flash fiction, flashfiction, microfiction, short story, shortstories, shortstory

‘Toe Of Toe Hall’

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If someone handed you a matchbox with their phalanx bones inside, and referred to it with a shy smile on handing it over as ‘Toe of Toe Hall’, you’d be charmed, wouldn’t you?  You wouldn’t yell out to a cafeteria full of teenagers “He’s giving me his boner!”  You wouldn’t join in the laughter pouring down like pig’s blood.

I had my first body parts removed at the age of six.  Airborne Foot versus Metal Bed Railing.  Several bones in the second toe on my right foot didn’t make it.  The doctor at the hospital took one look and said “amputation”, right in front of me.  I got to take the removed sections home, as a bribe to stop me screaming.

For years, I kept them in an empty matchbox, which I dubbed Toe Hall.  Push open the drawer: Toe of Toe Hall.  My parents laughed at that every time.

And they bought me a new bed.

Sixteen-year-old girls apparently don’t like receiving body parts.  Personally, I thought it a sweet idea, that I was offering something of myself.   I wasn’t good at small talk.

Daphne was in my tutor group.  We were in the same room for roll call every morning, five days a week.  It wasn’t as though I were a total stranger.  It’s not as though I necessarily expected her to display my toe bones against her own skin, in the warm, scented hollow of her suprasternal notch, say.   She could have kept the box on her bedside table.  I didn’t include instructions.

I tossed the box in the trash as I ran out of the building.

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flash fiction, flashfiction, microfiction, short story, Uncategorized

One-Man-Band On The Run

maltings

I’m a oneman band, when the crowds are tough, a oneman marching band.  I’ve had more coins thrown at me by the afternoon cathedral drunks than dropped into my hat.  I’m an unloved oneman band.

The bass-drum’s my Achilles’ heel.  I’m old school, I don’t think it’s right to perform to backing tapes like seems to be the norm nowadays, but can I keep a beat? Can I fiddle!

I practice at home, foot, pedal, foot, pedal, ’til the neighbours bang on the walls.   They’re better percussionists than me, I should rope them into the act.

The precinct on a Saturday, rain curtaining off the eaves. A couple of Community Support officers look over as they pass, but they don’t seem too interested. Them and everyone else.

Can’t wait to go home today, before I mould.  My harmonica suddenly makes the most godawful squawk when I blow.  I blow harder.

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