What Really Happened

By Trina Jacobs

“Be careful, girl,” Mr. Wolf said, “There are a lot of dangerous beasts in the woods.”

Little Red shrugged. “I’m not afraid.”

Mr. Wolf grinned. “You should be.” He rode on.

He was at Grandma’s house when she arrived, looking smug as he warmed himself by the fire.

“I’ve brought you wine and bread to go with dinner,” Red said, glancing at Mr. Wolf.

Grandma smiled with too many sharp teeth. “Shall we?”

The women shed their clothes and shifted.

Mr. Wolf’s eyes went wide. He was only a man. He didn’t have time to run.

Red and Grandma feasted.

Trina Jacobs has been writing down the stories that fill her head since she learned to write words.


By Tessa A. Adams

And I remember you
in charcoal dreams
and chalky daytime visions.
You become we stacking rocks
Like stacking a deck
Like stacking blocks
Like stacking boxes
One on top of the other
This day, we were light as we’d ever been.
Heads back in laughter.
We carried kings with our lips
and tasted salt diamonds on our tongues.
Even now,
our silhouettes sit
frozen forever,
mouths open.
I blink this image to life,
and I think of how
laughing looks like screaming
when the sound’s turned off.

“I write to get closer to the sublime.” – the writer

Jaded Soul

By Essam M. Al-Jassim

Worn out in body and soul, Ahmed returns home from work to see his wife and children expecting his arrival, as they do every day. He caresses his wife’s cheeks and plays with his children in his weakened state. Ahmed quietly withdraws amid the laughter of the little ones to take a shower; and there under the drops of water falling on his enervated body, he can cry where no one notices his tears. The world is cruel outside.

Essam M. Al-Jassim is a Saudi writer and translator. This translation was originally written by Hossam Al-Khattib.

Beautiful Creature

By Katherine Gleason

Tomorrow we will haul our luggage to separate cars and drive to separate cities. Tonight the gibbous moon silvers the surface of the lake. Your wife calls, confirming. A loon wails. Briny mist rises from the water. Tonight you hold my hand.

“I write to remember. And to forget.” – the writer


By Hugh Cartwright

I despise the red-light district, but I’ve no choice. I must visit Charlene.

Her window is her calling-card. Scarlet underwear slung along a curtain rail, draped against the glass. Panties heavy with trinkets and tokens left by grateful clients, mementos safety-pinned up as they depart.

A woman ushers me into the blood-red room.

Charlene’s “busy right now,” so I must wait. Within moments my nerves get the better of me, and I turn to leave.

But first, I add my own contribution.

I safety-pin my husband’s wedding ring to her D-cup bra.

I’m certain he’ll see it by tomorrow.

Hugh lives in the Pacific Northwest, where he writes to provide relief from his hopeless goal of growing Canadian oranges.

Best of The Drabble – 2020

To celebrate the end of this god-awful year, we present some our favorite posts of 2020. While we are grateful to all Drabble readers and writers for helping to make this site a success, we want to recognize (in no particular order) a few drabbles we truly loved in 2020. We hope you do, too:

Dog Poem
by Juanita Rey

Her Friends Have Begun to Worry
by Anonymous

Learning to Write Poetry Late in Life
by stevieslaw

In Her Dreams
by Jim Bates

The Weary Healer
by Mark Tulin

All The Concerts Are Canceled
by Sarah Grady

Wild Flowers
by Melissa Gill

by Judy Darley

The Void
by John Malone

by Bruce Levine

The Waterfall
by Bibiana Krall

The Road Back
by Raymond Sloan

Secret Thoughts of a Survivor
by M. Jay Dixit

Holding Out for an Anti-Hero

By Shelli Cornelison

First you haunted my peripheral vision and I only knew you in silhouette. Then I learned to expand my view, taught my eyes to track quicker, to open wider until I captured you fully. Now I can’t shut them tightly enough to black out that mistake.

They say seeing is believing. I rolled out a red carpet of faith for your performative pain, your rehearsed affection, and your unparalleled devotion. My vision gets clearer with every flashback.

You always possessed the clarity to see right through me, straight to my weakest points. X-ray vision: the perfect superpower for a villain.

“Some days I do it to avoid the laundry, but mostly I write because I am fascinated by the way a phrase becomes a sentence becomes a voice becomes a story.” – the writer


By David Lowis

You said you needed to go home, that your parents would be worried. And then you ran off. That was it – the last time I saw you.

Was it something I said? I don’t know why I’m asking really. Of course it was. It was the first time I’d mentioned Harry, the new boy in class. The first time we’d talked about boys at all, if I remember right.

Did you know, it will be our fiftieth wedding anniversary tomorrow? Harry and me. I hope you’ll raise a glass to us, as I will to you, Gwendoline, my imaginary friend.

“I write because it’s a cheap hobby.” – the writer


By A. Perveen

The circumference of my being is a thing so banal, it’s still untethered by the mere possibility of a glance from you.

I am bound to you. Gravity to Earth, moonlight to the sea, and still, this strange craving does not abide. I care not for the moment when it may arise, nor is it the look that matters, be it loving or kind, playful or devastating.

Rather, it is the prospect of this everlasting wait …
No one told me it’s the long in the longing that enfolds, the year in yearning that binds.

“I write because stories fill my head until I let them out.” – the writer


By Jaden Richardson

There is a difference between too much and too little. I talk to not get overlooked. I don’t wanna talk a lot. But it just happens. Me. Talking. Talking a lot. Talking too little. It just happens.

Talking too little gets you overlooked. Talking too much gets you too many eyes. Getting overlooked is the worst feeling. The feeling that you have to make initiative to be seen. To be heard. To be noticed.

I am not an attention-seeker. But I am a seeker to be listened to. But isn’t everyone?

Jaden writes “to release any tension or pain I feel in the moment.”