Ten-year-old Bobby Henderson sat outside by himself at the lunch table, munching on apple slices and thumbing through an issue of “Monsters Monthly” while screaming children darted around him shouting “You’re it!” at each other and making karate noises. Bobby pushed his glasses up to the bridge of nose and lifted his head to watch a small group of five kids hopping from table to table like fleas to avoid the dreaded touch of death.
His eyes panned to the left and he further observed the scene around him: three second grade girls playing Double Dutch (Bobby could hear the…
It was around a quarter past noon. I chose to take a walk through the city on my lunch break instead of my usual routine, which consisted of scarfing down whatever food had been packed into a grocery bag while mindlessly browsing YouTube on the work computer at my desk. As always, my wife had put my lunch in the bag earlier that morning. This was about five years ago, during the “organic food only” trend that she had gotten wrapped up in, courtesy of one of the daytime talk shows that she watched faithfully, I don’t know which. …
Many had seen her face, few heard her voice, and none knew her name. The Woman drifted about like a nomad — never in one place for too long, and if one looked away for only a moment, there was a chance she would be gone. A vanishing act with no smoke or mirrors. A bicycle without handlebars. A joke with no punchline.
Her days consisted of wandering around downtown engrossed in her own world. A typical morning for her began with jumping jacks and yoga poses in the park’s grass as the sun beamed brightly overhead. Dressed in stained…
(NOTE: The following work of short fiction was inspired by this writing prompt.)
Clarence Hawthorne crouched at the edge of the bathtub, washing his hands like a doctor would before performing surgery. He paid close attention to the dried blood caked underneath his nails and in-between his fingers. The mixture of hot water and chemical-grade powdered soap was harsh on his palms — the soap box’s warning label bore a message that read “CAUTION: FOR INDUSTRIAL USE ONLY! NOT FOR USE ON BODY, HANDS, SCALP, ETC. MAY CAUSE REDNESS, BURNING, RASH OR PEELING.”
Clarence didn’t mind, though. All it would…
Cement dreams — hard and weightless
Light as a feather, cold and baseless
Gray-cloud weather, obscured vision
High beam-blinded, fixed decisions
A valiant mission, or a path predetermined?
‘X’, ‘Y’, ‘Z’, follow these and you shall be
Given a life free of mediocrity
Or, is it so?
The suburbs away may keep the ruffians at bay
But what say of the throwaway’s state?
Does he not urge to build, make — create?
Despite his place in the vice of fate?
Does she not desire a future? Her wishes fulfilled?
Despite opposing forces, the weight of society’s will?
A new car…
(NOTE: The following short story is based on a writing prompt that I used. The link for the writing prompt can be found here)
I came into this world in a flash of white light. With my eyes burning, my heart pounding in my chest, and seemingly every hair on my body standing at end, I took in the sight before me: A brown-skinned girl no taller than 5’3, her long, dark braids accented with gold rings and purple streaks draped against her shoulders. Her hazel eyes filled with equal parts awe and hesitation, and her ruby lips slightly agape.
Eight loops around again
Bringing with it trials, tribulations and brief rewards
Cold and unforgiving
Every act addressed and accounted for
Action and reaction
What karmic response does Eight have in store?
With a mane-sporting Mars and a water goat Moon
Fire burns the heart and Earth grounds the mind
Struggling to stay in tune
An instrument unique, one-of-a-kind
The Eight path — supposedly lined with riches, success, glory
Power, prestige and recognition — the main theme of the story
But, is it so? It appears not
A path fraught with rejection, loss and deadlock
Seems to be the true…
The following is a trio of original poems that I composed during the morning hours of Sept. 9 and Sept. 10 of 2019. The “theme” for each of these works is the number three, which is utilized in both an overt and codified manner.
These pieces were my first attempts at poetry. The first of the bunch (“Untitled #1”) was the very first poem I’ve ever penned.
Hope you enjoy.
It comes back, reminding you of what you lack
A brief moment of happiness, was it all an act?
A flash in the pan, fleeting as ever
A helping hand…
2020 was for myself and countless others, a year of misery, a year of loss, a year of struggle and a year of solitude. Uncertainty seemed to be the theme of the year, as either a global pandemic, a sudden job loss or the sight of flashing lights in the rear-view mirror left the security of one’s life to a perpetual coin toss.
It was discovered during last summer’s uprisings that for one to witness acts of police brutality that wouldn’t be shown by CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News, they had to watch livestreams from protestors on the ground via…
25 years after its release, La Haine stands as a riveting testament to France’s neglected underclass.
(WARNING: CONTAINS SPOILERS THROUGHOUT)
Written and directed by French filmmaker Mathieu Kassovitz, La Haine (French for “Hate”) premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 1995 and received immediate acclaim. Filmed in color but published entirely in black and white due to budget restrictions, the drab palette serves as a star in its own right, complimenting the film’s bleak themes with bleak visuals. …
I’m an Ohio-based writer, music lover and movie snob. Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @QBAbstract.