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.

Photo credit:Visa Kopu

1,071 Responses to “Photo Prompt”

  1. Meet me. Why does he have this pull on her? And what’s in the damn box?

    Being with him was a rush, understanding you can’t resist someone is unexplainable. She found herself in memories – fast and furious at times and sweet and sensual in others. He worshipped her.

    He was too much for one woman. She was too much for one man. Here in this place they worked.

    Meet me. What could be in the box? He doesn’t take no for an answer. There is something about them that makes them feel real.

    She responds —

    What’s in the box?


  2. Scott Rothschild says:

    Don’t open that box, my friend. It’s filled with letters from people who loved you but you didn’t love back and from people who you loved but they didn’t love you. It contains wishes and heartbreak. You want to sort your letters into piles. It’s impossible. There are long letters about events you have long put out of your mind. Your life was messy. Don’t go back. You’re old now, not like when most of these letters were written. You’re like that band around the box that has lost its elasticity. You can’t snap back. So, don’t open that box.

  3. Krystyna Fedosejevs says:

    Last Box

    “Meat grinder?” I asked.

    Arnold laughed. “Strange guess, sis’.”

    “Not at all. Grandma kept her favorite possessions even when she couldn’t use them anymore.”

    Arnold shook the box. Contents moved.

    “She grinded roasts for cabbage rolls and meatloaf,” I added.

    The overhead light flickered as it swayed. I shivered.

    “Let’s carry the box downstairs,” I said. “I hate attics.”

    “Why, you’re scared?” Arnold snickered.

    I followed my brother into the kitchen. Inside the box we found parcels wrapped in Christmas print. Each labelled with tags spelling out names of the family.

    Grandma didn’t have a chance to give them out.

  4. Anna Sapp says:

    Saturday was always wash day. As a child I spent mine at the laundromat helping my mother tend to ours. Taking a large scoop of white flakes from the soap box over to one of the shiny, new machines, I would become mesmerized by the rhythmic circulation of colors and suds. Once I dared ask why we had to spend our weekends in this way. Mother said, “So we can look respectable at work and school.” That answer satisfied me then, but now as I spend Saturday nights alone, washing and folding, I ponder its meaning more heavily than before.

  5. Constance Bourg says:

    Temporal Existence

    Twenty reliable shipping boxes, flattened out and neatly tied together with string, hide under her bed. One of them has a coffee stain. In her previous apartment, she had used it as a side table. She had never bothered getting more than the basic furniture she needed. The arrangement had been temporary; she would move on soon and start her life over properly. Now she would have to buy more stuff, make a home for herself. Like the one she was forced to leave a few years ago. The boxes lie in waiting, their patience a stark contrast to her uneasy flittering.

  6. Colleen Maloney says:

    It was here. Larry, the mailman, had discreetly put it upside down. The label alone might stir gossip. People didn’t understand, it was so different than when they were kids. Larry understood, he shown her this world and told her where to get it.

    It was Drizzle, the purple one, she identified with most. Her struggle to keep the harmony of Bell-Dandy Forest, distracting her from Saffron’s affections, mirrored her own life. It wasn’t just a kid’s show.

    She pulled the plum colored costume from the box and squealed. Tonight was the 100th episode. She and Larry… Saffron would celebrate.

  7. Jim Byrnes says:

    Instant Gratification

    The box materialized right in front of me. I wasn’t alarmed because it had happened before and they usually dematerialized rather quickly.

    The box was from one of those satisfaction centers testing their latest package delivery system. They called it a transporter, just like in Star Trek, but their point of delivery was apparently a problem, since unidentified, random boxes were popping up everywhere.

    When I asked the company about the problem they assured me that there was no problem, and that soon everyone would be able to just ask their special talky things and instantly receive anything they want.

