Posted in flash fiction

Fire Starter

I walked my dog here from the time the rain smelled of flowers through heated summer pains. We grew old here, grey hairs cropping up like pine needles. Soon we were covered with avalanches of them, prickly and sticky like aches and pains. Needles gave way to winters and snows heavy with human sorrow.

I had my first kiss here when birds were still quiet against the rising sun. He rested his hand on my cheek. He told me it would be alright. We planned a wedding through the morning dew and afternoon rays. But when the evening breeze came it left no remains. In the dark they strangled what we thought we had. By midnight it was just me and the needles, alone again.

I find myself in this place, over and over, shuffling dying fire starter from one memory to another. There’s smoke in the distance; the smell of burning dreams. I wonder what’s the cost to catch it all aflame and dissolve into the night, a waft of regret on the scent of what remains.

Photo Credit: Susan Spaulding

Word Count: 178
For
Sunday Photo Fiction – This might as well have been partially written by Dirty Three (seriously, I’ve been on a binge)

Posted in flash fiction

Poker Face

We’re standing opposite one another.

Me and the boy.

Me, with insecurities spilling to the pavement and tears running my spirit dry, and the boy, with his faltering understanding and screaming eyes.

I draw my lips into the best line I can manage. I quell my tears, reserving them to the well settling in my stomach.

He turns away, arms crossed over his fading, shredding t-shirt.

This, I slowly realize, will not end like the story crafted in my mind. My narrative written on real life has gone horribly awry.

“I guess this is it then.” His voice trembles as my heart descends foggy valleys unknown.

Wait … But ingrained habit and childhood rules dictate; my poker face must remain. The last one standing wins. I’ll regret this …

Slowly, I reach a shaking hand for his.

“Just go.”

We collect our shattered pieces in silence, me and my poker face opposite the boy I love.

I plaster my poker face, like a second skin, and tell myself it’s ok over and over again.

The boy tucks himself gently into the darkest corners of his mind where he confides in demons he hides.

The last one standing wins. My poker face has become my sin.