My summaries are quick this night, for midnight beckons - and a rare day off to boot. So much to write, so much to read. Oh get on with it, you rambling haridan..
- Jenny's modern magic, perfect murder immediately throws us through her extraordinary sad doorway where the soul of the house is older than the story itself.
- Mimi takes us into the horrors of war with a satisfactory twist in The Other Option.
- Ellie returned to knock us out with her sci-fi killer Gravity (Pt II). Helward is king.
- Little, little words and tiny verses; Susan's poetry ties up Fox, Middle and Surrender in the tightest Tanka.
- I gave the beautiful fox back her grace against the wicked hunt in Her Grace, then Lure left a lover in a spectral no-man's land.
- Sandra despairs of the norm, transfixed - if momentarily by the sheer beauty of Mr Fox in Traditional for May 1st.
- Nightmares - over and over - with Aidan's Clown Hearse. Intensity and bigotted undercurrent fuel this well-observed piece.
- Rebecca (rightly) exposes the tragic experimentation on one species of a race in Tamability, or: The Wild Dreams of Itself, then Mona Lisa - from the same pen - sucks the soul from this cold fox before she flies away.
- Melenka reveals a cautious yet tender love affair twixt animal and humankind (only just) in Transition. Twist and twist again - Crashing the Party dances out desire, in whatever guise is required.
- Tribal assault overwhelms Ragemore's hero/heroine who shares a unique sense of apartness with wise fox in Cast Out.
- The mythical Atlas is brought down to a salacious earth where he sits, lost, bewildered in Chris Allinotte's One more time, Gentlemen. Then we have the cheeky and acerbic observation of a life baited by technology in the hellish poem Tech Support.
- A rage of emotions, bewildered by fear and toppled by abject horror slips down AJ's foxhole in the intense Sacrifice.
- William Davoll has revenge on his mind, and Darla's out to steal if for him without a care in Darla's Wicked Game.
- Such tragedy of a life self-taken, Antonia's Suicide sees a desperate outlook overwhelmed, cold... sad...gone...
- Asuqi shares death with a harbinger through the birchwood in Winter Hunt followed by a complete contrast - a woman who loves from afar yet give herself without care (or self-respect) in Obtainable.
- Anthony turns our heads with his poetic twists and fleshy colours in the strange and haunting My Wet Infection.
- John tears our souls apart, plunging our sinuous spirits into a well of emotion before splitting them away as disparate twins in Madame Fox.
- Steve's Crossing fights with our childhood dreams; makes us question intent in this dancing prose piece.
I am struck by the reverance everyone has for the beautiful fox. Don't think me pretentious but I can't help the shaman in me - we and fox have always shared an affinity. I'm glad I'm not the only one.
Straight to it. My winner this week is Aidan Fritz with the terrifying Clown Hearse. As if it wasn't even brilliantly written in the first place I urge you to google 'Westboro(ugh) Church' and then decide whether fact is not more horrific than fiction. Brilliant Aidan, congratulations.
My runner-up is Chris Allinotte with his first piece, One More Time Gentlemen because I loved the concept of a mythical hero lost in a world of urban debauchery. Well done Chris.
I must slumber, lest the morning brings light - and only the darkness will do. Sweet dreams - a demain mes amis.