Runner

PHOTO PROMPT © G.L. MacMillan.

Photo prompt courtesy and copyright property of G.L. MacMillan via Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Friday Fictioneers event. I’ll eventually figure out how to provide the inlinkz button here. …Maybe.

Runner

The crescent moon’s
shine clings like a fog,
its phosphorescent vapor
beading along the bottles,

each globular droplet wielding
a reflection of the sickle
looming somewhere overhead.

The still whines
that its sultry, copper body
is being refused a fitting luster,
and begs for the sickle
to swoop down and shred
the shrouding shadows,

to reap away
the secrecy, the anonymity, the mysticism.

Its pleading goes for naught.

This is a life of silences, of coping
with namelessness,
and going nomadic the moment
you gain a name, an identity
outside the running.

All you have is the sickle
looming overhead.

Lament of the Gelato Vendor (In Two Forms)

unnamed

Photo prompt courtesy and copyright property of Dee Lovering via Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Friday Fictioneers event. Consider joining in if you haven’t already; it’s an intriguing exercise and a supportive community.

If you don’t mind my asking, this week I am providing my drabble in two forms — one as an attempt at straightforward flash fiction and the other as a poem — and I wish to hear if one has greater appeal over the other. It may be tedious comparing the two (they consist of the exact same words in the same order), but you may develop a different rhythm between them. I tend to emphasize alliterative clusters and I fear they may feel rushed in prose. This is just a matter of curiosity, but it may shape future contributions. Thank you in advance to anyone willing to provide their opinion.


Lament of the Gelato Vendor (Flash Fiction Form)

Snow fell before the leaves; an unexpected happenstance.

Look how the hot dog peddlers capitalize on the windfall of unannounced winter. Footfalls pattering and patting down the fallen flakes freeze at the sizzle and snap of overcooked, underwhelming, days-old dogs being pulled from the carnivalesque whirl of the grody rotisseries. Quality doesn’t matter; the charred, bitter taste is stomached as fitting fuel for internal furnaces. It’s an infernal process: sacrificing tongues as a countermeasure to the cold.

Customers climbing out of the crowd scowl at me as if I’ve allied the frost. But it’s as much my enemy as theirs.


Lament of the Gelato Vendor (Poetic Presentation)

Snow fell
before the leaves;

an unexpected happenstance. Look

how the hot dog peddlers capitalize
on the windfall of unannounced winter.
Footfalls pattering and patting
down the fallen flakes
freeze at the sizzle and snap
of overcooked, underwhelming, days-old dogs
being pulled
from the carnivalesque whirl of the grody rotisseries.

Quality doesn’t matter;
the charred, bitter taste is stomached
as fitting fuel for internal furnaces.

It’s an infernal process:
sacrificing tongues as a countermeasure to the cold.

Customers climbing out of the crowd
scowl at me as if
I’ve allied the frost.

But it’s as much my enemy as theirs.

Oracularity

PHOTO PROMPT- © Sandra Crook

Photo prompt courtesy and copyright property of Sandra Crook.

A chariot slowly wheeled westward, its radiant, blazing spokes coming to a crawl as the driver grew curious of the man laying out the road below. The young, handsome bricklayer was diligent, perseverant as he tamped the blocks despite the burgeoning burden of the sun’s approach. But the charioteer was discomforted by the path apparently lacking pattern. It was dionysian, disorderly; splintered into sprawling fingers, inattentive tendrils.

“Life has no mean course,” the adonic laborer professed.

The charioteer mused for a moment before returning to the discipline of his rituals. He knew all too well the frivolity of such thoughts.


A thank you is in order to the Friday Fictioneer community and the promptress Rochelle Wisoff-Fields, as well as any other wayfarer that may stumble upon these words. I’m something of an introvert (read: extremely poor communicator) and hesitate to make personal responses, but every reading, comment/criticism, and whatever else may occur is exponentially appreciated.

Oh, and if anyone knows how to write an Adonic line (the last line of a Sapphic stanza), feel free to tear my attempt to shreds. “Life has no mean course” was supposed to be one, but I’m terrible at interpreting meter and may have persuaded myself into thinking it worked so I could move on.

Duel

We’re savage. Deplorable. But we have honor. So long as we get our steps in, we’ll keep it, win or lose.

One.…

Dust flits at the scuffle of our boots. Clouds drag over peaks; silent witnesses to our brutality.

…Four. Five.…

A snake skitters across my course before sinking into the canyon. Its regal brown body blends in amongst the brush, tongue unceremoniously probing. The king in exile’s hiss is shallow, dry, desperate to be quenched.

…Nine. Ten.

Our pivots scrape up earth, our pistols roar.

I will be seeing the lithe lord’s old throne soon enough. But not today.


This piece was originally a submission to Indies Unlimited’s Flash Fiction Challenge, intended as a response to the prompt scenario and image provided by K.S. Brooks. I am careful to say “intended” because it was a very loose interpretation of the rules, barely employing any of the necessities, and is in part reflecting upon D.H. Lawrence’s “Snake,” just not to the same degree as my previous post, “A Pettiness.” (That poem is itself an entry for Yeah Write’s Micro-Writing Challenge cued by answering what you did the night before….I read “Snake.”) At any rate, I implore you (whosoever glances at this) to visit their website to consider participating, either writing or reading and voting upon the submissions. Don’t worry, this isn’t a shameful pleading for votes; I am not amongst the finalists. With that in mind, if you happen to enjoy this, the other stories there may be even more satisfying (though my entry was far from the intended scenario altogether, so it’s hard to say).