Writing Prompt: What does Mother's Day mean to you?


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Write a fictional scene or a nonfiction essay conveying what Mother’s Day really means to you, beyond cards and flowers.

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One thought on “Writing Prompt: What does Mother's Day mean to you?

  1. Mark James

    Just for the record, Zac. . .this is fictional.

    “Mom, I’m busy.” Shawn’s phone was slick with blood. He wiped it off, and jammed it between his shoulder and his ear. “No. I’m not on a date. Can I call you back?”

    Shawn rolled the corpse onto its side, slipped his shades up into his hair so he could see better. “What? No, mom. I’ll be there tomorrow. Is Aunt Sarah coming?”

    He tied a noose around the neck of the sprawled body, threw the end over a wooden beam, and hauled the body to its feet. The phone nearly slipped. “What do you mean Meggie won’t be there?”

    When the corpse was hanging about four feet off the floor, Shawn tied the rope around a hook built into the wall. “I’ll go by her house.” He pulled the knot tight. “Eric won’t be a problem. What do you want me to bring?”

    Looking up at the corpse, he realized he’d forgotten to pin a note to the jacket. He’d have to leave it somewhere else. “Yeah. I’ll bring dessert. Mom, I have another call. I’ll see you tomorrow, okay?”

    Shawn cleaned up. When he was done, he ran a DNA sniffer over the suicide scene he’d built for the police. Perfect. No trace of him.

    Now for the hard part. He headed out to his car, speed dialed “2” and waited for his sister to pick up. “Meggie, where are you?”

    He drove down the long driveway, took a shortcut over a dirt road. “I know you don’t have to report your life to me, but I’m coming to get you tomorrow. So tell me where you are.”

    His little sister drove him crazy. He listened, tried not to hear the way her voice sounded like a confession. When she started talking about how Eric was going to get help as soon as he found a job, Shawn couldn’t take it anymore. “Did he hit you anywhere that mom can see?”

    Her silence told him more than he wanted to know. “God, Meggie. Tell me where you are. I’m coming to get you. And he better not be there.”

    More silence. Shawn made himself take three slow deep breaths. “I’m not mad,” he said. “Mom wants to see both of us tomorrow. After that, do what you want.”

    He slammed a fist into the steering wheel, nearly drove off the road. “Yeah, I care. If I didn’t he’d be dead.”

    Shawn gave up on driving, pulled over, laid his head back against his seat. “Okay. I’m calm. Tell me where I can come get you and I’ll hang up and you can go rescue Eric.”

    He hated himself for getting mad at his sister, hated himself even more for letting her boyfriend live. But killing the two before Eric hadn’t changed anything. “Come on, Meggie. Stop crying,” he said. “I won’t touch this one. I promise. Give me an address.”

    She gave it to him, and Shawn hung up and told himself that making a promise he wasn’t going to keep didn’t count because mom wanted to see him and Meggie, and tomorrow was Mother’s Day, the day that moms got exactly what they asked for.


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