Photo Prompt

Each month, we post a photograph as a writing prompt. Post your 100-word story in the comments section, and we’ll choose one to feature in our next issue. To see examples, read photo stories we’ve published in the past.

In the spirit of fun and fairness, please follow these guidelines:
• Post only one story per photo prompt.
• Be mindful of others’ feelings when commenting (keep it positive rather than giving feedback).
• Remember this is a shared safe space for all lovers of 100-word stories.

image of fork and spoon

 

Art Credit: production AL1

83 Responses to “Photo Prompt”

  1. STRANGE FEAST

    Friskies sate the teacher more than kimchi. Dalloway lies alone on her patchwork quilt by the window. Sunlight casts tiny sparks on her brown fur. Her fellow traveler would never eat the scratchy nuggets, whine at midnight, or shake her sassy tail again.

    The teacher puts down her spoon. Raises the bowl with white paw prints on it to her lips and drinks. More than borders and emails between her and home, Dalloway’s death makes her feel foreign.

  2. Matt says:

    Chopsticks
    Whenever I’m using a spoon, hell, even a fork, I always find myself thinking about heroin. The smell of it cooking, the tightness of the tourniquet around my arm, the prick of the needle, the warmth and relaxation of it spreading through my veins, the shedding of all my worries and problems. My sponsor says whenever I find this happening, I should think about how it ruined my life. Or I can just use chopsticks for the rest of my days. We laugh like it’s a joke, but deep down I’m seriously considering it and I know he is too.

  3. Carmen says:

    Her gentle smile graces everyone with a sense of innocence, lolling them into a dream like state. Even adults fall for her smiles and her silent laugh. Children talk to her like she’s their best friend. As the children grow, they trust her less and less. But then a new wave of children come and go, she is reused over and over again, until she is old and worn. She grows older and older until her hands are used as a holder for a fork and a spoon. It’s not very practical, but she holds a special place in our hearts, even when we are old and grey. And when we are gone, she still stares at the fork and spoon clutched firmly in her hands.

  4. Charlotte Van Goor says:

    The Cutlery Thief

    Being stuck in a drawer for all of my life wasn’t the worst thing in the world. What eased the pain and boredom was being stuck with the love of my life Spencer. He was the spoon of my life. One day he was taken by what I call the cutlery thief. He used Spencer as a soup spoon when he was specifically a yogurt spoon. My love was put into a hot metal box that made him spotless. This thief ended up returning my love but he didn’t come back the same Spencer that I knew.

  5. Eric says:

    Spoon is always confident. He always looks forward, never looking back, never regretting. But me, I can’t help it. The mistakes I’ve made in the past build up behind me and drag me down. I can’t stop seeing them, remembering them. I can’t look away.
    I wish I could be like him. Head up, looking forward. How does he do it? I may never find out. His smooth head, capable of holding almost anything. Even liquids. Me? I’m sharp and pointy. Rough and violent. I can’t elegantly scoop up soup. When I try to do so, it simply escapes my grasp, falling through the holes in my head. I aggressively stab things like a savage. I could never be like spoon.

  6. Chanbaekler says:

    Human

    They represent the pros and cons of different people. Some people always put themselves in a positive way, they are not afraid of danger, and they always explore positive energy to the people in the world. On the contrary, other kinds of people will huddle themselves in a comfort zone and are unwilling to come out, like a frog falling into a well and can only see the little part of the sky, they will never know what is a real world looks like.

  7. Kris says:

    I had the option to choose only one. Time was running short with the two weapons just below my reach. I look towards the opposite side of the room, the minute hand almost striking midnight which was when I strike. Tik tok tik tok. The screech of claws grazing against the wall echoed the dining room, waiting to surprise me at any moment. The quite footsteps, were not quite anymore, and there it was. It scrabbled towards me with excitement in its eyes. I was buried in my thoughts and trampled to pick one of the weapons. I turned over, and grabbed the shiny, smooth spoon and targetted dead center, to the thing in front of me. “CUTTTT,” of course i made the wrong choice AGAIN.

  8. Christopher Robin says:

    The spoon laid beside the fork. The spoon had been awake for many hours now and could not fall asleep. He laid awake wondering when he could get out of the house. He was sick of being used to eat, and being thrown into the dishwasher like trash. He wanted to explore the world with his fork and wanted to have fun. They had talked about leaving for a while but never had the chance, but no longer. Tomorrow they would leave this house and never return. Spoon didn’t know how they would leave but together he knew that they would be successful.

