An Honest Apocalypse by Jane Flett


I had a dream it was 9/11, but instead of planes there were great pumpkins drifting across the sky. They’d warned us, but what can you do about that, really, we asked? What can you ever really do about anything?


This time, the dream got into my computer. A virus! All the keys turned around, exorcist style, to show me their small white backs. I tried to type fast enough to outsmart the technological collapse, but my fingers got stuck. The computer screen swooned, limp as fresh pancakes, all across my hands.


I woke up in a doctor’s chair, legs in stirrups. The physician read my fortune by the bones in my head. He told me what to watch out for. But he was grinning as he said it. Can I trust you? I asked. We’re not at liberties to disclose that information, he replied.


Without information, I was at a loss for breakfast. Without sleep, I couldn’t escape the squashes of the sky. It was an honest apocalypse, so we didn’t mind too much. First, it turned orange—the skyscrapers fell, the whole sky smelled of sage. So we burned our sticks. This time, we said, we’d start it all again.

Jane Flett is a philosopher, cellist, and seamstress of most fetching stories. Her writing features in the Best British Poetry 2012 and has been commissioned for BBC Radio and performed at the Edinburgh International Book Festival. She was voted Berlin’s best English-language writer in 2015 by Indieberlin.