Blog, Fiction, poetry, Short Story

Flash Fiction Friday: The Revival


flash fiction marlin

Occasional Fridays, poet and Every Day Poems editor Tania Runyan carries her keyboard into world of flash fiction, writing quick pieces using prompts from The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Writing Flash Fiction. We’re exploring surrealism at Tweetspeak for the month of November, and today’s story from Tania has some of those unexpected juxtapositions we’ve been talking about. 


A blue marlin hung on the wall of Mario’s. Every Friday night she watched it while waiting for take-out pizza with her dad. The fish’s yelping mouth. The sad marble eye. The fin like a giant blue staircase.

“Why won’t it move,” she said.  She said it every time.

“Fish need water,” he mumbled. He was quiet every time. He stared straight ahead or peeled his fingernails, crescents falling to the carpet.

She thought of the swordfish swimming through miles of pink pebbles and castles and treasure chests. She thought of the other swordfish who must have loved him and played light-saber games with their noses.

“Pepperoni up,” the waiter said.

Her father walked up to pay.

“Bye, Daddy.”

He didn’t look back. She looked at the marlin. She took a pitcher of water from a table and climbed up on a chair.

“Stop,” the waiter said. “Stop it right now.”

She tossed the water on the marlin. The waiter yelled. She tossed again and again and through the arc saw her father’s wide-open eyes.

Photo by Rookuzz, Creative Commons license via Flickr. Post by Tania Runyan, author of A Thousand Vessels.


Buy a year of Every Day Poems, just $2.99— Read a poem a day, become a better writer. In November we’re exploring the theme Surrealism.

Every Day Poems Driftwood

Your Comments

4 Comments so far

  1. L. L. Barkat says:

    I love this. It’s so creepy-wonderful.

    My grandfather used to have a big blue fish with a sword-type nose or something, on the wall at his house. That fish gave me the shivers. I get that, about wanting to do something to make him less ominous.

    Maybe I should have poured water… ;-)

  2. Tania Runyan says:

    Thank you! Deep down inside, we all have a swordfish story to tell.

  3. I really liked this story too. You not only need to be careful what you tell children but it says so much about their relationship.

  4. Tania Runyan says:

    Thank you, Peter! I’m so glad you enjoyed it.

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