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"Off Fukushima" by Amos van der Merwe


This week’s piece blends recent events with fiction. It uses the earthquake in Japan as it’s place/setting and frames the events in terms of character, as it must be framed. Devastation is about people. Yet in the end, ironically, the character mimics the action of the earth. School starts on Monday. Procrastinate by writing something short. Or rather, be a good student and take a break by writing a flash story and sending it in to

—Lyle Rosdahl

“Off Fukushima” by Amos van der Merwe

The brave little boat crests the first wave as the wind picked up. Fishing had been slow and the few cob at the back will barely pay for tonight’s drink. The fisherman glances towards the shore, a good three kilo’s to go and the sun is so low already! He opens the trottle a bit further, spurring the aged engine on to a higher whine. Waves this deep is uncommon. It’s only when a storm is brewing somewhere that they come this deep. No matter which way he looks at it: trouble is on its way. The night can be as dangerous as a storm, if not more so. At the edge of his vision, the horizon buckles a bit. That too, is strange. He doesn’t hear, cannot hear the rumbling under the water, but the fish did. When the first chuck of seafloor shifted that morning, just a few millimeters, they knew and scattered. The fisherman will be home early tonight. Early, but not in one piece. --- Lyle Rosdahl, a writer living in San Antonio, edits the flash fiction blog & best of in print for the Current. He created, facilitates and participates in Postcard Fiction Collaborative, a monthly flash fiction response to a photo. You can see more of his work, including photos, paintings and writing, at Send your flash to

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