Posts Tagged ‘Fiction’

Written On The New York City Subway

In Excerpts of Prose, FOR YOUR CONSIDERSTION, poetry, Short Fiction on July 3, 2011 at 12:40 PM

The F Train runs the course of Manhattan into Brooklyn Heights.

Late one evening, on a Wednesday, she steps onto the south bound train to go home. She takes a window seat, alone at the end of the subway car. Biting her lower lip, she opens a book and begins reading. But not for long.

Distracted, she closes it and removes a pen from her purse. Using the beige paper bookmark, she begins to write.

I picked it up long after the train crossed into Brooklyn. It read:

Did you ever consider that maybe what we’ve got isn’t so bad?

Maybe what we have is more than what we’ve had.

And somehow we manage to sleep at night.

(The free flow of thought is like a magnet catching dust. And sense has a lock that’s covered over with a thin layer flaking red rust. My mind is somewhere behind.)

But what I have is so much more than what I have had.

We move,

In and out and up and down, back and forth, underneath some immovable force.

And every once in a while, we pause and stop

Step back

And realize what we’ve got:

A piece of ourselves at peace

I flipped the book mark over and the small, crips letters filled that back as well. I kept reading:

Even though it will never be enough.

Here I am

And holding to who I am

I humbly ask you

Who you are and what made you think

We could take it this far —


Without you I would not be me

Nor you without me, would not be you.

But I humbly ask

IF we have taken this too far

IF in this pause

I must bid you farewell

Remembering this, alone,

Until I am old and undone.

Because what we have is more than what I’ve had

To lose it unexpectedly would be horrorific.

Leave me mad.

The woman on the subway became real.

I did not even know her name.

I paused.

Copyright 2009-2011, by Kimberly Cox, All Rights Reserved

Revision from November 1, 2009

What Happened When Reilly Woke Up

In Excerpts of Prose, WHAT HAPPENED WHEN REILLY WOKE UP on November 1, 2010 at 11:13 AM




No One Was Supposed To Notice

She stood watching. Expression blank. Eyes soft. The wheel of thought behind them, turning. Wisps of blonde hair laughing; showing off for the summer sun, dancing in the afternoon breeze; gentle. They were beautiful, whispering inaudibly, “I have a secret.”

And in this, the eyes held the hidden smile of someone silent and in agreement. (Like the woman in that old oil painting. The one everyone recognizes immediately.)

For a moment, she became distracted by a piece of newspaper blowing past her feet. The front page of The Times, pausing for just an instant, pierced her vision with the fraction of a headline,

“…Hundreds Dead In Afternoon Bombing….”

The paper turned over and continued up 6th Avenue, scratching the sidewalk.

The eyes flashed, hardened and became sharply acute. The blank expression opened to reveal only a disruption. She bit her lower lip and sucked it back in, breathing, arching her neck upwards. A posture wired from ballet and modified over time to initiate a kind of physical alignment. She exhaled slowly. Focus. Then inhaled steadily, silent. Inside, conjuring grace and strength. It would soon emanate from her, almost tangible for those who came in close contact. This had become a shield, a defensive stance before engaging in critical action. She assumed it because she did not know what else to do.

The thoughts had resumed their slow turning, reviewing what had happened. What she had missed. What got her trapped in the first place. Do not go insane.

She had left off with the objective reasons behind the recent disappearance of a close ally. Vanished off the radar, there had been no communication. No response to recent requests for status reports or confirmation. In their language, he had chosen radio silence, done only once before and in a volatile predicament. Something had gone wrong. Something had happened.

Several blocks uptown a van turned into traffic. From the second floor office, a fax machine turned on, his vision was failing, but he could see her.

The woman standing vigilant, taught and tall. Long legs made longer by the narrow high heel of black designer shoes. Perfect legs stretching upwards, forever, meeting a slim A-line skirt several inches above the knee. Teasing but ladylike, they disappeared inside. The rest left to imagination. The body underneath the tailored, sliced grey suit.

If there ever was a time in life to be alive, this was hers. Rising in the ranks of the world, a young woman with a brilliant future, surveying the landscape from a hilltop.

He thought this as he watched her.

The van blared its horn in the midtown traffic. Someone wearing a red hat came out of the subway, blinded for a moment by the sun and the glare off of the avenue.

This is what you see with a lazy glance. Look closer.


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In Excerpts of Prose, HAUNTED, NEW!, Uncategorized on November 24, 2009 at 5:50 AM

Charlie’s face shattered. Arctic wind struck my face, its ice crystals shattering to molecules. I could feel every last one of the crystals, every last one, individual, miraculously different in shape. Sharp little Exacto blades that broke against me and disintegrated across my cheeks, my lips, my open eyes, bringing no pain.

