Showing posts from October, 2018

fifteen years

sunday morning mr pembrooke wakes up in a bed next to a woman for the first time in fifteen years and he goes downstairs and makes breakfast for a woman for the first time in fifteen years and he thinks about the lectures his father used to give him about sex before marriage for the first time in fifteen years and he puts the coffee on the table next to the halved grapefruits and toast dripping with marmalade and soft boiled eggs and four strawberries each for the first time in fifteen years and he opens the newspaper and listens to the sounds of a house that is not empty and it is so different from the sounds of one that is and he decides that this morning he shall do his sunday morning crossword puzzle in pen. John Brantingham is  the first poet laureate of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park, and my work has been featured in hundreds of magazines and in The Best Small Fictions 2016. He has eight books of poetry and fiction including The Green of Sunset from Moon Tide Press,

The Election Rally

This story is written by Vijai Pant who is a freelance writer living in India “Hunger has been banished,” he thundered. The crowd roared. Kalawati, too, feebly cheered. After all, they had been given clear instructions on what all to do during the course of Netaji's speech, before being ferried in a truck to the rally. Meeting over, she jostled with the others for the promised 500 rupee note. After a lot of pushes and shoves she managed to lay her hands on one. Clutching the crumpled note she hurried home. She didn’t want to lose one more child to starvation.

The Party

This is the first poem in #worthingflash and it is written by Laura Solomon You have to be dead to be invited to this party. As is to be expected, all the stars are here. Janis, Marilyn, Jesus. There are ordinary people too though. Kevin Watson who died of a blood clot to the brain shortly after his 40th birthday. He’s been resurrected. Now he’s partying in the corner – he’s put himself in charge of the music and is playing Nirvana as Cobain toys with a segment of his blown-off head. Other run-of-the-mill folk present? Jimmy Molesworth who hung himself and is now hitting on Janis Joplin who is oblivious to the attention, dancing wildly to Come As You Are a whisky bottle clutched tightly in her right hand. Jimmy’s still got rope marks around his neck. There’s Cindy Rutherford who was hit by a car while simultaneously cycling and listening to her iPod. Not a good combination. She’s got splinters of glass from the windscreen embedded in her face. Mari

Granddad's Crabmeat

This story is by Nod Ghosh 'There's no crabmeat in heaven.' So you've come back to life, and the first thing you say to your grandson is some bullshit about seafood? 'Hey,' I manage. There's butter in my voice. Overcome with emotion, I see your open eyes, your limbs moving. You speak, and the death-stubble on your chin trembles. 'No streetlamps, no ice-cream, no tax returns, no armatures, no orgasms.' 'Steady.' It's not like you to talk that way. I've never heard you say the word  orgasm  before .  Or  armature.  What is an armature anyway? We haven't spoken for so long and the first words I say to you are  hey  and  steady . Classic. 'And,' you continue. 'In hospital, when you held my hand, said I'd see Eddie in heaven.' Eddie. I loved that dog. My eyes fill. I relive my eight-year-old self cradling the Labrador’s golden head. He died in my arms. You

Tough Enough

Tough Enough During his week-long trip from Kansas to Colorado with his wife and teenaged son, Oscar let his beard grow in. That's why he looked so facially awkward on the trip. There's probably a support group somewhere for this condition: not-quite-a-beard. But you can only be in the support group for a few weeks before they give you a pat on the back and tell you that you're cured, and you have to go away because there are people out there with real problems. Oscar thought the whole beard thing would give him that tough, outdoorsy, Western look for his trip. But Oscar wasn't in Kansas any more. Looking tough was a little difficult on this particular trip because he has a pronounced fear of heights. So when the family hiked up six-inch-wide switchback trails on an exposed Rocky Mountain ridge at ten thousand feet, his son skipped along, head down and checking for cell phone service, and his wife floated like a ballerina across gaps in the trail over head-spin