Flash Fiction: Life at 8

Flash Fiction: Life at 8

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Uncle Shankar was Ma’s older brother but I often wondered if maybe one of them was adopted. They couldn’t possibly be genetically related. Uncle was as jovial as Ma was prim, he smiled as often as Ma frowned, he was slender in build while Ma was, well, thick.

We moved in with him and grandma after Dad passed away. I was eight. Every morning, when I went out to go to school, I’d find Uncle on his chair outside beside the flowers. His face would light up when he saw me; it appeared as if the sun shone out of it.

Good morning old lady“, he’d greet me and set me a pun question which, if I answered correctly, would earn me a chocolate. I rarely got that chocolate.

But I was eight and life, couldn’t have been better.


word count: 138. This story is in response to Flash Fiction for Aspiring writers photo promot challenge hosted by priceless joy. Thank you very much for this week’s photo  @shivamt25

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You don’t remember-

You don’t remember-

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He’s just a teen,
Bound to get his back up,
At every little thing-
Don’t you remember it,

Defensive
Without an offence
Attack, eager to depict-
I’m an adult now,
alternating between
rebellion and obedience,
Don’t you remember it,

Enthralled,
By the illusion of teens
In cliques,
Conforming to their
status quo,
At the risk of all
You’ve been raised to be;
Don’t you remember it,

When all you needed,
Instead of a hand,
On your body,
Violently sweeping across,
Were words.
Simply words.

But you don’t remember it.
As your hands,
Violently,
Swipe across his body.
While the words he yearn
He needs to hear-
Silent.
You’ve forgotten,
What it means to be-
A teen.

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Writer’s Quote: Dear Reader

Writer’s Quote: Dear Reader

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Welcome to another writer’s quote/poem Wednesday, where I share some of my favourite poems written by other authors.

Today’s poem talks about taking care of a patient with Alzheimers, from the point of view of the nurse. I love the fact that the writer, Rita Mae Reese, left the identity of the patient and the carer genderless. Leaving it up to our creative minds to fill in the blanks.

This poem, “Dear Reader“, is not a poem one reads and immediately whips out the pen and notebook because of its poetic inspiration. No, it’s one of those reads which strike a chord in the heart. For lack of better wording, it’s what I like to call “beautiful and heartwarming”, and reading it, left me wanting more of it. Below is the poem:

Dear Reader by Rita Mae Reese
You have forgotten it all.
You have forgotten your name,
where you lived, who you
loved, why.
I am simply
your nurse, terse and unlovely
I point to things
and remind you what they are:
chair, book, daughter, soup.

And when we are alone
I tell you what lies
in each direction: This way
is death, and this way, after
a longer walk, is death,
and that way is death but you
won’t see it
until it is right
in front of you.

                Once after
your niece had been to visit you
and I said something about
how you must love her
or she must love you
or something useless like that,
you gripped my forearm
in your terrible swift hand
and said, she is
everything
—you gave

me a shake—everything
to me.

                   And then you fell
back into the well. Deep
in the well of everything. And I
stand at the edge and call:
                      chair, book, daughter, soup. 

If you could describe this poem in two words, what would they be? 

Flash Fiction: red-handed

Flash Fiction: red-handed

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Is that what I think it is”, was the first statement which came out of mama’s mouth the minute she stepped into the house. Her gaze went directly to the cup standing in the middle of the living room. 

The horror on our faces was impossible to hide. We didn’t know she was coming back so soon, we didn’t have time to formulate any theories. Heck, we didn’t even think she would be back early enough to see it.

I looked to Tracy and Brianna and they glared back at me. Oh crap!

“Well“, she was clearly waiting for an answer as she motioned towards us three.
I laughed nervously and the words that came out of my mouth were,
At least, it’s not human poop.”

It was too late to take it back; Brianna gasped, Tracy looked like she needed to puke. I glanced at my mum again, and the look on her face told me one thing- Lord help me!


word count: 162 words. The above story is in response to Flash Fiction For Aspiring Writers photo prompt challenge, hosted by Priceless Joy, where each week we are provided with a photo and are to write a 75-175 word story on it. Thank you very much for this week’s photo @artycaptures.wordpress.com

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Mrs Latashka-

Mrs Latashka-

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Mrs Latashka had no money,
Bore 5 girls with her husband Monty;
Sarah was a baby when he went running,
To another woman; says neighbourhood gossip.

