Instead of Adultery, We’re Guilty of Conspiracy

Photo by Gemma Evans on Unsplash

There is no letter burned into my chest,

but there is a mask on my face.

I put it there,

and that burns you.

And you would prefer me gone

for I am a reminder of fiction not truth.

The nightmare has ended,

or so you would like to believe.

But here I come as a mad parade,

and if you had it your way,

and you think you do,

you would tie me to the stake,

throw rocks at my bones,

and burn this mask off my face,

scar my skin

because I am living truth

that this virus…

Even the puppies are infected.

Arya (Photo by the Author)

Yesterday was a very hard day for my family and me. We had adopted a golden retriever three weeks ago from a breeder, and in the beginning, she was nothing but an angel. Then, aggression surfaced. At first, we thought that she was a puppy and she’s going to chew on everything, everyone. We were fine with that, but this was more than just gnawing. This was something else. Then, more aggression. I looked down at my brother’s arm, and it was covered in bruises. My father had a scratch on his face from her nails, which might have been…

But maybe some do need their industrial strength hair dryer and can’t live without it

Photo by Jennifer Marquez on Unsplash

It’s like in that Christmas M&M commercial. “They do exist.” I found some on Long Island. Their heads held high up. Their features tight and pristine. Their giggles and laughter faux and insidious. Their gazes penetrating, eliminating. Maybe, that’s why they didn’t see me standing there, walking in front of my face, a strand of hair gracing across the tip of my nose, and they move like ballerinas do, spinning and tiptoeing as not to bump into anything unpleasant. They are eye candy, catching those yum-yums without their shirts on, flexing their biceps, not caring that nobody’s home inside. After…

Flash Fiction

Photo by Anthony Young on Unsplash

I used to take walks when I lived on Long Island. I used to walk along Merrick Road and Sunrise Highway. There was always a lot of traffic, cars speeding by, and I would wait for the light and cross the road. It still wasn’t easy, and the drivers didn’t care if I was there. But I always made it to the other side.

I could see him heading in my direction. His feet set for collision. My head lowered toward the pavement. He did the same. No eye contact. We brushed past one another. Our bodies barely touched. …

250 Words

But how often are we recognized for it?

Photo by Etienne Girardet on Unsplash

Writing is easy to do. How many times did I want to smack someone for saying that? Writing is not easy. It takes time, time that some of us don’t have when we’re chained to a day job working eight to four, then we come home, and we have to do the dishes and make dinner. There is only a slice of time during the week for me to write, which is why I love the weekends. I devote most of my Saturdays and Sundays to writing, but then there’s distraction, procrastination. Thank you, Social Media, so no, writing is…


Photo by Christin Hume on Unsplash

I hate feeling not comfortable in my own skin.

At work, I feel out of place,

unable to connect to those around me.

I’m more comfortable at home in my room,

writing my stories and poetry.

That is when I am real,

my authentic self,

and sometimes, I can be too real, blunt.

I have to remind myself to pull my claws back,

but at work, I am not real.

I am covered in layers.

I don’t know what to say to my coworkers.

I don’t have their lives.

Marriage and children.

I think that’s off the table for me.

50/100 Words

Thrifty Word Challenge Roundup #20/41: Trance

Arya (Photo by the Author)

She might look cute, but she is a monster. And she loves to chew on everything and everyone. It’s been hard slipping back into my comfort zone, my writing trance when she pulls you in with those deep, brown eyes and melts your heart. Welcome to the puppy zone. Cue the Twilight Zone music.

But at least, other writers have channeled their thoughts, feelings and creativity into a Trance of writing.

100 Words

Smillew Rahcuef is forever in trance.

James Knight met and fell in love with a beautiful German enchantress.

Paul Mansfield listens to the whispers in the darkness.

50 Words

Kim McKinney

I even gave you ten cents for a tip.

Photo by Rachel McDermott on Unsplash

Dear Bagel Boy,

thank you for helping me today.

Thank you for listening to my choices

for the bagels,

and thank you for getting my two selections of cream cheese.

My family and I enjoyed our lunch,

and I even found a dime on the floor,

which I dropped into your tip box.

I hope you help the next person like you helped me,

but maybe they will be more fortunate than I.

Maybe, they won’t receive an attitude

with eye rolls, annoyed sighs, and mutterings

because I was still wearing a mask.

I noticed the look from others.


A short story

Photo by Joshua Newton on Unsplash

“Do you have to burn that one?”

Josh looked at the book in his hand. All the magazines were already burnt. The hard covers barely burned. The paperbacks would keep them warm. He ran his finger along the cover. “Our hearts are not in Atlantis,” he said. “They’re already gone,” and he threw the book into the fire.

“That was my favorite,” Taylor said. She brushed a few tears aside. She picked up a mug and took a sip. Her head jerked back. “This is disgusting,” and she placed the mug down near the fireplace.

“It’s cold chicken noodle soup.”…

Dedicated to the Late Night Television Hosts

Photo by Levi Stute on Unsplash

He said things that I wanted to say,

things that I was told not to say,

things that nobody wanted to admit,

things that should not be spoken,

but he said them.

And I heard my thoughts in his voice,

his eyes a reflection of mine.

Something was wrong with this world,

something needed to be said,

something that needed to be heard,

something that could not remain silent.

I could not say these things,

but he did.

His tears were as fresh as mine,

the fear the same,

the uncertainty hanging over both of us,

all of us.


Melissa R. Mendelson

Horror, Science-Fiction and Dystopian Author and Poet.

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