When she says goodbye, my mother keeps repeating mechanically: write that you have arrived. I nod with my eyes downcast. I don't like that all the people on the platform are staring at her worn-out bag and hands stained by the peeling of green nuts. For her I'm about to arrive somewhere, whole and impatient, if only in a small, unpainted room where no one is waiting for me. Whole on the outside. Inside, I go crazy as soon as the bus starts moving. The same oscillation between worlds. With my heart in my mouth. Tick tock. I wave my roots like a pinched flag.

(Translated by Cristina-Nicoleta Costache (Mircea) / 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 December 2022, the group has 9,880 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 every few days. 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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