The livestream of his daughter’s birth crawled; he didn’t recognize himself in the black flicker.
Just earlier he shot a child who had pointed a gun at him. Watched the hate and fear fade from his eyes.
She’s now the only part of him that still belongs in this world.
Shaw Chen is a USAF Veteran and graduate student who wants to try creative writing.
Some aches, like some days, were worse than others. He swallowed a pill to make himself sunny, but within hours the clouds were back. He practiced his breathing.
Meanwhile, real clouds, gray and big as mountains, bumped against the window. Some kind of wild bird was cawing in the trees.
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.
The face was there, but the rosy cheeks and twinkling eyes were absent, absconded along with ready smile and gleeful giggles, lost in memories.
She wore civvies, not the nun’s habit she had hiked up a little to play football with us as children.
The coffin also took her voice.
Perry McDaid is a writer of prose and poetry who has developed a taste for pastels. They’re a tad chalky but provide roughage.
My greasy hair is flowing upwards, blonde flames licking the stale air of the ISS. Exercise twice a day, followed by sponge baths only.
“I know, sweet pea, I know,” I whisper into the microphone. Her newborn cries inconsolably.
Twice a day I am only 220 miles away from her.
Dini Armstrong, now Scottish, has worked in journalism and psychology. She is currently completing an MA in Creative Writing. Her controversial style got her into trouble from age six, when, after writing a particularly enraging piece about a cat blowing up three boys, she had to promise to her stepdad never to write again. She lied.
“I’m sorry. Your tests with the latest medication proved unsuccessful. The prognosis is six months.”
John grasped his wife’s hand and squeezed it gently.
They travelled to the airport in silence, but desperate to talk.
Understanding airline staff upgraded them.
“Your lucky day!” cracked a joker as they left Economy.
John B. Sinclair is a much-travelled Scot who has now returned to Scotland, where he enjoys freelance writing on a variety of subjects.
Despair of evening gives way to terrors of the night, to sleep, disrupted, dreaming of elegance, of past and future nightmares. To wake to morning and rise, to work, to read, to listen for wisdom, to love again and hope for another evening, another night, another dream of another day.
Originally from New York, Janet Clare lives in Los Angeles with her husband. She’s had short fiction and essays published in literary journals online and anthologized. She studied at UC Berkeley and UCLA. Her first novel, Time Is the Longest Distance, was published December 2018 by a small press out of Australia, where the story is set. She is at work on her second novel, A Different Happiness.
26 years old. That’s when my heart first met hers.
26 minutes in and I was already in love.
26 months later I broke her heart into a billion bits.
26 seconds. That’s how long it took her to leave.
26 years older and I’m still picking up the pieces.
Dylan Martin is a University at Albany alumnus who currently lives in the New York metropolitan area. His passion for fiction tends to gravitate towards the characters involved, and his writing tends to focus on the characters as well. See more at dm-writing.com.
Finally, the call came, after six months of mystery liquid
dripping from her nose–
a cerebral fluid leak originating from a hole at the base of her brain.
The enemy had been unmasked after not one, not two, but three lab samples.
No time for fear; she prepared for battle.
Vernae is a wife, mother, and grandmother who is getting off the sidelines and into the art of writing for better or for worse. Vernae is currently completing three books of poetry that reflect the joys, challenges, and hope throughout the human experience.
I found a mildewed stack of love poems in the attic, looking centuries old. The snatches of looping script I could read brought the stars and moon tumbling down on my head.
We’ve lost more in the poetic art of writing love than we can ever reproduce with our thumbs.
A graduate of the University of Minnesota’s Creative Writing program, Soma is reinvigorating her poetry and flash fiction muscles after over two decades of writing stories for businesses and brands. She intends to tell her story as a first generation Indian woman growing up between Western and Eastern cultures.
The zebra butterfly clung to the glass pane. His black and white wings drew the attentive fingers of the little boy on the window seat inside. Could he cradle this wonder in his hand?
The butterfly clapped his wings and lifted away. He carried with him all the toddler’s joy.
Gary Thomson lives in Ontario, where in his quiet moments he blows Beatles tunes on his Hohner harmonica.