I’ve been writing a short short story a day for eleven weeks, I am doing this as a participant in a Round Robin at The Writer’s Salon in San Francisco. I now have 77 stories. they are piling up so I have decided to share some here. Each day there is a prompt which starts me off. From there, anything goes. Rule is: one can only write for 12 minutes and can edit afterwards.
Two TREES on the edge of a cliff
~I’m tired of being here
~What do you mean you’re tired of being here? You can’t be tired of being here. You are a tree. We are trees. We’ve been here a long time.
~Right, & we’re supposed to be here for a long time to come, but I’m tired of it. Sorry, but I am even tired of you. You and I, all the time, here on the edge.
~It’s better than being on the edge alone, you know that.
~Right well, you got me there. UHG..this time of year…I hate the gray skin. I hate the nakedness of it all. Truth be told, I’m tired of the whole winter, spring, summer, fall thing. It’s same old same old all the time. So predictable. Nothing happens.
~Yeah, but you gotta admit in the winter we have a lot of fun and in the fall our leaves are the brightest, orange yellow-ish color anywhere on the planet other than some sunsets which never last very long.
~It’s true I like the splat contest. I like that we’re not on a farm and that the people who live near us hardly ever come at the right time to get our persimmons. I like how we play the game who can get the most splats in the day.
~True that’s a fun game but we always know at the beginning of the day how it’s gonna end. Always depending on WonderWind and what mood she’s in that day and the way she cares to gust, blows the surprise out of who wins on any given day she’s around.
~Yeah, But it’s super fun and she’s not always around being the deciding factor.
~True, but I’m tired of being taken for granted. We are saving these humans lives, and they are so busy they can’t even see or appreciate us.
~Remember that time when people used to hug us?
~Yes, that was nice. I think the worst time was when that idiot Shel Silverstein wrote that book “The Giving Tree”. I mean what the fuck bullshit message was that? What was he doing? Trying to teach people how to have a dysfunctional relationship?
~Yeah, I don’t think people read that to their kids as much as they used to.
~I hope not. If that guy walked under my tree, I would make for sure to have a big branch fall on his head giving him a headache for a couple decades. Better yet I’d have one of my roots trip him, so he’d fall off the edge a little bit, not so much as to kill him, but just enough to injure his right hand.
~Hey, wait a minute! hold on there! Why would you ever want to injure anyone? Those human beings are in such a mess. They are constantly injuring themselves! Directly or indirectly.
~Yes, I know it’s true. Even I, a species able to maintain complete equanimity feel sad for them. I wish there was some way I could help.
Just then a young woman comes up to the tree. She has a stool with her. She sets that down under the tree. Forlorn, she pulls a rope out of the bag she’s brought with her. Dejected, she stands for a long time at the edge overlooking the chasm. Is she considering jumping? What is she going to do with that rope? It’s for sure she’s not going to play with it. She has an agenda. She comes back to the stool, stands on it while she ties one rope end around the tree branch and the other around her neck.
WindWonder starts to gasp and move quickly around in a flurry. The trees start to wiggle and wobble in the wind. The girl pushes the stool out from under her. There is a moment inbetween, when WindWonder wooshes, and the wanting tree yearns. The branch breaks. It all falls down.
The young lady gasps “THANK GOD!” She lays down beneath the tree and looks through the intricate lace of the old grey naked branches. She watches the clouds in the sky pass one after the other. For the rest of the afternoon, she looks up through the maze of the tree’s pattern at the clouds changing shapes, appearing and dissolving moving across the endless sky.
She comes back many years later, with two small children, gets on a stool and hangs a swing.