  9. Da says:

    It has been 3 days.
    Jonathan’s mind could be declared as a natural disaster hotspot, filled with tornados and hurricanes of thoughts he did not want.
    Johnny could not sleep, because of these thoughts.
    Johnny could not focus because of these thoughts.
    These ideas plaguing his mind until the night came, and when did, John was dead set on the deed.
    Fork and spoon, the tool of his choice.
    A smooth stab, quick, efficient, down to the very bone. There is no coming back now, young John has done it. A chill ran down his spine, caused not from the deed, but instead, from the deed’s simplicity.

  10. Dwayne says:

    Fourchette loved Cuillère with all her heart.
    They married young, and she thought it would be forever.
    But now she lay there stunned – the tears migrating to her pillow.
    The announcement that he was leaving her, having left his lips, he sat there coldly – A literal space between them.
    Her name was Di’ sha. They met at Mrs. Vache’s ‘over the moon’ wedding.
    Gáta played beautiful violin. Inu, ever observant, chuckled at what he saw in the corner.
    “Fourchette here… You can sign them in the morning.”
    “Hey, Diddle…Diddle? Here!” At seeing his unborn child regret filled him.

  11. Cate Rhys says:

    Perspective

    “Fat head! Tine face!” That’s what we hear. But, it’s not who we are or what we reflect. It’s about perspective. Turn around. Face yourself. What do you see?
    I see long, sleek, powerful lines. A machine. The wedge that splits you from these misperceptions. The tined-lever prying the entrenched lies from your persona. Ready to dig in!
    See yourself for who you really are. Shiny and beautiful. Simple, yet versatile. A crowd favorite.
    Remember the toe-tapping music you made clanking together in talented hands? Or, being on stage, scraping on a washboard in a Zydeco tune?
    See your power.

  12. Jim Byrnes says:

    Papa

    A fork and spoon, posed beneath dramatic lighting opened the exhibit. Unremarkable utilitarian kitchen utensils, but they unexpectedly called forth memories of my beloved grandfather who was an accomplished spaghetti twirler. I watched him twirl at every opportunity. It was mesmerizing, like he was conducting a symphony orchestra. I asked and pleaded many, many times for him to teach me how to twirl. He would always say not yet my child. The yes finally came on my sixth birthday. I thought I might pee my pants. My first twirling was an unmitigated disaster but the smile never left Papa’a face.

  13. Sundays are the hardest now. We’d get together as a family, all of us. Even Clive who couldn’t wait to move out, he always took the 47 bus across town to have Sunday dinner with us. Mum would roast a chicken or something, veg, potatoes and Yorkies. She laid a lovely table, she did, thanks to the wedding china and silverware. Dad always toasted Mum and then at the end of the meal would say, “All day to cook and only ten minutes to eat it.” That was our Sunday. So when Clive didn’t show, we knew something wasn’t right.

  14. The fork snored lightly, sound asleep and unaware of what tomorrow would bring. He lay beside her, on his back, wide awake. Moonlight spilled across the room. In the quiet, he could hear everything. The neighbor’s cat and a faint melody that might have been a violin. A dog’s chortle. A cow’s moo. The clock’s tick. It was almost time to go. He was too tense to relax; too excited to sleep. One more hour. Then he would slip out of bed, grab his duffel, and go pick up Dixie.

    He smiled, “What a dish!”

    Tonight they were running away.

  15. Elif Baysak says:

    Spoon. Fork. Knife.

    I was unable to cut through my meat as I was unable to cross the painstakingly built false reality. “We need knives, Martha.” She stared on her plastic finger, fighting her way through the stubborn meat.

    “Or no more food that needs cutting.” No more cutting. She listened with a blind ear that matched her eyes. Life was dark after him. Her vision allowed her to flow through this routine but my eyes widely rested on the empty chair, cramping at every attempt of a bite.

    He drank the soup, endured the spaghetti, and served himself as the last bite.

  16. Dining Out

    It started with a fork. The arc of its stainless body over the grey table, the tines tentatively touching the surface and reflected as though bent over water admiring their own beauty. We were dining at Le Bernardin where the staff fussed over my polite five-year-old sitting properly and ordering off the adult menu. But the alure of the silverware was too much for him; the concave spoon revealing its shadow-side on the table’s veneer and the fork challenging Ryan to determine its payload. The latent architect within broke free. The staff, slightly horrified by the construction, smiled admiringly anyway.

