The cat sees me with yellow eyes and smoky gray fur. Her ears are pricked up, you'd think she was listening to the wind, but no. From the road, air throbbed in the heat, as if dancing, or not. Under the walnut the swing moves, you see there is no one, but it would be nice if there was. The foot lazily moves the tree, the voice sings a song. The swaddled baby closes his eyelids and trembles slightly. The ants carry grasses from the field gathered at dawn. I beat the grass with my left hand, to bathe the child in medicinal juice. With the right hand, I make a cross.  

(Translated by Medeea Alexandra Stan / 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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