She Said (poem)

She Said...


She said I don't care about most people
         but I like you

she said I want to be with you
         forever

she said I love you


*


she said I don't want to come around 
         anymore

she said I thought I loved you once
         but now I'm not so sure

she said I'm sick of you


and I was pushed under
    the dark waves


Joanne Fisher



This was previously published on my blog in June 2018.

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©️2021 Joanne Fisher

Crossing That Bridge (flash fiction)

Crossing That Bridge

Now it was getting dark, Anastasia could try to cross the bridge. She had remained hidden for most of the day by the riverbank hoping her captors wouldn’t find her. No doubt they had agents nearby searching for her frantically. If she had crossed during daylight, they probably would have seen her and taken her back to that room.

The last few days she had been tied to a chair, but found her captor’s knots weren’t as tight as they should have been. She eventually untied one and slipped through the ropes, then quietly opened a window and quickly limped away. When she got to the river she hid among some bushes.

If she could make it to the other side, there would be a good chance she could escape them. “Well here goes nothing”, she said to herself as she stood up. Then she heard a car behind her…

Joanne Fisher

Word count: 150

This was written with the photo prompt provided by Crimson’s Creative Challenge #116.

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©️2021 Joanne Fisher

At Graeme’s (poem/repost)

At Graeme’s

the sun is here

but the cold wind blows

through the living room

windows

I stare out onto

a landscape

forever falling away

tiers of corrugated rooftops

& granite buildings

to a sawdust harbour

Dunedin sprawls

like a crumpled jersey

looking down or up

there’s always something

to see…

soft jazz on the stereo

& you sit tapping away

on your laptop

about climbing rocks

I am living on muesli bars

& honey nut logs

we are filling our time

with lines on pages

waiting

Joanne Fisher

This poem was originally published in the anthology Climbing the Flame Tree and first appeared on this blog in December 2017.

I bet when I publish this WordPress will condense this poem into one stanza as it is doing with all my poetry posts these days. If it does (and probably will) the second stanza starts at the line “soft jazz on the stereo”.

Dunedin is the second largest city in the South Island (Christchurch being the largest). It’s built on hills and has some of the steepest urban streets in the world. Occasionally I would visit friends there.

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©️2020 Joanne Fisher

Her Place (flash fiction)

Her Place

Gina unlocked the door and walked in to her place. After a lifetime of renting, she never believed she would finally have her own house. Already her furniture was here, along with all her other belongings lying in boxes everywhere.

No longer would she have to worry about landlord’s demands, or being suddenly evicted for accidentally missing rent or some other reason. This was her house. She looked out the window and saw the garden and imagined herself pottering away in it to her heart’s content. She deeply breathed in the air of her home. This would be awesome.

Joanne Fisher

This was written with the prompt of something a character never dreamed would happen provided by the Carrot Ranch December 10 Flash Fiction Challenge.

I’ve never actually owned a house. As someone who has been homeless a few times, this is a dream of mine…

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©️2020 Joanne Fisher

First Letter (poem)

First Letter

It is only now

we have the

Tasman Sea

between us

I can safely say

I love you,

you write saying

you’re making burgers

for redneck hippies

& washing dishes

feeling like Siddhartha

becoming a merchant,

there are compensations –

bats & wallabies, strange

insects, gliding pygmy

possums & two metre

carpet pythons

the ocean is now

a part of your life

like a lover breathing

softly beside you,

here in Christchurch

I don’t hear the sea

boiling in my ears

anymore though

beaches are nearby,

our creativity saves us –

we do what we have to

& not let the bullshit

swallow us whole

I was never sure of

the way I stood on the earth

my shadow spirals

around me

gripping me

at the throat,

you write to say

you don’t love me

in that way

but your incandescence

breaks my darkness

you allow me

to breathe again

& I write you love poems

because you deserve it

Joanne Fisher

This was originally published in the journal JAAM and was first published in this blog in August 2018. It’s gone through a severe edit since then…

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©️2020 Joanne Fisher

Time Out (flash fiction)

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Time Out

Tess sat on the toilet. She usually avoided loud parties, but had been dragged to this one by a close friend. It didn’t take long for her to get overwhelmed by the sheer number of people in the house, and so she ran off to the bathroom where she could be alone. She could leave, but that would involve trying to find her friend again. Tess sat there listening to the music thudding through the walls. All she wanted was to have just a few minutes of peace and quiet to gather her thoughts. Someone knocked on the door.

