Author Archives: Editor

Winning Stories, March Flash Fiction Festival

Congratulations to the winner, Rosaleen Lynch and the runner-up Mandira Pattnaik.Read more about them and judge Susmita Bhattacharya’s comments here

CHAW
by Rosaleen Lynch

Chaw /tʃɔ:/ (verb.) to chew roughly, (noun.) a wad, like chewing tobacco your Da might spit at you when he comes home drunk; (acronym.) e.g. CHAW;

‘C’ for Courage (n.) from the French ‘coeur‘ for heart, the heart to run away or the heart to stay;

‘H’ for Hope (v.) from the Germanic to trust, rely on, have confidence in or Hope (n.) as in ‘we haven’t got a hope’ or ‘hopeless’ (antonym.) or without feathers;

‘A’ for Admiration (n.) from the old French ‘to wonder at the miracle’, the miracle you’ve lived this long, and you truly wonder at the miracle that your Da’s standing after how much he’s had to drink;

‘W’ for Wisdom (n.) insight, making good judgements e.g. whether to remove the remaining chaw and food from your Da’s mouth as he now lies on the kitchen floor, after trying to convince you all, that beans on toast need decorating with edible flowers, like on some TV cooking show, holding irises from next-door, he swears are edible, and to prove it, stuffs one in his mouth with tobacco and chaws, and when he falls, you look for courage to let him be, to see what’s best for family, hope this time he’ll do the right thing, something you could admire, like change or die, but you’re wise enough to realize, he’ll survive, your Da’s toxicity will win against that of the iris;

Iris /ˈʌɪrɪs/ (n.) Greek for eye pigmentation, the same colour as yours, watching him, waiting, ruminating on whether this is the only trait passed on, if the darkness too will be carried by the genes, like clouds carry rain, like Iris, the messenger of the gods, in The Illiad (the legend of the siege of Troy) the Greek goddess of the rainbow, carries truth.

TOP FLYING ADVICE FOR NEW FLIERS

by Mandira Pattnaik

29 March 2017

1. Fly on Nonstop Non-risk Routings
Most accidents occur during takeoff, climb, descent, and landing phases of flight. Like dating, lovemaking, marriage, and cohabitation. Soniya’s admiration for Rajiv stems from his saying yes on the first date. But both must agree to reduce their exposure to these most accident-prone phases of flight.

2. Choose Larger Aircraft
Obviously. Also, in the unlikely event of a serious accident, Rajiv’s larger hands will be more comforting.

3. Pay Attention to the Preflight Briefing
Although the information seems repetitious, the locations of the closest emergency exits may be different depending on the aircraft that you fly on and seat you are in: says Mum and married sisters. They also provide endless hope.

4. Keep Your Seat Belt Fastened While You are Seated
Wisdom demands a firm anchoring if and when the flight hits unexpected turbulence: says Soniya’s friends.

5. Hazardous Material Banned
By the end of the first year, both new fliers know the list of hazardous materials that are not allowed, but common sense should tell them how handy knives, mirrors, glasses and bottles can be while you’re involved in an argument. Particularly if the coupling is already under strain.

6. Drink During Flight — Maintain Responsibility
Atmosphere in an airliner cabin is pressurized and moderation is a good policy at any altitude. Rajiv (or both) often forgets this. Dirt is dug and flung at each other.

7. Keep Your Wits About You
In the rather likely event of a precautionary emergency evacuation, Soniya isn’t alarmed when Rajiv tells her: Go, get lost. She is prepared to land in the worst possible. All flights are essentially leaps of faith.

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