Wednesday, 14 November 2018

The living ghost

Chomp Chomp Chomp...... the bowl of white radish , cucumbers and carrots generously sprinkled with salt and lemon juice is polished off and only the residue stains sat in the middle of the steel container.

"Ughhh. Were you a goat in your last life ?"

"And you were the King of the Jungle, isn't it?"

"Meat is delicious". Ivanka devours on the piece of chicken.

"Salads keep my bowels clean". Anita rubs her right hand on her well-toned abdomen.

" Girls, place your plates and bowls into the sink", orders the matriarch.

" Ivanka, you picked a fight with that bully Sam?". Anita relishes the cucumber bits still stuck in between her teeth.

" He started it first".  Ivanka rolls her eyes and stresses on the first pronoun of the sentence.

"You could have ended the war of words, Miss LazyBones". Anita piles the dishes in the sink while Ivanka rests her feet on the table.

"I had my fists on him and the red oozed from his nose". A satisfied smiling Ivanka relishes the chicken gravy still on her tongue.

Anita startled , looks up, from scrubbing the kitchen platform.

"Miss Preacher, don't start your lecture on non-violence". I believe : an eye for an eye", Ivanka heaves and  signs off in her usual trademark line.

" Mom , Ivanka is in trouble again". the soft-spoken lass is extending her neck so that her voice can travel to mom's room above.

"She is sleeping. don't disturb her. Papa will be proud of his daughter. ", and Ivanka feels the flush of pride spread on her face. She is the apple of his eye, a soldier's daughter. Anita feels that papa's genes runs in her sister's bloodline. 

"Did your finish your homework, Ivanka?"

A question mark stretched on Ivanka's face and words barely escaped from her mouth. Her legs spring into action faster than her brains and she searches for her books.

"How many times have I asked you to arrange to study table?". A precocious Anita is picking a novel.

"I prefer it my way", scowled Ivanka.

A pair of wrinkled eyes and ears is an invisible  witness to the  drama.  A murmur is whispered , unheard to anyone in the house, " Identical twins with non-identical outlook towards life.  They look alike yet so different". And the grandma vanishes through the roof in resignation.



                                               

Wednesday, 7 November 2018

Festival of Lights.






The bursting crackers outshone the twinkling skies but darkness multiplied in his heart. 

He wished that he could celebrate Diwali as other fortunate kids.

The Sunshine caressed the nondescript facade as his tiny feet made a way out 

with a childless couple. He had a last look at the orphanage and desired each kid, a home.

The lady with wings and wand pronounced Tathaastu.






                                                             

Thread of life

FFfAW Challenge – 190th


               He looked at the box and his eyes turned moist.


The noise of the sewing machine woke him up. He knew his mother was up 

with the Sun.

He was her sole reason to be alive and she felt alive seeing him smile with the 

glistening trophies and certificates. He was the apple of her eyes and a blue-

eyed boy of his teachers and professors.

She would often tell him that clothes do not make a man but manners make a 

man stand out. He was never ashamed of her humble work and took pride of 

her independence.

When people asked him for the secret of his success, he said there was not 

secret. The coloured threads unspooled and unleashed his academic and 

management talents. His mother was a blanket of security for him.



                          

                                (photo Credit :Yarnspinnerr)

                                               Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. 


                                                               

(134 words)

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

thoughts

"And if she doesn't come?"......thought I, as my soles boarded the bleak vehicle. The 

content of the bag was weighing down my shoulders but not my 

conscience. Ughhh!!! does the uniform dress colour have to reflect on the bus's exterior? 

It makes my mind sick. Wish I could dip the brush into the palette of my mind and colours 

of Nature would be splashed on the bus. Now the dull hues of smoke grey and black 

dominate my body and vehicle.


Pushing back the curtain of colours, my mind raced to the 'Little Angel' as she is known to 

everyone save me. 'Green eyed monster' as I have silently baptized her. She would be at 

the school gates with her mom and a smiley pasted on her face.

I have a strong urge to put an end to her but don't know how to.

If she accidentally slips into the pool. No-one will suspect me...oh no!! she is born with 

fins. Plan drowned.

I could mix some poison with her food? I know not where to find that stuff. Idea kneaded 

away to cold storage.

