The story of a seed of a story.

Thanks so much to those of you who have read Between shelves [if you haven’t and would like to, you still can].

Below is the unedited seed that grew into this piece of flash, written in the seven minutes between two train stations.

Because sometimes a story comes from a phrase, an idea, an experience, a turn of events. And sometimes it is borne of a fragment shed by an unknown someone that ripens for interpretation at the very moment you cross their path of years, months, or minutes ago.


Leederville to Perth Underground

There is a toenail on the floor. I’m in the train and see a toenail on the floor, under the seat in front of me. It’s not a whole toenail—just a clipping. I wonder what circumstances would lead someone to leave a piece of them behind like that. It’s something I would not dream to do: aside from littering, aside from the hygiene issues, you don’t know who there is to come after you, who will use your DNA—a criminal mastermind, an errant police officer, a witch, perhaps. Maybe your toenail will form part of someone’s voodoo doll and you end up with a twitch in the night, which is actually daytime their time because you are in Perth and they are in Buenos Aires, and the doctor you go to calls it “a mild Tourette’s” but really it’s voodoo magic and neither of you grow aware of this, especially not when your death certificate reads “heart attack” even though the coroner has never seen a heart bleed out from such a diagnosis.

[Feature image by Janko Ferlic from Pexels.]


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