Flash fiction – red roses

Red roses. A sign of romantic interest, elegant sensuality, and passionate love.

Yes, I have received red roses, but mine weren’t accompanied by affection, butterflies fluttering around my stomach, or flirtatious kisses and caresses.

Mine came with feminine shame, a statement of sexual entitlement, and a paranoia I just can’t shake. I fear I see him in the cereal aisle while picking out my Cheerios. I peek over my shoulder again and again as I walk the driveway to my mailbox. I wake in the predawn, still riding the waves of a nightmare that bleeds into waking reality.

All because of red roses.

Flash Fiction – A Mother’s love

Alone in her mother’s house, she wandered the silent, lifeless rooms, looking for remnants of something she knew she would never find, as it had never actually existed. Yet, she still searched diligently for some secret token, some magical whisper, some buried acknowledgement that what she had always foolishly longed for and sought out just might have had even the slightest basis in reality. Unsurprisingly, in the end, she left empty-handed one last time.

Flash fiction – Old man

Her old man died. She’d never forget that day. Coming into the house after canning peaches all day in the shed, and finding him laid out on the carpet, a halo of red surrounding his head. She’d known he had guns – had often felt safer and protected knowing they were within reach – but somehow, she had never considered their potential use for self-destruction. Now she wished that firearms had never been created.