Alive-flash fiction



Group therapy. It’s not supposed to be spill-your-guts and be judged, but feels that way. Surreptitious glances are thrown your way. Musician. Drug overdose. Cliché.

“Are you 27?” a large-eyed girl asks.

Random, you think.

“Lots of rock stars die at 27. It’s a thing,” she says.

You shake your head. Suicide wasn’t your intention. You were just trying to feel better. Just another syringe of heroin.

You’ve been clean 17 days. The emergency room visit convinced you.

“Lucy, do you want to talk?” the group leader, Ann, asks.

“Not really,” you say.

“Tell us why you think you’re here.”

“Because I overdosed and my Dad really hated that.”

Ann smiles. “Why were you an addict?”

An addict. You can’t stop yourself from visibly wincing. You never thought yourself an addict. That was Nick with the endless supply of heroin he shared because he wanted you to feel as good as he did. For a while, you did.

“I wasn’t,” you say and feel it’s truthful.

The guy next to you snorts, receiving a rebuking glance from Ann.

“No, seriously. Things were great. My boyfriend wanted to share this with me. I wanted to make him happy. Before the gig I discovered he was cheating and I shot up and then because I was screwing up, I shot up some more. I was desperate. Or desperately unhappy and stupid. Maybe just stupid.”

Ann nods, encouraging.

“It’s always a guy,” the big eyed girl says.

“It was me,” you say.


S. Darlington


The Next Time

You weren’t expected. Obviously.

His door is open. She’s giggling. You hear his soft laugh join hers. She’s leaning over his desk, supposedly pointing at data, but her blouse gapes open to show what little cleavage she has. He looks. Of course, he looks. She catches him and purses her lips, the smile still there. Her fingers reach toward his face and as they are about to caress his beard, you step in the room.

“The car’s broke down,” you say, jangling your keys.

She leans back, no apology in her eyes. The next time you’ll be on the interstate.


end 6/16/2016

©S. Darlington

Happy Thanksgiving!


(c) Sascha Darlington

Even if you are not American, I want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving to me means being grateful for all of the wonderful people, dogs, and other things in my life.

This year has been a sad year in so many ways for me and I think it’s because of the sadness that I like to reflect on all of the good that’s happened. No matter what people think, the good usually outweighs the bad, but the bad always takes on a disproportinate amount of thought.

I am thankful that I finally discovered the courage to blog. Truthfully, it’s been a great experience. I stopped writing creatively a few years ago because I wasn’t getting published and someone told me that perhaps my efforts were best spent elsewhere. So I stopped.

When I started my blog, it was to be a book blog, but then I found I wanted to fill in days and then I started posting my own writing. I may not garner the “likes” of a lot of people, but to know that a few of you appreciate my poems or my stories is amazing.And it’s for you (and me) I write. Thank you. You seriously rock my world! You cannot possibly know how much I mean that.

You all are my Thanksgiving.

I am grateful to each and every one of you. I am blessed with your feedback and your humor and your sarcasm and wit. I am blessed with your honesty and your beauty and your style and grace. I am also blessed by those of you who write so beautifully, you know who you are!, who make me want to excel and be a much better writer. I am blessed by those of you who are so kind that you want others to succeed. I am blessed.

So thank you. Happy Thanksgiving.

Love, Sascha Darlington

Thanksgiving Celebration 11/24/2016


Lights across the Dark Sound

Have you ever sat in evening

by a body of water,

watched the far lights twinkle

across the dark abyss

so magical, a fairyland of light

your thoughts capricious

imaginings of candy castles

whipped cream snow

candlelit stars dangling from golden jeweled spokes

only to have the scientist say:

debris in the atmosphere?


end 9/7/2016 (2)

The Night My Heart Went “Plop”

Whenever I’m alone with you
You make me feel like I am home again
Whenever I’m alone with you
You make me feel like I am whole again

Love Song by The Cure

I wish I could tell you a fairytale between me and Prince Charming, one with godmothers and wands and beautiful but scratchy tulle dresses. Alas, reality does not sanction fairytales.

Dominic worked nights while I worked days. The luster of lust tarnished. We scheduled a date for Friday. Our first in two weeks. He cancelled. No explanation, just an apology which sounded scripted.

Tina dragged me out with the girls. We all hadn’t been out together since that night when Dominic and I met. I determined that I would have fun or die trying. I accepted that he and I had run our course. The next time we were together would be the last.

We ended up at a bar where Tina’s workmate, Stella, bartended part-time. Tina ordered a round of SoCo shooters.

“One, two, three,” Tina said.

We swallowed the contents. I gasped as the heat burned my throat and blazed through my bloodstream.

“Dance with me,” a deep voice whispered in my ear, the heat of breath tickling.

I gazed into brandy brown eyes and felt myself melt all over again. He took my hand and nodded to the band. Mellow guitar chords plucked out the intro to Love Song.

“However, far away, I will always love you,” Dominic sang against my temple.

He held me close. I felt my heart go plop.


end 9/6/2016

S. Darlington

Learning to Fly

“I’m bowing out tonight,” Bella says.

Melissa stares. “You aren’t coming?”

“I don’t feel like a party.”

“Is this because of Jason? You know he’s not going to be there.”

“I just want to have a latte and read a book.”


Bella smiles. “Not for me.”

“You shouldn’t sit around licking your wounds,” Melissa says. “You need to get out there.”

“Not for a bit. I used to like me before making relationships a life’s goal. I hate the whining, worrying, conniving. I’ve learned I want me back. The whole nice person with self-esteem.”

“Self-esteem’s so overrated.”


end 8/23/2016

S. Darlington

Things You Can’t Judge By the Surface

Things You Can’t Judge By the Surface

Book by the cover

Wine by the label

Woman by her face

Crème Brulee by its crust

A smiling face with haunted eyes

Lithesome ladies at jazzercise

Lies under charm

Coffee under whip

Pie under pastry

Genius by grades


What I really mean to say.


end 8/11/2016 (2)

S. Darlington

Faithful Companions Revisited

Almost a year has passed (July 29, late morning Wednesday, because some things you never forget) since Scout the faithful companion lost his remaining canine step-sibling, Miss Cha. His reaction has been mixed.

At first he behaved freer because there was no bossy lady telling him what to do and so it seemed a good thing to let him be sole pup. Now, his yearning for canine companionship seems palpable, although when he sees other dogs he hastily decides action: visit enthusiastically or scurry away.

A contingent of individuals offer their opinions regarding how much simpler life is without dogs—how you can travel at a whim, how there is no dog hair or vet bills or, well, I’m sure you get the gist. While I respect their opinions, I feel that the joy I’ve received from my dogs has infinitely superseded any perceived downfalls, except, of course, their eventual loss.

So between Scout and me, we will find him the right companion—someone who sheds and plays and happy dances at the slightest provocation and, for the unfortunately too brief period he or she graces this microcosm, demonstrates how to truly live.

end 6/21/2016



In winter when bleak gray days meshed with permeating cold, she envisaged summer. She would be happy in summer. But today, summer solstice with daylight ebbing, joy remains a memory, perhaps not even hers, of laughter, skipping, feeling carefree. Life’s rip current steals her footing; she flails for purchase.


end 6/20/2016

©S. Darlington