The Better StoryThe Better Story by shadowsmokeandfire
“So, the clergyman went back to Rome and reported to the Pope…”
It was Christmas Eve, 2013, and my grandpa had been regaling my family and I with the Knanaya legend for the past hour. The Knanaya legend is the story of how “my people” migrated from Israel and came to live in southern India, specifically the state of Kerala.
“Don’t roll your eyes,” my mother said, poking me in the side.
“Mom, I’ve heard this story so many times, I can recite it in my sleep. Why can’t Grandpa tell me the real history of the Knanayas?” I queried while yawning. My grandpa continued to talk over us, his movements and voice grand and exaggerated.
“The legend is the real story of the Knanayas,” my dad piped in from my left. “There are some embellishments, of course, but the basic outline is true.”
“So we did migrate from the Middle East to India for the spice trade?” I asked incredulously.
El BosqueEl Bosque by shadowsmokeandfire
Puedo ser en completa obscuridad
Entre tus árboles,
los que parecen como brazos
que existen para consolarme.
Siempre me dices
"Se queda conmigo, mi hija."
Tus palabras me tientan
pero sé que no es posible.
Debo volver al mundo de los humanos
porque no puedo vivir
dentro de las fantasías que creas.
The FacadeThe Facade by shadowsmokeandfire
I sat on my stoop, my cousins splayed out around me. It was a summer day in India, the sort of day that makes moving a Herculean task. One of my older cousins, Joel Chetai, had gone inside the house to grab some water but had yet to return. I wondered what was taking him so long when he appeared above me, dangling my Hello Kitty diary above me.
I sprang up and began I chasing Joel Chetai around the house, attempting to wrangle my sacred book from his claws. He always held it just out of my reach, making me beg for it. After ten minutes, I gave up hope of ever seeing my diary again. I began to walk away when Joel Chetai started reading my latest entry.
“Don’t tell them any of your interesting facts, D.E.L.A. I know you’re not trying to, but it makes you seem like a show-off,” Dad instructed, keeping both hands firmly on the steering wheel in front of him. I had a four-day vacation from the strenuous academics of fourth grade, and my family in Detroit had
The Gifts My Father Gave MeThe Gifts My Father Gave Me by shadowsmokeandfire
I cannot sleep if my room is not in pristine shape. Some may call me anal, some obsessive, but I need my room to be neat and organized, free of clutter and other paraphernalia.
I guess you could say my room represents my philosophy on life- cut out the extraneous. That’s easier said than done though. There are four gifts from my father just sitting in my room, and I cannot get rid of them. It feels wrong to throw them out, as if they were nothing more than old socks or rotten meat. They hold too many memories. It would be too painful to let them go.
My Stuffed Dog
A brown and white creature creatively named Puppy 1, this stuffed dog had been Dad’s present for my third birthday. It was wide-eyed and soft, a child for a child.
My parents were arguing. Again. So far on our three day trip, they had argued at least twice a day. Well, I suppose arguing is not really the right word. It was mostly just Dad yelling at my mom for the most trivial things. Currently, he was bera
A Conundrum of EggsMara sat on the edge of reality, dangling her feet over the border and watching them fade out and return to existence. "Hello, feet," she said as she swung her leg back toward her. She thought for a moment about what grand adventures they may have had without her, but ultimately decided she couldn't have missed out on much if they stayed connected to her knees.
The grassy knoll Mara sat on separated the city of Locana from Fordham Forest. It stood in the shadow of a tall, obelisk structure. Part of the knoll jutted into the woods, forming a little cliff that overlooked a dip. When she first peered over the edge, she saw nothing but a dark abyss. This must be the edge of the world, she thought. Nothing exists beyond this point. It is a blank canvas on which anything can be created.
Mara closed her eyes and listened to the gentle trickling below. The world is rushing out, like a waterfall.
Earlier in the day, Mara came up with the idea of fishing from the void. She s
Pool PartyTom was giddy. Here was his chance to prove himself capable to his friends! As a new homeowner, he had not only a place to host parties, but also an above ground pool and deck. Rather than be late to everything, he could take credit for organizing everything. His best friends, Jack and Stephen, were somewhat skeptical.
"You haven't even unpacked, and already you want to host a party?" Stephen scoffed.
"You've heard of a housewarming party!" Tom insisted.
"Tom," Jack interjected, "you don't throw those for yourself. That's telling people to get you gifts."
"Fine," Tom said. "We'll call it a cookout, backyard barbecue, whatever. Pool party."
"Do you even know how to operate a pool?" quizzed Stephen.
"How hard can it be?" laughed Tom. "Fill it up with water, and all the pool stuff's in the garage."
"Give him a break," Jack told Stephen. "He's got a point. How hard can it be?"
Stephen avoided eye contact but relented.
Saturday, Tom was almost ready. He had ribs to barbecue, napkins, the go
What is Love?The way I see it, love is a fear.
It's mistrust and trust all in one, an escape in which to fling yourself upon the one who was trying to catch you in a daring attempt to be free.
Love is heartfelt devotion, yet a quiet distance. The staring from afar at the one you admire can often be considered love, though the love I see is passionate and wild and contained and meaningful all at once. It's empty and thoughtless, careful and just, and never passes a moment in which it is forgotten.
The love that I wish to feel I have never felt, only in my daydreams. The love that I wish to feel is a love that the written word could never fully describe, one that is so romantic and casual, tamed and adoring, all in a perfect balance that lifts you upward into the sky like a feather where it could otherwise hold you chained to the stone if weighed incorrectly.
The way I see it, love is a fear.
It is a fear of the unknown, of the things that have not yet been experienced, and the thin
Aftermath - Entry One"I'm still lost out here. Lost and alone in the aftermath..."
Jan. 8th 2045
Today was no different to any other. I've still seen no sign of hope in anyone who passed by. That's all they do now; they don't even check the hospitals now. It's all been looted. You can tell by the bodies lining the doorways and broken windows from where they broke in and grabbed what they could to take away the pain, to take away the reality of all this. Needles still stick out of their infested, maggot riddled arms, their veins almost entirely eaten away and their eyeballs plucked out by the crows.
The crows are no different to them, the 'people'. You know what they call a group of crows? A murder. A murder of crows.
That's what they all are; murders. Packs that work their ways through city after city with no aim other than to pillage goods and slaughter the remaining survivors. You'd think we'd be few in numbers, humans, but there'd supposedly been 10 billion before this had happened... It shows