Could I put her into a spaceship and orbit her away to outer-space? There would be aliens 

to praise the  'little Angel' in the unknown territory. Option not a feasible one and 

aborted before take-off.

The school bus came to a screeching halt and so also the train of my thoughts.

"I have brought a chocolate donut for you, Hazel" and my thoughts melt away at her 

sweetness.

There is another chance, I console myself.


                                                         

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

shadow of doubt



"Good-night, little Princess". 

“Don’t leave me alone, Dad. The monster under the bed keeps me awake the 

whole night”. I bend. She is sitting with her arms encircled around her knees, 

her face ashen.

“Dad, don’t believe her”. I go numb.

But when my eyes scan the bed, nothing is there.

Laughter resonates the room.

But when I check under the bed, nothing is there.




                                    



Tuesday, 2 October 2018

unmatched combination


                 YeahWrite’s Weekly Writing Challenge #390



If you wanted to set your life on fire, there wasn’t a better combination.

The warning pronounced was not heard by anyone in the room but resonated in the labyrinthine 

folds of her grey cells and I seemed to absorb every word of it. But I failed to grasp the 

intensity of the prognosis. A silly assumption laced in over-protectiveness , I concluded and 

brushed off. She felt it as intrusion of my basic privacy while my interpretation was his fondness.

He kept tab of every phone calls I made and received. Questions were raised and I stood in the 

defendant's box explaining to him my every move . Sulking became his middle name  and I took 

pride in pacifying him.

The arduous hours behind the counter , the stilettos pinching my independence earned a pretty 

sum. A large chunk of it footed his vices.  

She fought tooth and nail imploring me to set aside a sum for rainy day. I brushed her fears 

under the carpet.

The landscape of my body was contoured with blue and black marks. I subjugated to slavery 

losing my self-respect. I hid every punch under the guise of a branded scarf.

                            She died a thousand times breathing worry and helplessness.

I stood on the threshold of her house nay my home, defeated. My mother's warm embrace 

and acceptance injected a hope in my battered soul.






                                                      



The first prompt : If you wanted to set your life on fire, there wasn’t a better combination.


The second prompt from the narrator's point of view  is: Death.

Thursday, 20 September 2018

Parachute

FFfAW Challenge – 183rd







This week's photo prompt is provided by Michelle DeAngelis. Thank you Michelle!



Her flight took off from Mumbai for an official client meeting.  Her husband 

attended the PTM of their daughter’s school.

A few rows behind, he sat with his eyes closed; ruminating about the mess, he 

has got into. Could he entangle the knots and extricate himself?

From the window seat, the man in dark sunglasses admired the swathe of 

coconut trees and the waves lashing the sands.

Destiny would braid the three tuft to form a plait or twist their lives. Only time 

could tell.


The abandoned ‘Chelsea beach bar’ on the secluded sands in South Goa was a 

perfect rendezvous for the clandestine lovebirds or was it their misconception?

Were they being watched? Nay not a soul on the beach.

A divorce case would be filed in the Bandra Court on the grounds of infidelity.

The man in dark glasses hanging up in the air was doing his duty.



                      Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Thank you Priceless Joy.



(word count : 150)


Wednesday, 19 September 2018

low spirits





                             

                                                       photo credit : Dale Rogerson


She objected to him frequenting ‘Thambi’s Bar’. He loved the ambience, his 

friends and lastly the drinks.

Now he enters and leaves at will, no botheration of knocking on her door 

at night.

One late night, then, everything changed and that was what she always had 

feared.

Now he escorts the sloshed men to the safety of their homes.

He wished he were not very drunk that fateful night so as not to see the 

approaching truck.

He sits in the bar looking at the familiar coloured parasols, each soul of his 

friends hanging down.


         written for  Friday Fictioneers. Thank you Rochelle .


                                                       

word count : 98


Market

     YeahWrite’s Weekly Writing Challenge #388



Lord Surya doesn't smile on a September day on the island city. But today ,

India's financial capital is fortunate to bask in the warmth. Me and he took  

our bags and stepped out. The lanes were generously muddy. I stepped 

gingerly on the stones so as not to allow the luxury of sinking my full weight on 

the wet path. The path ended sooner than I expected. It was because of the 

good weather, he reasoned.


