Posts concerning microfiction

2017 Goals/2016 Goals Review: A Year of Treading Water

16:10 01 Jan 2017

On every front except work, 2016 was a bad year for me.

Not in big ways; I didn’t have any major setbacks, bad injuries, or dramatic blowups. It just sucked in a low-key but consistent way.

It was bad in terms of the goals I set myself at the start of the year, too.

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“The Distance”

20:17 12 May 2013

It’s not that I don’t want to listen carefully. I do. I’m interested. I care about you. I’m trying to pay attention, to be present, to not have my mind wander, to not give in to distraction.

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“Still in the City”

23:44 11 Dec 2011. Updated: 00:48 12 Dec 2011

At Clay and Gough, after I crossed the street, there was something. No cars in sight, no car sounds, not even from Franklin. No people in sight. No people sounds, until a man in Lafayette Park broke the spell by speaking to his workout partner.

Until then, however, I had felt as if I were alone.

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“Wandering Mind”

23:57 18 Apr 2010. Updated: 01:14 19 Apr 2010

The mind wanders around and around. It might be in a maze, for often the spaces look eerily familiar. The paths seem different, the distinction between path and destination murky.

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pafib #6

22:00 22 May 2009
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pafib #5

18:43 16 Feb 2009
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‘Stretching Out’

23:56 31 Jul 2007. Updated: 09:42 07 Apr 2008

Afterwards, when I was next aware, everything was dark. I had my eyes closed, but couldn’t seem to open them.

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23:43 27 Jul 2007. Updated: 01:45 28 Jul 2007

From a distance, all looks well. Peaceful, serene. The ship floats, its sails unfurled, ready to depart.

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23:51 25 Jul 2007. Updated: 16:24 11 Feb 2015

The flight had been a long one. My legs and back were sore, and complained when I put my bag down to use the sink. The restroom was relatively busy, and I’d had to wait for a sink to become free.

It was one of the ‘no-touch’ sinks, where the water just runs when you put your hands under it. I put my hands under it.


I waved my hands around a little. Still nothing. I tried higher and lower, but no water came forth.

I pushed my bag sideways with my foot and moved over to the next sink. Same actions, same lack of results. Another man stepped up to the sink I’d just been using and washed his hands.

When the next sink over freed up, I tried that. No success. I stepped back and waited for the man using the first one I’d tried to leave, and then moved to that one again. But it didn’t work. The other sinks also worked both before and after I tried them.

I tried touching parts of the faucet, rubbing my hands together, faster movements, keeping my hands still, covering my belt with one hand in case it was somehow reflecting something. The tap stayed resolutely off.

None of the others in the room paid me any attention. There was a sense of transience, and everyone wanted to remain in their own bubble.

The other bubbles were moving smoothly through the restroom, but I was not. The machines governing the process refused to deal with me, and I could sense the combination of slight irritation and increased bubble thickness from those around me who noticed I wasn’t following the same steps as everyone else. The room was full of unconnected strangers, yet I had managed to become an outsider.

(300 words)

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‘Guard Detail’

22:30 23 Jul 2007

He didn’t like it. The work, whatever it truly was, had dragged, and now they were stuck there a third night.

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‘One Day’

23:54 21 Jul 2007. Updated: 01:25 22 Jul 2007

“Have I mentioned that I love you?”

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23:58 19 Jul 2007

Technology. What does that mean? We think of it as meaning electronics, computers, but it means all our tools. Including the latest gadgetry, yes, but also the simplest things, like clubs and knives.

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‘Saeka and the Pillars’

21:02 15 Jul 2007. Updated: 23:23 22 Nov 2010

When Saeka was but a girl-sorceress, she learned the art of walking between worlds. She would go wherever her fancy took her, driving her teachers to distraction. Only the most powerful among them could follow, and tracking her was a major undertaking. So she wandered the uncounted worlds, indulging her curiosity and avoiding tedious classes.

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‘A Sale’

23:44 13 Jul 2007. Updated: 21:03 15 Jul 2007

“Burnt her out, have you?”
So spoke the eponymous proprietor of Mr. Dreyson’s Shop, a small and rotund man..

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23:44 11 Jul 2007. Updated: 00:46 12 Jul 2007

I would be stammering, if I could say something. My mind feels blank, and nothing emerges from my lips.

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‘An Urgent Request’

23:59 09 Jul 2007

“What are you doing, barging in here? You can’t do that, how did you get past the—”
“Come on, they know who I am, and I told them it was an emergency. It is an emergency!”

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23:52 07 Jul 2007. Updated: 16:44 08 Jul 2007

First, there is breath. Breathing must be easy and deep. Anticipation must not intefere with steady respiration.

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23:55 05 Jul 2007. Updated: 01:30 06 Jul 2007

It started with the cats. Two cats, on his way home one night. He’d always been good with cats, and stopped to say hello to these two. But they wouldn’t come near him.

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23:17 02 Jul 2007

I saw her when we were at the gates. Her auburn hair caught my eye, and I fell in love. I looked away when the Marine Captain fired into the air. The crowd moved back, afraid. But we all remembered: plague. And surged forward once again.

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‘Distant Sun’

23:56 29 Jun 2007

As I sit on my throne, I think of my Queen. My ex-Queen, now gone, gone but alive but not forgotten.

I think of my Queen.

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22:52 28 Jun 2007. Updated: 14:06 20 May 2009

“You need us,” said the djinn, “To realize the world you want.”
“But what’s in it for you?”
“The fulfillment of our function. We exist to serve.”

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‘Rose and Trove’

09:46 07 Jun 2007

I had loved Saura all my life.

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‘A Pointed Visit’

23:33 22 Mar 2007. Updated: 00:36 23 Mar 2007

The viscous remains oozed between my fingers. Already, it was beginning to disappear, passably similar to rapid evaporation.

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