• Stories, poems, haikus or lyrics added daily by one of our seven writers in 99 words or less!

Thursday, 31 December 2009

New Paint

The houses in this neighbourhood are pale and their paint is perfect and smooth. The sidewalks are not cracked yet.
I sit on a wooden bench under a recently planted tree.
In twenty years this place will look like the place I grew up, worn and broken and rusty.
New paint only lasts so long.

Wednesday, 30 December 2009

The Next New Beginning.

One day, this day I am nothing. All my problems and mistakes have led me here. But tomorrow I am new again. When the clock strikes twelve no one will remember and I will forget. Like a drug this day, of all days, erases the past and allows new beginnings where other days bring only monotomy. And so it comes. And it goes. And it turns out the day is just as monotonous as the one after and before. Until the next new beginning.

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

How can you still believe?

Every year, a radical change. A second after midnight. I get tired of changing so much. And always for the better. Oh, stop it, New Year, I am exhausted by the luck you bring...

Monday, 28 December 2009

A New Beginning

11:59 One minute to go. A new year, a new beginning. All my flaws will be erased. I will be a better person. Not even at a party this year, not drinking. Ten. Its one of my resolutions you see. Nine. Eight. Seven. A fresh start. Six. Five. Four. A new beginning. Three. Two. One. The inmates cheer and laugh and smile. Come on! Everyone deserves a fresh start. Happy new year!

Saturday, 26 December 2009

A reminder

Count your blessings. Don't be lazy, but don't be desperate either. Pay attention to the gifts around even the loneliest or toughest places of your existence. Believe. Trust. Sit in the moment with your latte, your pen, and your dream. Breathe in. Take stock of the good, the light, the best in you and others. Don't give up. Don't settle. Pay attention and wait for the unveiling. And never forget to do what you love.

Thursday, 24 December 2009

I went for a walk one day - down my street, like I always do, but instead of turning left, I went right.
It's amazing how one small decision can impact your life.

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

The Little Christmas Present

I saw him. You probably don't believe me but I did. He smelt like mince pies and Christmas decorations and there was glitter in his beard. He told me I'd been good but there was a recession on so I only got a small present. I told my mummy that was why. She cried. I think they were tears of joy. I should have taken a photo of him. She would have cried even more if I had, I think. But I forgot. I'll get one next year.

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

First Christmas without her

She was 93, last Christmas. She was 12 when she went to my house to work for my Great-grandfather. And there she stayed. It seemed like it would be that way forever. Every Christmas of my life was spent in her company. After a journey of hard work, she decided it was time to rest. This year, it feels strange. I miss walking her back home, just down the road, after midnight. Amazing, the stars were always shining during those five minutes.

Monday, 21 December 2009

Holidays are coming.

The air crackles. The ground shakes. The water shivers in anticipation. The crowd look on. The unmistakable trucks are coming and there’s nothing they can do about. For it is the season.

Saturday, 19 December 2009

Spit it out

This isn’t the matrix
But I swallowed a pill.
I walked up the long dark hill.
A chill, damp sadness entered in,
a white knuckled grip of sorrow with black eyes, dead to light.
And tonight?
I don’t have the energy to put up a fight.

But there's something here at the top.
A Giant, waiting, holding onto a tea-light lantern
in oversized hands, dangling on his pinky finger, barely holding on.
It catches my eye.

Sadness is hard to swallow
but easy to maintain.
It seeps into your veins.
If you’re not careful it will define.

Thursday, 17 December 2009


Long ago, Destiny was responsible for all life’s joy, pain, and sorrow. Everything that happened in our lives was decided by Her, and She took care to ensure that our lives were worth living.
When you were born, Destiny consulted the stars and plotted a path for you. The first steps you would take, whom you would love, and even when you would die was decided by Her before you opened your eyes for the very first time.
Nature’s course ran perpetually, making Her people believe that they were creating their own fate.
But She was always watching.

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Life is Cold

Life is cold,
Ice creeps round my ribcage
Like frozen ivy.

Life is cold,
My throat is dry and lined with broken glass
Swallowing is suicide.

Life is cold,
Brittle fingers dreaming of warmth,
the caress of another's touch.

Life is cold,
Wear a jumper.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

These love songs

I’ve said that forbidden word,
Insulted this modern world.

Punish me cruelly
And never set me free.

These foolish love songs
You didn’t want me to listen to...
Voices of caramel,
Breaking the spell,
Reminding me I’m lonely.

I’ve yielded to the pressure,
A cardiac drum that begged


A drug that will kill me,
Only death can cure me.


