Friday Fictioneers – 27 June

Every Friday writers from around the world contribute 100 word stories prompted by a photograph supplied by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields to Friday Fictioneers. Here’s my story.

Copyright - Madison Woods

Copyright – Madison Woods

Sugar Gliders

My daughter is leaving for university in the city. She packs the important things: jeans, hair straightener, make-up, nail polish. I squeeze in towels, sheets, a first aid kit, pens.

On her last night we watch the family of sugar gliders who live in the hollow of our ironbark. At dusk they scurry around the trunk, silhouettes against the darkening sky. One by one they leap, spread their membranes and glide like small carpet squares across our backyard into the trees.

We’ve watched generations of timid babies take their first short flights.

This is our first time.

This entry was posted in Short stories and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

47 Responses to Friday Fictioneers – 27 June

  1. margaret jackson says:

    Beautiful Karen – I just love this.

  2. Karen, I enjoyed the contrast (so real) between important things and “other” things. I like the two launchings you showed, too. Lovey voice here.


  3. storydivamg says:

    Karen, Beautiful comparison between the squirrels and your family. A neatly woven tale appropriate to the prompt.

    All my best,

    • Thanks very much, Marie Gail. Although they look a little bit like them, sugar gliders aren’t related to squirrels. They’re a very timid Australian native. As you can probably tell I have a soft spot for them.

    • Don’t feel bad, Marie Gail! Many people think they’re a type of squirrel. You couldn’t be expected to know about sugar gliders. They don’t get any publicity internationally and I’m sure that’s the way these shy creatures like it.

  4. dianathrelfo says:

    Karen, love the analogy between the daughter leaving the nest and the baby sugar-gliders. Particularly like the description, ‘like small carpet squares’ – how unique.

  5. The parallel between the sugar glider and the daughter leaving the nest is very well done. This could be the first chapter of a book.

    • I can’t seem to write a long work doesn’t matter how hard I try. Endings keep writing themselves after 2,000 words and won’t be budged. I’m pleased you enjoyed the short version though, Bjorn.

  6. Mike says:

    Gosh .. I can relate to this story all too easy. Nice clean, simple, and well written story.

  7. Sandra says:

    Had to google Sugar Gliders. What a lovely little creature. And a lovely story too. You’re on a roll, Karen.

  8. Nan Falkner says:

    Dear Karen, What a lovely tale you have written or reported to us. Such beautiful imagery! I have never seen a ‘Sugar Glider’ but I bet they would be worthwhile to watch! Your dancing pen has made me happy thinking of this story! Good job! Wow, your Continent has all this cool stuff! Nan 🙂

    • That’s a lovely image you made about dancing pens making you happy, Nan. When we lived in the bush we watched the sugar gliders most nights. They are tiny and very quick moving. Unfortunately their hollow was in the part of the ironbark that cracked off in a storm and although we put up a little house for them they didn’t come back. The tree split at night so they wouldn’t have been home, thank goodness.

  9. MrBinks says:

    This reads very simply, and I mean that with such praise. A perfect, emotive tale. Loved this.

  10. Awww my eldest has recently left home. Really touching.

    • When our children leave home it is an exciting time, but there’s also the sadness that things will never again be quite as they were. Thanks for reading and commenting.

  11. Such a beautiful, tender story.

  12. A great little passage of life tale. Had to google the glider. What unusual little creatures.

  13. Horus says:

    And the young one’s leaves the nest. I wonder if Sugar-Glder moms help their kids to pack too…

  14. draliman says:

    Such a lovely story. Very clever comparing the sugar gliders’ first time out of the nest with the daughter’s.

  15. Danny James says:

    Well written. I love the comaprison you painted. I admit I had to read the comments to find out what a sugar glider was. Still…great story.


  16. Karen, That was a great story. I looked up the sugar gliders on Google also. They’re really cute. I read that some people keep them as pets. Comparing them to a daughter leaving home kind of made me laugh because our daughter left home for the state college, got homesick after one year and the wrong major for her, and came back home to a branch of that college near us and a major she loved. She moved out closer to the college in a couple of years, but still not far from us.Well written. 🙂 —Susan

    • Susan, sugar gliders are cute, aren’t they?. You need a license to keep them as pets. I don’t know anyone who has kept them, though. I smiled at your comment because our daughter did the exact opposite to yours – local university which didn’t work out and after a year moved to university in the capital to a major she loved. She hasn’t come back because there are no jobs in her field in regional areas. Thanks for dropping by, Susan.

  17. Very poignant and descriptive!

  18. subroto says:

    This was such a beautiful and elegantly crafted story about leaving the nest – both sugar gliders and humans. Wonderfully done.

  19. Dear Karen,

    God was at his creative best when it came to Australia. Love the allegorical feel of this story. Nice one.



  20. LOVE this one Karen. I’m with Rochelle– the allegory here is just wonderful. And, Australia happens to be one of my favorite places. My son is moving there for a year, starting in August. Just an incredible place, and a beautiful story.

    • Thanks very much for reading and commenting while you’re on your world wind holiday, Dawn. I hope your son has a wonderful experience here. Where is he staying?

      • He and his gf will be living in Melbourne, for at least 6 months… he’s having a little trouble with his visa right now, as he spent half a year in China, in school. They told him very late in the game that he needs chest xrays, etc… and he already has his tickets. Ugh. We’ll see how it all plays out!

      • That’s very frustrating for him. It’s a strange and unfortunate contradiction that a country known for its easy laid back attitude has a bureaucracy that is so officious. Hope it all works out for him. Melbourne is a wonderful city.

      • Yes, I’m sure it will all be fine. He’s really excited.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s