KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 6: Fall 2016
Tanka Prose: 180 words

Mise en scène

by Carol Judkins

Harry was a cool cat, a jazzman. He played all the reed instruments. Successful for years as a studio musician, he had also toured with some of the greats in his career. Harry created mood and magic through the stories of his adventures, flew us to the moon, like he did with his music.

A bit past middle age, he enjoyed a daily stroll on Malibu beach, relishing the roar of the ocean. Tall and lanky, with a white crewcut and goatee, and even his stride had musicality. On those walks most days, he passed a house with a large picture window. In the window stood a harp, and sometimes a woman playing it. Mesmerizing, he said, this view of her hair spun gold by the setting sun. Her concentration on her music, oblivious to passers-by, captivated him. He could only imagine the music. Each day, a glance to the window, and a quickened heart when she was there.

the door
with its hand-painted sign
“no solicitors”
how often do we dare
to flout the status quo?

—Semi-finalist, KYSO Flash HTP Writing Challenge

Carol Judkins
Issue 6, Fall 2016

lives in Carlsbad, California where she can breathe the sea air. Focusing primarily on Japanese short-form poetry, her work has appeared in a number of print and on-line journals and anthologies. Presently retired from a satisfying career in Public Health, she is a social justice advocate, a romantic dreamer, a mother, voracious reader, independent-films lover, perpetual dieter, eternal student, wine lover, world traveler, almost-gourmet chef, and a non-swimmer—all of which provide inspiration for her writing.

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