  8. Emily Chan says:

    Tension smothered the air as his eyes flashed from a light blue to a charcoal grey. The sign of rage. Flickers of hope in his eyes became extinguished as the thoughts struck him to what the parcel could be. Tied and bounded, the mysterious parcel sat in silence. Sweat filled palms clenched into balls of fists at his side, legs shaking uncontrollably with feet stood firm. Realization hit him with a bang as it struck him to what the parcel was. Ticking,tocking and clicking traveled into his mind and the flashback started. He knew for definite this was a bomb.

  9. He was a Level 4 agent, clearance on all TS documents and intel. A double-Tanqueray, braces and belt, Don Draper with an MI6 pass card kind of guy. The job suited him like a paracentric key slides into a vintage padlock: fastened and finely tuned. It had been his life, this border-hopping racket of hiding in plain sight. He could spot a security breach from a hundred paces.

    There was only one problem: it was coming to an end. Pushed out by younger, smarter, cheaper, tech-savvy pimpleheads. It was the first time in thirty years anything was beyond his control.

  10. Ernestine Coleman-Dupree says:

    She hoped it wouldn’t leak.

    The box itself was nothing special but most vessels weren’t, it was always what was on the inside that counted most. Great care was taken to ensure everything would stay together as planned.

    The contents had proven most difficult and time consuming to package.

    Each piece had been cooled to the point of frozen, wrapped, cushioned, then wrapped once more for good measure. The box itself was double lined and insulated against everything from leaks to punctures.

    Since he wanted her so badly he could have her. Shipped first class and delivered to his door.

  11. Dan Slaten says:

    You had to open the box, didn’t you? That’s what boxes are for. Same thing with doors and windows. They are there to be opened. Otherwise, what’s the point? If you don’t want the things behind the doors and windows to be seen you don’t put them behind doors and windows, you destroy them. It’s a simple concept. So you went and opened the box, and as soon as you did that you regretted it, didn’t you? Because when you open the box or the door or the window you can’t close it up again. By then it’s too late.

  12. I put a lot of thought into this one. Yes, indeed, no doubt. I turned it over and over again in my mind, trying to catch the perfect idea as it floated through my brain. I wanted this gift to be perfect. I wanted the looks of surprise to be genuine, not the usual forced appreciation. The day was quickly arriving as I desperately scoured the recesses of my memory. This gift had to fully reflect how I felt about them and what they meant to me. Then I suddenly got it.

    Wait till the bastards open an empty box.

  13. Pépin says:

    Title: – That’s odd.

    No. No I tell you it’s mine.

    Not likely little brother.

    But, that’s not fair. I saw it first. I’ll tell.

    You bitch. I should have choked you at birth, just like little Sis.

    Charming I’m sure.

    There’s no name on it.

    Yes, that’s odd.

    We’ll share. No one will ever know.

    Ah, so that’s how you want to play it. Just like little Sis.

    That’s right, it will be our very own cosy secret.

    But. He will know. He always knows.

    Who’s he?

    Him up there.

    Damn him to hell. I don’t care.

    But, it fell off his sledge.

  14. The flood took everything, even the birds. Water rolled and crashed over anything that remained, dragging the dead to the surface in the wake of their escaping gasses, but it was the noiseless sky that turned Thea’s stomach. She dreamed in birdsong, surprised by her own aching over the now dead sky. As the world drowned her hopes had nowhere to go but up, and now there wasn’t anything left there either.

    Her memories existed beneath, full of dark and slime. And then there was her—afloat somewhere in the middle, still deciding which direction to look.

  15. Prashant Sankaran says:

    Last memory

    I knew only they would come searching for me.
    The only friends I had left, after everyone dropped off—In bunches, in twos and threes, then one by one. You were the last to leave. There was nothing more here for you to wait. All was said and done, the last drop wrung out and drunk.
    It was dusk when you came it that day, leaning the shovel by the door and not bothering to wipe the mud off your shoes. Your breath was heavy and your arms cold with sweat when you scooped me up.
    Before everything went dark.

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