She receives £75 prize money for her piece 'Abuse', and a place in our next poetry/flash fiction anthology. The authors listed below were short-listed in the competition and will receive £5 for their work and a chance to submit work for the anthology. Selected runners up will be offered a temporary membership of the Earlyworks Press Writers' and Reviewers' Club.
Cedric Fox Kirk
The anthology, 'Sky Breakers' is due to be published on 5th November. Details here.
by Anne Lawson
At the end of a gruelling shift, she spotted two familiar little casualties: filthy, battered and with deep scratches exposing raw skin. Not again! How could he treat them like this? Her professional eye assessed the latest assault.
Close to despair, she gently bathed and patted their wounds dry. A generous layer of cream, evenly applied and softly rubbed in, melted away their grazes and soothed her agitation. The healing was miraculous.
But she couldn't agree with her husband, who strongly advocated restorative justice in this particular case; surely their seven-year-old was too young to clean his own shoes?
© Anne Lawson 2010
by Melissa Lawrence
I must have caught the Number 9 bus. I must have walked down Everley Street. I must have brushed against a morning shopper. I must have passed Antonio's and smelt the garlic bread. I must have ignored a beggar sitting outside the bank. I must have stared at shoes in the window of Glamour. I must have tasted the wind on my lips as I stepped out into the road. I must have heard the scream of the saxophone. I must have seen the taxi. I must have realized that nothing is worth dying for, not even death.
© Melissa Lawrence 2010
by Cedric Fox-Kirk
"The sign,. Look for the sign!" an old man with windblown hair broke through the police cordon at the investiture. The Archbishop smiled and raised a hand in blessing; it would not do to appear flustered.
Stewards forced the man to his knees. the cold January afternoon gave his features a bluish tinge as he looked up at the Archbishop. "Your time is up, prelate. The old gods are back!"
Later, walking through the Close, the Prince of the Church glanced at the stars in the southern sky. Glittering brightly, a sword had appeared, hanging from Orion's belt.
© Cedric Fox-Kirk 2010
A Fairytale Ending?
by Tracy Davidson
The big bad wolf gobbled up Red Riding Hood's grandma, put on her nightie and nightcap and waiting for Red Riding Hood to visit. He looked forward to feasting on such young, tender flesh. Especially after stringy old granny. In his eager anticipation he didn't hear Red Riding Hood creeping up to the open window behind him, nor did he notice the barrel of the gun she held in her hands until it was too late.
Bang bang! The wolf was dead.
"Screw you, Grandma," said Red Riding Hood. "This cottage is mine now."
© Tracy Davidson 2010
by Delroy Oberg
At first the police thought it was a hoax call - a small child reporting a dead person at the bottom of the back steps. His father, he said.
They came. It was true.
Little George was remarkably calm. He sat beneath the big picture of his deceased mother, and cuddled his pet cat, Tabitha.
"Daddy's dead, Tabby."
"Now he won't hit me any more."
"Prrp-Prrr." (That's right.)
"He fell down the back stairs."
"Prrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr." (I know.)
"I wonder how it happened."
"Prrrp-purrr. Prrr-Prrr_Prrrr-Prp. Poop!" (Elementary, my dear Georgie. I waited in the dark and tripped the bastard up.)
© Delroy Oberg 2010
by Iqbal Chowdhury
The regularity of the waves smashing against the rocks at the entrance to the cove almost imperceptibly filled the silence, remotely at first, but soon drowning out the song on the radio with its swelling volume. The stars behind him seemed effervescent with rage, just like the water ahead. He took one last look at her lifeless form in the passenger seat. She'd always wanted to leave with her ashes in the sea, but there was no time. He pressed his foot on the accelerator. Then the glimmer of those troubled stars started fading away with ever increasing speed.
© Iqbal Chowdhury 2010
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* If you are one of the shorlisted authors and have opted to take up your free trial membership of the Earlyworks Press Writers' and Reviewers Club, please register on the forum here and then drop me an email to request activation. - Kay G.