One-Sentence Stories

One Sentence to Sleep
Murray Dunlap

Oh to be injured in an accident and have no dreams or even good sleep anymore, I try my damnedest to write just one sentence that will let me sleep.


The Robot
Ryan Ridge

We found an old robot behind the YMCA and took it home and taught it to dance and it was so simple to teach it to dance: all we did was turn on the radio and say, “Act natural.”


Three Months Later, the Note for My Ransom, Still Unpaid
Brad Rose
I only hope it was because of bad spelling or a typographical error.


Jesse Tangen-Mills

The otter officials of Oogonium opted for the oblong ocular-plates to optimize their observation of that oneiroid state.


The Complexities of Candy Bars
David Kinsey

He said that he loved her, not because he truly did, but because she had the exact change he needed.


Family Feud
Marcus Speh

It was later said that the cutting off of cousin Kolko’s head caused the feud between the two families that would eventually end with their mutual extinction, but Gennaio knew the truth because he had been there when the leaders of the families had shaken hands for the first time in an Italian restaurant and could not agree on the tip for the waiter who had dropped a biscotto under the table so that when they parted, their bellies pasta-filled, they felt belligerent, and cousin Kolko, the only one of the family who had ever actually been to their native Poland, was but an unfortunate first innocent victim of a hapless ritualised initial encounter where fate was wrought of bread crumbs.


Chella Courington and Ted Chiles

She believed the blood, not him.


Kyle Sundby

His love of karaoke and his need to be different occasionally clashed but often, to the discomfort of the audience, couldn’t be any more in tune.


Jackie Bateman

My wretched dog limps on the dirty snow while Ivan kicks him in the rib cage (one more for luck, he says), until I realise that it’s my turn again; as Ivan lunges, I grip the ice axe tight (for luck) and hope I can make up for all the torn blouses, the rough times.


Troubled Mornings
Helen Vitoria

In the morning we spend time discussing how the dashboard Jesus was ejected from the car, before the crash.


Love Me Now
Rita Buckley

Love me now, if you have time.


Katherine Gleason

Hauling her one souvenir, a Maine lobster trap, not weathered, but new, untouched by the elements, up the stairs, bursting into the apartment, expecting a welcome, Janet was sure that separate vacations, time to think had been a good idea, but Peter, who glanced up from his computer on her entrance, turned away, back to his work, when she moved to kiss him, so she placed the trap in the center of the living room, admired it, slipped into the bathroom, into the shower, where she imagined that Peter would soon warm to her presence, then stepping out of the shower, onto the chilly tiles of the bathroom floor, she heard the meow, more like a shriek, that propelled her, towel dropping to her waist, into the living room, where she found the cat, a kitten really, soon to be a marmalade tom, inside the trap, and not just within, but stuck, its head caught in the plastic netting at one end, where it cried and struggled, surely about to hurt itself, so Janet called for Peter, her rock, but he must have gone out while she bathed, and thus she ran to the closet, dragged the tool box from the top shelf, tumbled the contents on the floor, selected hammer, screwdriver, putty knife, managed to wedge the knife under the strip of wood that anchored the netting to the trap’s frame, pounded, pried, finally loosening the nails and the netting, freeing the kitten, who shook its head, and just at that moment of freedom Peter drifted into the room on a breeze that puckered her skin: “I release you,” she said; “I let you go.”


Andrew Kozma

The sky broke open and the world flooded, ruining crops and clothing stores, and just before we all drowned the sun fell from the sky like a baby bird.


Alex Bernstein

After dinner, we’d wander through Celia’s immense backyard picking lush, ripe raspberries from her orange trees.


Silent Dribble, The Lottery, and a Dog Biscuit
Kulpreet Yadav

When Gandhi becomes first in the family to win a lottery he is very excited, so on the way to the claims office he looks at the city and grimaces at people who are dead silent, dogs gaping with their mouths closed, and the potholes on the roads like sparrow droppings gone ambitious in size overnight; and for the first time he is awoken to a fresh perspective that all failures need to be told to mend their ways, but when he reaches the office, he is given a dog biscuit and Gandhi just ends up crying.


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