Old Man Fred –flash fiction for d’Verse

Published June 15, 2019 by Nan Mykel

Although age and poverty had taken its toll,  when far away an interrupted cry woke him from his sleep, he shuddered.  He knew he lacked boundaries, was too easily empathic. That tendency had led him to  panhandling in the evening of his life.  It was getting more and more difficult to arise from his seated position on the sidewalk and retrieve his upturned hat from the pavement before him.

Someone at the Center had stolen his flute, so he had  nothing left to offer passersby than  the one song he could remember all the words to, Old Man River.

The children still stood round and begged their parent for a dime to drop into his hat. The children stared. The adults avoided his eyes.  He thanked them all.

128 words

16 comments on “Old Man Fred –flash fiction for d’Verse

  • Petru–I can’t look it up just now. I’m locked out of e mail and Google because I forgot my password again and I resent having to pay to get a new one (phone charges). Maybe I’ll come across where I wrote it down soon. The only beggar poem I can remember is one about a beggar giving his starving dog half his sandwich and the lady angry that he didn’t appreciate it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t know what to do about your email situation. If I had advice I’d have given it. It’s going to have to be Google to get you access back into it again. I think clicking on: ”Forgot Your Password?” may give you an option to let Google know you’re locked out. Hope you have an alternative email they can send a link to, in order to create a new password. If you haven’t, it’s wise to do so, purely for these reasons. It happened to me once before as well. Else, use a friend’s if there’s one close by where you live?


  • What an excellent write for the prosery prompt! Good use of the line and you’ve painted a true person in so few words here. I especially like the detail that it’s hard for himto rise from his seated position.
    As host for OLN though…I have to make the reminder that for OLN each person can only do 1 post. This is your second. For all the other prompts, quadrille, prosery, poetics, MTB on Thursdays, folks can post as many as they want…but only 1 for OLN. Just a reminder for next time 🙂


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