Art inspires reality and reality inspires art. Especially if that reality is Venice. 

My flash “Retracing” is pure fiction, yet I couldn’t have written it without my recent experiences in that beloved water city. 

Thank you, Special Features Editor Steven John, for soliciting this piece, and thank you Meg Pokrass for letting it live in the wonderful New Flash Fiction Review. (Don’t forget to check out the other Place pieces and the latest issue. So much excellent short prose at your fingertips.)

It’s easy to disappear in the dampness of this town. Twelve moons ago, my mother wandered through a murky labyrinth of streets and bridges, crossing canal after canal—like I do now—leaving no footsteps. Cold air snakes across her face and her loneliness swells. She slips into a ruined palazzo like the fog at night and climbs the marble staircase. Music invites her to dance through the infinite ballrooms as the woman she once was. She twirls and forgets, shedding mass. She twirls and levitates. She is like smoke, like a cloud of perfume, vanishing into a dreamscape no mortal eye can see.

Read the rest of the story at: New Flash Fiction Review
Photo credit: Daniel Presley