Chance Encounter (an Ode & Lament to Beauty) | {story#4}

This is an original fiction piece written for StoryADay September. Read more & follow here.

As I was walking down the crowded downtown street, I noticed a woman walking the opposite way, walking toward me. She was stunning. Long black-brown hair framed a clear face with a touch of rouge; the face contained two deep and dark eyes, ornamented with the perfect accents of eyeliner and shadow. Tall and slender, she walked with a poise and confidence that could do nothing but draw one’s eye. The cool of the coming Fall brought forth her seasonally-appropriate dark colors, layered clothes, and charming violet shawl.

My gaze was immediately arrested and mercilessly held without bond, tortured for the information I had no words to say. I had only thoughts. Only sensations. Only slight, but deep, sensual perceptions rising to an unfulfilling place of fleeting desire and longing. I felt the invitation to come, tempered only by the canyon of anonymity between us.
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A Kaleidoscope & Mirror, Both Darkened | {story#3}

This is an original fiction piece written for StoryADay September. Read more & follow here.

Yes, I am.


I am.


Karen. From the office.

How long?

To what degree?

To what degree?” What the hell is that supposed to mean?

I mean, “How long since what?” Since it became physical? Since we started talking? Since the idea popped in my head? Since I contemplated opening myself up to the possibility in the first place? To what degree are you referring when you ask me “how long”?

Why are you talking so calmly about this?

Because we’re adults.

No, “we” are not.
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Tomorrow | {story#2}

This is an original fiction piece written for StoryADay September. Read more & follow here.

It’s not until you’re laying there that you realize how different reality is from the movies–especially in this case.

That moment exposes the assumptions you had about how this sort of thing would happen, and the various details and nuances of those assumptions are really affected by the cultural influences you take in.

The biggest difference? For me, at least, it was the sound. Or rather, to be more specific, the lack of it.

Music. Squeal. Cursing. Bending of metal. Breaking of glass. Breaking of branches. Landing of body.

And then, silence.
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Semi-Sweet, Bittersweet | {story#1}

It was from loudly sucking the last of his milkshake that Ted finally understood the way she really was. Grabbing tissues, he made the call.


This is an original fiction piece written for StoryADay September. Read more and follow here(Because today is Labor Day, I am following today’s writing prompt by to write “Twitter fiction”: a story in 140 characters of less. Come back tomorrow for my first “full length” piece.)

Creative Commons License
This work by Paul Burkhart is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

September, Stories, & Writing (my brain needs a break!)

As anyone that even remotely follows this blog knows, my summer was mainly spent with me teaching a Bible Survey Class at my church (the fruits of which can be found here). I spent roughly 15 to 20 hours a week working on it. As I mentioned last week, I read and read and read to prepare each week for this class. I’d spend the week reading scholarly articles, books, journals, commentaries, etc, and then spend Friday and Saturday writing anywhere from 15 to 35 pages of material for the class. Nearly every week.

I’m exhausted. The analytical side of my brain needs rest. And so, I’m going to take September to spend some time with some stories and fiction. I’m doing this in three main ways:
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