You're laughing, but it's no laughing matter. Do you remember how we used to simper before, icon with long legs that I adore? Whoever laughs, the world sees you. The sole of your step imprinted on the sand between two waves, one coming with blissfulness, the other leaving with wistfulness. Even the tracks are not what they used to be. Well, in the Mesozoic, they remained carved in petrified clay. Scientists were amazed until they became the scapegoat. Today, fried seeds are planted in the clam beach. The tides take place and steal my grace. I get the last laugh, understanding too late. A mark you leave, a mark you are. I laugh.

(Translated by Tania Diniță / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I / Corrected by prof. dr. Nadina Vișan / Edited 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 November 2022, the group has 9,580 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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