This is me, flashing you

by Julie Frayn on June 22, 2014 in  Flash Fiction

Every Friday, a fellow writer eggs us all on to take two minutes and write. Just write something, anything. For many months I stalked this group of amazing talent, reading their short and often brilliant mini-works. But I didn’t take part, not sure I was able to come up with anything worthy in 120 brief seconds. Turns out, they let you cheat….

After my first foray one Friday in May, I was hooked. Can’t always make it, but appreciate the feedback when I do. And so, I wanted to share the last two Friday’s worth of flash fiction (and last Friday, he upped it to four minutes! Ah, I could finally finish within the allotted time frame). If you would like to read everyone’s amazing contributions, find your way to JD Mader‘s page and have a read.

Jasmine

The faint scent of my grandmother’s garden wriggles its way through the stench of my dumpster overcoat and finds my nostrils, thirsty for anything more than body odour, mildew, dirt, and car exhaust.

Jasmine.

I lift my forehead from my arms and rest the back of my head against the sandstone, stare at the muddling of humanity awaiting the bus not ten feet from my tin cup, scant with a couple of quarters and one generous toonie.

Then I see her. The origin of the wondrous aroma. With each breeze that catches her flaxen hair and tosses it to and fro, a fresh hint of flowers seeps into my consciousness. Into my life.

I stare at her golden locks, hope for a glimpse of more. She turns. Her eyes catch mine looking at her. Then a miracle. She smiles. At me. Smiles. Teeth and upturned pink lips and a slight gleam in her emerald-fire eyes.

My face cracks at the curl of my lips. But I don’t bare my teeth. She doesn’t deserve that.

Worms

My mind wanders. She prattles on, the third repeating of the same story in less than five minutes. Or maybe it’s the fourth. No matter, it’s not real anyway. It didn’t happen like that. But in her mind, it is truth. Until the next time she tells it when it will change. New truth. Revisionist history. My mind wanders.

“Do you remember that?”

“What?”

“You weren’t listening.”

“No, Mom. I wasn’t. Sorry about that.”

She dives back in. I stare at her watery eyes, the green now faded to a yellowish-gray mass of ooze, her lids red and swollen from her constant wiping, wiping, wiping with the ever-present Kleenex clutched in her fist.

How did she get here? Where did my mother go?

I listen to the crazy shit that comes from her mouth, watch her agonize over the slow ebb of her mind, the memories that fall into Alzheimer’s holes never to be found again.

It is slow drowning, like worms on the sidewalk during a rainstorm. So close to home, and yet so far gone.

(Ok, that last one was less fiction and more mini-memoir, a glimpse into life with our new, uninvited guest, Alzheimer’s)

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Laurie Boris June 23, 2014 at 6:36 am

Love it. I’m glad you started coming by!

Reply

Julie Frayn June 23, 2014 at 12:55 pm

Thanks, Laurie! Still intimidated by all of you, but doing it anyway :)

Carolyn Frayn June 23, 2014 at 9:26 am

Those are awesome mini works! I hate those Alzheimer holes so very much, well done… that one was hard to read. xoxo

Reply

Julie Frayn June 23, 2014 at 12:56 pm

Yeah, but oddly it was easy to write… xoxo

JD Mader June 23, 2014 at 12:58 pm

Love it. And I concur, really glad you’ve joined the club. See ya on Friday. 😉

Reply

Julie Frayn June 23, 2014 at 1:13 pm

Thanks, Dan! I will be there…

Nette J June 24, 2014 at 6:01 am

Wow! These are very awesome. I love both – and am beginning to feel a stronger connection to the second.

It’s amazing what can be done in two minutes.

Reply

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