I attended a writing workshop at the Burning Tale recently and had a great time. We did some exercises and then listened to mysterious poetry in the dark of the night.
Here are a few fun pieces that I wrote during the workshop. I hope you enjoy them! 🙂
Short, Short Story
The egg rolls were twitching and screaming as they were lowered into the sizzling pan of oil. They wanted to remain uncooked and uneaten, forever smelling like dough. But alas, they have turned into a crispy, golden brown, no longer twitching, but still.
Image from Google
Image from Google
Image from Google
Lusting for egg rolls while writing ’bout memories in a studio.
I decided to write a poem in my physical journal today and realized that I haven’t written in it since April 2012. While flipping through the pages, I found this interesting piece that I wrote back in October 2010. It was written in a time when things were very stressful and hectic at work, when many people were asking for my assistance. I have to say, sometimes I crack myself up. I think Analogy #2 is my favorite one.
An analogy of my sanity, or lack thereof…
It’s like being able to see ghosts and other supernatural things, while other people can’t. No one understands you and you’re the only one that can vanquish the evil. While you’re at it, all these little ghosts cry to you “help me, help me, help me,” – one after another, day after day, night after night. They haunt you in your dreams, until you scream in fright. You cower in the corner and scream “STOP!” then whimper, “please, leave me alone.”
It’s like being a successful therapist, really. Everybody comes to you with their problems. You solve their issues, tell them how to remedy the pain, tell them to wait a few days and it’ll be fixed. Then you go back and follow up on all of them. It’s OK at first, even satisfying to be able to help people, but then your patients multiply. Before you know it, you have a colony of patients pounding at your door. They’re pounding and pounding, “I have a problem, I have a problem…” they say. Louder and louder, until your brain can’t take it and explodes into mush and you scream, “I have problems too!” The therapist, obviously needs, a therapist.
Remember playing “Smack the Alligator” at Chuck E. Cheese’s or Dave & Buster’s? Basically, there’s like 6 alligators that pop out of the hole, one after another, and you have to smack them with a hammer before they disappear. The more of them you smack, the higher your score and the more tickets you get. Well, it’s like that. At first you’re doing really well, getting the mojo down, but then you notice more and more alligators pop up. You frantically scramble to hit all of them, but then realize that the moment you hit one, two more appear, the moment you hit two, four more appear. Your head is spinning. You’re twirling around and getting completely dizzy. The machine is burning up, about to explode, buzzing and buzzing, and time is running out. Your score is in the negative, so finally you throw up your hammers and say “I give up.”
Funny that after 3 months of not writing, this is what I’m inspired to write about 🙂 I’m so glad that I’m taking vacation in two days, or I think I might have a mental breakdown, lol.
Since Halloween just ended, I thought it was a good opportunity to post my other darkish flash fiction piece that I wrote in 2005 before moving back into the realm of poetry.
You Are Mine
Laylona bolted out of her bed as she heard a roar of thunder followed by a terrible screech. From the corner of her eye, she saw a black figure race into the darkness. Darn that stupid cat, always so cowardly, Laylona thought. Nevertheless, she grabbed her coat and went after her beloved Sir William. After all, it was the only thing her mother had left behind.
A tear started to fall from Laylona’s eyes as memories of her mother flooded back to her. She could still remember the day her mother had come running, holding two ice cream cones in her hands. Yet Laylona never tasted that Rocky Road because her mother never made it across the street. A red mustang, going 80 mph, had slammed into her, spraying blood all over the gray cement. Laylona had suffered from depression ever since that day, but luckily, she had found an escape, a way to avoid the pain.
At that moment, Laylona noticed a dark shadow dart across the bramble weeds and disappear behind the open doors of a huge mansion. She couldn’t help but hesitate at the entrance, wondering if this was the legendary haunted house talked about among the townspeople. There was no time to decide as the rain started pouring. Laylona gently touched the wooden door, which groaned in return.
“Anybody home?” she squeaked. The sound of rats scurrying across the floor was the only response. As Laylona took two steps into the house, a gust of wind whipped past her, and the door slammed shut. The house was then filled with an eerie silence, a kind of anticipation, like a mummy ready to be reborn.
Lightning continued to flash outside and Laylona was able to piece together the interior of the house. In the center of the room the once glamorous 15th century furniture was covered in cobwebs and the cream colored rug on the floor was stained with rat urine. Aligning one side of the wall was an elegant cabinet of wine glasses, no longer shiny, but worn with age. Laylona gasped in amazement, but her glimpse of the house was over when the lightning stopped, engulfing her in darkness.
Then, as if by magic, a light appeared before her eyes. Laylona saw a woman with dark flowing hair dressed in a white gown. It was her mother and in her arms was Sir William.
“Here,” whispered her mother, extending her hands to offer the cat to her daughter. When Laylona took hold of Sir William, her mother disappeared.
“Mom?” she called into the darkness, but there was no answer. All of a sudden, she felt a searing pain in her arm and found herself staring into the devilish countenance of the cat. A set of burning red eyes, accompanied with sharp, piercing fangs, pored into her very soul.
“YOU WILL NOT LEAVE THIS HOUSE!” croaked an inhuman voice.
