The Best of New Writing on the Web

February 13, 2008

Matriarchy

Filed under: Short stories,Writing — litlove @ 3:24 pm

From Beautiful Desolation 

After the service and interment, we drove back to the church for the reception. Stood in a receiving line, mourners shaking our hands and mumbling words of sympathy while we did our best to look suitably solemn. The church basement was airless, musty and full of old bones. Not unlike mother’s coffin, I thought, and had to cough to cover an unseemly smile. I endured the well-wishers for as long as I could; it was a geriatric crowd, composed of brittle, dew-lapped dowagers, most of whom I’d known all my life. Some of them looked inclined to tousle my hair or chuck my chin. At one point I caught Edward’s eye and nodded toward the exit. He took the cue and soon we made our escape, adjourning to a nearby bar to compare notes. (more…)

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January 14, 2008

The Island

Filed under: Short stories,Writing — litlove @ 12:00 pm

From Jeff Bursey’s website

Though most went down with the ship, one man managed to swim through the heavy seas to a small island. It took some time for him to recover and accept a solitary life, to learn which fruits to eat and how to catch small birds and fish. A great deal of energy was spent in building a shelter out of grass and wood, and when this was completed he made himself familiar with the island, disappointed afresh when no signs of civilization could be seen. Initially, learning to survive kept him occupied with practical details, but as panic subsided and his abilities grew he began to dwell on his former life. He set up torches for passing ships or planes to see, signals which were never acknowledged. His anguish ebbed somewhat when he began to explore his new home with greater care and more scrupulous attention to the natural life around him. (more…)

January 1, 2008

Christmas Mourning

Filed under: Short stories,Writing — litlove @ 12:00 pm

From Andy Rants

2,147 sheep had already hopped the fence by the time I finally stopped counting, and I was no closer to sleep than when the first of the woolly mammals had made the leap. At around a thousand or so, I had them jumping backwards, just to relieve the monotony. Some of them started doing little summersaults and assorted feats of ovine acrobatics by 1500, but this proved no more soporific. And then the air filled with terrified bleats at the approach of the dreaded Deathstalker robot, who annihilated the fence with one well placed proton-blast, dispersing the flock and destroying all hope of sleep. (more…)

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