Coffin Hop 2013: Day 7

One Photograph, Two Points of View: Comparative Flash Fiction


The Tango of the Hunt by Kalla Monahan


The best time of night to stalk. Silent; I await the buzzing sound of wings on the subtle currents of air.

Hidden; awaiting my prey. Mayhap a mosquito with its iridescent wings, searching out a victim of its own. Flying in swarms, intensifying my chances of success.

Or a bee; the noble bee. Spreading the pollen of flowers around as it sucks the sweet nectar from deep inside its fragrant petals. The symbiosis of the hunter and the hunted; need, desire equal only to its clever function.

Nature is like that, coupling risk with reward all around us.
I hear it. The sound my senses have been waiting for, longing for. I’m hungry and I cannot wait any longer.

It’s a treat for me tonight. Its wings a myriad of colours; cobalt, gold, crimson, all fluttering in the soft glow of the evening. The soft push of its delicate wings signaling the start of our dance.
The tango of the hunt. My awareness is supreme. I alight, seeking reward for my patience.

It does not know I am stalking up behind it; fluttering through the descending darkness, it’s blind to everything but its enjoyment of the warm breeze, fragrant with honeysuckle and damp.

Slowly, I gain, my large eyes taking in everything around me, ultimately focused on my desire.

My large wings soundless in the encroaching darkness.

Mere moments until the attack. I can feel it along my body, electrifying the hairs covering me.


I quicken the beating of my wings. Up and down, they caress the air, my prey seeming to come closer.

Crushing pain.

Torn wings.

Body buckling under the pressure.

Devouring its meal with a slow vigour reserved for such moments.

A reward for patience.

As the butterfly flutters away, the hunter becomes the hunted.

All Rights Reserved © 2012 Kalla Monahan


Odonates by Nina D’Arcangela

Beautiful creature of destruction; you are the embodiment of majesty and grandeur darting through the air; humming past in the blink of an eye, stunning your prey into a shock of paralytic fear; engaged always in aerial combat with the currents that fight you in your forward progress; rising, dropping, jerking, zipping.

Always seeking…

What is it you seek on those elegant gossamer wings? Perhaps the next meal that awaits you… What else would a voracious living thing such as yourself desire?  You, with your crushing mandibles and gnashing teeth, so willing to consume all that cross your path and thereafter, your gullet.  A beast of miniscule proportion whose lust to sate itself knows no bounds – respects no boundaries.

The patter of rain does not deter you from the hunt – your need for nourishment is all consuming; it’s all your disjointed body knows. The repeated pumping of your clasping organ seeking purchase as it curves downward to secure a hold in this new and foreign terrain. Your legs spread so delicately, laid wide ever so gently, in this most opportunistic of places. Large bead like eyes of gleaming blackness adapted for spotting the smallest of morsels passing by whilst you suckle on nature’s other offerings.

You have at last found a worthy feeding ground amongst the thin grasses of this murky bank. This piece of drift offers a perch from which you may indulge your glutinous greed. You seek a place to hide, a place of recess from which you may ambush your unsuspecting prey.

Cloaked by stealth and the hush of your own inner stillness, you await what tasty treat flicks past seeking a safety all its own whilst knowing not that you are now the monstrous dark occupant which all others must fear in this previously safe harbor.

All Rights Reserved © 2012 Nina D’Arcangela


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14 comments on “Coffin Hop 2013: Day 7

  1. Loved both of these pieces of flashfiction.
    Great post and Great image!
    There is something very lethal about insects. They are stellar predators but seem to enjoy the hunt as much as the end result. Today I watched a spider toy with a mosquito. Part of me vied for the mosquito to escape the sadistic play of the spider. But in the end the mosquito did not stand the chance. Funny enough I would say “tango” perfectly described that little dance of death between the spider and the mosquito.
    Happy Hopping!
    – KimK

  2. You vary the first word of your paragraphs. That’s exhibits a mature writing style and good editing habits. Thanks for not poking one of my peeves.

  3. These read more like poems than flash fiction. In any case, they were lovely!

  4. Great stuff. Theyre both like poetry!

  5. A pair of darkly descriptive and perfectly written stories.

  6. Loved both pieces of prose when I first read them; love them even more now!!

  7. I liked both stories. It is hard to develop character in such a few words but you managed very well not only once, but two times! =)

  8. Hi Kim! I’m glad you enjoyed our flash pieces, and were drawn into your own macabre tango in real life! (well, the insects, anyway) 😉

  9. If that’s a good thing, and I think it is, thanks!!! 🙂

  10. There is a poetic rhythm to the prose of both pieces. Some flash tells a story; some provokes an emotional response with no specific beginning, middle or end. I happen to love both. Thank you!! 🙂

  11. Thank you, Juan! This one was a true pleasure to write. 🙂

  12. Thanks, AF! I like this pair very much myself. I enjoy reading what someone else saw in the same image. 🙂

  13. Thank you, Joe!! I’m proud of this one, and I know Kalla is too! 😉

  14. Thank you, Georgina! It’s a challenge, but that’s what makes it so fulfilling to do in a strict word count. 🙂

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