Welcome to Flash Fiction Friday and the one hundred and sixty-third piece in this series. This week’s is a 160-worder by Kevin DeLuca (which was originally posted on http://flashfictionmagazine.com/blog/2015/04/12/moment and shortlisted for the 2014 Fish Flash Fiction Prize… you’ll see why).
At the break of day, they went forth. The wind yelled in their sails, the gulls flashed them by, the cliffs rose and fell away behind them. Come noontide, they sailed to a cove where the sun lulls the waves and Moment was wont to swim.
The day long they stood, poised with spear and net. Here they glimpsed it lolling amid shoals, or there swimming ’neath flashes of sun.
Yet Moment proved elusive, and the sailors, try as they might, threw their nets to no avail, and to no target hurled their spears – but Moment’s scales always gleamed away, laughing.
Cursing their luck, they raised oars, and turned their prow shoreward. The wind yelled in their sails, the gulls flashed them by, and the cliffs rose and fell away behind them.
But going homeward, they caught Year, for he is clumsy, and huge, and dove headlong into their nets.
I asked Kevin what prompted this piece and he said…
I thought of this story while reading Stevenson’s “The Song of the Morrow.” His strong imagery and flowing prose in the beginning of the story had a profound impact on me. The themes of repetition also greatly impressed me.
Another source of inspiration for this story is the collection of prose poems by Robert W. Chambers, “The Prophet’s Paradise”. These stories also have a strong theme of repetition in them.
And lastly, my inspiration for the story is the following thought that occurred in my head one night: the essence of the moment is more difficult to capture than the essence of the year.
Thank you, Kevin. That was really clever.
Kevin is a writer of weird fiction as well as horror and fantasy. He is an avid reader and his favorite authors include Lord Dunsany, Stephen Crane, Robert Louis Stevenson. He is currently taking classes in technical writing, though his passion is for fiction.
- and guest blogs about short stories on this blog: Alberta Ross, Jane Hertenstein, Helen M Hunt, Morgen Bailey, Sarah Grace Logan, Warren Bull.