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Postcard-sized flash fiction about the strangeness of life and loss and everything in between. And it all starts with an image...

hoop dreams

I dream you every night, clear as the empty bottle of gin on my table. I once thought you lived in the bottom of them, so I did my best to drink you free. Turns out you’re someplace darker, more dangerous…my head.   I see you like a memorized photo, bouncing that official sized ball in your eight-year-old hand. You saved up for months for that thing and made me shoot hoops every night. You said it was our own kind of shooting, the kind where no...

Postcard-sized flash fiction about the strangeness of life and death and everything in between. And it all starts with an image...

Chinook winds

I think about moving south, away from the mountains, but the chinook winds blow me back every time. I want to run away, pretend I’m alive, but this morning, I know its too late for all that.   There’s a knock. I open the door wondering if I’m letting in the living or the dead. A girl, maybe twelve-years-old, holds out a paper lunch bag clutched in her tiny fist. Here, it’s for your trip, she says. I check inside the bag. Apples cut up neat and...

Postcard-sized flash fiction about the strangeness of beach life and Jesus and everything in between. And it all starts with an image...

Sunday morning church

If we’re being honest here, I almost didn’t go in that place, all broken down and life-worn. It’s the church I’m talking about not the Reverend. He was a kid. Barely cut his teeth is what I was thinking. But he invited me in and I felt the Lord right away, in the form of the best southern-fried chicken this mouth ever tasted. Done crispy on the outside but moister than the devil’s breath on the inside.   Why they served lunch before the sermon I’ll never...

Graffiti of Time

Coffee Talk With Time

I've been thinking a lot about age lately. Could be that the infamous five-oh has been staring me in the face since February. That's when Time showed up. My birthday wasn't until August but she would flare her red skirt in the shadows of my home, catching my attention. Then she'd leave. She (yes, Time is a she, at least in my story) would pop by before I'd have my coffee or at the end of a busy day, she'd catch me unaware, laugh, and sashay...

urban porch, two chairs on cement pad

Monday the 60th –– a postcard story

We slept in the house of a woman we didn’t know. She made us coffee and showed us what she called her urban porch. I sat in the sun, you in the shade, drinking our coffee wondering when the car would be fixed but not really caring one way or the other.   It was our first morning as husband and wife. I remember thinking the world was so bright and so big, and that somehow, we’d see it all, together, with or without a car. You...

Neon sign of a chicken and the words fried chicken

Sunday the 59th –– a postcard story

I was in a part of the city I didn’t know, in a diner that was open at 3 am and had a Pepsi sign in the window. I was on my third coffee when a rich and rowdy group of thick-gutted men came in, stumbling and talking like their volume dial got stuck on loud. The place was near empty, but they had to sit in the booth next to me. I thought of you then. How you’d smile at me in that knowing way...

abandoned tv

Saturday the 58th — a postcard story

You dragged me around the corner and pointed––that’s it, that’s where I saw Twilight Zone, that creature crouching at the edge of the airplane wing just staring. You know the episode. It was real. It was there, looking at me through the glass.   Babe, I say, the tv isn’t even plugged in. You sure you didn’t dream it? You set the camping chair up in the road close to the curb. Set it up like you were watching a movie and waiting for me to bring...

payphone, baja, street, urban, collect call, city street

collect call

The voices whispered in my head, hammering away with quiet, deadly words. They were the only ones in there now. They’d tied up Hope, shoved memory of better times and better dreams in her mouth, gagging her. Forcing her silent. They injected me with nightmares and fear––I saw their evil faces, tasted their foulness until I lost myself. But today––I woke up.   Hope, with bloodied and mangled wrists, untied my mind, let loose the thoughts of you, how you held me when I was in the...

caution tape, baja, door, graffiti, stay out, warning

Thursday the 56th –– a postcard story

We drink black pop and stare past the yellow tape. I ask, what do you think happened here? This is how we start the game, the story game. I think the papa bear came back to finish off Goldilocks, you say.  He ripped the place apart, ate some Captain Crunch and when he couldn’t find no one with golden hair, he roared, and the roar was so mighty it cracked the ceiling. Now it’s not safe to go in.   You take a long drink and fling...

fire escape, back alley, latter, climb, break in

Wednesday the 55th – A postcard story

Nine in the morning, the best time to break in, take what I want and leave. I’m not saying its sexy. And no, it isn’t legal. But it puts food on the table, at least most of the time. The trick is to do your homework. Know a routine. Most people leave for work by nine––and I’ve had my coffee. I call it my golden hour when shadows are hard-edged from a sun that is well on its way to the top of the world.   Even in...