  17. Krystyna Fedosejevs says:

    On the Utensil Table Setting Paradigm

    “What’s for dessert?” Tony asked.

    “Pie,” answered Faye.

    She observed the table her husband had set. “Why spoons? Pie’s eaten with forks.”

    Main course offerings must’ve delighted their guests. Merry conversation accompanied hearty partaking.

    When Faye angled a knife to cut the first slice of pie, liquid gushed from under the thin meringue. Women gasped. Men stared.

    “Anyone wants a spoon?” Tony asked.

    “No thanks, but I wouldn’t mind another slice,” a man answered, looking around. “So what if it isn’t presentable. Tastes great.”

    Amidst nervousness, Faye sighed relief. She took a gamble making that dessert, without an electric beater.

  18. Judy Gatehouse says:

    Delightful! Thank you 😊

  19. Patrick Grewe says:

    Slipping Away

    The garage door closes. He exits the car and stands scarecrow while the overhead light times out. His pupils adjust to the near black. Hot, oiled air pulls moisture from him. Sweat mixes with the dark. He’s getting close.

    A door opens. Light hisses past.

    “Dinner is getting cold. Are you done out here?”

    “Soon.”

    Inside, the kitchen light is soft. He’s ready to be on both sides now. Darkness his utensil.

    “You going to eat? Or just stare at it?”

    He lifts the shadow from the table, black coal in his fingers. He dines on light, a supernova rising.

  20. C.D. Marcum says:

    God prepares a table before his enemies. Vengeance is his. Holiness. Jealousy. God is love, giving life, breath, and everything. The worm that never dies. The sovereign lord, setting boundaries for seas that devour. The heavens declare his glory! Swollen bellies, drought, and famine also speak. Await his swift return. Crumbling tombstones. It is written, I am crafty, and he comes like a thief in the night. His words types and shadows. Mine cold truth. God tabernacles with his chosen. Hypocritical hubris. We are all in this garden together. Let us make it in our image. Come. Taste and see.

  21. Dawn says:

    The Cutlery Museum

    An ancient stone wall,

    surrounds the Cutlery Museum.

    “Closed Sunday’s.”

    Inside, a Curator, West Wing,

    – dismantling a display.

    the King died then the Queen died where did I put my marker remember to call Sam don’t order any pizza I’m on my low carbs day the bathroom needs cleaning 20th century silverware maybe try the cauliflower crust can’t wait for this heatwave to end.

    From nowhere, a figure.

    The sensors on the 300lb Security Robot activate:

    Black diver’s watch, clunky warped metal, gripping human’s left wrist,
    white knuckles, blood raining,
    A neck tatoo, a year, a lion, hallmarks.

  22. Sophie Bay says:

    The harsh spotlight scared him, so he turned and locked eyes with his past, and saw fear there. The space between himself and his reflection seemed full and infinite: there was a universe within his own mind. His reflection looked over his shoulder and guided him; he trusted it completely.

    She faced the spotlight. She welcomed it. What use was his concentrated contemplation? Why explore within when there was so much out? The darkness behind her would follow her forever, but it did not have to trap her down with it. She would drag it with her, upwards and onwards.

  23. Steve Bailey says:

    “Hey! Listen. I think the plans are to replace us with chopsticks.”
    “What! Dude, you are so paranoid. Too much spearing the hashish cake.”
    “No, really. Look around. The knife is already gone. We’re next!”
    “How can you tell? You are facing the wrong way! You never had the sharpest tines in the drawer, but this is ridiculous.”
    “We will be melted down! Wow, my shadow is awesome!
    “You need to turn around and come back to reality.”
    “I’m telling you the end for us is near.”
    “For you, maybe. I’ll always be here. They can’t eat soup with chopsticks.”

  24. Liam says:

    I should have seen that it would never work out between us. I am curvy and smooth, while he is sharp and rough. I scoop things up, holding them until the pain has cooled, but he just stabs and widens any wound. I thought what we’d had was love, but it was just a primal hunger, filling me for the night but making me empty once again come the morning.

  25. Makenna says:

    Good Morning

    The sun has risen, the birds are chirping. The spoon and the fork remain still. They sit in the kitchen drawer to be touched, to be used for something more. The exciting thought of being chosen, both spoon and fork remained unknown. As time went by, spoon began to be chosen for the first time in weeks. Fork had remained still. Fork had waited and waited for spoon to come back, to join fork in the lonely, empty drawer. Spoon had never returned. The silence, the drawer empty, and fork remained lonesome. Spoon has been left unfound. Fork is determined.

