Nancy Tingley

Fire Wall 1

Choking smoke, gagging fear. The fire wall sailed down the hill as the kids, wedges among hurried belongings, cried, Arthur, Arthur. And the dog, crazy with ears skull-pressed plummeted away. Get him. But, I turned the key. No, they wailed and I took in the house in the rearview, pressed my toe, then opened the door for the dog.

Fire Wall 2

That house burned and this didn’t and only because fireman Joe liked this paint job, but didn’t like that rusted swing set, that yard of rocks. Over there flames like high jumpers and here smoke like hair. He dug the shovel, felt the heat, smelled his fear, watched the swing set buckle and bend.

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Nancy Tingley is a specialist in Southeast Asian art, who has written fiction in the closet for years. She’s recently come out -The Jenna Murphy Mystery series (Swallow Press) and flash fiction forthcoming in various literary magazines. Her mornings are dedicated to writing, her afternoons to the pleasure of the potter’s wheel. She lives in northern California on a hill.