Irina was a simple girl inside and out. When God took her mother to Heaven, He gave her three little brothers in exchange. She worked all day. Her palms and heart were bruised by the yoke of the days and the desolation of the nights. But in the field she forgot it all. She'd gather corncobs, she'd hum, she'd watch the clouds with green eyes. She'd throw the bags in the wagon as if she'd put all her worries and longings in them. Once a day she'd soothe herself. She'd sneak to the edge of the field, make a swing out of her arms and throw herself into the sky, free, to live her dream.

(Translated by Lenuța Bejenaru / 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 August 2022, the group has 9,000 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 Ficțiuni Reale.

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