The realtor pushed the door open. “Will your wife be joining us?”
“Don’t worry about her. Does it have everything I asked for?”
“I believe it does.”
“Which way to the basement?”
She led him through the kitchen. “This is it.”
He flipped on the light and peered down into the dark dank hole. “Uh huh,” he said as he disappeared down the stairs. The realtor followed down behind him.
It was the worst sort of basement, dark corners, only one sliver of a window, musty, dead.
He toed the dirt floor and it gave way under his boot. “Sold.”
From Guest Contributor Darci McIntyre
“I saw Patti Smith in concert once. It was quite recently actually. I like to think that after the show she went to a late night beat poet meet where they gave beautiful spoken word renditions through the fug of cigarette smoke whilst drinking sour wine. Or she went to keep candlelight midnight vigil over an altar of Allen Ginsburg, a vigil unbroken by his devotees since his death in the 90’s. More realistically I think Ms. Smith went back to her hotel with her band and caught an early night, she was getting on a bit at the time.”
From Guest Contributor George Aitch
I sit and think.
Of what, I’m not sure. As this mind has tendencies to wander. Wanting perfection, but tending to squander.
As the ideas flow as dam water, next thing you know you’re down the river. I gasp, adrenaline flows to capture the shore. Just to be able to hold to one original idea.
I sit and think.
In ways of harnessing this cursed gift, since frustration foreclosures many of them before they leave the pen. In a sense I’m the hopeless poet I so ironically created. The oxymoron of a poet’s life sitting in a empty parking lot.
From Guest Contributor UInk Poetry
Some of us are birthed rigid, leather left too long in the sun, so carefully struck dense beneath hands. Everyone and everything’s hands. Shaped into whatever it is we play at long before your shadow cooled me. You knit something soft overtop, fingers of catgut dancing like satin ribbon and for a time there is a concealing, something less than painful looming in the mirror. And though we both knew I would ravel and tear with so many seams under the strain of your weight, I knew the taste of skin on your throat, and we made the world spin.
Nick Christian is a poet and fiction writer who currently studies at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.
I hate going to the Introduction Agency to get a date. There is a certain sense of shame and failure.
This time it’s for a skiing, long weekend my boss has arranged. I can’t attend another company weekend alone.
“My screen has a record of your preference,” says the receptionist. “You last used our personal services four months ago. Your good credit qualifies you for bronze level membership. Would you like to join?”
Tempted, I nod my head.
“We can introduce you to Amber, model looks, brunette, elegant. Amber will be fully recharged in about ninety minutes. Care to wait?”
From Guest Contributor Barry O’Farrell
Barry is an actor living in Brisbane, Australia. Barry’s other stories can be found at Cyclamens & Swords, 50 Word Stories, and here at A Story In 100 Words.
“You’re such an asshole Chuck,” the back-braced senior citizen Ruby said as Chuck held the Stanford Medical Center elevator door open for her with one arm, balancing seven incontinence pads in his left.
Chuck smiled and pushed floor one.
“We’re parked in the basement you idiot.”
“I knew that, dear. I wanted to show you every floor so I’d get my money’s worth. $75,000 to fix a damned hernia.”
“You’d rather I be in pain, jerk?”
“Hmm… tough question.”
“Proves my point.”
“I love you enough to tolerate your usual grumpiness at the hospital.”
“Of course you do. You would.”
From Guest Contributor Jay Paul
My dog takes credit for ‘diagnosing’ my brain tumor. My husband and I entered our garage together, but he jumped back. I asked what’s wrong.
“You’re kidding? The stench is unbearable.”
Late August temperatures cooked the bin used to collect the dog’s poop and the lid fell open, releasing a stink.
“I don’t smell anything.”
“That can’t be right.”
My doctor scheduled an MRI that revealed a racquetball-sized tumor between my eyes and olfactory nerve. It was operable and benign. I was lucky.
My dog reminds me at every turn that I owe him my life. He thinks he’s Lassie.
From Guest Contributor Anne Anthony
To delete, or not to delete, that is the question. Kurt stares at the highlighted name on his phone, and his finger hovers indecisively over the button that will erase Karen from his life forever. Eyes closed, he breathes deeply. Deleting would be the right thing to do, considering the misery she’s caused him. On the other hand, she was the source of some incredible moments in his life. Maybe she’ll come to her senses someday, he thinks. Maybe this isn’t quite the end. He opens his eyes, backs out of the directory, and leaves her there. Just in case.
From Guest Contributor Dan Slaten
Cellos make little nicks in the dark and we breathe together. The afternoon was a failure. This plain gesture, togetherness, makes quick use of industrious forgetfulness. I cannot keep you behind this gate beyond the third movement. We mean to create more than one monologue to accompany the flutist. The children upstairs, our occupancy momentarily set. I position your fingers behind my neck as talisman for strings. The tent is down. This igloo explodes into every shard of routine that has, before this moment, set what stands for you and for me, aflame, sparks falling into pockets, to the ground.
From Guest Contributor Kelli Allen
Kelli Allen’s work has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies in the US and internationally. She is a four-time Pushcart Prize nominee and has won awards for her poetry, prose, and scholarly work. She served as Managing Editor of Natural Bridge and holds an MFA from the University of Missouri St. Louis. She is the director of the River Styx Hungry Young Poets Series and founded the Graduate Writers Reading Series for UMSL. She is currently a Professor of Humanities and Creative Writing at Lindenwood University. Allen is the author of two chapbooks and one flash fiction collection. Her full-length poetry collection, Otherwise, Soft White Ash, arrived from John Gosslee Books in 2012 and was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.
I always said I was scared of nothing. I wasn’t afraid of the dark, or death, or even lizards, mice and cockroaches. I didn’t disbelieve in ghosts, but they’d done nothing to make me believe. Nor was I frightened of Judgement Day, because I am a conscientious person. Until the moment I heard the sound of footsteps approaching my room, I was truly scared of nothing. But when his shadow crept into the bedroom and his sinewy hands stifled my scream before tearing off every scrap of modesty on my being from that moment on, I became scared of everything.
From Guest Contributor Namitha Varma
Namitha Varma is a media professional based in Mangaluru, India. She has publishing credits in over 15 literary journals including Sahitya Akademi’s journal Indian Literature, eFiction India, Hackwriters, MadSwirl, FIVE Poetry, Microfiction Monday Magazine, and Postcard Shorts. Her micropoem has been read out on NPR Radio as part of the National Poetry Month 2014, and a poem of hers features in the Authorspress anthology ‘Resonating Strings.’ She blogs on narcissistwrites.blogspot.com and tweets via @namithavr.