#flashfictionfriday: I am afraid

“I am afraid,” she spoke the truth back to herself hoping that someone would hear her and tell her it was a lie. But she was alone in the room. Just her and her fears and a glimpse of a fearless self struggling to breathe. The fearless self cowered in the corner waiting to be rescued. A little light blinking where its heart beat. Waiting for her to wake up to that fact that she needed to fight her fears with fearlessness. She couldn’t remember ever being fearless, so she didn’t do anything. She found herself a corner, laid down and waited to be rescued.

It didn’t survive long, her fearless self. It whimpered and faded into the darkness as she closed her eyes and let her fears merge into her. When she opened her eyes, it was dark. She drowned.

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#FlashFictionFriday: The Very Late Ous’ Mapaseka

was too lazy to write something new… found this unfinished story from 2012. unedited (eek!). i’m sharing the first 495 (of 2580) words.

should i finish it, na?

Chop. Chop. Chop. Went the knives on that cold June night. The tongues were sharper than the blades that chopped onions, potatoes, carrots, pumpkins.

It was the night before the burial of Ous’ Mapaseka. It was the night vigil and the neighbourhood women had come to help the family prepare for the burial the next day. They stood around a table heavily laden with all sorts of veggies. A fire was to the side; a trifoot gigantic pot cooked a stew from the freshly slaughtered cow. Another giant pot boiled samp. The women watched over them. The work flowed and the conversation was thrilling.

“I heard it was the three letters,” said one woman, gesturing with her three figures.
“Apparently,” started another.
“Allegedly, tsala,” yet another quipped mischievously.
“I-delivery ifike ngohubby.”

The ohhs, grimaces and winces that followed showed much disapproval. The disgust propelled the hands to chop even faster. One of the women, a cousin of the very late Mapaseka sucked her teeth in disgust. She had hardly spoken since arriving and joining the chopping squad. The neighbourhood women didn’t know her so they paid her no mind. The gossip swirled. The hands chopped faster. There was a momentary silence as each woman wondered what kind of diseases their own husbands possibly delivered to them.

Ous’ Mapaseka’s cousin clucked her tongue and sucked her teeth. Shaking her head, her unuttered disgust seemed to support the neighbourhood women’s disapproval. They hmm’d, hawu’d, rha’d and exclaimed in sisterly unison.

Ous’ Mapaseka’s cousin didn’t say a word. She wasn’t going to. She knew a lot more than what the village grapevine guessed. She wasn’t going to say a word. She shook her head as if to communicate to the other women that they were not going to get a word out of her. But the other women took it to mean that she disapproved of the way that Ous’ Mapaseka’s life had turned out. The chop squad sisterhood was in solidarity with poor Ous’ Mapaseka.

 

Ous’ Mapaseka was a true nineties lady. Born in the eighties and raised the roof in the nineties as she would say. Even in the two thousands she would rock a kangol hat and pepe jeans tightly squeezed with a belt around her tiny waist. She always looked even hipper than the hippest of hip. The daughter of a priest. You know what they say about the children of a priest. Wilder than any child raised by a shebeen queen. But Ous Mapaseka did mend her ways. This is why her death was of such interest to the entire neighbourhood. It fired up the village grapevine. More neighbourhood women had showed up to lend a hand and help the family mourn. Well, they wanted to confirm the various bits and pieces of rumours they had heard in the week since Ous’ Mapaseka’s death. And there were so many contradictory pieces of information about the demise of the very lovely Ous Mapaseka…

#FlashFictionFriday: suddenly beautyful

Suddenly he was beautyful.

She was sure she was still looking at the same fool. The same fool who used to pull her pigtails out when she was eight. The same fool who moments ago pulled her ponytail in jest. Yes, he still thought that was funny. Seemed to enjoy it more when she got annoyed. Always made her end up laughing when he smiled at her as if he hadn’t just annoyed her.

There he was suddenly beautyful. Suddenly making her feel things she had mailed express to guys who didn’t deserve her time. He was always there when the things she sent were returned unopened stamped “return to sender”. He’d brush a runaway tear off her cheek, serve her all the gin she wanted then let het write sad poetry and listen to love songs. He’d leave quietly when she started to howl the songs.

She gazed at him trying to figure out when it was in the last twenty years of friendship that he had become this. Beautyful.

“What?” he smiled.

“You’re beautyful,” she said.

“I know,” he said. He chuckled at her frown. “I’ve always known it from the way you look at me. Even that first day we met when I pulled your pigtails.”

She was stunned as he averted his eyes, doing that funny chuckle he always did when he felt awkward.

“You know I hate it when you pull my hair,” she said. He glanced at her and smiled. A goofy smile she had never seen.

“I pull your hair to find out if you’ll stop looking at me that way,” he gazed at her. Reached over and instead of pulling, brushed a stray hair into place.

And just like that, it was she who suddenly felt beautyful.

#FlashFictionFriday: In the Eye

She should’ve been storming. Exploding, crashing, tearing hair out. Tossing the wig. Screaming. Losing it.

But something had settled. Cut through the chaos. Slipped through the din. Landed in her centre and quietened. She wouldn’t call it peace. Not with all the bedlam. There would be havoc all around. She thought she should be in the maelstrom but realised not this time.

So she simmered. Opened up a door that let zen in. Seemed after months of her looking for zen, zen had come and found her. She wasn’t sure how long this would be but it was right now. There would be no raging on this day.

Just the silence.