Friday, April 13, 2012

L is for Lucky Days and Languish

Leroy’s lucky day landed on Friday, the thirteenth of April. First call of the morning brought good news. His application for admittance to the new factory located between Earth and Mars was accepted. The only hitch: he was the replacement for a worker scheduled to take the next shuttle out who was unexpectedly dismissed for causes they preferred to not discuss. The shuttle’s departure was Sunday and he needed to arrive that afternoon for training.

“This afternoon? We leave Sunday?”

“Is this going to be a problem, Leroy? Because, if it is, we have a long list of applicants ready to jump on that shuttle.”

“No, no,” Leroy quickly added. “I just thought I’d need a bit more preparation before flying. You know, getting used to the change in atmosphere and all.”

“The application states that you’ve been working with WASP. Was that a mistake?”

WASP, Workers’ Aero-Space Program, trained young men and women for long-term employment in industries whose products were made faster and cheaper in the low gravity of space. Several space cities had sprung up over the past few years and WASP prepared most of their employees and citizens.

“No, sir.” Leroy began to sweat. He needed this job, his rent was due tomorrow and he had nothing left in his bank account to cover it. “I just thought there would be some additional training before a departure. I’m ready to go right now, sir.”

“Good, good. Drive to Gate “L” and the guard will provide further instructions. Be here by eleven. We have a lunch training session at noon.”

After hanging up the phone, Leroy pulled out his training notebook. This notebook contained all the instructions regarding the distribution, disposal or storage of his belongings, any financial accounts he might currently have and, of course, his body, should that become an issue in the future. As part of his training with WASP, he’d been required to obtain notarized agreements with friends and others willing to handle these issues with little warning. Today was the day to put the wheels in motion. He called his brother, Jack.

“Jack, it’s time. My application was accepted and I leave in an hour.”

His brother didn’t say much. “Safe journey. I’ve got you covered down here. Skype us when you arrive.”

And that was that. Leroy sighed, surprised he felt a tinge of sadness at the departure. After all, this was his dream, wasn’t it?

Will Leroy Languish far from home? .... To Be Continued

L – languish

One hard, black plastic
ramp, angled, at rest
in casual conversation
with the back fence.

In close proximity,
unobtrusively eavesdropping,
an old wooden planter,
wearing a green-moss jacket,
head sprouting tendrils
of wicked weeds.

Too distant to catch
all the words whispered
by the ramp,
waits a yellow wheelbarrow,
sides somewhat rusted
in spots where age
cannot hide its presence,
the cost of plastic surgery
beyond her bank balance.

All hope the homeowner
won’t notice them
as spring’s warmth
entices her outside,
they scan the back door
with a wary eye, attempt
camouflage. It worked
last year, spared them
transport and transformation
from casual backyard residents
to junkyard dogs.


  1. I loved your short story. People always question change if it's sudden even when they wanted it. My boyfriend's 13th of April was not so lucky as he hasn't put the new sticker on his plates so he got a ticket. D'oh!

    xoxo Lloralye @ Adorning Schemes A to Z

    1. Y-Owch! Bummer about the ticket -- I like Friday the 13th - and it isn't luck, just a day with my numbers.
      Thanks for reading and commenting. I think I've found a new direction for my blog posts...

  2. Very good! I enjoyed this - thank you for sharing.

    New follower here. I’m enjoying reading my fellow “A to Z”ers. I look forward to visiting again.


    1. Thank you for stopping by - always nice to be visited and read. I'll check out your blog - hope you come by again. I'm switching gears, going to do more flash tales or starts of longer stories -- at least for a while