Beat – Flash Fiction For 9/20/13

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Photo Copyright John Nixon

Photo Copyright John Nixon


The pretty young clerk was reading 50  Shades Of Gray when the old man hobbled up.

“I called about a book.”

Face flushed, pupils big as saucers, she handed him a slim volume.

“How much?”


It was everything she’d said, first edition, signed, dust cover intact.

Standing by the front door, he thought about smoky jazz clubs, wild-eyed young poets, and the endless highway.

A collector would pay big, but he just wanted the book.

The cab arrived on time and he took small fast steps and climbed in.

“I’m in a hurry driver. Let’s get on the road.”

21 responses to “Beat – Flash Fiction For 9/20/13

  1. Neal and Jack and Allen are out there waiting, darling. Interesting take on this photo, but really, I just loved the book he picked.

  2. Personally I am bigger fan of Dharma bums but On the Road was an excellent read as well. Every now and again, I go out for a drink at bar Jack hung out in back in the day. They have not changed the place since the 50’s…it’s a real s–t hole…perhaps one of the best dive bars around.…. Nice job contrasting the different generations. As my Pop likes to say “As much as things change they stay the same.”


  3. Dear Ron,

    Jack’s back. your riff on the the more things change, the more they stay the same was fantastically multilayered and I will remember it always. One of the top stories this week. On the road again. Beautiful.



  4. Great descriptions in this – the huge eyes and little footsteps – and a wonderful sense of satisfaction at the end as he settles into the cab.

  5. 50 shades kinda bored me. i merely skimmed through it. that being said, i finished all 3 books and lost some sleep. lol great story, loved the whole flushed face, saucer eyes thing ^^

  6. “A collector would pay big, but he just wanted the book.” <– My favorite thing I've read all day, as he scuttles out the door.

    • Well, I was trying to be subtle, but not that subtle. The book is On The Road by Jack Kerouac. The last three words of the story are a clue and the title, Beat, was a reference to the Beat Writers. Thanks for the question. Ron

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