My name is Marin and my life is not so amazing. I am 64 years old and I don't have anyone. I'm retired and my body smells like an old person. In the evening, I listen to the radio and flange at my neighbor's window from the fourth floor. I can see her kitchen very well and hear everything because our building has lighting. She breastfeeds the baby and sometimes I fall asleep with my head on the table listening to her squealing. Every time I want to put the noose around my neck, I hear that damned neighbor's parrot saying "mommy is here, mommy is here" and I give myself another day.

(Translated by Ioana Negrea / 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 September 2022, the group has 9,250 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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