Flash Fiction–Paradox

Paradox

On a day when divorce was distinctly possible, she threw up, went to work, then to her son’s baseball game. For one moment, breeze, sun, voices combined and something utterly inexplicable occurred: she felt purely and completely happy.

by Louise Kantro
Modesto Branch, CA

Flash Fiction–Too Fat to Fit

Too Fat to Fit

We drove 300 miles to the Iowa State Fair–Ian, Leo and me. Planned to stay with Sis, so we did. Next day we walked. Ate things on a stick. Grandsons kept walking as they ate –cotton candy, pork-chops, funnel cakes. Tried midway rides, some twice. Sun warmed farmer caps and strollers, as we listened to horse-drawn wagons and talent scouts.

Packing for home next day, Sis rushed super-mega toilet rolls to my back seat.
“Why we taking these to Wisconsin?” asked Leo.

“They’re too fat to fit,” Sis said, “my toilet holders.”

“Why not just stack them on the counter?” he said.

Linda Newman Woito
Iowa City Branch, IA

From the author:

I still am laughing out loud, to this day, when I think of Leo’s obviously ADULT rational response. I think Leo wins the day, and for me, the story is about him, not the sister.

Reader response?

And happy, belated Valentines day:

“FRAME”

Oh you’re so pretty!
I think you’ll fit just fine!
I might have to hang you
and call you my Valentine!

Dianne Lynn Benanti
Palm Springs Branch, CA

Flash Fiction–The Ring

The Ring

Traffic whizzed by; she waited at the café table. Running her fingers through her gray hair, she recalled.
“You’re so beautiful,” Angelo had said, frowning. “Why do you look so young? You deceive me.”
It was one of those smack-in-your-face moments. She loved him. He loved her.
She shook her head. He’s not coming. Rising she crossed the street. In an instant, brakes squealed. She was on the ground – pain, blood. Someone picked up her head, cradled it in his lap. In that moment she looked up, a death smile on her lips.
It was Angelo, fingering a velvet ring box.

Christina Laurie
Cape Cod Branch, MA

Flash Fiction: Ester

Ester

My mother died when I was thirteen years old. Never mind that my father died the same day-he shot her twelve times and then turned the gun on himself. Ester, I loved her so much.

Years later I was in labor with my first child. I cried with heart pain not labor pain, wanting so much for my mother to be there. Hours passed and I was still in labor-couldn’t my body just let go and move on?

That’s when the new duty nurse came in and said, “Hi, I’m Ester. I’m here to help you have your baby.” Mom.

By Mary E. Edgerton
Bayou City Branch, TX

Visit our bookstore to order our beautiful new art calendar, books of poetry and powerful stories of healing for graduation gifts for the seniors in your life

Flash Fiction–In or Out

In or Out?

From his wheelchair, Bob reached for the doorknob and dropped his hand.

Jay, his caregiver, leaned over his shoulder. “Aren’t we going in?”

“I can’t face them.” Bob looked at his legs. “What will they think of me, now?”

“As the strong man they knew and loved,” Jay said.

Bob shouted, “Look at me. I can’t walk into the room. Turn around,” he snapped. “We’re out of here.”

“Tough,” Jay said. “We’re going in.” He pushed Bob to the door.

Bob turned the knob and heard cheers from the men in the room. “Welcome back, coach.”

Margaret Leis Hanna
Central Ohio Branch, OH

Thank you to all our veterans who served our country and our freedom.

Flash Fiction–That Sounds Better


That Sounds Better

Summer in the Hampton’s: nine year old Jack, his Grandpa Tony, Grandma Peggy and I are in the living room of the rental house.
Grandpa Tony says, ‘Jack I have to get a new dinghy for the boat.’ ‘Why Poppa?’ ‘Because it’s old and worn out.’ ‘Sort of like me,’ I immediately say.
Jack quickly replies, ‘No, no Nana, you’re not worn out, you’re just old.’
Now, that made me feel better.

Etta Schaeffer
Boca Raton Branch, FL

Flash Fiction–Postcards

Postcard #1

The second time the waiter spilled soup in Archibald’s lap, he ended up with bouillabaisse stains on his pinstripes. The waiter—he’d better succeed next time—was positively abject with apologies. I plan to wear yellow to Archibald’s funeral before I leave for Paris. See you soon, my dearest.

Postcard #2

Well, mum, you were right. Why didn’t I see it as clearly as you did? Had to trip the blundering fool twice. If she could pay him, I can pay him more. Tonight, I think. Then I’ll be home for a good long rest. After her funeral.

Fran Stewart
Atlanta Branch, GA

Flash Fiction–Between Duty and Devotion

BETWEEN DUTY AND DEVOTION

Sitting with John, my mind reflects back fifty years to the day of our marriage.

A hot August day in Maryland, sweating in his Navy uniform, then a short honeymoon, duty called.

John’s breathing coming hard and erratic. Last night he held my hand tight and gave a weak smile.

This morning nothing, simply curled in a fetal position, eyes shut and that deep, hard breathing.

I hold the form to sign for relieving him of his pain allowing him to die with dignity.

Sign for devotion or sign, as he would say, for duty.

By Mary F. Twitty
Boca Raton Branch

Flash Fiction–War

War

Strategy is the only order in the chaos of battle. Can’t tell if we’re winning or losing.

Combat subsides with an uneasy calm. Losses are surprisingly limited; strength renewed.

Enemy approaches.
Walls fortified.
Attack fails.

Curious, then furious: “Weren’t these soldiers weak and undisciplined in war? Haven’t I been their master?”

Young soldiers watch as the enemy circles and strikes without success.
“We have been injured before, why not this time?”

His eyes light with rage. “I can’t get in! I can’t get in!”

“He can’t get in!”

One who had power through fear suddenly had none.

Elizabeth Martin
Pikes Peak Branch, CO

Flash Fiction–Breakfast

Breakfast

Francine poured a cup of coffee and went outside to sit beneath the hemlock. It had been a rewarding though hectic family visit. They left behind a supply of vodka, beer, used linens, wet towels and plenty of sand.
She pondered on her sons’ lives: David attempting to be father of the century to compensate for the dubious mental state and physical health of his wife. Cookie, the dog was company for Jay who was in the midst of a nasty divorce from his irrational wife.
It was 10:30 a.m. The sun was high. Francine opted for vodka over coffee.

Dayle Herstik
Boca Raton Branch, FL