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Indecision November 29, 2015

Posted by wimynspeak in Absurd Shorts, General, Uncategorized.
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A snake with two heads, one on either end of its long, slender body, slithered into the garden and stopped abruptly. “Which way should we go?” each head asked the other.

“Should we curl up under the cabbage over there?” said one.

“Or maybe settle in by the fence over there?” said the other.

Of course they could not agree, and set off in opposite directions, stretching the long, slender body to the point of nearly breaking in two.

“This way!”

“No, this way!”

Each tugged and pulled but neither would budge and so the snake, undecided and stubborn, went no where.

Seeing the dilemma as it unfolded, a sharp-eyed, opportunistic hawk swooped and made a hasty meal of the indecisive two-headed snake. But the snake was so contrary, it gave the hawk indigestion and he decided he preferred quiet, inquisitive mice, removing two-headed snakes from his diet and encouraging all of his closest friends to do the same.

On the Move October 1, 2015

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The tree waited until no one was looking and then he made his move. He wasn’t in a hurry, so the fact that his big move was a matter of measure so small as to be unrecognizable to all but the most scientifically and specially schooled was irrelevant. He knew that humans measured time and distance as if they were fixed and immutable, but the tree had a much different relationship to reality.

And he was ever so patient.

In truth, though, patience was not the real key, although it helped. The real key was trust . . . trusting that even if he, himself, did not achieve the goal in his lifetime, the goal would yet be met by one of his descendants, an off-shoot of himself. In fact, the tree didn’t even know the ultimate goal at all, just knew that his job was to stay centered, grounded, and to trust that there was a bigger picture that would one day be revealed to him . . . or not.

In any case, he continued to take tiny, infinitesimal steps, ever on the move while yet appearing stationery, doing nothing to upset the fragile humans who counted on his stability, his treeness.

Pesky Karma January 15, 2015

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A perky penguin in a purple cloak with patched pockets interrupted the reflective reverie of the fancy fox sitting at the far end of the painted pier. “I just found this,” the perky penguin in the purple cloak with patched pockets said, “over there at the periphery of the pretty pond, where the sand is saturated with the shiniest and most sensational shells to be seen anywhere. I think it’s a fossil.”

The fancy fox opened one elegant expert eye and glanced at the object the perky penguin in the purple cloak with patched pockets held out to him. “It’s a sand dollar,” he said, “not a fossil. Still breathing, in fact. Put it back.”

“It’s living?” said the perky penguin in the purple cloak with patched pockets, surprised and skeptical, believing that the fancy fox was trying to fool him into fallible folly. He was about to drop the sand dollar into the patched pocket of his purple cloak when the thing in his hand squeaked savagely and nearly slid from his greedy grasp.

“Put it back,” the fancy fox said again firmly, rapidly rolling his elegant expert eyes, “or that sorry sand dollar’s demise goes on your karmic record. No small consequence, believe me.”

High Moon Tea July 16, 2014

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The duck waddled in a circle at the edge of the ocean at low tide, mumbling an incantation to the moon, who, for her part, threw down a silver mantle at the duck’s web feet and invited her up for tea. As soon as the duck’s feet touched it, the silvery mantle curled up, swallowed the duck, and disappeared. I watched and hoped this was a magical mechanism for reaching the moon, secretly wishing it had been I who had been invited by the moon for tea.

Wanting to see what the duck had placed in the circle and perhaps glean some of her secret, I crept out of my hiding place in the beach grass. I hurried to the water’s edge, but the tide suddenly turned, wiping out the duck’s circle, and leaving me wet to my knees.

When I stepped backwards out of the water, I found myself standing next to a large ghost crab, who had dug a hole in the sand big enough for both of us. She invited me in for tea. “Well, you’re not the moon,” I said, “but I will come for tea.”

The crab pinched me and said, “Don’t be cheeky or I will un-invite you.”

I apologized and followed the crab into the sand tunnel, surprised at how spacious it was inside. We reached a deep inner room where there was a comfy couch for me to sit on and a small fire where a kettle simmered.

