The Skywalk’s Story

Two campers huddled by a fire trying to stave off freezing temperatures at the lower rim of the Grand Canyon one night, when they saw quite a sight…

an old Indian was walking on air beneath the bright moonlight, casually strolling alongside the ruby red ridge without making a sound, and not even looking down…

One camper told the other who was his brother that the man they saw was Levi Levi of the Hualapai, the last great chief of the Mountain Tribe who still protects his people and gives them pride…

and who inspired a source of income that is now worldwide…

… called the Skywalk, a trail shaped like a horseshoe with a steel frame and a glass floor, to some tourists delighted horror, with sides that project 70 feet from the rim, it’s an attraction that brings them in

and the two campers let the fire dim, as they slipped into sleep dreaming of walking Skywalk’s scenic rim.

****

A Dash of Irony

life is a three course meal

of baby food

steak and lobster

and mushed food

sprinkled with

a dash of irony

and a touch of salt

some good whiskey

and wine

while you dine

until it’s time

to pay your final bill

when you’ve had your fill

The Champion

The Roman arena on display with the blood of humans and animals on a scorching August day…

we see a massive iron gate rise and out strides two gladiators in armor with killer eyes, ready to find out which one dies…

the blistering heat from the sandy arena floor shimmers on their swords as they walk through the gore and stand before the emperor, listening to the crowd’s roar…

“We who are about to die…” is drowned out by the crowd’s excited cries from spectators with blood in the eyes…

the emperor gives a slight nod and sat down, and the combatants turned around until they faced each other in the open ground, weapons held high, both hoping the other would die…

metal rang against metal in the raging heat, as each athlete refused to retreat so that blood covered each from head to feet while spectators passed out in the terrible heat…

finally one of the men clove open the other’s head, striking him instantly dead, leaving the victor the champion for the day, a title he’d be forced to defend again and again until his last day

****

The Last Match

(238 words- flash fiction/poetry)

The wind hammered down the narrow Sierra Nevada Mountain trail, followed by hail and then a blanket of snow as the man looked for somewhere safe to go…

he was covered by his old slicker poncho pulled over his sagging hat and leather clothes, a lone traveler who was nearly froze, but who was able to walk even though he couldn’t feel his toes…

… when the snow stopped and the night crept up like a rattlesnake, the traveler had a decision to make, if he were to survive he’d have to find a shelter to stay alive…

when to his relief he found a small cave in the mountain’s side, an opportunity to get warm inside, where his biggest desire was to start a fire so the heat could get to his frozen feet…

… he gathered some twigs and leaves off the dirt and knelt down while drawing a little cardboard box from his shirt, that to his horror only contained one match…

that he could feel and dimly see, a wooden key to warmth and being frostbite free, he sat there for what felt like an eternity, hesitant to see if the match would be able to relieve his misery…

holding the cardboard box on it’s side he took the match and let it slide across the rough surface and suddenly there was a spark, he lit the fire, and chased away the cold and the dark.

*****

The Last Train

(158 words- flash fiction/poetry)

He waited impatiently on the wooden bench in front of the one-room train depot that sat in the middle of nowhere sweating in the high desert air, when he heard a faint whistle…

Dust devils danced gleefully in the distance, forerunners for a giant sandstorm gathering in the West, but the man was unimpressed, as he stared like he was possessed…

… into the direction of the whistle which grew louder with each heartbeat, and soon he could see a train through the shimmering heat, as he got to his feet, ready to board and take the back seat…

as the train idled and plumes of steam shrilly screamed with the whistle’s urgent blast, the man moved fast to get aboard and ignored the other passengers who looked bored…

There was no need to look back as they went down the track with their memories already fading with the light, something new was just ahead in the gathering night.

****

Mystery of the Maze

He traveled far, through hostile lands for days, hoping to locate and solve the mystery of the maze, which ancient legends say a treasure lurks dating back to another day, when the giants of the earth held sway…

When he saw the opening in a wall of granite it was so huge it made him feel small, but he stepped inside and discovered a great hall, that stretched as far as he could see lined with marble pillars and blocks of ebony…

he trod on the polished serpentine floor, listening to the voices of those who lived no more, who, like him where once an explorer, until something terribly happened and unleashed a nameless horror…

the music of the spheres assaulted his ears, and magnified his fears, so that to gain his sanity and harmony he plunged blindly into the darkening maw screaming at everything he saw…

until a light ahead lessened his dread, and the more he looked ahead the brighter it got until it appeared he found what he sought, a golden corridor and door… he grinned happily and opened what was a dimensional door, becoming part of the Maze’s lore.

****

Little Red Riding Hood in the 21st Century

(184 words -Flash Fiction/Poetry)

They called her Little Red in Sedona, Arizona where crystal-gazers told the fortunes of tourists who came to see the famous red sandstone hills beauty, that explodes in orange and red splashes of brilliant colors when the sun rises, or sets.

Little Red was from the barrio on the wrong side of town, a collection of homeless people who gathered around, helping one another, like a sister and brother, to survive in a merciless economy of the 21st century…

The local homies who respected her gig of taking from the rich and giving it to the poor, had a good rapport with the Harley-riding Little Red who stayed ahead of the law gaining the awe of all the local gangs…

One day Little Red went to see her grandma who lived by the sea, to see if everything was the way it was supposed to be, when she discovered an anomaly that led her to believe an imposter was there to deceive…

Little Red hopped on her Harley and headed for open country determined to be free from the constraints of fairytales and history.

***