I stepped on the paved area of the market and my eyes feasted on the array of 

colourful veggies spread on polythene sheets on the ground and another sheet 

kept in abeyance least Ma Varsha plays spoilsport.


Each seller was drawing attention to every buyer to hawk her/his wares. The 

buyers took their own time to see, assess and decide to buy from the umpteen 

sellers. It was clearly a free market , the forces of demand and supply 

interacting. I imagined how the same forces would behave on the global arena. 


The ridge gourds , bitter-gourds, French beans, Cluster beans happily co-

existed side-by-side each waiting for its turn to end up in a house-wife's 

kitchen. The ripe tomatoes lay asking me for the warmth of my shopping bag. 

The lemons reminded me of the lack of Vitamin C in my body. The bunch of Dill 

leaves spread a smile on my face and I smiled back at its tenderness. The 

farmer's wife sensing my affinity for greens pulled out the most tender bunch , 

teasing and cajoling me shop and fill her coffers. The Spinach bunch too 

beckoned me to bring my old recipe of Paneer(cottage cheese)  Palak (spinach) 

from oblivion . My taste buds already on an overdrive. Both the bunches landed 

in my kitty. The Colocasia leaves were wrapped and tucked into the bag. 

Moringa's leaves(drumstick leaves) reposed in the corner and my 

mind in ' should I or shouldn't I buy' dilemma, voted on buying the next time. 

My heart was relieved. The Madras aubergines were already in the 

picture of my mind , being chopped and shallow  fried in the wok eagerly 

waiting to the coated with Indian spices. Junior would be happy eating his 

favorite dish. The cucumbers and carrots were weighed and deposited in my 

bag. My family's quota of roughage was taken care off for a week. Many more 

veggies were tempting to buy but my bag was already bursting  at its seams 

and screaming not to burden it further. I asked the farmer's wife to settle the 

bill. She verbally spelt out the prices of each variety of vegetable and asked me 

to add it up. I questioned her inability  to deal with Math. She shied behind her 

handkerchief. I teased her if I  cheated and paid her less. This time she lowered 

the piece of cloth from her face and accompanied with peals of giggles said that 

her tryst with numbers was bad but she was good at distinguishing people. She 

further reiterated  her faith in good Karma. The veggies at the Farmer's Market 

were tender, organic and chemical free and so was her heart. 

             I was touched by her simplicity in this masked world.



                                                  

cell prisoner

          YeahWrite’s Weekly Writing Challenge #388





Jealousy is your middle name,
Excuses are just so very lame.

You caress me lovingly all day,
Poor me!!! Do I have any say?

You sleep with me the whole night,
allow me to be out of your sight.
                               
Your fingerprints on my body,
caged in a plastic cover, gaudy.

You poke me with your nails, painted,
I shed tears, many, unseen, pained.

You swipe on my body swiftly
I scream out but silently.

I am your faithful genie,
trapped in Aladdin’s lamp, by destiny.

In Gucci or Louis Vuitton I repose,
or stuffed in Wrangler , I doze.

I connect to your loved ones in a jiffy,
My speed and precision, no iffy.

I am your personal assistant,
Files, drafts,lists stored in an instant.

A silo of information,
Google and a see every nation.

Yet I am branded a villain,
A threat to relationships, billion.

You are a prisoner of your 'cell' phone,
O Human ! for some time, leave me alone.

O Man ! Allow me to 'live' in peace,
don't breathe down my neck, please.

Image result for cell phone in prison





                                 








    

(courtesy Google Image)


Monday, 17 September 2018

holiday

                               Sunday Photo Fiction – Sept 16 2018





DSCF1134 (2)

                                  Thanks for the Photo Prompt : Susan Spaulding


The Sun had already begun its work of burnishing his body with its heat. He 

would flaunt his body to his colleagues after their holiday. She smeared 

generously the suntan lotion on his back. He woke up from his reverie.

The azure waters gently kissed his toes and a smile spread on his face. He tore 

open the Chips packet to munch its salty and spicy contents. After relishing, 

he was about to litter it in the sea when she grimaced and a volley of 

reprimands followed,” keep the water bodies free of plastic”

“Where do I throw this?” he meekly asked.