Joanne Fisher

This is something I’ve done at parties.

This was written with the prompt of story that glorifies a toilet provided by the Carrot Ranch November 19 Flash Fiction Challenge.

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©️2020 Joanne Fisher

The Big Reveal, part two (fiction)

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The Big Reveal

2

The van had stopped moving. Carly and Bob looked at each other with concern. Almost immediately there seemed to be weird sounds coming from above, like drones were flying above the van. Suddenly the doors of the van opened up. In front of both of them hovered a robot. It was circular shaped, about three feet high and five feet wide. The top of it was a dome which seemed to have sensors, while its body was covered in robotic arms that went all the way around it. It looked at them and suddenly it’s dome lit up bright red.

“BIOLOGICALS! WHAT ARE BIOLOGICALS DOING HERE?” the robot screeched. Carly slowly approached it, wondering if she was doing the right thing.

“Hey we accidentally locked ourselves in the van. We tried to get out, but couldn’t.” she explained.

“DOES NOT COMPUTE!” the robot screeched again. “BIOLOGICALS MUST LEAVE BEFORE STERILISATION PROCESS BEGINS!”

“Believe me, we don’t want to hang around for that.” Carly replied.

“So where do we go?” Bob asked.

“BIOLOGICALS MUST REPORT TO ADMINISTRATION! IT IS FORBIDDEN FOR TO BE HERE!” the robot replied.

“Okay, just show us the way and we’ll skedaddle.” Carly said.

“BIOLOGICALS MUST LEAVE VEHICLE AND FOLLOW PATH TO ADMINISTRATION!”

Both Carly and Bob quickly got out of the van. Neither of them particularly wanted to end up going through the “sterilisation process”, whatever that meant. Once they were out they saw they were in a huge factory. Hundreds of robots were flying about overhead. There were also many other conveyor belts each having a van on them also in the process of being cleaned. They found a narrow path and, assuming it was the way to administration, followed it. Eventually they came to some double doors. Since they both felt they had little to lose at this point, they just went on through them without even stopping.

They came into an office. There at a desk was an overweight middle-aged man with a thick mustache seated looking at monitors. When he looked up and saw them, he seemed taken aback.

“What are you two doing here?” he asked. “You’re not meant to be here.”

“Yes we’ve gathered that.” Carly replied.

“We got locked in the back of our van.” Bob informed him. The man laughed.

“Does that happen very often?” Carly asked.

“No. It has happened before, but not for a long time. The Boss isn’t going to like this!” He picked up the phone. “Can I speak to The Boss please? Thanks. Hello Sir. We have two cleaners here… I don’t know… They say they got locked in the back of their van somehow… What shall I do with them?… Okay!” The man looked at them and smiled. “The Boss wants to see you.”

“Really?” Bob asked.

“Yes. Just go into that small lift there.” He pointed to a lift directly on the other side of the office. “It will lead directly to his suite. Oh and take this.” The man handed Carly a disposable coffee cup. “He doesn’t like it when it gets cold.” Carly took the cup with her and followed Bob to the lift. On the side of the cup some handwriting had scrawled “Mr Big”. Carly smiled and showed it to Bob.

“Do you think he’s over-compensating?” she asked. Bob gave a half-smile. The truth was he was too worried and scared to find the humour in anything. They entered the lift and noticed there were no buttons to push. The doors closed and the lift went up for what seemed a long time. Finally the doors opened into a small room. A youngish woman sat at a desk filing her nails. She looked up at them as they walked in.

“We’re here to see The Boss.” Carly informed her.

“Just go on through. You’re expected.” the woman said. As she spoke, a door behind her slid open. Carly and Bob walked through. They were in a large spacious room. There was thick carpets, wood paneling, shelves full of books, and paintings. At the far end was a large oak desk. There sat The Boss smoking a cigar. He was covered in long dark hair.

“Bigfoot?!” Bob blurted out in surprise.

to be continued…

Joanne Fisher

previous episode

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©2020 Joanne Fisher

The Big Reveal, part one (fiction)

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The Big Reveal

1

“He must have exploded!” Carly said wide-eyed in wonder.

“Yeah, we don’t need a mop and bucket so much a spatula.” Bob replied.

“Why build a giant microwave anyway? That’s just asking for trouble.”

“Well it is a popular fast food business. They just make everything beforehand and heat it up in the microwave in large lots when the wave of customers hits.” Bob explained. “Remind me to never eat here again.”

