavy load
Dreaming of love
lit by candlelight
and roses, I didn’t see
that when my father told my mother,
“I’ll get that,”
he gave her sweet bouquets
gathered after work:
blanket flower, buttercup, honeysuckle.
Jennifer L. Freed usually writes poetry but likes the challenge of micro-fiction. She recently had a 100-word story, “The Lesser,” published in The Citron Review. Her website is jfreed.weebly.com.
He was never much for talking,
but he must have felt
our youthful lack of questions
as a wound: when
we asked him, later—
when we were old enough
he’d never told us
of who he was,
his answer flared
quick and sharp:
Jennifer L. Freed usually writes poetry but likes the challenge of micro-fiction. She recently had a 100-word story (“The Lesser”) published in The Citron Review. Her website is jfreed.weebly.com.
Her last moments haunted me.
Yes, she was a mean old
witch, but to think
how death washed over her
How she must have felt,
she had no
of her final words.
Toto sniffing the black pool
of her empty robes.
Jennifer L. Freed writes mostly poetry, and occasionally some short fiction. Her poetry chapbook was published in 2014. Other work can be seen at Jfreed.weebly.com.