Read the Sign

If you woke up to bawling kids, a sink full of soiled dishes and a strew of beer bottles…

If the fridge was empty, your entire closet in the laundry, and the cable cut due to unpaid bills…

If I walked out and never looked back, would you notice me then?


In response to The Three Line Tales: Week 140 challenge based on a photo by Ernest Brillo via Unsplash

As I gaze

I make my own tiny window within the window. Sitting on the ledge I peek out at the empty street. The rain has washed everything clean, like God suddenly decided to take out the clutter. One by one the objects will be filled in again. Bright yellow buses will arrive to spill out colourful children. Cars of all sizes will zip by.

They think I’m foolish to sit here every chance I get. While they go off to do important things, chase the tangible, I wait here observing the mundane, contemplating the details of existence. The way I see it, they are missing out on the greatest art in progress.

They say what I do doesn’t matter. They are wrong. I am the quiet stream along whose bank flowers grow. I am the coolness they sip to quench their parched throat.

And when I hear the buzzer ring, I rise in positive purpose. The apple pie is done and the winter vegetables need to be roasted.


In response to Priceless Joy‘s 182nd Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers challenge, based on a photo prompt contributed by wildverbs.

The Mirror

I sit here, before it, wondering…

At first I thought it might be dirty. That could not be. That should not be. I clean every square inch of this house myself. An immaculate home and hearth are a woman’s pride.

I did not see it in the morning, but I dared not dwell. There were meals to be cooked, boys to be dressed, school runs to be made…

If I had the time to comb my hair then perhaps I might have wondered earlier, but who has time for vanity. Like he says, I’m just a store keeper, not the window dressing.

And now that the day is done I sit here wondering…

Why can I not see my reflection in the mirror? Has the light faded, or have I ceased to exist?


In response to Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers challenge based on a photo prompt by Nathan Sowers

Crank up the madness

Crank

Crank up your whining
drown out my thoughts
spare me no stillness to ponder my lot

Crank up your neediness
consume all my time
leave me no moments to feel my fatigue

Crank up your selfishness
decimate my self respect
no courage should I have to raise my head

Crank up the adrenaline
be the master of my life
Alas! there is glory in lording over the dead

Caged

“A beautiful creature like her should be left free. She should run wild, go where ever her mind takes her. Its wrong to confine her like this.”

“But father, it says here that she was born in captivity. She does not know the great outdoors that you speak of. This zoo is the only world that she knows.”

“Two wrongs do not make a right. Its wrong that her parents were bred in captivity. Its wrong that she lives in captivity.”

“She’s part of a conservation program. They are working to improve the population of snow leopards.”

“Well, then she should be in a reserve. Not a zoo.”

I watched the firm set of father’s jaw line. That expression meant that his mind was firmly and immovably made up. It was the same expression that he had when he told me that women in our family do not wear revealing clothes, do not stay out late, and most certainly they do not go to big cities and live alone.

A sudden laugh bubbled up my throat. “Father, do you think that she looks at us and wonders why we are standing behind a barbed fence.”


In response to The Sunday Photo Fiction challenge of 14th January 2018 hosted by Al Forbes

Emotions recycled

Steel dragons. As dead as the relationship that I called marriage. As cold as the man I called husband.

Everything unwanted should be recycled, he always said. So everyday, every moment, I strived for perfection. Always afraid that if I let up for even a moment, then I would be unwanted, discarded. Just someone to be recycled.

Reused. Refused. Recycled.

The security tapes and backup have been deleted. I always told him not to use birthdays as passwords. The man was too arrogant to listen. He never did understand technology. Never understood that the cameras recording the employee movements, recorded his movements too. Never understood the concept of remote monitoring.

In the forge, the furnace simmers leaving no evidence of its greed and rage. No bones. No ashes. No evidence of sweaty undulating bodies. No evidence of blood soaked steel.

Everything unwanted should be recycled.

Emotions recycled.

Karma. The ultimate recycle.


In response to the 140th Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers challenge based on a photo provided by Enisa.

Heaven on a tray

I wake up to the aroma of freshly brewed coffee, roses and chocolate, to the sight of my handsome husband bashfully holding heaven on a tray.

Placing it down gently, he leans in for a kiss.

“Morning breath,” I warn him.

“Don’t care,” he whispers, as his mouth softly meets mine, lingering, his tongue sweeping across my lips seeking entrance.

I open for him, tasting coffee mingled with traces of whisky.

Nature calls, and I eventually make it to the toilet.

Undressed, I examine my reflection.

The blue and violet bruises on my arms will be easy to cover up. How do I conceal the impression of his fingers on my cheek.

“I’m waiting babe…” he calls out.


In response to Bikurgurl’s 100 Word Wednesday: Week 40 challenge based on a photo by Brooke Lark.