Miramichi Flash showcases four smashing flash fictions: “My Fake Brother” by Leonora Desar; “Dad’s Manila Envelope” by Annie Bien; “Stiff As Boards” by S. B. Borgersen and “Sirens” by Fiona Jane MackIntosh; in its July 2021 Issue, today. — Enjoy!
My parents are throwing a party. It’s for my fake brother, Johnny. He’s the son they should have had. You may think I’m exaggerating but no, they say it, we should have had a son. Every year they whip out the good china. They light candles and get the scrapbook and there he is.
My dad lifted himself into the parked wheelchair. “The day I can’t do this anymore you’ll be pushing me out on a gurney straight into the stove.” “Oh come on, Dad, you had a great checkup this year.” “Thank you, Margaret, you look lovely in that saucy sweater. Cashmere?”
The line of wash crackles in the freezing salt wind. “Stiff as boards,” Ma says as she unpins the ice encrusted flannel shirts, letting them fall like cedar planks into the old tin bath she uses as a laundry basket.
In the wet slap of the haar, the lassies slit the herring mouth to tail and pack them into briny barrels. I see her head move among the rest, brown curls escaping from her shawl. She has the juice of silver fishes in her veins – it’s in the raised blue of her wrists, her raw fingers, in the taste of oysters when I lick her down below, her skirt canted up and knees apart.