How could I go there, sweetie? What, aren't there any other sad old women in this world? True, the sky fell over me when my old man died, but it's just how it is: some leave, the others remain with the longing. I should wear the black clothes I keep in the chest and cry on the porch. Then I should wipe my face with my kerchief and go to feed the chicken, the tomcat, the dog - they are hungry no matter whether I'm sad or not. I won't go, sweetie. Look, I talk to you - I tell you that my soul aches from longing and my flesh shivers from sleeplessness, because I haven't been able to sleep since he departed. But I have you, be my cure.

(Translated by Dragoş Frangulea / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year II / Corrected by Silvia Petrescu, coordinator of the translations)

Real Fiction is a collective project started in 2013 by Florin Piersic Jr. The concept of Real Fiction continued to exist as a Facebook group, after a volume of stories was published at Humanitas Publishing House. (In May 2021, the group has 6.400 members.) The authors write ultra-short stories, with the texts limited to 500 characters (in Romanian, so the length of the English translation might be a little different) - a flash-fiction exercise on a topic that changes almost daily. The group's coordinators are Florin Piersic Jr., Gabriel Molnar, Răzvan Penescu, and Luchian Abel. (Drawing by Adrian T. Roman)

Versiunea în română a acestui text se poate citi aici, în rubrica Ficţiuni Reale.

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