“I only have chamomile tea,” the crab said, “but I do have honey of you’d like.”

I nodded and the crab filled my cup, stirred in the honey, and then urged me to drink up with some speed. She rushed to take the cup as soon as I’d swallowed the last sip and then hurried me back through the tunnel. I found myself back on the beach and saw that the duck had returned, too.

“How was your tea?” I shouted to the duck over the sound of the waves.

“It felt rushed,” said the duck. “I thought the moon would be more gracious, more companionable, but she seemed to be in a hurry and the tea was weak, lukewarm, and unsweetened. I left as soon as I got the chance.”

“How did you do that?” I asked, remembering that the moon was many thousands of miles away and there was no silvery mantle on the waters on which to slide back.

“Oh, it was easy,” said the duck. “I just waited for the moon to slip behind a cloud and then I flew away in the dark. I hid myself behind cloud after cloud as best I could and I arrived back here without incident.” The duck shook her head. “I don’t think she’s even noticed that I’m gone.”

The Chartreuse Bicycle May 31, 2014

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Melvyn slapped on his beret, jumped, as best a zucchini can jump, onto a chartreuse bicycle that Clare had left for him, and made his way to the VA hall where he had been recently hired as a bingo caller. Melvyn was new in town, had barely avoided being shredded into muffins the last place he stayed, and was still a little wary around kitchen utensils and those large round men in tall white hats who always seemed to be wielding sharp instruments.

To discover this little village, hidden in a secret valley beyond the edge of the last mountain range on earth, had felt like a miracle. To be befriended by Clare, a plump pear with fluttery eyelashes and a sweet, flirty lilt in her voice, seemed to be beyond the realm of possibility — miraculous or otherwise.

Yet, here he was. And when he had insisted to Clare that he would not accept charity but would pay his own way in the world, she had smiled and offered him the job at the bingo hall. She told him that their last caller had . . . well . . . um . . . wondered out-of-bounds, so to speak, and came to a bad — though almost certainly delicious — end. The chartreuse bicycle had been his.

Now it was Melvyn’s.

Blue Baboon May 3, 2014

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A blue baboon bartered his breakfast biscuit for a burgundy begonia to give to Beatrice, his beloved. Beatrice was a brown bear, an ordinary brown bear, if you considered only her looks, and many wondered what a bright, blue baboon could possibly see in an ordinary brown bear. The blue baboon, whose name was Bertrand, packed the bartered burgundy begonia into a big black box and set off for Beatrice’s lair, high in the hills above the village.

Beatrice was remote and shy around others, but around Bertrand she became gregarious and light-hearted.  She always accepted the blue baboon’s simple gifts, even when she had no use for them, because she knew his feelings for her and knew him to have a generous heart besides. Having experienced prejudice in her life, being blamed for damage and fears that were not hers to incite, Beatrice was not as confident as Bertrand that the world would accept their unorthodox partnership, but when they were alone together she could almost believe the possibility.

Today, Beatrice had planned to go out into the deep woods alone for a quiet day of meditation, but when she saw Bertrand climbing the steep path toward her lair, carrying a big black box, she changed her plans and put on a pot of water for tea. Perhaps, after tea, they would go to the deep woods to meditate together.

Five Terrible Toads April 2, 2013

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Five terrible toads sat on the boardwalk, each immersed in his own fairy tale.

The first, the smallest, was a tenor who dreamed of writing his own operetta – and starring in it, too, of course.

The second, a little larger, a little greener, dreamed of kissing the princess, should he ever find her.

The third, and largest of the five, was also the most cowardly. He rarely slept because when he did his dreams were nightmares: he was boiled alive; gutted; his legs chopped off, breaded, and fried before his eyes.

The fourth terrible toad fancied himself a therapist, a toadish Freudian type who listened to the dreams of his brothers and tried to help them, giving them advice that they rarely followed. And why should they, really? He was, after all was said and done, merely another terrible toad, just like them.