  26. Shadow For A Day

    It was that time of year again. Melanie had sent out the usual text messages, locked her social media profiles, and mailed her phone back home.

    She stared out of the plane window, wondering if her other self would be happy. Melanie always agonized over the destination. She did not want to upset her, but she also wanted her far from home.

    After landing, Melanie met her driver at the airport. She had more than enough time to reach the cabin, but she could feel herself slipping into the background. Soon, she would be watching her shadow lead the way.

  27. Astrid Egger says:

    A Cover-Up

    It is a two-forker: strawberries planted into the glaze, pistachio pieces in the bottom layer. Brett and I work our way to the middle, cheering at our discovery. A surprise inside a cake, just like in primary school. Our tines intertwine as we lift the key with the convex side of our forks. We guess it fits a safety deposit box.

    What’s the number? I ask.

    Marlon flares his nostrils, but gagged and tied to a chair, he can’t spit it out. His face turns a greyish pale. Marlon hates chocolate — a crime on par with stealing from his employer.

  28. Penny Ellis says:

    Spooning

    Do you have to lie so close? You will block out the sun. Look at you, so provocative, and that tattoo on your back – to prove you are made of steel I suppose.

    We do look rather good together though. You know you really should turn over. Your prongs should face upwards, then we could slot together nicely. Spooning I think they call it. So sleek and shiny, we make a good pair.

    Of course, we won’t let knife come between us, not with his razor-sharp wit. He’s all for starters and mains, whereas we prefer a delicious desert.

  29. Mahek Khwaja says:

    A thick booklet on Marxist Criticism on Family beside a bowl of peppered noodles, and a dim blue Apple screen, constituted her world. A steel spoon and a fork mountained the bowl. She always used both. On one morsel, she cut the food hard. On the next, she excavated the soul out of it. She called it pleasure. She sat beside the window facing a peopled flat, slurping low-carb pasta. The husband was doing her pregnant wife’s bun who wore a chequered apron. She sat with an empty bowl until the couple disappeared, clanging the greasy cutlery in strange displeasure.

  30. Leo Anthony says:

    Raven-girl seemed delighted with the utensils tightly gripped within her fists. She swirled the air with a spoon in her left hand, as though the instrument possessed magical powers, while she brandished a fork in her right hand like a miniature trident, spearing demons only she could see. The empty plate and the food smeared upon her face affirmed the girl’s naivety.

    The wizened mage regarded her new ward with a mixture of amusement and sadness, as she contemplated arduous trials ahead. To confront the monstrous evil in her future, Raven-girl’s first lesson would be how to use a spoon.

  31. Lara says:

    He stares at the spoon and the fork, resting on the immaculate kitchen counter. It’s not as though he’s never had dinner alone before, it’s just been 30 years. He can still hear her humming the opening to Golden Girls and the smell of her homemade tomato sauce, the sound of it simmering in the pan. He looks up to find the kitchen empty and smelling of disinfectant. Painful silence. Her favorite apron still hanging on the hook. He sighs, leaving, only to return moments later with an urn. “I promise not to make a mess this time, my dear.”

  32. Riley Ann says:

    He wore his smile as mindlessly as he looped a Windsor knot at his neck like a noose, but I saw it in the tremble of his fork, the flush of his neck, the dampness on his collar. While his name could make our dinner reservation appear on the list in moments, he crumbled before me like a sand statue lapped away by the tide. I saw the child he was, draped in Louis Vuittans and Stefano Riccis, diminutive, helpless, and desperately eager. I rolled Malbec over my tongue and sucked it through my teeth. Shame is an acquired taste.

  33. Lisa H. Owens says:

    Kitchen at Peace
    ~
    Once upon a time, a couple fell in love. Society didn’t approve. ‘Twas taboo for Fork to love Spoon. The two never mingled, spending their lives segregated by Tray inside Drawer. At dinner parties (Forks on the left—Spoons and Knives on the right) Plate created division. It was fated the young lovers should meet, jostled against each other in the privacy of Dishwasher. It was cleansing and led to the birth of baby Spork. Spork bridged the gap and the leftist Forks have since coexisted in harmony with the right-wing Spoons and Knives. A melding of cutlery; Kitchen at peace.