I have never known pain.

I dove, the furnace in my chest pulling me earthward, slave to my will. I dropped, a thousand times faster than gravity’s paltry pull could have begged for.

The clouds parted.  My flight leveled off. A living rocket, I took it all in with the pleasure of a boy at play:

A virgin landscape rolled to meet me, a blur to human eyes, but not to mine. I could see everything, every pellet of snow, every defiant ridge of ice. Nothing could escape my vision. As easily as I could see a frozen mountain loom in my path, I could see through it, I could see eternity.

The snow and ice and stone shattered against my fists. Not wavering in my path, unimpeded, I drilled through the mountain  as effortlessly as  a bullet shot through a wedding cake.

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In Excerpts of Prose, HAUNTED, NEW!, Uncategorized on November 20, 2009 at 4:55 PM

I saw them. Emerging from where the wall meets the ceiling. It was late at night in the hotel room. Was I awake?

Thick, like black oil, their robes spreading as they came outwards and down. As if rising up out of still water. A lake under a moonless sky or the dead calm from a windless night.

I was awake, watching, as this darkness expanded and grew hungrily, moving out and then down towards me. I lay on the bed, conscious that the heaviness had come, the injection of something evil, smothering my breath, my movement, everything. Paralysis. They were moving closer. No scream would be heard.

Even though inside I could feel every instinct curdle in horror, I had no power. I had nothing but my eyes to see them come from the walls. There were four, without faces, in robes and they had come for me.

Part One of Round Robin by GidgetWidget


They moved in complete silence, no sound of footsteps as they approached my unmoving body. Then they leaned towards me and whispered from the darkness, a quiet sound but one that shook me to the very depths of my soul, ”the keys shall remain lost” I could not tell if the words were spoken out loud. Then they embraced me into the darkness.

I died.


I breathed once more.

I opened my eyes as my lungs screamed for air. I felt a sheet,  covering me from head to toe. It reminded me of silk, a face from my past flickered across my memory, I smiled for the briefest of moments. I tried to remove the sheet but as I tried to stretch my arms, I found that I could not. I seemed to be in some kind of box.

My mind struggled to come to terms with what exactly was going on. Thoughts of the dark figures flashed into my head, but I had no time to contemplate about who they could be and what their words meant. Before I could answer those questions, I had to deal with the matter of my own survival. All I needed to know at this moment in time was; I’m in a box and I need to get out.

But that wasn’t all. The box (a coffin?) was being moved.

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PART III: Information Age and Constellations

In Excerpts of Prose, WHAT HAPPENED WHEN REILLY WOKE UP on November 5, 2009 at 11:36 PM

Photo 103








The Sigh of the New Chapter

The time was 6:42 PM, according to the round clock on the wall.

Tick, tick, tick of the third hand.

The woman sat, smoking a cigarette, flicking her heal up and down, stamping in 16 Beat Rhythm. She was about 25 years old but aged 10 more than she should be. Another 5 were added by the glowering scowl, a steel gaze she held across the table. She was thinking.

I’m thinking definitely drugs. Definitely drink. That damn Cheese Steak with extra mayo.

The empty room with the electric lights, shiny clean linoleum floor, metal chairs around a metal table, all in a conversion to welcome the enclosing concrete white walls….

The design sucks the mind into a desperate void. Her eyes see nothing, searched the depths of some unknown inside. Silence as the moment grows fierce. I don’t even have coffee to sip.

The rhythm of agitated tapping stops from her heal. The signal brings it all back with a sudden jolt. Wave of consciousness crashing into sudden twitch. The rapid shudder, clenching teeth. A fire-filled sigh through the nose.

For some dumb reason, I remember that horse snorting through its nostrils as it sidestepped before the start of a dressage routine.

She snaps her head to the side and pulls at her hair. Recomposing herself, sucking the last of that cigarette, I notice a mess on the table. An empty ashtray.

That horse and its giant teeth grinding at the bit. No foam…yet.

She stamps the cigarette out, “Dammit.” This time the fire of air came from her mouth, “Heh.” Her head snaps to the opposite side.

I watch hypnotized, disconnected, bored.

Knowing they cannot see you makes it easy to pretend; play the scientist in a lab experiment with a white coat. Record each observation like a robot, forgetting whatever makes you human. Its just another lab rat in a routine response and procedure.

Time can be like a slap in the face. I have to go in.


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