In dream, images lure: my hands spanning his bony scapula, lips kissing his neck, leg snaking his muscles as I lean back, believing he won’t ever let me go.
Awake, I pray for strength I cannot muster, to rise, to walk, to forgive the texting teen for unraveling our tango.
Sudha Balagopal’s short fiction appears in Jellyfish Review, Drabble, New Flash Fiction Review, New World Writing, and other journals. She is the author of a novel, A New Dawn. See more at sudhabalagopal.com.
Every summer we haul grandpa’s ashes down to the beach and listen to the crashing surf.
The roar reminds us of grandpa’s grumbling groans after a long day’s work.
When the tide recedes, the shoreline resembles a long stretch of freshly poured cement, waiting to be troweled, skimmed perfectly smooth.
Bob Thurber is the author of “Paperboy: A Dysfunctional Novel” and two collections of stories. A celebrated master of Flash and Micro Fiction, his work has appeared in 60 anthologies, received dozens of awards, and been used in schools and colleges throughout the world. He resides in Massachusetts where, though legally blind, he continues to write every day. Visit his website at BobThurber.net.
Lost most of my teeth and sight. Not rambunctious like I was.
She still loved me, unconditionally. She looked at me as if I was still a pup. “You take love with you from one world to the next,” she once told me.
Never thought that I’d outlive her.
Jody loves to write fiction. She is inspired by her old hound dog, who puts a smile on her face every day with his silly antics.
Growing up, I looked up to my dad more than anything. So when he said my mom was a goddess in every sense, I was perplexed. She was… matronly. Crow’s feet and freckles.
As I grew older, it never dawned on me.
Until I met a goddess in every sense.
Isaiah Smith has lived in a lot of places, but his favourites are where he’s among friends. Before he was a writer, Isaiah didn’t have a purpose outside of pleasing his friends and family. He wears a two-piece suit while he writes. It’s just business.
Being us is coming home, slipping into PJs, and pressing soft, weary limbs together under grandma-made quilts and old sheets. It’s absence of words while my nose is tucked inside your neck. Then it’s singing “Hallelujah!” with our eyes because we’re home, together, in the tender place of being known.
Alyssa Minaker lives in Africa with her husband.
The steel wheels of the approaching train
screech at me to jump.
This is it!
I move towards the platform’s edge
and surrender to the approaching light.
A man’s voice calls from behind
Is that the train to Amsterdam?
I turn around, and I behold
my brown-eyed destiny.
Susan J. Nassuna is a Ugandan born writer and coach. She lives in the Netherlands, and when not working on her novel and a collection of short stories she guides others in using writing and storytelling as powerful tools for healing and growth. See more at writingforwellnessworkshops.com.
Dusty bounded into my life, like a golden bone lay hidden inside me. Our ritualistic greeting never failed to cheer my weary spirit.
Dusty is gone now but sometimes I picture God laughing, tossing that tennis ball over the Pearly Gates. Dusty pounces and returns with eyes full of adoration.
Eileen McIntyre is a writer from Northern California, who sometimes listens when voices speak.
It wasn’t love – she’d caught a glint of gold in a moment of poverty.
The polished Seducer had built a bridge to Paradise.
It was a temporary one.
In the end she realized her surroundings were quicksand.
The pyrite she clutched didn’t compare to the genuine counterpart she had forsaken.
Carrie enjoys writing in her spare time. Two of her children’s books, Wayne’s Trip to the Moon, and Mr. Jacobs and the Serving Spoon, are available at backerbooks.com. She has also written a few poems and short stories which have not yet been revealed to the public.
It’s been a long time and I’ve missed you, my old friend.
The thought of you, your smell. The way you taste.
You’re always on my mind.
I know it’s been good to be away from you, but I want you back in my life.
Hello carbs, my old friend.
Susan is a Technical Writer by day and fiction writer at night. She adores her five grandkids.
“I followed your vision through the hellholes of northern France.”
Now, on a chateau hospital lawn near Ypres, she laughed beside him.
“Custance, nurse of my wounds, beacon of my desire.”
The purloined brandy, springtime lark song, and his idolatry bonded her heart to his.
Close by, field cannons rumbled.
Retired in Ontario, Gary Thomson has ample time to blow Satchmo’s and Beatles’ tunes on his Hohner harmonica.