Fifties by the Fire — a fifty-word, prompt-based writing challenge. Feel free to share your response below, or read and comment to join in on the fun.
Prompt: Write a fifty-word story (fiction, poem, or work of CNF) incorporating freedom, liberty, or a flag.
Here are the other guidelines:
Make sure your piece is exactly fifty words. Feel free to use Word Counter or the word processor you use.
Write a title with the genre in the first line. (Example: Porch, Fiction)
The title does not factor into the word count.
Good luck and have fun. Happy writing!
Special thanks to John Lightle for providing “The Colonel Stands Ready” for our writing prompt.
John Lightle is a Texas writer, poet, and photographer who spends many hours sitting on his woodpile contemplating. When away from his frame shop, he schleps his artwork among area art shows. The job takes him across the countryside, occasionally overseas, photographing the quiet resolve found within the golden hours.
The Atlantic needed to feed.
Jamie had been swimming in its shallows when the riptide pulled him under. He tried powering through—fighting against its force—but it proved hopeless.
Thinking quickly, he swam parallel to the coast. He inhaled saltwater, tasted death. Saw light, life—broke free, sputtering.
The Swan, Fiction
As he lay there amidst bodies and bullets, his gut gaining heat and the riverbank staining red, Admiral Barrett saw the strangest thing.
Floating in the river, like a cloud among sky, was a swan.
She didn't know that she signalled the end; his final liberty.
Now neither did he.
Joyriding on a Budget, Poem
I flag down
the first Ferrari I find
leaving the car show
and ask for a ride to
We purr a few blocks
I say 'here' and
Guy drives off.
I walk back
to the avenue
full of wheels
and flag down
The figure stabbed the flag into the ground, her blonde hair waving with its movements in the refreshing wind. Tears glistened on her cheeks as her back faced ten other figures.
"We did it," she whispered to the one who wasn't there. "We're free. And it was worth losing you."
Freedom From Fear, Fiction
Walking home alone she braces for danger.
She’s paralyzed. Fingers laced through her keys.
Death on her mind.
Walking home alone he doesn’t worry.
He’s distracted. Face in his phone. She’s on his mind.
He could have walked with her. But it was out of his way.
She’ll be fine.
Free as Rain - A cautionary tale
“Did you know that me and the wife finally got divorced? Oh, well, I guess I told you that already. Yessir, I am like a sailor on liberty. Freedom! Free as rain! But you know, living alone... It sure ain’t what I thought it’d be. It’s awful damn quiet.”
The Shining Pole, Poem
Each year I buy a new Flag
To run up the shining pole.
The old one having taken the brunt
Of a year's worth of wind and sun.
Like the flag our Country toils
against the bells that toll
A warning that our Liberty and Freedom
Must never go unsung.
On September 12, 2011, our flags flooded the country, a patriotic tsunami.
.I never saw a flag for Emmet Till. Never saw one for Maloclm X. I never saw a flag for Allende, or any democratically elected leader we covertly overthrew.Never saw flags for kids crammed in cages Did you?
Once again, I tried to write a 50-word story and failed spectacularly. It ended up 160 words. But I appreciate the prompt. I will include the story in my Monday newsletter.
Is the flag in shot?
But, Minister, your view on what’s happening.
And the Portrait of His Majesty?
Minister, I must press you. The riots, the looting, the beatings?
That’s the trouble with these people. No respect for our country, our values, our flag. So is it in shot then?
Really behind on the readers, Justin. Started writing a quick one and . . .TIME! Only word count instead! Alot of great stories here. Thanks for the prompt!