Flash fiction

My adventures in flash fiction started about ten months ago. It’s a challenging and joyful way to write and occupies a place between poetry and short fiction that I feel very at home in.

My first piece, Liver, was published in issue 24 of Riggwelter Press, and you can read it here.

https://issuu.com/riggwelter/docs/issue_24/24

Liver
Jaclyn’s dish is pan-fried calves’ liver with pearls of shallot gel, served with a white wine reduction.

Jaclyn squeezes the button on the remote. Her hand freezes on screen, mid peel of a clove of garlic. She looks down and her hand is in exactly the same position today. The smooth clove gripped so tightly she might crush it. It needs to be finely sliced.

Jaclyn’s dish is pan-fried calves’ liver with pearls of shallot gel, served with a white wine reduction.


Jaclyn squeezes the button on the remote again. Jaclyn has to stop it before it gets to the bit where she hears “I’m sorry Jaclyn this is inedible. I can’t eat this.”


Before, when Clive bounded in each day, asked how it was going, talked about changing her life. When Clive bought her recipe books and recorded all the T.V. shows. When Clive gave appreciative umms and aaahs and always asked for seconds. When Clive suggested she could, and when Clive made sure that she did.

Jaclyn’s dish is pan-fried calves’ liver with pearls of shallot gel, served with a white wine reduction.


Jaclyn grips the liver, she doesn’t wince at the cold slippery flesh anymore. She has to get this bit of sinew. All the sinew and all the eyes. Maybe she left some in. Maybe that was the problem. Jaclyn didn’t get all the sinew and all the eyes. Or did Jaclyn mess up the garlic? Did Jaclyn miss a piece of papery peel? Jaclyn cooked it with three different types of onion yesterday, but Clive couldn’t tell a difference.


Jaclyn’s dish is pan-fried calves’ liver with pearls of shallot gel, served with a white wine reduction.

Jaclyn foams the butter, counting the bubbles that form as it melts and darkens. Fourteen, fifteen, seventeen; in go the livers. Dusted in organic flour today because last Tuesday Clive said that he thought that made a difference.
Forty-three seconds on one side. Forty-five on the other.
Out. Quickly onto kitchen paper.
Shallots, chopped with the new ceramic knife, then garlic, wine and bubble. Four minutes thirteen seconds. No more.


Jaclyn’s dish is pan-fried calves’ liver with pearls of shallot gel, served with a white wine reduction


Jaclyn bounds in to Clive. Clive sits at the table, scrutinises his reflection in the polished surface. Clive has tried to train his face, but Jaclyn always spots something. An arc of Clive’s left eyebrow means the liver is overcooked, grainy. If Clive’s mouth turns down on the right it means the sauce is bitter.Clive has been practicing his expression since yesterday’s dinner.

Clive needs to get it right today