“Finding Amelia” and “Eye Contact” will appear on the FlashFlood journal blog, at around 01.00 (BST) and 10:00 (BST) respectively on National Flash-Fiction Day – 22nd June 2013.
I was one of the panel members at the Northland Flash Fiction event discussing “Why the short form is so conducive to creativity and experimentation”, held in the May Bain Room, 2nd floor, Whangarei Central Library, on Wednesday June 19th at 5.45-7.00pm.
The winners of the Northland Flash Fiction 2013 competition were announced at this event.
*** On Helen Weaver, Amelia Earhart and the Sibyl of Cumae
I am in ruins.
Oed’ und leer das Meer.
Sometimes we make the most unwise of decisions. Sometimes the most unwise decisions are made for us.
Leaving her enigmatic fiancée, Helen takes flight from Worcester hoping to sail to a different place.
The Sibyl’s wish, as she grasps the black grains of sand with her fists, is for long life. Failing to see the many meanings of her own oracles, she plants her roots into the black soil of the underworld.
Amelia, grand-daughter of Daedalus, searches to be loved by all. It takes two mirrors, two pieces of silvered glass to catch the sun and send a ray of light down the dusty hollows of chill mansions, catching each island mote in the path of fatigued vision.
Helen pursues calm seas and a prosperous voyage over the oceans, carried by gyre and Tasman currents, to the romanza of tympanic engines and violins.
The Sibyl shrinks with old age, held in her ampulla for all to see.
Electra plots her revenge on her mother and stepfather. Fred floats the thin atmosphere, navigates the journey with a sextant, flies north and south. Amelia escapes the winter, forgets the cry of the gulls and, like Enoch, was not.
Trimalchio asks after the Sybil’s desire. The boys tell him she wants to die.
On Taranaki’s glassy black sands, Helen connects nothing with nothing. A damp air brings cold rain from the South.
We all are stranded on some strange shore, trapped in a cage of water or glass or living under the black ash of some fiery mountain.
We are all bit parts, variations on an original theme, fragments have I shored against my ruins.
Sometimes I go south in winter.
It is my decision.
Her eyes widen then narrow suddenly. All trace of redness has gone from her face, and the skin has suddenly tautened. Her cheeks have dropped.
She turns, stands and leaves the table, silently, steadily accelerating away.
He is shaking hands with his companion, but his eyes suddenly shift focus and he begins to gaze off to one side. I look behind me and see a girl flicking her long hair in the air.
She sits in her wheelchair, neck collapsed into the cavity between her collar bone and shoulder blades, cheering madly.