A Story in the Headboard Book
It’s a story of a woman reading in her bed. A woman who wears a flower of gray petals embraced by four finely chiseled sepals surrounding her face. Her canopied bed in the barren room comforts and protects. Well-pillowed, her body alert, she reads, absorbed in a red book. Her Vizsla hounds, oblivious under the bedcovers, snore and twitch their paws in safety.
She doesn’t need to read the story of the carapaced being crawling out from under her canopied bed. She knows it has sheltered beneath her for decades. She and the carapaced being both know the story and both live in the comfort and protection offered by the mystic beasts and symbols that decorate the canopied bed.
It’s a story of feathered creatures the woman reads, of feathered creatures that fly only when skies are thick and gray. Delicately boned with shining skulls and grasping hands, they know only treachery. Stay away. Hide! The feathered ones will claw at you with their twisted nails, will pull at your eyes and will smile when they leave you with blood dripping.
There is a story amongst the feathered creatures that they are born out of the boredom of gray. They lurk in wispy branches, camouflaged behind restless leaves. When they keep still, some eyes mistake their delicate bodies for branches. Stay away. Hide! Remember their twisted nails!
A fragile little tree has taken root on the carpet in the woman’s barren bedroom. There is a story it was seeded by the same flower the woman wears surrounding her face, the flower with the gray petals embraced by four finely chiseled sepals. The tree’s fragile little roots stretch, the thin gray trunk lengthens. The fragile little leaves unfold a story.
Fran Turner grew up on a farm in the southernmost part of Canada, but Toronto, where she's lived most of her life, is the place that's home. She was a nurse, a shiatsu therapist, and worked on cancer programs. For decades her heart was on the Aikido mat, training and teaching at her own dojo. Now she enjoys working on flash fiction. She’s had stories published in The Ekphrastic Review, Dodging the Rain, and Adelaide Review.
The Ekphrastic Review
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