The crab crawls across the beach, sand flicking away from his twisted legs in little furrows. The crab’s eye stalks wave towards the sky, searching for the shadow that brings silent wing-borne death. All that whispers from the air today is wind. Maybe, he thinks, the wind will bring a genie. Wishes will be granted, children will fly, and men will turn invisible. The crab skitters sideways to avoid the remains of a large shell. The crab wishes that his shell was hard as diamonds and that it emitted a seagull thwarting scent. The shell wishes that it still rested under the sea, where the surroundings were cool and no one picked it up and set it to molder on a shelf. What about the genie? Does it get a wish? The genie just wants to dissolve into the wind and float around the world in a vague, disparate, cloud, untroubled by the desires of man or crab or shell.
When the mirror broke, the pieces scattered across the living room floor like lethal confetti. Slivers glittered in the light. Images flickered, disconnected and startling. The frame slumped against the wall, its black wood dull without the distraction of reflection. The paper in its center had a splotch of mold shaped like the face of a bearded man.
The guests stared at the shattered disaster. No one moved to clear it up. The shards taunted them with their knife sharp edges, eyeing soft finger with greedy lips. Come on, they seemed to crow, sweep me up.
I dare you.
When the muses refuse to come out and play, free writes are one strategy to try and trick them into coming back. Sometimes I use prompts, sometimes I just start putting words down on a page. The short pieces posted here are some of my favorites and, yeah, I spent way too much time finding photos to go with them. Shout out to pixabay, openphoto, and stocksnap.io for their huge array of copywrite free images.