Flash Literature

Here are some examples (word count for each in square brackets at the end):


by Daniel R. Vertrees

My son and I sat on the back porch sipping iced tea. His is the Southern favorite – strong tea mixed with that supersaturated sugar experiment we all did in Junior High.  We contemplated thinking about something, lazy gazes brushing over the familiar sights of what might be known, were better horticulturists tended them instead of sitting sipping tea, as the gardens. 
We wondered out loud what that was in the drive; some animal walked in unnoticed and paused behind a bush.  Heck of a tail on that cat.  Then the fox, for that’s what ambled down our drive, stepped into view. 
I got the rifle placed by the back door for just such and emergency.   I leaned on the pillar and rested the rifle on top of my hand.  Steady as a rock.  The crosshairs of the scope steadied behind the fox's ear for a humane shot.  The .22 would crack and the fox will fold.  No problem, no fuss, no mess. 
All I could think about was the prize pullets needed protecting.  You know about foxes in the henhouse, and other perils of quasi-rural living.  
Only one problem with my scenario:  I don’t have any pullets.
I couldn’t pull that trigger. The fox snoozed in the drive– a quick foxnap – then ate a grasshopper or some delicacy. 
We had a family of four foxes. I would like more to control the chipmunks and squirrels.
A neighbor shot one of the pups.  Now there are just three.
And, the neighbor doesn’t have any pullets either.


Yard Work

I should be doing some yard work instead of sitting on the porch.  I can see a couple of down limbs that should be picked up, but the geometry they set up, the interesting shadows they throw would not be there if I threw them out.
Why do we think we can improve on the natural course of things?  Why do we cut the paths and prune the bushes, and make topiary?  What is in us that makes us push, prod, groom, and stomp natural shapes into unnatural shapes?  Bonsai is the art of unnaturally trying to mimic the natural.  We capture birds and place them in cages far from their natural habitat.  We put fish in tanks: sometimes they get out and our pets become our monsters.  The snakehead is one such phenom.
Ha! Sitting vindicated.


Channeling Milla Jovovich
by Daniel R. Vertrees 

Kat’s wide set eyes – high cheekbones – engaging smile – attitude – the gait of a panther.  Allure and beauty twists to resident evil slashing others and self.  One minute smiling magnetism, the next a snarling dervish that had she a kukri, let alone two, would make you coleslaw.
Straight A’s in math and science.
Five times in juvie court.
Tried hard to change.
Too much anger. 
Dropped out.
School help?
No. Child left behind.

Now I have to say that  Jovovich is dependent upon the reader's knowledge of Milla Jovovich's film works.  Of course there is the well known Resident Evil franchise, but the Kat refered to is in .45.  She stars with Angus Mcfadyen in a disturbing and intense picture of abuse and revenge.  The piece is about a seventh grade student in a school where I was an administrator.  See? Way too much prior knowledge needed, but I like it anyway.

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