A short short story. It’s short.

I’m in a fiery mood about the writing thing (you know, THAT THING YOU LOVE BUT THAT THING THAT MAKES YOU FEEL LIKE AN IMPOSTER??), as I just submitted a short short story (700 words) and I’m feeling pumped up. Not because it is so great, but because I submitted a story. To the internet people who are having the contest. Sub-mit-ted it. To strangers.

Grrrrr. I am a bad-ass. Got something to say about it? Didn’t think so.

I’m also writing a book (isn’t everyone? Lord.). I’m writing a book that is taking turns I didn’t see coming, so I think I’m doing something right.

I think I’m doing something right.

I think I’m doing something right.

I think I’m doing something right.

One day I’ll firm up my mantra and say I AM doing something right. But, I think it’s fine for now. I mean, it IS fine for now.

Jeesh.

I’m writing short stories to challenge myself and help get the words from my head to the keyboard. NOT as easy as you think. At night I fall asleep with the most fantastic lines or story ideas or ways to beef up my characters; I dream of an app that would take these thoughts from me so I can continue to drift off without grabbing the notepad by the bed.

Sometimes, like some supernatural event, these whispers endure the night and find their way to the page. Others go where all whispers go: to the wind.

I’m not sure this is entirely true. It’s my version of “…if I should die before I wake…”.

So, here’s a short short story that remained; it survived the night. And yeah, I submitted it.

The contest stated that the story be 700 words or less. It should begin like this:

“I’m going to disappoint you.

But you knew that already.”

Here you go.

He’s Sick

by me

 

I’m going to disappoint you.

But you knew that already. You knew the moment you decided to call me, to arrange this meeting, that it would not give you what you want. Mostly because you have no idea what it is you want, not anymore.  Your world, not mine, became a stranger to you in the instant you heard him say yes. Nothing changed for me, not really; for you, nothing is the same, not at all.

I know exactly what I want, even now, sitting across from you in my living room. I still want this apartment; I want the large artwork on the beige walls, the plush white rug on the floor beneath your sensible walking shoes, the fresh flowers he sends twice a week. I want the view that is behind you that I struggle not to stare at above your closely cropped bright silver hair. I want this tastefully muted setting that defies the passion and color and volume of my stolen hours with your husband.

I still want him. I still want to have him come to me at odd hours, feverish with his sickness. I still want him to come to me as I sit right where you are sitting, maybe naked under that soft throw you are fingering right now, with a laser focus on his need, willing him to turn the lock with his key and slide up next to me. I still want him to come to me, to call for me, to make me wait, to torture me with waiting. I still want him to bring me his sickness.

He’s sick. Did you even know that? Your honorable husband of 18 years, the faithful father to your daughter, the steadfast son to his now-dead mother whom he adored, and you cared for those last brutal years, the perfect professor to his needy nubile students is so, so ill. He is. Did you even know?

I didn’t think so.

I still don’t think so, as you sit across from me now, wanting something. Probably details of our affair, even though you’ve heard (read? Seen in a movie?) that the details would only make it worse, that you wouldn’t be able to get them out of your head, that they might destroy any hope you may have of moving on, rebuilding trust. Yadda, yadda, yadda. Or the other popular notion that reality would be better than your imagination? So you want to see and hear for yourself, do you? Do you?

What do you want?

If it is details of our sex life, I’m going to disappoint you. I’m going to deprive you of the reality and leave you to your imagination. I am his, not yours; he gets the real deal, you get to use your pop-culture-inspired brain to make up whatever you want about us. Sure, you are sitting on the very couch where we first had sex, kissing and sweating and laughing. But I’ll never tell you that. Maybe you can imagine us sitting there where you sit now, holding hands and talking about all the deep things you wish he’d talk to you about in your quaint ranch-style home.

We didn’t talk there, honey. We devoured each other there. We consummated our lust with hot nakedness, right there. We do most of our talking in my bed. Even when all he can do is call me, I talk to him from my bed. He loves knowing that I’m in bed, talking to him. Would you like to look there, too? You can’t see it out of the overworked corners of your eyes. Sorry.

“What do you want?” I finally ask, weary from waiting for you to take the lead. In this, your meeting. The one you arranged, remember?

When you speak, finally, I am the one disappointed. My world spins.

Now I am the one thinking how did I not know this? He should have told me. I thought he told me everything. I feel so betrayed. When? Where? What did he say? What did she do when he asked?

“Adam is sick. He’s dying. He wants to see you. Please, come.”

 

~~~~~ the end~~~~~

Asiatic Lilies: Ok, I’ll bite.

I’ve always seen Asiatic Lilies at the nurseries and big box garden department. To me, they were always the stuff of house-warming gifts or hospital stays. Never thought to put them in my garden.

As I’ve said previously, Husband is a fan of instantly-beautiful garden stuff. No surprise that he brought home nine Asiatic Lilies then, once I mentioned they were used in bulb gardens. He plopped them on my patio table, pleased as Johnny Appleseed. Three each of three colors:

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OK, yes, I admitted to myself they were lovely. The blooms had the necessary KAPOW and I loved their growth pattern—upright—and those pointy leaves. Perfect foil to the bushy Dahlias we had added a few days before.

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Can’t close this post without giving kudos to our cyclamen. Beautiful color all winter, still blooming like crazy in their pots in early April.

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“Oh petals so pure, so purple, so passing

The leaves surpass you, survive you, supplant your fading beauty.”

 

Dahlias to the rescue

I have friends and family who say I am a gardener. The truth is I just like plants and so I figure out how to make them grow.

I (amazingly!) have not ever (until last fall) planted a bulb garden. It has been deeee-lightful.

Here it is in it’s glory a few weeks back:

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Ok, well not it’s full glory here, but I like the hyacinths so very very much.

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This one shows the bulb garden with the IT’S A GIRL sign I stuck in there for my daughter and son-in-law’s visit. She’s pregnant! It’s a girl!

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Love the hyacinth.

So anyway…back to my bulb garden saviors, the lovely deep red Dahlias. Thick and beautiful and bursting with blooms and buds…the dying off of the tulips and hyacinth and daffodils bother me no more.

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I’m quite patient in gardening. I’m quite a patient person overall. My hubby loves instant garden wonderfulness. I think he’s pleased.

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