Saturday, 7 December 2013

Worms by Emily Nemchick


Emily Nemchick won November's short fiction contest with her rather fun covid story, you can read it in full below.

For fans of short and flash fiction come and join our Facebook group dedicated to those forms:

https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/shortfictionreadersandwriters/

Writers are also welcome to show off their short and flash fiction and now onto Emily's story:

Worms by Emily Nemchick
http://emilynemchick.weebly.com/

The bird perched thoughtfully on the cold, frozen ground beside the gravestone. He gave the frigid earth a tentative peck, as if the taste of the ice might be some indicator of who lay beneath.
Each person was different, you see. Some tasted sweet, like fresh honey dripping from the honeycomb. Those were usually the young ones, the innocent and the dreamers. Others were as bitter and galling as acid, their vitriol soaking into the earth around them and making the worms fat with pulpy white malice.

The worms were what he was seeking, you see. The bird had sampled many a human corpse through the plump, wriggling medium of the graveyard's worms. Each one had its own distinctive flavour, left over from the fragrance of the lives of the people they had consumed.

He had tasted many worms, but never had he found the taste he was seeking above all others. The mingled sorrow, wisdom and hope of his long-dead master, whose shoulder had been his world for so many happy years. He couldn't read the faded lettering, etched in the human tongue, and although he had called the name time and again on his search, the same 'caw, caw' was all that fell on the ears of the mourners. Now, with the ground frozen by the early November chill, he would have to wait a while longer to see if this gravestone covered the memories he sought.

He would know with the first bite whether he had found a granite shoulder to perch on.

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