the witch of the aegean sea

I want to tell you a story about a short stout woman who lived on the island of Lemnos in the Aegean Sea. She fished barefoot next to her shadow just before the sun found her copper face and presented her to the world. By the culture’s warped standards, she was not pretty. But she was a clever moonlight witch with a cauldron for each day of the week, including a special Sunday cauldron meant specifically to raise something dead. She knew that at the rate the world was going, she’d spend many Sundays searching for the left tooth of a hippopotamus and the right hind leg of a field mouse, the primary ingredients needed to raise the dead. Then there was the distilled water that could not be purchased in plastic gallon bottles from a supermarket shelf. Those were tainted. They’d been sitting too long and around far too many fearful souls who believed in too many gods. The energy was all wrong; so she, Alda, had to distill the water herself, a process that took several days and a large beacon handblown by a sad naked virgin with butterfly tattoos covering most of her body. Alda had watched the process many times before and sometimes joined the virgin, her clothes tossed over chairs and tables in solidarity.

(to be continued)

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it’s an imitation

Writing Prompt: Flangiprop!

Invent a definition for the word “flangiprop,” then use the word in a post.

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Some things were too insane to be real, thought the bride. When a woman plans to get married, she doesn’t have time to think about anything but the wedding and the many details that could unravel if she isn’t careful. So when her groom walked in and said he finally picked up the rings, the last thing she expected to see were two flangiprops in front of her that she paid over $10,000 for.

“What is this?” she asked her husband to be.

“The diamond rings,” he answered matter of factly.

“Are you blind? Can’t you see they’ve slipped us a Mickey?”

“A what?”

“Oh good grief! These are flangiprops fool! Why am I marrying you again?”

“Are you serious? I didn’t notice!”

“Obviously, or you wouldn’t have brought them home to me as though nothing was wrong.”

The bride grabbed her coat, car keys and flew out the door before her husband had a chance to take his coat off the hanger.

“If they think they are going to get away with this, they’ve got another thing coming. Imagine, they are trying to switch out these flangiprops for our real rings. Not gonna happen. Not on my watch,” she said as she sped down the road toward the jewelry store.

Flangiprop (noun): Fake ring; this could include fake diamond, gold, silver or platinum.

forgetting you

I wrote this micro fiction piece today. Decided to play with an idea.

∞ ∞ ∞ ∞

i twist.

i forgot about you last night. left you standing on the roadside while i drove around looking for weed and pink satin heels. you told me you walked to the bus stop, barefoot. you left your sandals in the back seat when we stopped at the gas station to get Twinkies and Mountain Dew.

my phone rang. it was Samuel. said he had some good weed and he’d meet me down the road by the swings. i saw you walking around, looking for the Twinkies, checking the price on the peanuts and swinging a six pack of Mountain Dew. i saw you put everything on the counter and mouth something to the clerk, who pointed to the back of the store. he gave you a giant wooden rectangle with small silver key dangling from the end. you walked to the back. you opened the door with a little black silhouette of a woman in a skirt. the door swung close and then you were gone.

you were gone too long. i needed my weed. so I left.

i turn.

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when you found me, hours later, you told me i shouldn’t have left you, at the gas station store, barefoot, in a dirty public bathroom that smelled like a well-used outhouse. you said the walk to the bus stop was long and you stepped on rocks that you couldn’t see. your feet hurt. the sun went away, you said. and I left you there, with no sandals.

i fidget

i forgot about you, i said. i found Samuel on a swing with his friends. he gave me weed, so i got high on the swings. then i forgot about you, just like that. like you never existed. i saw pink satin high heels flying through the air. pretty pink heels that fit me perfectly. they floated off into the starry night sky. i reached for them. but all i caught were sandals. your sandals. then i remembered that i left you. but it was too late. there was no turning back. so i pushed off and let the swing take me higher. i was high.

i leaned back.

© zaji, 2016

the history of colors

I grew black wings today. I spread them wide and flew beyond Mars. I pushed my wings to flap through thick dark space around Jupiter and beyond. I then stopped to dance on the rings of Saturn. Before I knew it, Pluto became a tiny dot behind me, disappearing as I flew toward a cluster of lights. Up ahead was another galaxy filled with colors that did not exist on Earth, colors that did not need light to be seen, colors without names. The colors were filled with grandeur and life; I knew instinctively that naming them would doom them to my limited idea of them, it would take them far from their meaning and mutability. So I let them exist, nameless and free, allowed to be whatever they wanted to be. The many colors grew their own wings and could fly.

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As I flew away from the colors, I could sense them communicating with me. They told me telepathically that colors were sentient, could feel and reproduce–yes, they gave birth to new colors. They said there were several planets where colors lived and breathed and had infant colors born black; they ran around spreading joy to everyone and everything. The infant colors grew into colors with their own unique DNA, variations of the colors on Earth, along with colors never experienced on Earth. Every once in a while, a group of adolescent colors explored other worlds to give species the experience of them. Some species could see them, others could not. Their ability to see colors depended on the bodies they incarnated in and whether the body was equipped to see the colors, and/or the spiritual level attained by the species. The colors, regardless, spoke of their experiences in different realms and what their presence did for each species. They gave themselves to others through love and a desire to explore the essence of other beings. These beings in turn, without knowing, gave something to the colors. What the colors received, they used to create new colors.

I listened and allowed them to share their history with me. I’d never heard anything like it and never imagined there could be planets where colors, as sentient beings, existed. But there I was, leaving their world and receiving the gift of their words as I flew away, far off into their galaxy and into new unimaginable adventures.

© zaji, 2016

screen deferred

Writing Prompt: Screen

Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

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Television screens rarely find themselves on trash heaps. A book will be burned before a TV is put to the fire. Any television found out in landfills will be aged and gray, fat and wrinkled at the seams, abandoned for slimmer, sexier models, unlike their owners, that will live in living rooms, bedrooms and kitchens, sometimes bathrooms, for decades before their owners turn them in for something sweeter and high class. The landfill waits long for televisions. But little black dolls will lay spread eagle and unkempt atop old newspapers, plastic bottles and colorful packages emptied of gently processed foods that are unkind to the heart. A half eaten Twinkie, still yellow and fluffed with cream falls beside the little black doll. Her plastic face melts, her pink dress is eaten away by rarely seen moths. She will be gone before the Twinkie.

A lonely television screen, scared and longing for an owner sits black and unwatched, found near broken on the heap by the measure of time. It searches for other screens. But it is alone, on miles of trash surrounded by unwanted things, wanting to be wanted again, like all other televisions, warm and at home, feeding their owners false images of humanity. Feeding their owners the dreams they’ve forgotten how to live for themselves. The screen longs again to be seen and to hypnotize.

© zaji, 2016

the highway

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The dusty black tar receding behind Panga ran into the forlorn past. Far from the groping and needy future, the road ahead beckoned her to follow.  She was worn from the sleepless drive. Morning became her night and the sun her night light. But a place to bed was more of a challenge than she’d expected. She wanted nothing more than to sleep until death claimed her. Death instead claimed her two year old daughter, husband of five years and her mother who suckled her into womanhood through breast and bravery. Panga knew that if she traveled the roads at night she would see them in the mint green car, driving back to meet her. They would rewind time, return from the great beyond and find Panga roaming the highways; no hopes necessary, only life wrapped in second chances, straightened metal, unbroken glass and bodies laughing in the noonday sun.

© zaji, 2016

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