“Shove it in the duffel bag”, she commanded him.

The teacher in her would not relax even on a holiday, he sighed.


                                              


                                         written for : Sunday Photo Fiction.

word count : 124

Thursday, 13 September 2018

books

Twittering Tales #101 – 11 




              


"why are you hiding behind the books?"

"I have no face , no identity."

"Why?"

" I dive into the pages, swim with the words and get into the skin of the characters. I lose myself"

"But you have to surface to reality."

"That's the toughest part. I loathe it."


                                                           Twittering Tales # 101


1510584710974-1


(252 characters)











Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Uncertain



                                     

                                             Thanks for the prompt J Hardy Carroll


The ornate teak wood piece fascinatingly intrigued me. I matched the position 

of the needles to my digital wristwatch. The matching was precise. How would I 

lug this piece home? Better, contact Christie’s or Sotheby’s. I could pay all my 

mortgage bills and have enough for the rainy day. The possibilities were 

innumerable.The legacy left behind by a dead relative weighed down on my 

shoulders. Were the small windows concealing a clue or a nudge to find my 

roots hitherto unknown to me?  Or am I sucked into the epicenter of danger? 

Only time will tell….


                                            




                                Friday Fictioneers. Thanks Rochelle Wisoff.

Word Count : 97

Click HERE to read all the FF stories. 

Saturday, 8 September 2018

The Fog

                      Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers



                                



                       This week's photo prompt is provided by Jodi McKinney. Thank you Jodi!




The fog drifted across the fence revealing foliage and facades of structures in 

the distant. Aurelia squinted her eyes and adjusted her glasses to see the 

silhouette of a grey suit with a slight limp aided by a walking stick.

He flashes his Identity Card to introduce himself.

“What brings you here Mr. Detective? You cannot smell a crime around miles in 

the salubrious surroundings.”

His eyes roamed the length and breadth of the ranch. A pair of wheel-tracks 

showed on the moist earth as Aurelia negotiated her ‘dependency chair’ as she 

called it, wheeling herself towards the ranch house.

“Locals complained of a ghost with a penchant for men”.

“I haven’t heard, Detective. You may go”.

“I will come back".

“You need not “as the words resonated close to his ear-drum. He winced as he 

felt the warmth of the fluid trickle down his back. The light in his eyes fades 

away.

She pushes the wheelchair away, “Bother, I have to clean this mess. Another 

number added to the statistics of missing person”.


          written for : Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Thank you, Priceless Joy.

                                                             


175 words

Friday, 7 September 2018

Hostage







                                                 Thanks for the prompt Gah Learner.


The sheer curtain fluttered with the slight draught. The streetlights were lit. Her 

labored breathing and a constant eye outside the window narrowed the bushy eyebrows 

of the masked character with suspicion.

She pressed the teddy closer to her body. It sent warm shivers down her each pore as 

the cold metal pressed against the temples.

“Sit upright”, barked the intruder as her frame started to slip down.

“Wait till the moon-rise”, she consoled herself. It did rise. Energy burst from its fur. The 

hunter became the hunted. “Well done Teddy”, as she dials the Police over his limp body.




                                                     



                         Written for : Friday Fictioneers. Thanks Rochelle-Wisoff.

Word count : 100

Tuesday, 4 September 2018

Bare


       Sunday Photo Fiction



                      SPF 09-02-18 Joy Pixley 1

                                              Thanks Joy Pixley for the photo prompt


“Isn’t this landscape so mesmerizing?” sounded more of a statement than a question.

I was jolted out of my trance as my head involuntary turned in the direction of the voice.

A twenty something had donned a faded tee teamed with tattered denim emphasizing the adherence to fashion fad.The bareness of the canvas failed to see any beauty but it aptly reflected the state of my mind.

The clairvoyant young mind pronounced, “Can spring be far behind? The cycle of life has to continue”. The words of wisdom sprouted hope in my infertile heart. My legs carried me to the next frame. A verdant landscape seemed to beckon me to shed my self-piety like autumn leaves.

My facial contours softened, my drooped shoulders straightened and my lips spread a smile.My eyes searched for the tree of enlightenment.


The tattered denim was out of sight.

                                                             Sunday Photo Fiction


                                                                

 Word count : 146