Of All The Land I Own

You may not know it to look at me, but I’m a real estate tycoon. I own more acres of land than I know what to do with, complete with property, some with sturdy foundations, other less so. Where, you ask? You should be asking when.

All my property exists in the past. Acreages of failed relationships with family, friends, and lovers, all abandoned before they could reach their full potential. Some were cut short by circumstances beyond my control, but the majority were absolutely avoidable if only I had taken time to till the soil.

Stories are…

Stories are the creatures that forage in the wilderness of our minds. Their claws pierce our curiosity, digging in deep to prevent our escape, as they force us into their maw, past razor-sharp teeth of conflict.

Cosmetic Layers

Kathryn’s gift, her one unique talent, had always been projecting a calm demeanor that she expertly layered like cosmetics over all her various and sundry rough patches until her public life appeared positively silken. Her deceptive doe eyes and counterfeit, rouge-cheeked smile helped the ruse remain balanced.

Planting Memories

My memory? A sieve in which past recollections drain away into one of the many great black holes of half-forgotten yesterdays. Could it be the result of a built-in self-defense mechanism that tamps down the harmful events one never quite survives intact? Or am I simply a poor caretaker of retrospection?

I find that in order to remember a past event, I must pluck photographs from an album I do not recall assembling and fold the still images into my locks, like planting seeds in soil in hopes that these memories will take root and replace the ones that have evaporated forever.

Charcoal Heart

According to the superstitious urban legend passed down by fish wives, it is said that when Death first approaches you, you feel it in your bones in the same manner arthritic joints can sense a change in the weather, but such was not the case for Millie Poole. She felt the arrival in her chest as if her heart was a charcoal briquette coated with lighter fluid anxiously awaiting the Grim Reaper’s fiery embrace.

Forever Faithful

“You’re the only person who never abandoned me.”

“I’m a memory. It’s my duty to stay where you left me.”

“And you always remain the same.”

“Not true. I change, slightly. I grow more sweet and innocent each time you remember me, the same way every good fantasy does.”

First Ever Kiss

Ricky’s first ever kiss was deftly delivered by Betty-Jo Kopecki, a camp counselor three years his senior, with enough body English to make his legs wobble. To her, it was a one-off thing, done on a dare but to him it was a torrid summer camp fling and her kiss would be the high-water mark all others were measured against.

Trading Places

Cornelius begins spouting gibberish like a madman and before I realize that it is some sort of incantation, my consciousness, everything I am, is wrenched from my body and dumped like rubble and detritus into the sickly form of my dying enemy and for a second my view of the world, now through his cataract eyes, shifts like a lenticular optical illusion of massive chaos and the last thing I see before my vision clouds over is his crooked smile on the face that used to belong to me as I try to claw my way free before this fleshy prison becomes a corpse.

The Dominant Species

Earth finally established communications with life from another world. Sadly, it had nothing to do with the efforts of humans.

The extraterrestrials eventually made the trek across the cosmos to our planet, arriving in peace and bearing gifts but they landed in the ocean and began negotiations to help terraform Earth to be perfect for the expansion of the dolphin species, whom were considered to be the dominant life form.

The Least of Her Habits

Ashley bummed a cigarette from the open pack without asking and steadied Roy’s hand on the match to light it.

“Bad habit, I know, but not the worst I’ve had by far. Once upon a time, I was addicted to 8 balls, booze and love but my body can’t handle any of that crap now,” she smiled wanly and let the smoke stream out in lazy snakes.