Psychotic Break

And so I wandered. Lonely as a cloud, seeking some break in the darkness you left behind. How did I get to this point?

Your proposal caught me off guard. I craved love for so long, my heart could not believe your words. We spent those next weeks in pure bliss. I asked to meet your family. “Soon enough,” you said. Then one day I came home to an empty apartment. Your clothes were gone. Your side of the bathroom, pristine. You’d stood there that morning, shaving off your beard until a fresh unfamiliar face looked out from the mirror. “I’ll have to get used to that,” I said. Did you want me to? They found me, wandering through the house. Incoherent. The darkness was everywhere.

I’ve spent years in this institution now, wondering if you were real.

Written for Prosery Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. EXCEPT, today, we’re not writing poetry. We’re writing PROSERY! This is a form of creative writing, developed at dVerse. The prompter (today it’s me) gives a line or two from a poem of her/his choosing as the prompt. Writers must then write a piece of prose, think flash fiction, that contains the given line(s) word for word, within the body of prose. The punctuation may change….but the word order must be the same and it must be word for word. The prose must not exceed 144 words in length (sans title). As the pub tender/prompter today, I’ve selected the line “I wandered lonely as a cloud” from Wordsworth’s poem I Wander Lonely as a Cloud. The line must be used word for word within the body of prose (punctuation may vary), and the prose must be 144 words or less in length, sans title. Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Come join us!

39 thoughts on “Psychotic Break

  1. tie-dye vibes March 14, 2022 / 3:50 pm

    I love this—especially that haunting piece of artwork you paired your poem with. Killer ending too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian March 14, 2022 / 3:52 pm

      Glad you enjoyed my prose today! On Prosery Monday we always do flash fiction….and I enjoy letting my imagination go! 🙂


  2. Glenn A. Buttkus March 14, 2022 / 4:02 pm

    Your imagination was in full sprint, and the closing was only a pause. Excellent flash-fiction, and an inspired use of the prompt sentence. And yes, your ‘image” was a capper and a keeper!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian March 14, 2022 / 4:19 pm

      So glad you enjoyed, Glenn! I never know what my pen will do….and for this one, it went to a dark place. Literally.


  3. ByteSizedStudio March 14, 2022 / 4:26 pm

    Wow, that rocked. The parts you left out were just as powerful, maybe moreso, because I had to supply them myself. Brava! Great use of the prompt.


  4. writingwhatnots March 14, 2022 / 4:27 pm

    Love where your pen took you Lillian.


    • lillian March 14, 2022 / 5:55 pm

      Thank you! I never know where the pen is going to go….sometimes it really surprised me!


  5. K.Hartless March 14, 2022 / 5:16 pm

    Has a chilling ending, but the details are so vivid in what could be a reverie. Excellent. Love this assignment.


  6. msjadeli March 14, 2022 / 5:51 pm

    Ooh! Spine tingling story, Lillian. I hope one day she will be released from her prison to live again.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Gillena Cox March 14, 2022 / 6:09 pm

    Story paired with an image to just take it a step further. Sad tale, but oh so well crafted.



    • lillian March 15, 2022 / 9:49 am

      So glad you enjoyed. I was searching for an image after it was written….then went back into my media library from other poems and found this one from over a year ago. I’m glad so many thought the image went well with the piece.


  8. Carol Congalton March 14, 2022 / 6:20 pm

    Methinks she had invested too much of herself in that man. A great read!


    • lillian March 15, 2022 / 9:48 am

      Yep….always important to invest in ourselves as we develop relationships with others. You’ve stated it well here.


  9. Mish March 14, 2022 / 6:56 pm

    Oh…”the darkness was everywhere”. That really captures the nightmare of psychosis or sudden loss… or both. Love the way your mind wandered with the clouds on this one!


    • lillian March 15, 2022 / 9:46 am

      Thanks, Mish. Sadly, some people live their nightmares during the day.


  10. D. Avery @shiftnshake March 14, 2022 / 7:38 pm

    That is a great last line, as if it wasn’t tragic enough before that. And now I wonder too, if he was real. Crazy good writing!


    • lillian March 15, 2022 / 9:45 am

      Thank you so much. So glad you enjoyed!


  11. Truedessa March 14, 2022 / 8:50 pm

    This was a suspense thriller in flash fiction. Very well done! I want to read more.


  12. kaykuala March 15, 2022 / 5:07 am

    I’ve spent years in this institution now,
    wondering if you were real.

    Great close Lillian! There are those ‘not happily ever after……’ending that are classic and this is one!


    Liked by 1 person

  13. paeansunplugged March 15, 2022 / 7:38 am

    Oh, heartrending! That last line…superb. And that picture goes so well with your words.


    • lillian March 15, 2022 / 9:42 am

      So glad you enjoyed! I’d had the photo from a poem over a year ago….remembered it and am so glad I did.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. ben Alexander March 15, 2022 / 8:37 am

    Wow, Lillian… I’ve probably been watching too many psychological thrillers recently, but I can see this as the basis for a movie plot!



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