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Friday, October 16, 2015

An Early State Secret

In the most important room
In a newborn nation
A great man
Unlocked the most curious drawer
Of an enormous desk

From the depths of the drawer, gently he lifted
A slick black contraption

He placed it gingerly before him
Paused (perhaps to pray)
And then lifted an appendage of the gadget to his ear

A finger more accustomed to squeezing triggers
He poked into an alien groove

Slowly, carefully, he moved his hand in a circle
Activating the device

Disconcerting sounds filled his ear
He closed his eyes
Then came the voice - high pitched, brisk


"I need... help," said the man shakily.

"How may I direct your call?"

"It's... It's these teeth, you see. The wood..."

"How may I direct your call, sir?"

"I was thinking maybe if some teeth could be made of... whatever this... this infernal device... is made of... perhaps..."

"Sir... I need the number or the name of the party you wish to reach."

"It's these damned wooden teeth!"

The man jerked his red face to the door 
Whereupon a strident knocking
Had ensued 

In a frenzied moment, he swept the device
Back into its drawer

As he keyed the lock
His wig askew
The door burst open

"President Washington, are you... Do you need assistance?"


  1. Bakelite teeth - that would have been something.. A truly black smile.

  2. This was a great response to FB's prompt -- who's calling on that device? I first thought of a Cold War era president lifting the receiver of the phone to scramble the ICBMs; turns out it was George calling to gripe about his wood choppers. Who will call next?

  3. You created an amazing sense of mystery and anticipation in the build up to the conversation and described the use of the phone very well.

  4. I can't imagine wooden teeth...such a creative take on the prompt

  5. This was a really cool response to the prompt. So imaginative......

  6. Fun narrative story. I had forgotten about those wooden teeth and half expected a transport ala the Matrix. Love it!

  7. Laffin here. This is classic, and the wig askew is the perfect detail.


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