  34. Lisa H. Owens says:

    Kitchen at Peace

    Once upon a time, a couple fell in love. Society didn’t approve. ‘Twas taboo for Fork to love Spoon. The two never mingled, spending their lives segregated by Tray inside Drawer. At dinner parties (Forks on the left—Spoons and Knives on the right) Plate created division. ‘Twas fated the young lovers should meet, jostled against each other in the privacy of Dishwasher. It was cleansing and led to the birth of baby Spork. Spork bridged the gap and the leftist Forks have coexisted in harmony with the right-wing Spoons and Knives ever since. A melding of cutlery; Kitchen at peace.

  35. Yash Seyedbagheri says:

    Bent
    At dinner, Dad claims Mother’s hysterical. He didn’t have a liaison.
    Mother picks up a fork, eyes squinting with concentration. She bends the fork, twisting, grunting.
    She slams it down.
    The fork is bent beyond proportion.
    “That’s what I’ll do to her,” Mother says.
    I want to be truthful. I’ve seen Dad in his Chevy Bel-Air, a mysterious shadow moving about with forbidden energy.
    Mother’s defended my music, called me Nicky where Dad called me Nicholas.
    But Dad exudes a particular energy, arched eyebrows and low words.
    I stare at the bent fork. So twisted. How far can one bend?

  36. Amanda Jones says:

    “If you steal any more of my chips, little one, I will stab your hand with my fork.”

    The child giggles, enjoying the game, reaching over towards her chips. Quick as lightning, her fork pierces the back of his chubby hand. His mouth is a perfect round. He is too shocked to scream.

    “I told you, my darling, Mummy always tells the truth.”

    He remembers what Mummy had said about Daddy. He daren’t ask whether she’s really killed him.

    • Ken Gosse says:

      Nicely done. A taught tale of terror with an open ending, leaving us with the image of a child’s frightened stare. Closure is disappointing in horror stories, whether long or short.

      • Amanda says:

        Thank you fir reading and fir your feedback

        • Amanda says:

          Fiir? Twice! For…

          • Ken Gosse says:

            Sometimes we pine for that warm, firry feeling. Eventually, I suppose, we’ll all pine for the fiords. After all, words are merely placeholders for what we mean to say and letters are placeholders within the words. The meaning is what really matters. Yours came across clearly—and besides, it was more fun that way! But let me not neglect to also say that you’re very wilcome.

  37. riham adly says:

    Love’s in the Details

    He was a joker.He called me Ugly Betty as he did with his ex-wife and the wife before her. His blood pressure was fine, mine hit the roof, so I avoided the greasy French fries he had three times a day, seven days a week. I liked to make sure everything looked neat. I’d spoon dollops of ketchup into my finest plates, and fetch the shiniest forks. That’s better than sex, he’d say. Later, the cops found the special salt I had stashed in my poison ring. They didn’t believe me when I said it was out of love.

  38. Ken Gosse says:

    Stories Entwined in My Memory’s Mind ~
    Oh, how importune was the fork to the spoon
    when setting to sea beneath the full moon,
    insisting she travel without her dear plate
    as the pussycat fiddled away while they ate
    pease pudding, nine days old, with whey and with curds—
    for dessert, surprise pies filled with two-dozen birds!
    Their sleepy friends cast off their small, wooden shoe
    with an owl, dog, and cow, and a ring-nosed pig too,
    but herring-fish stars that were caught in gold nets
    distracted the fork, much to his regrets.
    ’Twas a washable dish and a runcible spoon
    who sailed off into their lagoon.

    • Ken Gosse says:

      Crediting some of the sources (info mostly from Wikipedia):
      The Owl and the Pussy-Cat by Edward Lear, 1871.
      Sing a Song of Sixpence, Tommy Thumb’s Pretty Song Book, 1744.
      Hey Diddle, Diddle!, possibly from the 16th century.
      Wynken, Blynken, and Nod by Eugene Field, 1889.
      Pease Porridge Hot, John Newbery’s Mother Goose’s Melody, 1760.

    • Roseanne Boyle says:

      You do have a gift! A pleasure to read your efforts.

  39. Lilah Kalfus says:

    Bend me like the front end of a fork. Stretch me thin like plastic wrap and see what I can handle. Push me back and forth like a rolling pin. Spread me like mishandled flour, leaving little bits of me everywhere. I can take it – until I can’t. Or until my therapist says I can’t. I’ll say yes over and over because I have trouble saying no. You know that about me but you keep putting things on my plate anyway. My kitchen is a mess at this point, but I spot clean enough so that most people won’t notice.

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