These foolish love songs
You told not to listen to.
Voices of caramel,
Breaking the spell,
Reminding you you’re lonely too.

Monday, 14 December 2009

1941 Like Meat to the Slaughter.

Their eyes met through a crowded room. It was love at first sight. Even though they knew that their time was short and that their captures were going to kill them, because they were ‘different’ they didn’t care, they had each other.

As a man walks through the crowded room, with an evil look on his face, the couple knew they had no choice but to beg for their lives. Tentatively they approach, past the other captives, before finally mustering up the courage to say what they wanted to say. Mooooooooooooooo. But alas, the cows were killed. Enjoy your burger.

Saturday, 12 December 2009


Daddy asked me “why are you crying?”
and I said “I broke the vase.
The flowers have fallen,
they’re spread all over,
the water’s flowing away…”
Daddy asked me “why are you crying?”
as he gathered the flowers again.
We watched the water wind away
forming patterns and pathways.
Daddy asked me “why are you crying?”
I said “I broke the vase.”
He said I set the flowers free
then he gave them all to me.

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Midnight Train

One night I boarded that midnight train to anywhere that Journey sang about. It was empty and lonely and cold. It didn't reek of promise and I didn't feel inspired. I could see my own reflection in the window. We rode through the dark countryside with no real destination, just the train and I.

I may be lost, but I won't stop believing.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Knock, knock.

I heard a joke today,
It made me laugh.
And then I stopped.

Before the lines around my eyes creased too much.

I thought of you.
I'll keep it in my head,
Until I see you again.

I'll try not to grow old,
So we can both laugh together,
And your eyes can age with mine.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Me and Carlos do Carmo

Early morning. Lisbon awaking from a warm summer night. Old wrinkled women sweep the small steps to their doors. Our feet skate down narrow roads that smell of sardines and fado. The tram carries childish-looking tourists towards St. George’s Castle. We’re going down. To meet the nymphs that once made ships sink and men dream. They sell chestnuts, nowadays. But keep the chance of looking into the river’s eyes, once in a while. The giant Tagus – “Tejo”, as we say – always disguised as an ocean. It’s OK. We’re disguised as poets.

Monday, 7 December 2009

Just Think a Little

When I was young my parents thought I could read minds, so did my psychiatrist, so did my pets and so did all my teachers. I wish they told me, then I wouldn’t have become an accountant, even though I know what everyone thinks of accountants.

Saturday, 5 December 2009

At Bosham Quay

Jump up on a rock and fall down - fall slowly.
Float at the dawn with sails up, billowing.
Laughter unites and tears roll.
Jump up on a rock and fall down - fall slowly.
Ask me a question and let go of fear.
They were right when they said:
"This is the year."
Look up. Take destiny in your hands
Light up the sky.
Jump up on a rock and fall...
The unexpected is written on your tongue.
Wake up as you free-fall.
Feel the wind. Let go of fear.
They were right:
"This is the year."

Friday, 4 December 2009

The Stress Ball

Out with the anger
Out with the stress
Your soft foamy flesh
Soothes me
Without you I would not work
Endless amusement as i throw you
Back and forth against the wall

Then the dog got you
Squeezed you with jagged teeth
Your skin cracked
Your foam torn
To squeeze you now
Just seems cruel

Thursday, 3 December 2009


Wednesdays are like stepping out of a warm shower.
That instant of first feeling icy tiles beneath bare feet. The shock of air that drags me from comfortable to cold in a split second. All I want is turn the hot water back on and bask in the heat for a little while longer. Shut myself in my own oblivious bubble for just a few more minutes.
I'm always doing fine until I step out of the shower. Step out of my comfort zone and onto the unforgiving, brutal reality of a cold bathroom floor.
Wednesday is the day you left.

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Blissful Ignorance

"Another crappy job. Pretending I care and letting people talk to me like I'm 16 and a moron. There are some nice people. They nod. Wide eyed, pitiful.You tell them you won't always work here. But someone's gotta pay the bills. I think I like them even less. I wish I could travel into the future to make sure I'm not still it this cul-de-sac of a job in ten years time. Then if I was, at least I could just get on with it and save myself the embarrassment.

On second thoughts.. Ignorance is bliss.

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Lexicon Acid

Bitter taste, this one
That corrodes my mouth.
I can hardly open it.

I have punished my head,
Shaving it as a penitence
For not having managed
To keep my mouth closed.

I have swallowed my words' gall,
Felt it in my stomach, dissolving,
Turning it into a deposit
Of sulphuric acid.

I rolled and rolled in my bed,
Trying to let it all out.
Too late.
The regretting poison
Had already spread
Over my whole body.