Category Archives: Short Story

The Bus Against the Creek

The school bus slept at the bank of the creek. Blotches of brown crusted its face and a toupee of twigs and feathers made a silly hideous man that welcomed Ashley and I.

The smell is what I remembered most: old rotting plastic leather and stale water. We didn’t mind the mosquito bites; we tolerated it, more so than the bruises if we weren’t in our rusted home. But the smoke of our cigarettes helped keep the insects at bay. We made sure to take the packs that were nearly empty. Makes any search for it useless. So we smoked until we were finished.

Ashley’s blue hair was pulled back in a ponytail, and my red draped over the left side of my face. “There’s fire and Ice,” they would say, “they’re trying too hard,” they whispered. There were other words that floated around, words that hurt, words that drove our constant emotions. I was fire for my hatred, and she was ice to bay her sadness. That was our meaning, but of course, no one bothered to ask. Maybe one day.

The lonesome bus against the creek knew how we felt. Just to be stuck here, in this small fucking town, falling apart into the earth, I get you dear Bus.

Everything was far away, and when I would grab the torn and peeling steering wheel, I swore I felt the tremors of an engine. I pull the shifting lever and pushed the accelerator; we floated down the creek, into the ocean, toward New Zealand, and walked the Mordor trail. We lived in my hobbit hole and her smiling, and the smell of warm food. Maybe one day.

But dreams die and are reborn constantly. I dreamed of Ashley the night before. That she laughed with a beautiful smile. And I would kiss her. Over and over, this dream came and went. She knew how we felt, but the blue overcame her. I wish I could’ve told her. I wish that she knew how much I loved her.

It rained. A strong storm that came, Katrina, a vengeful woman’s name, and Ashley called me, crying about her parents. She wanted to dream of the driving again, with me beside her. She wanted me there.

It hurt me so much that I couldn’t be there. Ashley had moved the bus, just as we once dreamed, and the creek took her away. I wept alone on the other side of yellow tape with my boots stuck in the creek’s bed. I hope to meet her in New Zealand one day. Maybe one day.

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Dying Dreamers

Do you remember when we were kids:
When we jumped into small streams, welcoming the pull of an ocean’s current;
When we stood atop hills, planting our flag on Everest;
When we sat on skateboards, drifting across the line of the Grand Prix?

We were giants, and the Earth was ours.

I remembered:
I told stories.
I keep telling stories,
I still tell stories so I may feel
the water
the air
the wind
every day.

And the moment I hold my breath,
they come and dissipate
leaving their dying breaths, fading memories.

and my heart breaks.

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Cold Dead Lips; and Untitled

My sister was tasked in school to write a short story in 55 words or less. So, naturally, I took on the task for fun. This is what I came up with on the spot.

My dad loves dead lips. He paints them dead lips in his office but Momma’s already got painted lips. His assistant Sarah, loves dead lips too. She paints in red and green. With her Cold kiss hello on my head, smiling a Dead smile, I remember through a keyhole, my dad loving Cold Dead Lips.

***

We fucked on stairs. Who would’ve thought that Ascension could create Life?  But an angry cry, a frustrated love, and a misstep; who would’ve thought Descent could take away?

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A Photobooth Reprise

“Let’s look at each other. Spend time. Pretend we mean something.”

*Flash*

“There are others waiting for a photo.”

*Flash*

“But right now, it’s just us…

*Flash*

Maybe if we stay, they’ll forget about their turn.”

*Flash*

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A Canvas of Fire.

I had a dream where I loved setting fire to my house’s curtains. The black ashes break away, filling the air with tiny black angels; they take pride and enjoyment in filling and smothering my nostrils. Feeling pain was a pleasure.

And I would wake up. My hovering blank ceiling never fulfilled any childish fantasies of deep-space voyages, or a themed bedroom representing career aspirations.  I was a blank canvas. My father behind a newspaper, my mother being swallowed by the cooking steam; none was there to provide me the paintbrush.  And so, without contents/context/substance, I stared into the kitchen where both parents remain in the hums of the solitude house.

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The Lonesome Crab and The Inquisitive Fish

I am hungry.       I sit at the edge of the world, where the cold blue            smashes and dissipates into white clouds.                 Please, fish         bring me your strong fleshy muscles.                      The blue touches my claw            sending an earthquake                        echoing inside me.          Unlike my brothers,        I fear the discomfort.     Unlike my brothers,        I’m a lonesome coward. Suddenly, a fish calls out to me.

I am afraid.         “Hey, what are you doing there?” she calls out.                 I tell her, I’ve been waiting for her.          “Why are you alone?”        Her voice, an entrancing call        her flesh, an iridescent hue of red.      An erubescent red Salmon.             I tell her, I am a Lonesome crab.              I tell her, the effort of making friends,                               I fear the most.                 In words of tinder,  in a voice of flint,              she says “Well, I’m here.”

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A Supposed Father

People often inquired of my beginnings; they’d say: “What made you this way Nate?”
and I never had an answer for them. When people wanted to describe this Nate, they often use
the words: strange, apathetic, hard, lifeless, and cruel. I don’t know why I am the way I am, but
if I was to guess what has ‘created me,’ I tell them the story of my father’s death.
My father was also a cruel lifeless man. He always had a look of winter in his eyes; eyes
that would narrow and study me with hate and despise. I was a bane in the cold blue eyes of
his; I was an anchor preventing him from reaching the isles of aspirations. However, I never felt
spite or absolute hate for him. He was still my shepherd, even if he was a shitty one at that.

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The Woman with the Dark Blue Dress

Wrote this in one sitting on 7/24/11. Barely edited.

She sits alone at the bar, tracing the loop around her wine glass with her fingertips.  Her eyes survey her surroundings, looking at each individual person with large worrisome eyes. Her hand reaches for the wine glass slowly, sliding against the bar’s table as if her diamond wedding ring weighs heavy. Her eyes never stop wandering.

The large crowds of people constantly block my view from her. Everyone standing and shuffling about, awaiting for the countdown to 1980. Cheering and laughing fills the room with lively energy. Everyone is gleeful and sharing the emotion with everyone adjacent. All except this woman. This woman who’s wearing a dark blue dress. A gorgeous dress that one would wear to a special occasion. However, she isn’t celebrating, nor conversing with others. She’s all alone tonight, celebrating among herself. Why? I do not know.

She’s absolutely beautiful, I thought to myself. Too beautiful to be drinking alone. I pick up my glass of whiskey and walk toward her. Everything seems to be moving slowly. People raising their glasses into the air with large smiles and odd chants. I move through the crowd, gently pushing people aside, moving toward the woman.  I take several sips of my drink, hoping to finish it by the time I reach the bar. She isn’t smiling, but I am, for I want to bring her happiness tonight; the last night of the year. Continue reading

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