Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Second Writers' Campaign Challenge: Flash Fiction

Here is my entry for Rachel Harrie's Second Campaign Challenge:

(Prompt 4)

 Nandini’s Treasure

We dig in the trash, the filthy trash, my brother, sister and I. Most days we find ourselves here, scrounging for treasures: scraps of metal, worn tires, anything that may be of value we can sell.
No matter how many treasures we find it will not make Mother better.

On this day I find a surprising treasure. A ring.

Mandeep snatches it from me. “Nandini! We are rich!”

I know I should be happy but all I can think about is our mother lying on her side, a mat of woven grass beneath her. Her lips are cracked, her eyes devoid of awareness. Where has she gone, the woman with the bright eyes who used to fill our home with laughter? She cannot even drink the water we dribble into her mouth. My father pretends as if she is sleeping ... you cannot fool a child who has grown up on the streets of Calcutta.
As my brother turns the ring around in his fingers I realize that Mother deserves more than to die in an inferno of a hut, flies perched on her sweating face.

I snatch back the ring. “It is my burial gift for Mother.”


  1. Wow! This is powerful. Emotions on several levels. I'm in awe.

  2. Oh, so sad. Gripping. (#30)

  3. Holy. Man. This is powerful. It's hard to capture emotion with a word limit. But that didn't stop you. Really great work here. "liked" and a new follower... I'll look forward to your future posts ;)

  4. Congratulations! You have been shortlisted to move onto stage two.

  5. Great story! It's so touching.


  6. Oh, Siobhan. Talk about KA-POW! such incredible imagery and understated emotion. Well done!

  7. So sad. And so selfless of her to want to give it for her mother rather than use it for herself.

  8. Tugged at my heart. Nice entry.
    Melissa Maygrove #14

    (PS - consider turning off your word verification. For instructions, see the latest post on my blog.) ; )

  9. A very powerfully emotional story, well done!

  10. Beautifully written. Very moving, I loved it.

  11. Beautiful and sad that he realizes the end is near no matter what they do. And so sweet that his only thought is to take care of her. I loved that picture.

    Good luck in the contest! Very moving really!

    Take care,
    Jenn (2nd challenge entry #84)