KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 10: Fall 2018
Haibun Story: 160 words

Ladies of the Canyon Cafe

by Roberta Beary

I’m a sucker for Joni Mitchell so I step inside. Good. No children. I always make sure. An old man by the counter motions me to a corner table. Mommy, are you hiding from me. WTF? Behind the counter a round face pops up. On a squat teenage body. Right away I can tell she has it. Same as mine did. Or would have. If I hadn’t terminated. I need to leave. Now. But the old man shuffles over with notepad and pencil. Her mom needs a break now and then. I nod and ask for ginger tea. Find my phone and earbuds. Will her to stay away. It doesn’t work. She sneaks up behind me. Tugs at my earbuds. Keeps at it until I hand her the left one. Together we listen side by side. Our shoulders swaying to Joni’s painted ponies. Going up and down.

stolen rosebud—
this petal weighs
almost nothing



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