The Horse’s Head


He was unmoved by the fact, that he had instantly smelled the gun on Frank, who had picked him up to “go, see the man” a few minutes ago. The look in Frank’s eyes, as they casually exchanged pleasantries, screamed murder. Frank had never been much of a poker player, nor would he ever be – the inability to hide emotions would not get Frank far in this business.
It did not matter. For once, they would not be able to use his family as leverage. His wife and children were safely out of the picture, he had seen to that.
As he entered the room, his eyes fell on the polished mahogany desk and those manicured hands, tapping the smooth surface. Pavolini fixed him with his grey, concrete stare.
“Sam. Please, have a seat.”

This time, there would be no mercy.
This time, there would be blood.

(147 words)

Written for VisDare28: Obscured – 150 words or less. Grab a pen and join the fun!
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The Long Hours



She had ribbons in her hair. Purple velvet, nested in a sea of auburn. Small amethyst beads on her neck sparkled softly in the lantern light, complimenting her radiant smile. Her dress billowed and swirled as she danced to the sole violin’s tune, her breathless laughter the sweetest music in his ears. They fell in love beneath the stars; and love, in all its forms, guided them throughout the years, until auburn turned gray, turned white.
When she left, his heart went with her.

On this November day, there is no warmth left in the sun. He gently touches the amethyst necklace, carefully placed on the wooden chair next to his. The tea in his tin cup has long gone cold. Trees shed their leaves in gusts of autumn wind, and his Longing counts the hours, until they meet again.

(140 words)

Written for VisDare26: Engraved – 150 words or less. Grab a pen and join the fun!
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A Thin Line


Mother once told me to be a symphony.

Back then, I did not understand why she deemed those words important, yet the intensity of her green-eyed gaze, as she said them, stayed with me throughout the years.
Since that day, I have made decisions that caused me to stumble; decisions that brought me to the brink of the abyss – daring me to take another step. I have made decisions that elevated me; lifted my true Self higher than I could have ever imagined.
It is a challenge to not get addicted to extremes – they singe your insides with bittersweet intensity, leave you wanting more. It takes courage to not lose oneself in the process of finding purpose.

Today, I walk the thin line between black and white, careful to tread lightly.
Today, I take life’s chords and arrange them to inner harmony.

Today, I am a symphony.

(147 words)

Written for VisDare 25: Precarious – 150 words or less.
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Six Days

On the seventh day, he woke to the sting of tears, panting.

The image of her perfect, pouty lips as she had flung those horrid words at him remained etched in his mind; not even the unexpected, yet dreadful gift of a few hours of sleep could keep his thoughts from going back.

Six days.
It still tore at his guts.

Drenched in sweat, wiping the tears from his cheeks while reminding himself to Be A Man, he looked around the room, bleary-eyed. The pillow to his right was abandoned, the blanket crumpled and on the floor. The girl, last night’s ‘bump & grind accomplice’, seemed to have fled the building, along with his watch and wallet, which he remembered to have put on his nightstand a couple of hours ago.

Shit. Shit. Shit.
What was her name again? Sarah? Sandra? Oh, hell…

With a grunt, he sat up. He could still taste WhatsHerName on his tongue; the faint, yet lingering stench of cigarette smoke and cheap perfume completed the mental image of her – writhing underneath him. Wincing, he pinched the bridge of his nose, hopelessly trying to keep last night’s memories from conquering his mind. The first tendrils of a splitting headache licked at his temples, a perfectly infuriating addition to the already painfully present mix of guilt and shame.

Six days.

Absent-mindedly, he reached for the half-emptied, half-forgotten beer bottle on the floor and took a hearty swig. Stale and disgusting – but it would have to do, until he could get his legs to do his bidding and carry him over to the fridge.

It had been six days since She had left him.
Six days since the words, “I never want to see you again.” had sprung from her lips and driven their dagger-shaped intent into his heart.
Six days since his heart had been cremated.
Six days… since he had buried her remains a little way off the beautiful riverbed of Camlyn’s Creek; the exact spot where they had made love for the first time.

He stared at his trembling fingers, still clutching the beer bottle, and felt his stomach convulse.

Her words would haunt him forever.
She would haunt him forever.
That, he was sure of.

photo credits:

In the Line of Duty

CONTENT WARNING: This piece of writing contains strong language. For mature readers only.

— photo credits:

“There isn’t much left to say between us.

The Keatons, that’s us.
Suburban home, two cars, one mailbox, no children, and one hell of  a mortgage.
My husband mows the lawn on every Saturday.
I tend to the rose bushes.

After being married for nine years, we barely acknowledge each other anymore.
We go through our routines, and hide beneath the perfectly safe shroud of long-term habit.
We function together – but keep apart.

Our weekly exchange of bodily fluids has long since turned methodical; he knows how to push my buttons, and vice versa.
Mediocre, at best.
I come.
He comes.
The ‘Duty-Fuck’… because, hey, we’re supposed to do it, right?

Afterwards, we watch TV.
He snores.
I do, too, sometimes.

There isn’t much left to say between us.

In the mornings, we sip coffee and read the paper. Sports section for him, Home & Culture for me.
In the evenings, we give ourselves over to mind-numbingly stupid TV shows. He hates them as much as I do, but they help to drown out the cacophony.

There isn’t much left to say between us.

I once said, “I do.”
I meant it with all my heart.

My heart must have abandoned me… somewhere, along the way.
Somewhere, between rose bushes and morning coffee.”

Written for Picture it & Write over at ErmiliaBlog. Grab a pen and join the fun!


— By Jeffrey Smith

I am.
I am flesh made stone to stand against your crashing waves.
I am the Guardian – the Last Stand of hope in your world of chaos and destruction.

Years of decay have worn away my sentiment, have hardened my skin, have forced my will to battle among the clouds.
And still, I linger.
Still, I fight.

I am flesh made stone to stand against your crashing waves.

One day, my knees may bend to the force of your wrath and my body may drown in the depths of your cold embrace, but my soul will always be a beacon, shedding light across your stormy sea.

My response to Ermilia’s Picture it & Write Challenge… grab your pen and pay them a visit!