We are dealing with creative short story writing in which 10% is shown and the other 90% is to be conjured up by the reader. The stories have to be very short, sweet and, if possible, with hidden meanings and unexpected endings. Most of the mini stories below have been written by my own students and I feel a debt of gratitude to the likes of Ernest Hemingway(For sale: baby shoes,never worn);Augusto Monterroso ( When he/she/it woke up, the dinosaur was still there) Nathanael Hawthorne, Jorge Luis Borges and Neko Vidal´s Artes Libres inspiration(The crickets were taxed for their serenade and the glowworms refused to pay their electricity bills). These, obviously, encourage creativity in the classroom and promote crosscultural understanding in EFL learning.
While I was writing this entry, my school colleague , Javier Arón Fernández Ascacíbar, a teacher of Spanish Language and Literature, asked me to read a book of very short stories, called "Patchwork fiction: Stories written by a hairy pen", written in collaboration with Gonzalo Molina. Some of their nanostories have been rendered in English below as JAFA(Javier Arón Fernández Ascacíbar) :
TODAY IS MONDAY.
JUST A SHORT STORY CALLED SILENCE.
A FAMILY SECRET: BEFORE I WAS BORN MY MUM HAD SERVED 5 YEARS IN PRISON.
THE MEANING OF DEATH: THE DEATH OF ALL YOUR MEANINGS.
THE SCHOOL OF LIFE FAILED US ALL.
ARSENE & JILL DEFENDED SHORT-TERM LOVE AND LIVED HAPPILY FOR 60 YEARS SEPARATELY.
JULIA´S PET MADE HER FEEL SPECIAL AND SHE MISSED THE RELATIONSHIP SHE WAS IN.
ANDREW & ANDREA OPENED UP A CAN OF WORMS.SURPRISE:NOTHING IN IT BUT THIS MINUTE.
THE LOCAL CORPORATION GAVE THAT KID A MEDAL AFTER YEARS SPENT EATING AT BUFFET LUNCHES.
ONCE UPON A TIME A PRINCE ASKED A BEAUTIFUL PRINCESS: WILL YOU MARRY ME? THE PRINCESS SAID "NO" AND THE PRINCE LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER.
WHILE BERENICE WAS YAWNING PAUL GOT A SURPRISE BJ.
WHY DID HELL HAVE TO CLOSE DOWN?
RODERICK ATE LORENA´S HEART WITH ONION AND MUSTARD.
IGNATIUS SUFFERED A WHOLE LIFE OF CHRONIC PAIN,MISUNDERSTANDING AND INTOLERANCE.
THAT MUSTARD SEED WANTED DESPERATELY, ANXIOUSLY TO BECOME A TREE.
A DREAM WANTED OBSESSIVELY TO BECOME REALITY.
CECIL DREAMT HIS DREAMS WERE NOT HIS WHILE HE OVERCAME HIS SLEEPLESSNESS.
AN ANT DREAMED OF BECOMING AN ANTEATER TO EAT ITS NEIGHBOURS.
A STONE WANTED TO BECOME WATER AND UNDERSTOOD THAT IT´S JUST A QUESTION OF WAITING
TYPICAL: GIANTS WITH INFERIORITY COMPLEX AND DWARVES WITH GREATNESS COMPLEX,megalomania.
LITTLE DETAILS COLONISE MY THOUGHTS.
BORN TO SHOP AND DIED WHILE SHOPPING.
WANTED: HIGH WIRE ACTS OF IMAGINATION.
Y.O.L.O. but IF YOU SPEND HALF YOUR LIFE ASLEEP AND THE OTHER SMOKING WEED HOW DID YOU SURVIVE?
GOD ABORTED AND HAD ME: TIM.
THE LOSSES IN OUR PERSONAL LIVES:NOTHING SERIOUS JUST A SLOW BURN.
YOUR BRAIN TUMOUR DISAPPEARED, SO DID YOU.
WHEN CRABS DREAM THEY´D LIKE TO BE SEAGULLS.
I´M ON A DIET: I COMPARE PEOPLE´S WORDS TO THEIR ACTIONS.
LIQUID FRIENDSHIP: JASON KILLED HIS ROOMMATE AND LEFT A BLOODY MESS AROUND.
FISH MOURNED THE DEATH OF A RIVERSIDE TREE.
TWO MEN IN THE SAME TOILET: LUST? DRUGS? TERRORISTS? :
2 PLUMBERS LEFT SWEATING.
FRANK WAS BEHEADED BECAUSE OF A SPLITTING HEADACHE and THE EXECUTIONER MOVED FROM HEALTHY FEELINGS TO TOXIC NATIONALISM.
ON THE VERGE OF COMMITTING SUICIDE SHE WAS UNTIL SHE BECAME PREGNANT: A DEVASTATING TUMOUR.
I WANTED THAT APPLE, ATE IT; NO APPLE LEFT (Pablo Cereto Martin)
THAT WOULD BE AWFUL BUT WHAT REALLY WORRIED ME WAS THAT IT WAS GOING TO LAST FOREVER.(GLORIA M.G.)
I STILL MAKE COFFEE FOR ONE.
LIFE´S SHIT, REAL HELL:VIDEO GAMES & CHOCOLATE
fixed a toilet,get paid crap(from the New Yorker)
Inside suburban mom beats urban heart (NY)
You wouldn't know looking at me (NY)
Love NY; Hate myself(equally).(NY)
Not quite what I was planning(NY)
Hope is stronger than dope(Obama)
God called;mother listened; I responded.
Born in Nerja.Then nothing happened (NY)
Everyone who loved me is dead(NY)
Birth,childhood, adolescence, adolescence, adolescence..
Mountain guide, only got lost once.(NY)
Gonzalo shook the coconut palm so violently that he was killed by a falling coconut.(Ascacíbar)
The snail overcame its shyness, got rid of its shell and became an outspoken slug. (JAFA ")
Terror had disfigured his face. Treror had disguferd his fcea. Roret gufidsred hfi case.( " ).
As soon as I saw she had my name tattoed on her right armpit, I left her: that was the only part of her skin I deeply loved. ( JAFA. " )
One day before getting married Victoria discovered something about her boyfriend that left her both frozen and speechless for years to come.(J.A.F.A. ")
I did not cry when I lost my two ears: I just left them on the floor (J.A.F.A. ")
Andrew was an ugly man and that turned him into an uglier person.(JAFA " )
By staring fixedly at her dog, Inés learned to bark( JAFA ")
Tobacco kills, Road kills, Drugs kill, Life kills, Time kills, God is a killer. Why shouldn´t I? (Jafa)
Patchwork fiction is not a frustrated novel(JAFA ")
My mum gave birth to me and I was the gynecologist assisting her (JAFA ")
They discussed which was worse: physical or verbal violence. The following day they couldn´t practise either.(J.A.F.A.)
Armando had fallen head over heels with Noelia. He had been unable to forget a single square centimetre of her face. She married Aitor, a friend of Armando ´s. When years later they met, Armando realised there were at least two Noelias: one inside his mind and the other outside...(JAFA)
He both wanted to kiss me and lie to me at the same time: I ignored one action but the other I could not forgive. (JAFA)
I am an ephimeral poem with some mission
I´ve dared enter the realm of patchwork fiction
Since I have not been written in prose
I´ll have to return to where I arose (J.A.F.A.)