“So this guy must have walked in and then someone else must have closed the door and turned it on. Makes you wonder why.” Carly commented. Bob just shrugged his shoulders.

“It’s not our problem. We’re just here to clean up the body, or what’s left of it.”

“He certainly got into every crevice.” They both looked at each other and sighed.

“Well let’s get to it then!” Bob suggested.

They brought in their mops, buckets, squeegees, spray bottles, and industrial cleaners and then got to work. Within a few hours they had completely removed any trace of the poor unfortunate who had been splattered all over the insides of the giant oven. Before leaving they did a routine check they hadn’t missed anything, and carried out what remains there were in a black plastic bag. They then went down to the car park completely ignored by anyone they saw. Bob liked being a cleaner, since no one really paid much attention to you. You were both visible and invisible at the same time.

They loaded everything into the back of their white van with the words ERAZE printed on the side, removed all their protective equipment, and then drove off. Carly preferred to drive since she was relatively quick, but stealthy at the same time, which was important for people working in a business like theirs, particularly one they would rather not draw attention to. Once on the freeway they both relaxed a bit.

“Any plans after work?” Carly asked.

“No, I was just thinking of heading back to my apartment and collapsing onto my bed. It’s been a tiring day.”

“I know! Three bodies today! Who would have thunk it? People be cray cray at the moment!” Carly agreed. “I need to unwind first. I was thinking of going to the bar and shooting some pool. You’re welcome to come with.”

“You mean tag along and spend what’s left of the night watching you beat everyone? I think I’ll pass.”

“Your loss.” Carly replied shrugging her shoulders.

Carly parked the van in the Warehouse. She opened the back door and went inside to check the body remains had been correctly stored. Bob joined her, closing the door behind him.

“Why did you close the door?” Carly asked.

“Privacy.” Bob replied.

But it’s self-locking.”

“I thought you had the key.”

“No they’re still in the lock. Shit! Now we’re locked in!” Carly informed him.

“Crap!” Bob added. “How do we get out?” Carly squeezed past him and tried opening the doors, but they wouldn’t budge.

“I have no idea!” Carly replied. “What I do know is that once we leave the van, it is taken back to Headquarters and serviced.”

“Headquarters?” Bob gasped in horror and went pale. “We’re not meant to be there.”

“I know!”

“This is really bad isn’t it?’ Bob asked with a rising sense of panic. They both made for the doors and tried to force them open, but to no avail. Then suddenly they both felt they were going downwards, like they were in a lift. This sensation went on for some time. Once it stopped, they then felt the van move slowly forwards, as though they were now on a conveyor belt.

“Well, we’re definitely on the way to Headquarters. Thanks for ruining my evening bitch!” Carly remarked, feeling really pissed with Bob.

“Where abouts is it?” Bob asked.

“No idea. In fact I don’t think anyone knows, apart from the people that run this service obviously.”

“What will they do when they find us here?” Bob asked fearing the worst.

“Don’t know, but considering we work for a business that deals with erasing any evidence of dead bodies I’m not sure we’re going to walk away from this.” Carly replied. She sat down on the floor looking unhappy. “I should have been killing it on the pool table by now.”

“I’m sorry for closing the door on us. I wasn’t thinking.” Bob admitted.

“Damn right you weren’t!” Carly agreed.

All of a sudden the van came to a halt.

to be continued…

Joanne Fisher

This was originally a story I wrote for a competition, but then when I rechecked the rules I found I had got it horribly wrong, so I never submitted it. As it’s over two thousand words I thought I would post it here in three parts.

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©2020 Joanne Fisher

The Baron Returns (flash fiction)

The Baron Returns

This morning Aalen and Ashalla found the streets were packed with people. It seemed as though the entire city’s population had turned out. Soldiers marched towards the Keep.

“What’s happening?” Aalen asked.

“I think the Baron is finally returning.” Ashalla replied trying to see over the crowds.

The crowd cheered as a carriage drawn by six horses passed by. Inside was a man with dark hair and a neatly trimmed beard. He wore a red coat with gold filigree. He ignored the crowds that had come to see him return. Aalen stared at him.

“Perfect!” Aalen said. “Tonight we attack.”

Joanne Fisher

As I’m planning to shortly begin working on doing a short e-book of Aalen’s Saga, I thought would fill a few gaps in the narrative. This piece takes place between A Brief Respite and The Keep.

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©️2020 Joanne Fisher