Laylona felt her heart beating ferociously as she tried ridding herself of the cat, but her struggle was to no avail. Stifling a cry, Laylona reached into her pockets for her savior. Throughout the hard times, these LSD pills had given her the courage to go on, but this time it wouldn’t work. This time around, they were the cause of her suffering.
Hard as she tried, she could not escape. Hideous laughter filled her ears.
This was originally a flash fiction assignment that I had in class, in which I utilized the same idea from a poem that I had written. It’s supposed to be weird and ambiguous, so I hope you enjoy it!
Nothing in Particular
Rain falls in a diagonal motion, wetting ground, watering plants, falling into puddles, making ripples in the pond. Outside, little boys in blue raincoats are chasing paper ships down the waterway. The elderly Mrs. Chan dressed in white, burns paper houses in a black cauldron for her dead husband. It has been a long night. The crow watches a raindrop slip off the golden leaf and disappear with a “plop.”
A moment of silence, and then the rain pounds harder, like translucent daggers hammered into doors. The crow flies off into the night, passed the children, passed the wooden house, passed the naked slithering worms, into the cemetery with Gothic gates where people are engaged in a ritual dance. Singing, shouting, dancing around and around, arms in the air, with the beating of drums. Crosses, crosses everywhere, there are angels too, all over the tombstones. R.I.P.
The crow flies off, passed the lovers skinny-dipping in the lake with moonlight glistening on their skin, passed the restless, thrashing waves, passed the fallen tree, occasionally dodging the wire-like thunderbolts, only to land on the sill of a barred window at the insane asylum. With his dark little pupils, he watches, waiting, anticipating … the scream!
The woman has her back to him. Her long black hair falls down her thin nightgown in a tangled mess, until the tips touch the floor. She stares at the granite wall, as if mesmerized. She counts: 1, 2, 3, until she reaches 13, and turns around. She is pale with sunken eyes and high cheekbones. There are cracks in her red lips. Upon seeing the crow, she screams and screams and SCREAMS!
Her voice drowns out the “drip, drip, drip” of the leaking faucet in the corner of the room. Her face is contorted in pain. Her eyes reflect the flickering light of the candle that sits on the nightstand. The crow does not flinch, but simply stares back.
The screaming stops as the woman brings her index fingers to her lips and kisses it.
“Shh …,” she whispers, “breathe in, breathe out.” Her chest rises and falls, rises and falls. All over the world, awake or asleep, people are breathing a harmonious song of nature. She spreads out her arms, as if to fly, and twirls around in circles at a steady pace.
“This is our moment, a special moment in time,” she whispers. She throws back her head and cackles, jumps up, and lands sprawled on the floor. She slowly bites her finger until a trickle of blood appears.
“Shh…,” she whispers, gently putting down her bleeding finger on the cold cement. She writes in the flickering candlelight with the crow perched on the windowsill and the moon shining behind. There are no stars tonight, and she is no van Gogh. When her writing stops, she blows out the candle and the crow flies off. What does she write? Nothing, nothing in particular.
You find yourself wondering if what had happened, happened in a dream, but you can’t remember, because it’s surreal, yet real, until you realize that you’re still dreaming, and what had happened happened in a dream within a dream.
It’s like a weird inception of the subconscious. When you awake, you are baffled, confused, puzzled… what does it mean?
Did the event that happened really happen? Or did it really happen
in a dream? Or did it happen in a dream within a dream?
The cool thing about doing Winter Cleaning is discovering bits of yourself that you had forgotten about. While cleaning and reorganizing files on my laptop, I came across this short story I wrote back in 2006. I particularly liked this part of the story, and thought I’d share it with you. I hope you enjoy it.
Excerpt from TheTouching of Souls
Outside his apartment, she had thrown her arms around him in an endearing embrace as he wrapped his arms around her tiny waist. Standing on her tippy toes, they shared a tender kiss. It didn’t matter where they were or who was watching, she was literally swept off her feet. As they pulled apart, Kelly’s fingers lingered on his shoulders, slowly sliding down his arms, and finally resting in his hands. She swung their hands together side to side, as she slowly looked up at him with her glistening eyes.
“So this is goodbye?” she asked.
“Yeah,” he said, a little hoarse. She looked down at the cement pavement, letting the words echo in her mind.
“Can’t we make this work? I want to visit again. I want to make more memories with you,” she beckoned.
“I miss you too much. It hurts when I barely get to see you,” he replied.
“Once a month,” she said, offering a false grin.
“Is not enough,” he finished, “We should see other people … people that are much closer to us.”
Kelly bit her lips, slowly letting go of Ryan’s hands, feeling empty as her fingertips touched the open air. Straightening her back, Kelly walked towards her car. She was about to open the door when Ryan grabbed her hand and swung her into his arms, once again. She could smell his cologne, a smell she couldn’t describe, but one that she would never forget. It was the smell of Ryan.
Kelly snuggled against his chest as he gently laid his chin on her head.
“I’ll miss you,” he whispered.
Kelly said nothing, hugging him closer, listening to his heart beat. Finally she pulled away. Before getting in the car, Kelly turned around and said, “I love you, in a sense.”
Ryan looked into her eyes and gave her a sad smile, “I truly liked you,” he replied, “and always will.”
Kelly backed the car out of the driveway, suppressing the tears from flowing out. As she drove off, the image of Ryan leaning against the open doorway of his apartment, expressionless, was implanted in her mind.