The Wrong RSVP

From Catch Up With Summer, published in 2015.

The Wrong RSVP

Can anyone give me any hints
on the best way
to make sure
no one sees me leave this party
early
despite the fact that I am leaving this party
early.
The truth is
I meant to convey my regrets
but somehow I’ve presented
myself
instead
and now I’m sorry.
So if you know how I
can solve this problem
I’ll be very grateful
and do the same for you
someday.

Cocktail Party 8 x 10 4016 small

“Cocktail Party”, 2016, mixed media, 8″ x 10″.

Undone

Here is another of those two-sentence stories with poetry added. I’m thinking of them as “Minuscule” and quick to read.

Read the first Minuscule, the explanation of why I wrote it and got started on this idea, and search under the category Fiction/Poetry Combination for others in the series.

Undone

Years after that strange confession in the dining room and I’ve never been able to figure out how many people have actually considered the question of – but I digress, as it is not the topic of the discussion that is of significance. No, what matters is that try as I may, however much I seek to amend memory, in all my revisitings of that conversation I can only see a very good and humble man spilling his heartfelt sorrows to me, speaking with so much emotion, with so much fervor, and with a large green piece of limp spinach plastered to his front tooth.

unlucky chance
drew quite a portrait
doing you
no favors
fate’s cruel pen sketched fleeting flaws
in permanent ink

(Shadorma 68)
2/26/18

Clay tiles - four flat faces group #1 4-16 small

small clay tiles, 2016.

Balance

Here is another of those two-sentence stories with poetry added. I’m thinking of them as “Minuscule” and quick to read.

Read the first Minuscule, the explanation of why I wrote it and got started on this idea, and search under the category Fiction/Poetry Combination for others in the series.

Balance

I could see the wheels turning in her head, her thinking as transparent to me as the crystal of the watch she held out. The serial numbers match and my past is none of your business, she was saying, but I knew she was lying; I took the easy way and then I paid for it the hard way, that’s what she was thinking, that’s what had happened, that’s what she didn’t want me to know, and that’s what I knew, the tiny gears vibrating and turning inside the watch ticking out the truth with each passing second.

 

Too early
time ends. The ruined face
broken hands
broken heart
each hour out of balance
the trembling gears. Dead.

(Shadorma 40)
1/22/18

12th Street and Clock idea small

Bridge

Here is another of those two-sentence stories with poetry added. I’m thinking of them as “Minuscule” and quick to read.

Read the first Minuscule, the explanation of why I wrote it and got started on this idea, and search under the category Fiction/Poetry Combination for others in the series.

Bridge

Her face set, Georgina turned the door knob, her deck of cards safe in her purse, aware that the distasteful and distressing task before her was essential to keep the world from exploding and save society from disintegrating, at least the world and society to which she had somehow been assigned. She stepped into the living room of her hostess, switching on a blinding bright smile and calling out greetings to the ladies already assembled around the bridge tables, her face a match for theirs: mouths outlined in lurid red lipstick, wide open, teeth showing.

Card game as conquest
Ruthless competitors eat
the opposition

1/18/18

Card from Claudia McGill/Sharon Mann playing card project, 2018.

 

Lure

From Spring Cleaning, 2015.

Lure

Playground.
Fake enthusiasm in Dad’s voice
calling to the children
rightly ignored by the children
and by Dad himself.
Actually
He is
more interested in talking to the neighbor’s wife
who happens to be at the park
today.

Postcard, 9-17

Separation of Secret and Handshake

From Spring Cleaning, published in 2015.

Separation of Secret and Handshake

The sign on the door says
Not An Exit. Alarm Will Sound.
But people have been going in and out all morning
and no alarm and it certainly looks like an exit.
I have the uneasy sense of not being chosen.
The secret is not for me to know.
I can’t work out what the password is
or the special ritual
the signal
the open sesame
everyone is using.
Look, there goes another man right out that door.
Somehow
I am sure that if I try
Alarm Will Sound.

“Nothing Stays Secret Around Here”, 2013.

Frozen; Wonderful

Here is another of those two-sentence stories with poetry added. Read here for the first one and explanation of why I wrote it and got started on this idea, and search under the category Minuscule for others in the series.

I have two stories for Valentine’s Day. Different aspects of the same day.

Frozen

Noon on Valentine’s Day and Mimi watched from the window as a tired-looking floral delivery man skidded his way up her icy sidewalk, shaking off the sleet collecting on the plastic wrap protecting pale pink blooms. She didn’t answer the door when he knocked, not the first time nor the second; after a moment he gently set the flowers, so carefully arranged in their glass vase, on the concrete step and walked away, the bright green stems magnified in water that would soon be frozen, the pink petals lifted up to the gray sky, exuberant and hopeful, unaware of how short a time they would remain so.

Some things can’t be fixed
Destroyed means gone forever
Please don’t break my heart
(Haiku 364)

1/9/18

 


Wonderful

The decorated shoeboxes sat on the desks as the second graders moved around the room delivering Valentine cards, dropping the envelopes through slots in the lids; new to the school, Jane had made cards for everyone, in great hopes of making friends, but did anyone remember her, the new girl, the quiet one, all right at kickball, better at reading?

Returning to her desk, she waited with the others for the teacher’s permission to open her box, looking at the pink and red hearts she’d scattered over its surface and avoiding any glimpse of its dark interior, determined not to show disappointment, so much so that when the signal was given and she lifted the top away, she could not at first take in the sight: the box was full.

Pink and red
messages travel.
The mailbox
gathers in
Valentines and affection.
Love by the handful.
(Shadorma 16)

2/6/18

Valentine 2014

Haiku 330; Tanka 75 and 77.

Sometimes things go right and sometimes they don’t.

Haiku 330.
Cat on a sofa
quiet room good for sleeping
purrs fade into snores
10/20/17

Tanka 75.
distant relatives
arrived here having driven
in a big hurry
just short of one thousand miles
only to miss the wedding
11/2/17

Tanka 77.
Do you remember
that old song? You do. You smile.
Let’s come out tonight
dance by the light of the moon
with our experienced feet.
11/16/17