Contact the Author: rdlbarton@netscape.net

Contact The Author: rdlbarton@netscape.net

Ron. Lavalette's work has appeared in these fine publications:



Friday, December 28, 2018

A Man Among Ferns

A Story In 100 Words (Online) December 2018

He remembers waking up—ages ago—amid ferns, with neither a plan nor any desire to ever be waking up again at all, least of all amid ferns, which he had considered to be beautiful before he wandered into them and disappeared, hoping to disappear forever.
 
Now, almost a half-century later, he endures his almost unendurable insomnia in the broadest daylight his personal December has to offer. He sits with his journal at his favorite café table by the window, attempting to capture any fragment of last night’s dreams, but is sadly reminded—again—that not all attempts are successful.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Stormfront: Bookstore Café


The Writers’ Cafe Magazine #14 (Online) December 2018


It seems like half the town comes in
for coffee between noon and two,
most of them hooded and mittened
against the cold, some of them
—despite their best efforts—
appear nearly frostbitten, their
movement toward the café tables slow,
their utterances clipped, their eyes
still frozen into a sub-zero squint.


He peers at them intently
from his corner table, observes
them so carefully that, mesmerized,
he almost ceases to exist.


Suddenly, a snow squall breaks out
over by the periodicals. Small drifts
build up around the travel guides,
ice forms on the cookbooks.

Inside Winter


The Writers’ Cafe Magazine #14 (Online) December 2018


The snow is only a paper snow today, only a
story of snow outside the window, and the snowdrifts
I pass in the hallway are only paper snowdrifts.


This morning there’s imaginary sunlight.
I bask in it in bed from nine til noon, a new man
in a new year under the same old imaginary sun.


The sky today is a painted sky
and the imaginary sun is only pinned to it
the way a child pins a paper dragon to a bedroom wall.


Outside, I can see the air in motion. I watch it
through the window, remembering the snow
is only paper, blowing away, forgetting to bite.
 

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Reduction

A Story In 100 Words (Online) December 2018


He sat alone.

He watched her scrape the painted letters from the window; watched FINE ARTS CAFE become FINE ART, then FINE and finally FIN.

She took a break.

He couldn’t bear to watch anymore anyway, imagined PAINTING becoming mere PAINT, then PAIN; LESSONS, LESS.

Having finished his coffee, he talked to the café owner about her plans now that she’d finally served up her last cup.

He mentally counted out the other empty storefronts, some of the buildings invisible from where he sat, their windows staring out at a rapidly fading Main Street.

He knew he’d be gone soon, too.

Thursday, December 06, 2018

Unforgettable

The Drabble (Online) December 2018

When I finally walked away, years ago, I could hear her telling me all about her upcoming descent into hell; how it was all my fault.
 
If I turned my back, she said, I turned my back on any chance we’d ever meet again. But I knew it wasn’t true.
 
Even as I walked away, I could sense her reaching for the pint I know she always carries in her bag.
 
I wake up, years later.
The phone is still buzzing.

Incipient Pariah

50-Word Stories (Online) December 2018

Although he’d never been
officially banned
from any of the many
downtown establishments
he frequented,
he increasingly found himself
isolated
at one end of the bar,
other patrons
choosing to congregate
at the other, even if
half of them had to stand
two-deep,
reaching through the crowd
for their beer.