Postcard-sized flash fiction about the things we think we know about others, life, death, and everything in between. And it all starts with an image...

Riding the Rails

Ghosts don’t walk unless they have to. A last resort kind of thing. The train, now that’s a luxury. I’ve ridden with beasts and humans, but only a handful of each can see my once handsome face and lank hair resembling ill-cut string.

 

There are those who scream and stuff fists or handkerchiefs into their mouths for fear I might enter them between their parted lips. They caterwaul until I think my dead ears will bleed though I have been bloodless for decades. These are the ignorant ones and the ones I hate most. Why? Because they believe they are above death. That they could never, will never be me. For them, I pick up my old violin and play songs that hum like grinding cartilage and bones cracking. It might be cruel, but it is the only fun I have anymore.

 

There are a few travelers not bothered by me in the slightest. They read their paper, clutch their purses, or munch on hay, unaware of what waits for them at the next stop. One can only guess what is at the end of the line, no one truly knows but the cruel, cruel Fates.

How did I end up here? I rode the train to work and back. Everyday. Until that day. When a piece of dry toast, gobbled hastily, lodged in my throat. I never made my stop. And now, no one waits at the end of the line. Not for me.

4 Comments
  • Anthony Lake
    Reply

    Oi Vey, slightly bleak but a good representation of the mundane life some must lead.

    January 28, 2020 at 3:17 pm
  • Michelle Sampson
    Reply

    Wow!! I love this Postcard and this is definitely going into my Top Ten Favorites! Vivid and with texture I felt all of it. And from the ghost’s POV! Oh but for the things that might have been…

    January 28, 2020 at 9:53 pm

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