Think of someone who stood on the periphery of your childhood memories (a classmate, a teacher, a neighbor) and cast them as the main character of your story.
Posted in Middle School on Nov 1, 2022
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✍️ 31 stories
“Mothering” by Lindsay Flo
Carmen invades my mind a lot, even years after her astonishing death. Life is strange like that, sometimes. How people who didn’t necessarily have a starring role in your life sometimes have the greatest impact. As an adult, I think of Carmen as the mom I want to be. She’s the mom I try to be, even though I will never be as carefree and full of joy as she was. I parent with law and order, Carmen did it with wildne...
“Impressionism” by Matthew Perkins
Impressionism On the walls of Ishi’s house were pictures his Mum had painted: red and purple figures shaking their heads or moving their hands in front of their faces; naked bodies painted from behind that were little more than a blue smudge. But we never spoke much about her art. We stayed up late playing Sonic the Hedgehog and Jazz Jackrabbit on Ishi’s Dad’s com...
“Dalia ” by Farida Sherif
In the city, it’s hard to have friendly neighbors. You grow up seeing all these movies about being best friends with the girl next door, you would have all these sleepovers and share secrets. But the only thing you end up having is shattered expectations, and a grumpy guy in the floor below who keeps knocking on your door every two days yelling “stop playing the damn piano”. They don’t understand music here, they only know noise.And when you’re 10, you don’t understand why people do...
“The Old Philologian” by Chris Campbell
Kenneth Crook slipped his arms through the black robe of authority more commonly worn by school masters in the English public education system like Eaton, and the universities of Oxford and Cambridge. However, today – like every school day for the past three decades, he was preparing to teach Grammar School pupils in the heart of London’s Marylebone district at a school fighting for its very existence in the Conservative governments’ restructuring of the school class system. It was the 1970s. The era of working-class upheaval. Ken...
“The Innocent One” by Vince Vance
The Innocent One You ever get accused of doing something you didn’t do? Well, I have. And it ain’t too grand, Stan! The only thing worse is getting grounded for something you didn’t do. It hurts. Really! I know. You get this real bad feelin’ right in your gut like you ate too much candy before breakfast the mornin’ after Halloween. That feelin’ stay...
“The Every Other Saturday Knitting Club” by Deborah Mosley
Yesterday as I flipped through the stack of mostly junk mail that I had fetched from the mailbox, an advertisement for a magazine caught my attention. The cover featured a color photograph of a ball of yarn with knitting needles artistically inserted through the middle. The ball of yarn and needles was sitting on a table beside a retro couch with a knitted afghan blanket draped across the arm. Memories of Mrs. Hudson, my...
“The Delights of Abalone by a Hater of Seafood” by Kelly Sibley
On a hot summer’s night, have you ever eaten scallops seasoned with sliced garlic, salt and pepper cooked in their shell on a BBQ whilst sitting under a silver starlight night surrounded by family? Or maybe abalone, beaten to an inch of its life and quickly seared then smeared with a mild chilli-oil? What about crayfish cut in half, grilled and drizzled with a hollandaise sauce? Or even calamari and octo...
“Rita's Bench” by Jonathan Mccarthy
We stepped into the bright sunshine of an early September afternoon. My daughter was just given a clean bill of health at her thirty-six month doctor’s check-up and the sting of her COVID shot was tempered by three stickers of cartoon heroes. As we walked along the concrete sidewalk she chatted away incessantly about the needle and the “doctor not listen me”. I was about to engage her in conversation when my eye was draw...
“What For?” by Murray Burns
What For?“I always like walking in the rain, so no one can see me cry.”-Charlie Chaplin1963. Freshman year in high school. Spanish class. I never met him, but I will remember him forever.A foreign language seemed like a good idea. Besides that, my mother insisted on it. Spanish sounded easier than Latin, so I was dazzling my friends with “cómo estás” before day’s end.
“The Neighborhood Kids” by Cindi Lin
This story may contain a sensitive topic including the death of a child.Diego lived at 2301 Fairfax Avenue, Unit 111. That was two doors down from me at 2301 Fairfax Avenue, Unit 113. It was just him and his brother Marco every day. Early in the morning, I’d sit by the dining room window. There they’d be at exactly 7:08 AM walking side by side to school. That’s when I knew to grab my backpack, my mom Linette, a single mom of three, would have packed and ready for me. They were my visual alarm clock.My o...
“Dreams of Cloudbase” by P. T. Golden
Connie Cullen had dreams. Dreams dashed upon the rocks. The same rocks that shattered her spine, leaving her ‘confined’ to her wheelchair. Confined is not a word by which she wished to be defined. Her dream was to be unbound by everything that dragged her down. Unbound by the force of gravity, set free to touch the sky. Quite simply, she had dreams to fly.Irv and Mary Sobel are an extraordinarily loving couple. Irv had one first love, however, a love he nurtured from the age of five. As soon as Irv could walk and talk, h...
“The birdhouse maker ” by Dawn Kaltenbaugh
He woke up and prayed every morning. He never really asked for anything, just thanked to the Lord for his life, his wife, and the rowdy family next door. He almost felt like their second grampa, and they often made him smile as he watched them play. It was a large family, and it would take a mean old Grinch not to fall for their cuteness. But to him, it was a chance to be a friend who could give produce f...
“The Love That Lasted” by Delaney Howard
He sat quietly beside me. Austere in his black suit, crisp white shirt, and black tie. I turned my head to the right and silently studied his profile for a moment. He’d been on the edge of every significant event of my life from the day I’d been born, and he was here with me now. Finally, he turned and gave me a tight smile. I could see the emotion filling his soft eyes. Not so long ago, our positions were reversed. He ...
“Pioneer Days: Pop” by Nola Schiff
Pioneer Days: Pop Pop is a blacksmith. Us kids call him ‘Pop’ because he is tough as Popeye. He keeps his old cinder forge under the lemon tree near the kitchen. It stands on three iron legs. He fills the cinder pan with live coals, fans them with his kudu hide bellows. Then he heats up ir...
“Whatever Gets You Through” by Reagan Emmerling
Every Thursday after school, three sisters, Reagan, Ellie, and Mya, came with their mother to my office. Each appointment started much the same way. Beginning with my standing at the end of the drab grey hallway, just out of view, watching them. Psychology was as much watching as it was listening, and each girl gave you the tiniest glimpse into their heads if you were so inclined to pay attention. Mya, the young...
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