Fractured

Sun bright.

Autumn cool.

Cul-de-sac road.

Two story colonial home.

White.

Pine forest all around.

.

Pickup truck in driveway.

Driver’s door open.

Engine running.

Cell phone on seat.

One text message.

“He’s with her now!”

.

House’s front door thrown wide.

Entrance foyer.

Pine wood floor.

Shotgun shell.

Empty.

Dining room to the right.

Chair shattered.

Tabletop scored by lead pellets.

.

Doorway into kitchen.

Droplet of red on tile floor.

Granite counter tops.

Neat and tidy.

Wood block knife holder.

One slot empty.

.

Through the house toward the back.

Crimson petals the floor.

Bottom of stairs.

A woman’s house shoe.

Empty shotgun shell.

Stairway railing shattered.

.

Top of stairs.

Bedroom on right.

Door open.

Room empty.

.

Hallway.

Photos on the wall.

Blond man, blond woman, blond children.

.

Bathroom on right.

Broken door hanging on frame.

Shotgun shell.

Still smoking.

Shower curtain shredded.

Red splatters everything.

Man face down in tub.

Dark hair.

Partially dressed.

Not asleep.

.

Empty hallway.

Master bedroom on left.

Door open.

Floor carpeted in brown.

Dropped shotgun.

Shell jammed in the breech.

.

Dead woman on bed.

Blond.

Eyes staring.

Neck and face, purple and bloated.

Satin sleeping robe in disarray.

Blood drenches it.

Not the woman.

.

Master bathroom.

Gouts of scarlet.

Blond man on floor.

Breathing in rasps.

Wedding ring on finger.

Woman’s wedding ring in hand.

Steak knife between shoulders.

Other knife wounds dribble red.

Rasping stops.

.

Through the window.

Sun bright.

Autumn cool.

Dark haired woman by truck.

Gloved hands pick up cell phone.

Message erased.

Trees swallow her.

.

Along nearest highway.

School bus sighs to a stop.

Two blond children disembark.

Laughing.

∼ Charles Gramlich

© Copyright Charles Gramlich. All Rights Reserved.

15 thoughts on “Fractured

    1. I’d not call it a poem. It just employs a different presentation than a normal flash fiction. Is this a new choice for you, Charles? Did you discover it?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I was experimenting with this a year or so ago, and it seemed like a new kind of structure for a tale that I hadn’t seen before. I did submit this to a couple of bigger mystery/thriller markets but no takers. I guess it was too unusual for them maybe. But I rather like it and will definitely try to write more like this in the future.

        Like

  1. A beautiful ending… just another routine day between a mom and her kids… except for that one thing.

    Like

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