20190224.jpgCinderella had her glass slippers…

Dorothy, of Oz, had her ruby ones.

Maxwell Smart could call CONTROL with his telephonic-loafers…

Even Forest Gump had his special cross-country sneakers.

And now, I had found my treasure.

I had been window-shopping on the bustling side streets of Delhi for most of the afternoon when I spied them…

… Beautifully crafted white leather pointed-pumps with ivory-hewn buckles.

I could not believe my luck.

As I caressed the elegant lining of the left pump, my finger snagged a rough edging. The irregularity was not in the workmanship. A yellowed paper was wedged beneath the ivory buckle.

Feeling a sudden trepidation, I stepped behind the bustling shopping aisle and carefully unfolded it.

I recognized the lettering … It was written in Sanskrit.

“If only I could read Sanskrit,” I thought.

Instantaneously, the yellowed paper warmed and the lettering suddenly transmuted into English. WARNING: THREE WISHES. Two wishes remain.

I was astounded. One of my wishes I had already wasted.

“I wish I had a quieter place to think.”

Suddenly stone walls surrounded me. A small beam of light shone from a barred window high above.

“STOP THINKING!” I shrieked into the emptiness of the cell.

Written for Sunday Photo Fiction: February, 24, 2019.  



Anurag Bakhshi

The necessary paperwork had cleared with Dynamic Aviators months ago- permission for a sight-seeing fight over my neighborhood.

But the negotiations … ‘neighbor-shopping’ and bartering… to find five houses with residents who would agree to have painted roofs and that lived in adjoining lots… That was painstakingly difficult.

(I agree, my small favor was a bit over the top.)

Then I had to check the weather-fronts for a three day span… and convince my boss (not as nice as my neighbors) for three days off.

Now, I had only convince Margaret (my steady of four years) of for a quickly unscheduled vacation-date day.

And then (of course) to paint the message.


After much small talk and some dipsy-doodling over the memorable sights of our small town, I said, “Margaret we should – just for the heck of it- fly over my neighbor to get a bird’s eye view of the home place. I think it’s your turn with the binoculars. See if you can find my house.”

Quietly, I unbuckled my harness and stooped to a knee.

I heard a small gasp. Her eyes instantly bubbled into tears.

This was going to be a great story to tell our kids.

FYI: If you were not able to catch my Sherlock clues… The roofs of the houses had been painted with this message- MARGARET, WILL YOU MARRY ME?

Written for Sunday Photo Fiction: December 16, 2018. 200 words

Ba-ba-be Is Missing

spf-august-05-2018-james-pyle-1Jane triumphantly paraded around the garden in search of her missing doll. She had just left Ba-ba-be on her own for a few minutes when Mommy had called to come inside to see Grampa.

Ba-ba-be was very willing to watch the flowers and bees by herself, for just a short while, because anytime Grampa visited he always brought a package of Goldfish crackers. Sometimes Gramps even had Tootsie Rolls.

Jane new that they both were Ba-ba-be’s favorites as much as her own.

After circling the rose garden, for the third time, Jane decided that she would need to go quickly inside and see Mamma.

Ba-ba-be often got into trouble because of her questionable behaviors. She was all the time running up to total strangers and sitting on their laps … even though she knew better.

Mamma had cautions she and Ba-ba-be several times about such troublesome behaviors.

Jane carefully unwrapped her Tootsie Roll and placed it in her mouth. “Ba-ba-be was never very careful about things like that when left on her own,” she thought.

Written for Sunday Photo Fiction and The Three Things Challenge, 10 August 2018. 


imported-20170924-056-2His most treasured possession, the jersey from his junior-season The Scholar’s Tournament championships.

He didn’t play in that division his senior year: it was foregone by an early admission into Brighton and Sussex.

The hallway contained all his firsts. The first fish caught … at five.

The morning of his first deliveries on his paper route.

There are many others… I look at each to relive the memory.

A trio of photographs of his tournament victories in the family dart tourneys from Barnoqal’s, the pub down the street. After winning the youth division from 9 years to 12 years, he stopped playing and began playing winter football with a regional league.

But medical school had always been his driving force. The sports were a way to entertain himself.

Soon, his diploma – most probably a copy of it- he’ll keep the original in his office – will be up here as well.

Written for Sunday Flash Fiction – July 15, 2018. Requirements: Create a flash fiction story (under 200 words) using the photo prompt provided.

Ruled a Robbery

Here is this week’s prompt, courtesy of C.E. Ayr

“Yes, Chief… It has been ruled a robbery.”

“A robbery! They took a blasted wrecking-ball to the place.”

“Yes, Sir. That is correct.”

“A wrecking-ball!!!”

“Yes, Sir.”

“Did you see the pictures in the news…? It made CNN! … It made Fox News…. And you are going to tell me our line of inquiry is robbery by wrecking-ball?”

“It’s the third one, Sir.”

“The third one… We have a wrecking-ball serial robber on the loose in our city. Can you explain to me how he is getting away? You do know how large the crane is to wield the wrecking-ball?”

Written for Sunday Photo Fiction, Requirements: Using the photo prompt provided, create a 200 word (or less) flash fiction story.

Written for Be A Writer Now – 2018. I used a twist… OPTIONAL WRITING PROMPT: Write a poem with the title, “What was stolen.”  Or write a story about a character who is robbing a house when s/he makes a surprising discovery.

Man’s Best Friend

Photo credit: Susan Spaulding

Man’s Best Friend

Bentley had been by his side since the accident.

He had been first on the scene.

He had followed the ambulance to the hospital.

He had even found his way through the maddening maze of corridors into Joey’s ICU room.

He’d been found, by the morning nurse, sleeping along Joey’s side the first morning after surgery.

Of course, the nursing staff had him immediately removed.

Obediently, he left.

Every time.

But each morning… somehow… Bentley was in the same room… at dawn… awaiting his master’s awakening.

Joey never did.

Now, each morning…

You can find Bentley alongside Joey’s final rest.

Written for Sunday Photo Fiction: Requirements: Using the photo prompt provided, create an approximately 200 word flash story.

Two for You and One for Me

ayr6 elephants
Photo Prompt: C.E. Ayr

Two for You and One for Me 

“Be still, Barry. If they sense us, they will charge.”

“But Mama, look at the little one. He is so cute.”

“His mama won’t find us so cute if she feels threatened. Now, stay down. Be quiet. And wait.”

“Look Mama,” Barry whispered excitement could hardly be contained. “Another little one.”

“So rare,” was Master Hunter/ Curator Smith’s reply to her twelve-year-old son. “I have heard of three sets of twins recently at Addo Elephant National Park but I have never witnessed twins in the wild.”

“Can we keep him?”

“What!” the master hunter/ curator’s voice went louder than she had hoped. The mother elephant’s huge ears became emboldened.

“Can we keep the other one?” pleaded her son.

“If we can bag’em both… That’s all the museum wanted. Sure you can kept the other.”

With that confirmation, Barry leveled the monstrous beast. The team encircled the two calves.

The job was complete.

Written for Sunday Photo Fiction. Requirements: Using the photo prompt provided, create a flash fiction piece of approximately 200 words.