The Shine Journal

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Final Cut


Elizabeth Hardman




Looking up from her task, freeze-framed like a snapshot in the window, her gaze lingers on the bare soil, which she knows will still be warm from the simmering heat of the midday sun. Where once a half naked man worked, his torso glistening, beaded with tiny pebbles of perspiration as he moved amid the rows, birdsong accompanied by the soft thud of his spade.


Re-running the scene she feels a flush flooding her skin, rushing along her spine, snaking around her neck, rouging her cheeks. Digger’s hands that gripped her tightly, urgently whispering as he bent her forward and pushed her hard up against the unyielding sink.


Rivulets of soiled sweat, mingling and spiralling downward to the waste disposal; she spiralling upward, with each gasping breath she deeply inhaled the aromatic scent of the bittersweet herbs that line the sill.


Returning to the task in hand, Inis picks up an offering from the harvest of the morning toil, long roots limp and redundant; she grips it firmly at its widest part and prepares to chop.




BIO: ELIZABETH "LIZ" HARDMAN is a Freelance Tutor and Mentor with a distance learning college in Cambridge, England; tutoring History, English and Creative Writing. "I enjoy spending my leisure time writing, reading and I sail. I am currently working towards gaining my "Day Skipper Theory Course"TM which is time-consuming and eats into my creative writing time."

MOTIVATION: Inspiration for this piece was originally a request for submissions by Mslexia Magazine for a piece of flash fiction using the theme "Vegetables" .

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Editor: Pamela Tyree Griffin

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