short fiction

BG 141 – The Swing Realm

“Not too high on that swing!” shouted an unfamiliar male voice behind her. But she didn’t care. The construction creaked every now and then, but it was able to support her almost mature body just fine. With her hands tightly wrapped around the rough ropes, sitting on the smooth-worn oak plank, she swung her legs straight forward and hanging in the ropes with the wind through her hair she went higher and higher.

At the highest point she felt for a moment like her intestines made a little jump, then she swung back down again. Past the lowest point she pulled her feet up toward the plank. High up at the back she hang motionless for a split second before whizzing forward again with even more speed and stretched legs, pulling on the ropes.

She went higher and higher. She felt like she was flying, like she was being released from the ground, from this playground, from her old neighborhood, from her narrow minded home.
Woohoo! Higher and higher! Forward – stretch, backward – fold.
Stretch – fold, stretch – fold, stretch – fold.
She could already look over the trees in the distance and see miniature houses and tiny cars and tiny people moving.
A sense of ultimate freedom washed over her.

“Not so high on that swing!” the same male voice called from behind her. Oh no? We’ll see about that! And she went even higher, ever higher.
Maybe, just maybe, she could do a somersault. If only she could speed up enough. Speed up enough to not fall straight down on the swing and break her bones on the wooden construction.
Better yet, she’d jump out. Jump out on the front highest point. She had done that before. Higher, higher, ever higher, and then let go at the halt point and let the swing fall back without her. The speed she was making would make her fly a long way forward. Really fly!

When she was little and swinging barefoot, things had gone wrong once: she had missed an old roll of barbed wire in the tall grass and landed on it with her foot. The little wound had bled, and she’d gone home limping to have it washed out, disinfected with iodine, and put on a band-aid. She had immediately gone back to play outside, but she was never allowed to jump off a swing again.
That was years ago. Now she was old and wise enough to decide for herself.

Occasionally, halfway through the back swing, she would push her feet off the ground to gain even more speed and height. She had to time that right, otherwise she would wobble and lose height.
Swoosh up, and swoosh down again, stomp, quickly raise her legs again and swoosh back up!

She thoroughly enjoyed it. Forward again, sticking her legs out as far as possible. But…, what was that? At the highest point, the toes of her shoes had disappeared for a moment…
Even faster, even higher! And this time she couldn’t see all of her feet anymore!
Woohoo! How was that possible?
Even harder, even further! Now even her ankles were invisible for a short while!
“Hey little lady, not so high!” the man behind her called out now. But he shouldn’t interfere. Sure enough, every time she went a little further forward and up, a larger part of her legs became invisible.
Would the others see that too? To her left a little boy was swinging, but he didn’t go nearly as high as she did.

Would she jump? “Don’t jump off the swing!” a voice from the past echoed in her mind, but here the grass had just been cut and there was no old roll of barbed wire hidden in it. Back and forth a few more times and then, when she really couldn’t go any higher, she would jump.
There she went! Woohoo!

The swing fell back without her and continued to move on its own for a while.
Now it was only an empty wooden plank hanging from two ropes.
Astonished screams sounded. The bystanders had noticed that she no longer sat on the swing. They looked around, trying to find her. Where could she have gone? Before them stretched only a bare lawn, where you could not hide. Where on earth had she gone?
“Hey hellooo?” “Hey, where are you?”

She heard their voices in the distance as she landed softly on lush moss growing in a clearing in a mysterious forest unknown to her. It was beautiful!
For the first time in her life she was free, completely free!

BG 132 – 100 Words Fiction

Damn tree with shit birds

Lying on his back, in the young grass, under the curly hazel.
The branches move gracefully in the wind. The leaves are bright green, the sky above blue, the sheep clouds cute white.
He shuts out the city noises, concentrates on the twittering of the birds.
Magpies, magpie-birds. There are two in the curly hazel every day.
The same every day? He doesn’t know, he can’t tell them apart.
She will not come again. Not today, not tomorrow, not all summer.
She will never see the magpie-birds with him again.
Goddamn, right in his eye!

BG 125 – 100 Words Fiction

New route

This time everything was different. The route, the feeling, the arrival time, the destination. She walked along the deserted track and felt the cold rain, but in the distance there was always the mountaintop, sometimes shrouded in mist or watered by rain, more often silvery gray in the distant sunshine, while she walked in the shadows. Last time, on the previous route, she was he. He walked elsewhere, in another time, towards another fate. Initially, today was more promising, more challenging, but in the end still normal, as always. She walked close to where he used to walk.