100-word story: Birds


The mother saw birds, not blue jays or cardinals, wrens, the sweet birds other mothers saw, no, dark creatures with prehensile talons, massive wings, raptor faces, clutched on thin, wind-blown branches across the gully. Shapes in the mist, silent, brooding, malevolent.

The daughter would seize binoculars, shuffle slowly to the window, agonized, empty with her mother’s madness, and pretend.

Her mother’s confidants, women of nurture and patience and wonder, always saw them, the vulture apparitions, totems of the women’s closeness. They did not care. They understood mania, endured all lunacy, pleased to indulge the fragments of delusion in their friend.


Image: The Telegraph, UK

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