Mrs Latashka toiled night and morning,
All kind of jobs, to earn some money;
Never took charity, though neighbors offered,
She trudged through life owning no one nothing.

Mrs Latashka was one of her kind,
Bore 5 girls, whom most saw as burdens;
Ignored all advice- to stop the toiling,
And earn, by getting all 5 girls married.

Mrs Latashka grew old not weary,
Little Sarah had gone off to Uni,
Her joints now weak from all the toiling,
Her face aglow for, she was reaping.

Mrs Latashka had clothed all children,
With education and self dignity,
She lay- her last few breaths escaping,
With the satisfaction, it was all worth it.

It’s been a while I wrote a ballad, thought I’d write one today.
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On motherhood-

On motherhood-

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I remember when your tiny hands,
Found their home in mine,
With your body resting lightly,
In between my arms,
The rush each night for more milk,
And the tricks to quieten your cries,
I remember it like yesterday,
The day- you became mine.

And the first time you said mama,
When your feet first hit the floor,
Your first tooth and first tooth gap,
My Jaan I remember it all,
When you said you hated purple,
And we fought at the toy store,
How you’d make up, saying I love you,
My Jaan I remember it all.

But they say it is impossible,
Those nine months’ all that count,
They cannot call me a mother,
Since my womb was not your house.
But I’d give up the “mum” title,
To still have you in my life.
And as great of a job, is birthing,
so is raising a child.

Would you?

Would you?

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If I poured my soul in verses,
And stamped it in hearts,
Sent it to the places,
You lived since we parted,
Would you look back
For a moment,
At the memories we had,
The good and the bad,
With my words in your mind.

Would you take down the ring,
From the shelf it’s been standing,
Take a look at the pictures,
Of the babies we are having,
Would you look down your hand,
With my memories beside you,
Gaze at your fingers,
Knowing something is missing.

If I told you I’m sorry,
And we miss you in our family,
Would you give us a chance,
Or would you still leave me hanging.
If I poured my soul in verses,
And stamped them in hearts,
To bring back our family,
Would those words suffice…

W- When a girl is born

W- When a girl is born

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They say-it’s a girl,
And a chicken is slaughtered,
When a boy graces the earth,
A cow- he deserves.

They say- it’s a girl,
With one glance and their backs;
A boy breathes first air,
And is enshrouded by a crowd.

They say- it’s a girl,
and their shoulders feel burdened,
Cost of marriage is high-
Faces clouded with grief.

They say- it’s a girl!
In the 21st century,
The women curse their stars,
For birthing their kind.

They say- it’s a girl,
And ignorance comes to fore.
But without girls in the world,
There will be no men.

O- October lessons

O- October lessons

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Don’t take my silence,
As my innocence,
Or the naivety of a girl.
For the girl in me,
Had died long before,
Your ring ever touched my hand.

Don’t take my silence,
As a proof you’ve won,
For your barks more than your bite;
And I’ve fought more battles,
Than you’ll ever see,
And emerged each time a victor.

Don’t take my silence,
as anything but,
A remembrance of mama’s word,
One October morning,
bless her soul, she said-
never stoop down to a fool’s worth.

the above image is courtesy of Beautiful petals.com

L- Life after dusk

L- Life after dusk

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She grew up with laughter,
At the dinner table,
Holding hands across the street,
Kind of parents-
She was that kid with pink ribbons,
Daddy’s doll;

He was that kid- a replica of
hand me downs,
Wiping mama’s tears and cleaning
After papa’s mess,
He was that kid with barely average
On every test;

Life after dusk brought women-
Drowned in assortments;
Men elated for the peace at home.
Kids cradled- by soft hands
who’ve not experienced,
The touch of labour,
neither it’s sweat.

Life after dusk brought on a stench,
The kids knew too well;
An image they wish-
They could forget.

Life after dusk is different-
In every household,
Some build sweet memories,
Some dim the lights
Of Children, and their innocence.