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Exit Number 117

flash fiction contest branching out poem

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#1 Offline delilah

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Posted Mar 11 2013 - 10:49 PM

Note: "exit number 117" is meant to be read as "exit number one seventeen."

 

Exit Number 117

Fortnightly Flash Fiction #5: Branching Out

 

In this wild twisting chasing highway we like to call life

I suppose the first time I found myself facing an impossible choice

Was the midnight I came to exit number 117

 

And it wasn't the number that made it particularly special

The sign was old and worn and the 7 was sort of scratched

As though a bird had flown into it or something

 

And the road was cracked and faded and the puddles of

Asphalt I saw in my headlights were gray and older than my parents

I slowed down because I was the only one on the road

 

It's an interesting moment when you're the only one on the road

Because nobody else can make your choices for you

You can walk on glass if you like, or walk by

 

The sky was full of stars and a bright moon and planets and galaxies

But I didn't bother looking at them because I was busy

Wondering which way was right for me

 

You see, my parents always taught me to follow my dreams

And I was sure that my dreams lay farther down the highway

Maybe exit number 200, or number 179, or the place where the asphalt ends

 

But exit number 117 had a strange charm all the same

The dusty road begged to be travelled

And the darkness beyond the highway begged to be explored

 

And how is an 18-year-old supposed to know exactly which exit to take anyway?

I guessed that this wasn't my road

But who knew, and did it matter?

 

So I put it off for another day, put the engine in gear, and my tires squeaked as I

Pulled away from exit number 117

And set my tired eyes back to the highway

 

The wide road was easier to drive

And easier than thinking about other places I could go

More comfortable than thinking about branching out, diversifying, changing

 

Because, after all, the easiest road to travel

Is the one I've been driving all my life

And it's simpler to keep exit number 117 in my rearview mirror than to keep it in front of me

 

But every now and then, I'll feel a twinge of regret

The bite of nostalgia as I look back and think for a moment I see that exit I passed

A faint glimmer on the horizon

 

It's not there of course: I passed it long ago

And I've never found the time to go back

Who knows if it would even be there by the time I got around to it

 

Now I'm farther along the highway and it's been a fun ride

But I'll always wonder what lay beyond exit number 117

I guess that's how it works: you choose an exit, or you don't

 

 

:e:


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heytherecopy_zps41588106.jpg


#2 Offline Dual Cee

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Posted Jun 20 2013 - 11:15 AM

It was a good story, comparing life to a road has been done before, but the idea never gets old. Of course this thing didn't contain any grammatical or spelling errors at all. Not even something as small as a typo so yeah, thats good...
So I guess, I'll just comment on things I like, and things that just sounded that slight bit strange, since well, this story was pretty much very good.
 
In this wild twisting chasing highway we like to call life
 
Well this is a good introduction to the story, however...
"Chasing" sounds a little odd here, since a road can't really chase right? So I guess I'd be logic to assume that you mean "Changing"
 
The sky was full of stars and a bright moon and planets and galaxies
 
The repeating of the "and" sounds pretty, bwa, I know it's a super minor nitpick I just reccommend changing all but the last to comma's. 
 
That was basicly all the nitpicking I could do. Not my basic ideas:
For some reason I really like the choice of the number 117, it flows well, and well, I just like it, it surely sounds better then just hundred.
I liked how the main character had the choice between nostalgia and the future... It reminded me of my own life, and of the choices I have still to make in the coming future. Well it's always good if you can personalise with a character in the story. And I'm glad for the dude that he actually chose for the future, and the slight regret he felt while making the choise sounded very believable and logicaly.
 
[qoute]
Now I'm farther along the highway and it's been a fun ride
But I'll always wonder what lay beyond exit number 117
I guess that's how it works: you choose an exit, or you don't
[/qoute]
 
I really liked this ending, no, what do I say, it was downright awesome. It was really easy to get what you meant there, but still it was written in a little poetic way and a combination between poeticness and realism is good.
The choice also resembled real life, and that identification... Is good.
 
Well yeah, it was a good story, no, it was a REALLY good story. Everthing a good story needs is in this. It was not too long, but also not too short. Grammar and spelling were both ok only two super minor nitpicks.
 
Way to go man, way to go!
 
Keep on writing.

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