Freshly Pressed

The Collection

“…and that’s why I like batman cars.”

Mrs. Wonder smiled politely and started a gentle clap that prompted the rest of her first grade class to follow suit. Show-and-tell Friday’s had become a predictable time of slow talking and a round of letting all the students touch each object. This week’s theme of “What I Collect” had been a small parade of Barbie’s, superhero action figures, and for those who forgot to bring something… shoes.

(more…)

Three Rubber Bands

“The greatest gift you can give the world is not what you say or do, but who you are.”

David’s knee quietly kept pace with the thousand thoughts that raced through his mind as he watched the door. Each breath recharged the nervous energy that filled him and found it’s only outlet in the restless bounce of his right leg. (more…)

Fear Itself

The high-pitched scratch of chalk assaulted DeMarcus’ ears as Mr. Wainright finished writing the quote on the blackboard.

 

“The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself.”

 

DeMarcus was well acquainted with fear. His education on the subject began with the first steps of his life. Though his understanding was shallow in theory, life in the Bronx provided depth in experience. Sleep was elusive without the echo of gunshots off the crowded stacks of high-rises and sirens fading into the night. Silence always struck a much deeper note of fear in the concrete jungle.

(more…)

How To Become An Adult

I lived a mediocre life before I met a cranky old man named Russell. He told me a story that changed everything for me. Then he called me a sissy and told me to go get him some pudding.

The Garden Grove Senior Living Community was a grandparent’s dream. It had a first class staff, pristine landscaping, and a Baskin-Robbins less than a block away. I was afraid it would have an “old people” smell, but as the glass doors slid apart the only smells that greeted me were the fresh flowers throughout the lobby and a faint afterglow of cleaning supplies. (more…)

True Love

My Dearest Love,

The long winter is gone and my heart is slowly returning to life. I am overwhelmed with excitement as our time together draws near. When we are apart, I am only a shell of man. I don’t want you to think that I have chosen you just because no one else would have me. I know what I want and it is you. I just hate that I will never be able to buy you a diamond bigger than the one you already have.

Some people may question our age difference, but their looks will only serve as a reminder that love is blind. I may be quite a bit younger, but I have a wise soul. And my soul could no more pick another than a fish could climb a tree. (more…)

Kryptonite

“I found my kryptonite man.”

Josh looked up to see Adam flop into the chair across the table.

“That would explain a lot. Like why you own tights.”

Adam winced at the well-used jab.

“I told you, those are thermal running pants for the winter!”

The loud response drew a few looks from nearby tables.

“Riiiiiight. Anyway, what is your kryptonite?”

(more…)

The War

Thick clouds stretched from one horizon to the other, filtering the sun’s light of all the cheerful colors and casting a gray pallor over the landscape. Trees, having cast off their wardrobe of leaves, sat lifeless throughout the land like monuments of seasons filled with the laughter of children.

Adam stood motionless as he studied the army that stretched out before him. Their forces had surpassed a million by the way they covered the land like paint over a canvas. His shoulders rose slowly with a deep inhale of the stale morning air. Having reached their apex, they dropped suddenly as a silent sigh passed through his barely parted lips.

(more…)