Here’s Not Too Tall Tales, a microfiction section that will appear every month. Pen an original story in less than 50 words; the best ones will be published with your name and your picture.

Next edition’s theme: Anger. Send in your 50-word short stories with your picture to Last date for entries: June 22.

Wheel of fortune

“I couldn’t save enough to buy my favourite car,” he said. He already had a car but it wasn’t a luxurious one. Feeling low, he stopped at the traffic lights. People were crossing the road, among them a handicapped man – smiling in a wheelchair.

– Ahmad Moneer Ghafo


The lesson

The life I once lived, taking strolls, movie nights... now seem like the perfect gift I had. But I didn’t realise its value and would constantly complain. Now I’m home, I’m cribbing about my present; making the same mistake again.

– Chitra Ramchandani


Pain today, gone tomorrow

As the bullies’ taunts grew uglier, she hesitated only a split-second before pushing through, standing between them and their latest target. After all, she figured later, far better to nurse a broken jaw than a lifetime remembering that helpless, utterly broken despair in that kid’s eyes.

– Joanne Joseph


The prayer

In all her sorrow and turmoil, she offered a prayer for him – for a saviour she never saw and would never know; for a miracle called life he gave to her mother.

– Dr Vidhya Vijayakumar


Food for thought

Ravenous, Nithya was thrilled when she found a discarded packet of biryani near the garbage bin. But even as she was wolfing it down, she remembered to keep a portion for her friend – a dog that slept near her on the pavement; the one who protected her from drunks and ruffians.

– Darpan S


Drops of joy

“Where can I get some water from?” he asked, sweating profusely from his laborious midday work. I leaned into the back of the car and handed him the bottle of cold water I’d just bought from the store. The gratitude in his eyes equalled a million blessings.

– Sylviette D’Souza


Unconditional love – and luck

Surviving lockdown was tough. Then the month of fasting. Thanks to the stranger who became a colleague then a good friend for the unconditional love. Undoubtedly, a four-leaf clover, I have got.

– Mohsina Ajaz


Counting blessings

“Pakora and rooh afza again?” I groaned as I sat down for iftar.

“Nothing for iftar today, my child, maybe tomorrow we’ll be lucky,” the woman said to her daughter as they sat quietly through the maghrib azaan in warstruck Syria.

– Zoya Khan

This month's contributors: (clockwise from top left) Ahmad Moneer Ghafo, Joanne Joseph, Dr Vidhya Vijayakumar, Chitra Ramchandani, Sylviette D’Souza, Zoya Khan and Mohsina Ajaz. Not in photo, Darpan S

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