Dead Wood

I’m done for when bobbin thread snaps for third time today. Foreman’s in me face, sour spittle flying. Get out.Forget that five bob I’m due. That’s rent money gone. No use lifting me skirts for this one—‘is fancies fall elsewhere. It’s me as kept little ‘uns from ‘is fiddling, fornicating fingers.  Our Nan’s only seven.

Outside, factory’s blazing, but streets are dark, dank grave cuts. Workhouse looms deadbeat-black against moon. Foreman’s on towpath with ‘is bottle, tipping bitter down ‘is throat. Canal’s cold and silent as despair. Drown a man, it could.

I swore I’d swing for ‘im one day.

This story was shortlisted in the June 2023 monthly micro fiction competition.

About the author: Anne Soilleux lives in Berkshire and occasionally writes short things. Some of them have made it online.