moonlight

Photo courtesy of DB McNicol via Pixabay

The moon is no big deal. It’s just a big rock, my dad used to say. Four and a half billion years old, just sitting there.

Every once and a while a meteorite hits it and grinds up a little dust.

It can look good when it’s big and orange on the horizon but don’t be fooled. It’s just a big rock.

My dad is up there. He made it there ok but couldn’t get back. He spoke to us before he died. He was standing outside his ship up to his ankles in moon dust. He apologized to my mom but she didn’t accept his apology. She scolded him while my sister and I listened.

She’s still mad about it five years later. She remarried . My sister says it was for spite. Getting married again didn’t make her happy. I know that for sure.

So I don’t respect the moon. They say there’s a little ice on it that you could break down for its hydrogen and oxygen but I don’t know the details. Otherwise it’s just used as a garage and gas station on the way to Mars.

Which is why I don’t know why I’ve made up my mind the way I have. I haven’t told anybody, not my buddies, not my sister, not my mom. Now that I’m graduating from high school, it’s going to have to come out. I don’t need my mom’s permission to enlist but she’ll find out when I do. It’ll be in the local news and she’ll know anyway that I haven’t applied for college.

Nobody says it out loud but I know that I’ll be accepted into the program because my dad is still up there. I’ll go up and stand at his grave. I don’t have any plans after that.

for Foto Flash Fiction Challenge and The Twiglets

My Feet

Photo courtesy of DB McNicol via Pixabay

Can you wear Jimmy Choo’s and have healthy feet? Not if you’re me, you can’t. I’ve got a pump bump, damaged ankles, metatarsal problems, and hammer toes. My husband doesn’t want to hear my complaints until I get out of the shoes I’ve been wearing and I don’t blame him.

Parenthetically, he also believes that I pay too much for too frequent haircuts and don’t get paid enough at work. Can’t argue with him there.

Nor about the shoes. I live in Tulsa and I saw the object pictured above as I was getting gas one day with my dogs barking and inspiration struck. Don’t know why. The word “flats,” I guess.

Not just any flats, however. I needed flats with nice rounded toes. My feet spread out after our third child. Pictured below is the shoe style I chose and it has worked very well for me.

for Foto Flash Fiction Challenge

upgrade

I’m proud of my boy.

He may not be proud of me, once he’s old enough to appreciate my predicament, but be that as it may, I am unapologetic.

“How could you?” my spouse says. “I’m away helping my mother for a week and this happens? What were you thinking?”

These kinds of questions are hard to answer.

“Who puts a ’32 Ford L-head V-8 engine in a Kozy Koop?” she says.

I did not correct her, but it was more like putting the Kozy Koop on the engine, not the other way around.

“Who lets a three-year-old drive a 85-horsepower vehicle with a twin-throat carburetor and dual-plane intake manifold?” she says.

I let that pass, assuming it was hypothetical. Or do I mean rhetoretical?

“He’s never even learned to pedal the Koop,” she says.

“I trained him up,” I say.

That got me a stare like a dagger.

“I let him steer the Ranchero, sitting on my lap,” I say. “I put a governor on the Ford engine. It couldn’t do much over fifty.”

“There were twenty other Koops on that football field for the contest.”

“He didn’t hit none of them,” I say. “He went straight through and into the creek before a single one of them made more than ten yards.”

I was the only one who cheered, which I think showed poor sportsmanship on the part of the other parents.

for Friday Foto Flash Fiction Challenge

The Last Time

Photo courtesy of Pixabay

That right there was my last birthday in Otis County. My last birthday held at the Stockyards Bar and Grill. The last time John Jacobs gets to offer me a ride home and then put his married paws on me. He can explain the black eye to his wife best he can.

My feet are killing me but the road’s too hot to take off these shoes.

One mile to the crossroads. John can give my presents to his durned wife. I don’t need them. How’s he going to explain that?

Last time listening to Wanda and Elsie talk about their kids. Nettie bragging about her dispatcher job. In the city I’ll get a job just as good as hers. Better.

Fifty dollars in my bra. Greyhound picks up at the Shell station at three. Keep walking. The big grey dog. Thank God and Greyhound she’s gone.

Aunt Faith has offered me a place enough times. Surprise! Here I am.

Do they allow balloons on the bus? What am I doing with these balloons? Let them go. No, give them to a kid at the Farmer’s Mart by the gas station.

No, just let them go. Look up, somebody. That’s me saying goodbye.

for Foto Flash Fiction

bounty hunter

i’m a bounty hunter. it’s an ugly job. it’s not about the carts. the stores don’t want them back, not the carts i’m after. it’s about the commercial war against the homeless.

Your normal carts gone astray are collected by high-school students making minimum wage or fished out of stream beds by canvasing environmental groups.

My targets are the carts filled with a lifetime of belongings, filled with the residue of hard times, the detritus of civilization’s living detritus. Or so the mercantile class around these parts sees it.

When I head under the elevated interstate interchanges into the dark encampments where hundreds of carts are present along with abandoned furniture and discarded building materials and makeshift cardboard-and-blanket tents, i’m descending into a mental underworld,

i used to repossess automobiles but i’m too old for that now.

my focus this year was mary p., who accumulated a collection of carts, filled them, and hid them around the city. i found them one by one and dumped their contents. word on the street was that her distress increased with each loss. word on the street was that she was teetering on the edge of a serious meltdown.

i didn’t stop. i kept finding and dumping her carts.

you know how they say, take a long walk off a short pier. she took a long walk off a pier with no surface remaining on it. i emptied her final cart into the sea.

photo courtesy of Morguefile
for Friday Foto Flash Fiction Challenge