After walking dejected across town on such a damp, chilly night, longing for some small pleasure, a smoke seemed in order. As luck would have it, the recessed door beside a darkened storefront appeared just up the street. Ducking into the entryway, Charlie Buc leaned against the door, out of the drizzling rain, to light up.
The door immediately swung open revealing only shadows at first, and then as Charlie’s vision adjusted, a woman of large but attractive proportion emerged from the gloom. She approached him, smiling, and as she drew close he noticed her gown was of alligator hide, tanned to a visible softness, and she wore a feathered headdress. Instead of lighting the J, Charlie dropped it into his shirt pocket. “Good evening, Ma’m. I didn’t mean to….”
“You’re late,” she murmured, and took his hand, leading him inside. He followed like wavelets following a swan, without volition. The sound of a sitar wafted softly around them. She led him through a hallway so smoky he had to catch his breath, and then through a curtained doorway and up a narrow flight of stairs. At the top of the stairway she paused and made a motion with her hands, as though to gather the smoke-filled air around Charlie, and then opened a door to an alleyway, outside.
Without understanding why, Charlie bade her good evening and stepped out smiling, one story higher.
by Thomas Hubbard
Because long ago she helped to show him a way out of Midwest factories and into his own life as a teller of stories, Thomas Hubbard began work on a book entitled "Twenty Years With Proud Mary." The work is still in progress, but the current working title is "Fifty two years with Proud Mary." Meanwhile he has gone ahead writing, telling and living his stories.
Thomas Hubbard's website
Poetry (any form or style) and Micro or Flash Fictions wanted for an anthology on SMOKE. Not just the black clouds rising from the five-alarm fire next door, or the billowing plumes of smoke warning us of a forest fire, or the emissions from factory smoke stacks, apartment house incinerators, and crematoriums, smoke rings rise from cigarettes, smoke pours out of headshops, pipe shops & cigar stores--see that purple haze rising over the fields of poppies and marijuana we just planted--we've used it to communicate via smoke signals and skywriting, to cover our tracks and disappear with and without mirrors, combat the enemy on and off the battlefield, kill bugs, flavor food, cure illness, declare peace treaties, and fragrance our homes. Got the idea? Release it onto the page.
Guidelines: Submit up to three poems/micro fictions or two flash fictions at a time with a fascinating bio of 35 words or less, not just limited to publication credits, copy/pasted in the body of an e-mail (no attachments, please) to roxy533 at yahoo dot com & violetwrites at nyc dot rr dot com. We will also entertain up to six one-liners or 2 short stand up routines at time. Previously published work is OK as long as authors have retained the copyright, which will be returned to them after publication. Simultaneous submissions are encouraged. If your work is accepted elsewhere, and you still have obtained rights to republish, just let us know where and we'll be happy to acknowledge the other publication.
If you do not receive a response from us within a month of your submission considered it rejected and feel free to submit again. Due to the volume of submissions we cannot respond to each and every individual submission. Selection for the on-line edition are made on a ongoing basis as we receive your submissions. However, final selections for the print edition will made after the October 31st deadline. (In otherwords not everything that made the cut for the online edition will appear in print.) Please do not query. When in doubt, send the submission to roxy533 at yahoo dot com & violetwrites at nyc dot rr dot com.