Tag Archives: world

Champagne

Beneath the veneer, the sparkling wit and quaffed hair lay the remnants of a soul in despair; it was his eyes that gave him away. They were lost. He would always be lost.

I pitied him then, turned away with the broadest back. And though he spat venom, riled and roared, it missed on all accounts. So weak!

I left him to his collected friends and so-called compatriots like grapes on the vine missed in the picking. Worthless, a vintage fit only for insects, he’d rot into the soil without ever knowing what it was to taste champagne.

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Overwhelming

It’s a big, wide world out there to those who feel small. Every tree conceals shadows, every puddle a skin to the world below. We fear and tremble, defer and divide, when what we really ought is wonder. Let us not forget, the flower to the insect is as a sun to us, yet the pull of its pollen is enchanting. Never fear the big wide world, my friends, it can’t help being overwhelming.

Over Shade and Shadow

Over shade and shade we ploughed our lonely furrows. We travelled at night when the dark ones were least prevalent, when the universe swallowed them and hid them away. They couldn’t touch us then though I often heard their skittering, ebony talons tickling the ruined forest floor. We prayed for the moon to stay hidden behind the storm clouds, the intermittent lightning making us cringe in its stead. This was how we moved. This was how I made my way home to you.

The grasslands were a welcome break from the giant, decrepit trees. The shadows were there, of course they were, but governed by the trails they cast, their willowy fingers in direct mimicry of the fronds that fluttered around us, they were too weak to harm. They tried though. Oh, how they tried!

The mountains appeared along the horizon like the razor-toothed saw I’d left behind with half-eaten sandwich; we only carried the bare minimum speed being essential. Soon the massif threatened, then loomed, then engulfed. And even though I knew you and the other women just a slab of granite away, I like the others, trembled. We forgot the mountains cast the broadest shadow of all, a world of obliterated light.

The others pretended it would be like the night, that the shadows couldn’t touch us if swallowed by the greater whole. I argued them wrong, but they shouted me down. Exhausted, they waited, whereas I would not. I pressed on into the sliding shade, the sun slipping ever lower against the highest peaks. I ran.

I ran and clambered, struggled and ran again. Over gaping crevasses like ogres’ maws, climbing sheer cliffs slick like a mermaid’s slimy skin, I moved like a man possessed; I was a man possessed.

As the world around me grew darker, I smiled. I’d made it, the mountaintops in sight. I burst onto the plateau like a cheetah ready to bite its prey. That’s when I realised my mistake. Right there and then, as our house was almost close enough to pluck from the horizon, the sun sinking behind the distant ocean and casting the longest shadows of all, they took me. One, a gnarled oak limb, strangled. Another, a pile of rocks, lumpy and squat, pinned me to the ground. The others, the shadows of eagles, shades of hidden pinnacles and ever more took their revenge upon another man. That’s all I was to them just another.

They tore me to pieces as we’d torn their world, nature and all, into a billion shreds of what it should’ve been. I knew the world’s hurt then, and though it pained me to admit, I wished they’d tortured me more. I’d have deserved it. We all would.

The End.

The Muddleman

The Muddleman made a mess of everything. He seemed to stumble through life smashing into this, clattering into the that, and never ever apologising. Parents warned their children about the Muddleman, so notorious did he become. People avoided him like the plague. But it was hard to avoid the one that ruled them forever. Soon, everyone became muddled by the Muddleman. The world followed. After that, there was no one left to be muddled anymore.

Individuality Lost

“Standing in the shade with shadows and strewn leaves, I feel a strange affinity with the world all around. Like me, this zone of the dark and lost is displaced from the English summer everyone else inhabits. Scattered fragments of seasons lost, we crinkle together, the leaves and I, discussing our cool displeasure. I may remain here, if the shadows will have me, unless that means individuality lost?”

50 Word Stories: Home


It doesn't matter how many pairs of boots you wear, the miles they've covered, what they've seen, they'll never replace a pair of slippers by your own door. It was a simple detail, lesson learned, but learn it I did. I just wish you'd been there to pass me them.