Monday, June 10, 2013

Keeping Fingers and Toes Crossed

Flash Mob Contest

It's been a while since I posted. A long while. I have so many excuses I could toss out, but will choose this one:  just completed my second class working with poet extraordinaire, Barbara Henning. I've been busy creating dozens of tiny fictions and prose poems.
One of my classmates in the flash class offered up a challenge to enter Flash Mob's contest which will celebrate Flash Fiction Day on June 22, 2013.
What is flash fiction, you ask? Tiny stories (with a beginning, middle and end) that strive to be brief. As I tend to write pieces between 400 and 600 words, it's a favorite of mine. This contest is for stories under 300 words and must be posted to your blog. My piece comes in at 286 words. Wish me luck!

Peace to all.

Here it is:

Jack Sits and Smokes
286 words

Jack Kerouac is smoking on the back porch, staring at a broken cement table and three benches in the yard. Well, he’s not really Kerouac, but a look-alike with tousled hair and scruffy shadow on his face. Aviator sunglasses grace his nose even though the sun hasn’t quite risen and he’s leaning against a rotted wooden rail with his khaki pant legs crossed.

The screen door slams shut and a plump young woman pops out of the drab grey house. Her jeans are so tight that a roll of alabaster escapes at her waist. Her lips are painted hussy red and her thick inky hair is a nest of mess.

‘Whatcha gonna do about it? Huh, Jack?’ the plump woman asks, pointing at the pile of rounded rubble in the leaf-covered yard.

‘Sort of reminds me of a miniature stone henge,’ he says, taking another puff. ‘Maybe if we leave it there long enough the pagans will start having rituals here.’

‘Don’t even TRY to be funny,’ she hisses. An orange tabby cries and then leaps from bushy ferns that border the house onto a window air conditioning unit. The rusted unit rattles and sputters, dripping water on the woman’s bare feet.

‘And that’s another thing,’ she says, ‘when are we getting central air and heat? You promised more than all this shit. Huh, Jack?’

When he doesn’t respond, she stomps back inside her drab grey house.  Jack pulls out a pack of cigarettes from the front pocket of his rumpled plaid shirt, lights up another stick and walks over to the pile of cement. He motions to the cat.  ‘Here, kitty, kitty.’

 It’s Sunday morning and fake Jack Kerouac sits on his ass and smokes.