The last terrible toad, the youngest, had yet to discover his true calling, and was happy to simply sit with his brothers on the boardwalk, croaking.

Angry Sequoias April 2, 2013

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Angry sequoias dropped heavy pine cones onto the rich earth, trying to get the attention of the group passing through the patch of sunlight that was sneaking past their heavy, dense branches.

“They’re not paying any attention,” one of the big giants said.

“They never listen,” said another, disgusted.

“It’s just that they don’t understand tree,” said a third, the one with the biggest heart, the only one who still felt any sort of compassion toward the tiny, pale, two-footed, interlopers.

“You’re too nice,” said the first sequoia, hurling a sticky pine cone at the ground, just missing one of the tourists gazing open-mouthed in his direction.

“I give up,” the old tree said. “Two thousand years of living and it all comes down to this?”

The youngest sequoia, the one with the biggest heart, began to cry. Huge gobs of sap ran down her scrubby bark body.

Not one of the tourists noticed.








Partridge, Medicine, Red, Bistro January 30, 2013

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The sign on the bistro blinked a bright fluorescent red: OPEN . . . OPEN . . . OPEN . . . but passersby didn’t seem to notice. They walked on, heads drawn into coat collars, eyes straight ahead, focused on something out there, in the future. The bistro might as well have been invisible for all anyone paid attention to it.

The owner, a young partridge named Pete, tapped his feet and flapped his wings nervously. The rent was due and the till was empty. If he were a more out-going sort of bird, he might have raised a ruckus to get potential customer’s attention.  But Pete was shy and had little head for business. His parents had warned him, had wanted him to be a doctor, but Pete had other ideas. He wanted to see the world.

“Why do I have wings,” he asked, “if I wasn’t meant to fly?”

His parents had shaken their heads sadly and reminded him of what had happened to great-uncle Perry who had flown . . . straight into a pear tree, from which he had never emerged. That was the last the family had ever seen of him, though they heard rumors occasionally and  thought he might have taken up with a trio of sassy French hens; any information they had on that matter was strictly hearsay and not something they liked to talk about.

Pete was frantic. The bistro was supposed to earn the money he needed to see the world. So far, he had nothing saved and, because he lived in the little alcove behind the kitchen, if the bistro closed, he had no place to live. No place else to go. He certainly couldn’t go back home with his tail feathers between his legs. This was his last chance. His landladies had made that very clear. If he couldn’t pay the rent, the bistro would have to close its doors  . . . today.

They was serious this time, he was certain. A few cheery songs, a couple of free dinners, and one heart-throbbing, wild wing-beating night with both of them (shameful shades of uncle Perry) had bought him an additional month, but that time was up and Pete couldn’t bring himself to lead them on any further. They really were a couple of sweet young turtle-doves, his landladies, and he had allowed himself to be seduced by the desire for success to mislead them.

But no more. It was time to fly. He just had to figure out how . . .

Wise Fox Moon August 27, 2012

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Though the night was warm, Fox pulled her shawl across her thin shoulders. The full moon was rising and the sky still held on to the burnished hues of sunset. In fact, Fox, her shawl, and the vast sky seemed to have been painted with colors from the same palette of the great divine artist and creator.

Fox sighed. She was old, the oldest in her community, in fact. And wise, or so she had been taught: to be old was to be wise. But Fox didn’t feel wise; she was worried, and her concerns chilled her to the bone. She shivered in the warm night air and pulled her shawl tighter about her. Her tired eyes, rimmed with straggly white hairs, gazed into the distance without really seeing; it was her inner eye that she was counting on to provide clear vision.

Times were changing and Fox knew this to be the natural course of things, but the changes she was seeing and the choices being made by those in power did not bode well for her people.

By now, the moon had risen behind Fox and she sat, warmed and still, in the halo of its soft light. How much longer will the moon rise in the night before she grows weary of the antics of the creatures on this planet and decides to hide her face for good? Fox wondered.

She, the wisest of her people, had no answer. Not yet . . .

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