100-Word Fiction: ‘1 September 2015’

1 September 2015. Global share prices tumble as visa checks are waived and bodies are washed up on a continent’s beaches. Dead. The stations and sports halls are full of refugees. We are learning new names and new vocabulary. There was no vocabulary for this. Old words are not sufficient. Very old words might justContinue reading “100-Word Fiction: ‘1 September 2015’”

100-Word Fiction: ‘The Disappeared’

With one small bag and no note he became the next of the disappeared. He was seventeen. They searched for him on maps but the maps were empty and sand covered them. They searched for him across websites but found only redacted rhetoric. He was gone. And he was gone before he was gone. TheContinue reading “100-Word Fiction: ‘The Disappeared’”

100-Word Fiction: ‘Into the Grey’

The grey months are back. The river is a monochrome line through a commuter town. Shrieking magpies hop across the railway sleepers; five for silver. Wheel rims slash the gutter puddles of a wet street. City towers wear loose shrouds and leak osmotically into the concrete sky. Coats are zipped, umbrellas black dots streaming pastContinue reading “100-Word Fiction: ‘Into the Grey’”

100-Word Fiction: ‘Here It Comes’

Here it comes: the football back on telly, the root around the wardrobe for a jacket, the predictions for the bank holiday weekend weather, the TV trailers for autumn’s best viewing. It feels like a final sign-off. You will hear no more from us until Christmas. What you haven’t got done won’t get done. AndContinue reading “100-Word Fiction: ‘Here It Comes’”

100-Word Fiction: ‘Freedom Fruit’

They lift from the hedgerow Light as cobweb and spun sugar A shroud of lace for a season’s going Displaced migrants, the bramble’s other Temporary lover: Jenny Long Legs rise in a cloud In pestilent numbers this September As hands shake the limbs of briar For black berries and rose hips On foraging trips. PeaceContinue reading “100-Word Fiction: ‘Freedom Fruit’”

100-Word Fiction: ‘Andalusyria’

The largest of the pines is full of sparrows. Soon the birds will rush to the roadside wall flushed with the electric bloom of bougainvillea, then to the tables and chairs of the beach club as restaurant diners return to the pool, the loungers and the canopied beds, to sleep off the lunchtime cava, turningContinue reading “100-Word Fiction: ‘Andalusyria’”

100-Word Fiction: ‘The Pictures On the Wall’

He spent an hour removing pictures from the bedroom wall. Images of icons, cars, animals, slogans, pin-ups, friends. He saved the blu-tack from the corners of each piece of paper and combined them into a ball. He put the pictures into a black bin liner, then he took the ball of blu-tack and dabbed itContinue reading “100-Word Fiction: ‘The Pictures On the Wall’”

100-Word Fiction: ‘Raptor’

The bird’s wings scythed through the morning air imperiously as it locked its position over some ground prey, unseen, scuttling in the wildnerness below. The long arc of those wings; I had seen something like them before. An owl, perhaps, or a bird of prey, a falcon or harrier, a raptor. Was an owl aContinue reading “100-Word Fiction: ‘Raptor’”

100-Word Fiction: ‘Signs and Codes’

Exercise No. 1: Image: A fairytale castle. Words: This castle does not exist. Image: A townscape. Words: The city is at risk. Image: A man in a hat. Words: This picture is believed to have been taken in the past few weeks. Image: A man in a different hat. Words: Freedom. Image: A toy helicopter.Continue reading “100-Word Fiction: ‘Signs and Codes’”

100-Word Fiction: ‘A Crossing (4)’

All is quiet. A little girl runs out into the street. She is smiling but her eyes say something different. From somewhere a man is shouting her name. Then a woman shouts it too. But she is looking at me, on the other side of the street. She stops, then steps towards me. The voicesContinue reading “100-Word Fiction: ‘A Crossing (4)’”