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Flash Fiction: She Gave Me CPR

She Gave Me CPR

It was in LA that she took everything from me, the tomatoes that weaved the lattice, the fresh pesto I blended from my herb patch, the Swedish-Esalen massages, the carnations I stole from the neighbors’ alley and the white roses I stole from Vons, the ballooned caricatures I populated with German and Italian accents when her panic attacks drove her to seek solace in her kava kava-infused personal bath time. She took cleaner to my dreams. She took my friends and family’s trust. She took the liberty of being in a relationship without being in a relationship without telling me. She offered the appearance of introspection while holding paramount what others thought of her—too neurotic to spur much beyond a couple of paraplegic paperclip sculptures. She offered the resemblance of an artist in progress. To be fair, she offered some very compelling mouth to mouth resuscitation. To be fair, her grandmother was dying. I recognized my attraction rested only in the way her hair stuck to her chin line with summer sweat. That she was too beautiful to work. But without her I would have never conceived my In-Uter-Retro Personal Ads, a self-published zine I pushed on the Venice boardwalk:

Write a personal that asks for something you’ve actually gotten from a past relationship. Something like:

30 y.o. giving male, enjoys cooking, gardening and heavy lifting in the hot, summer sun ISO miserable coquette to do CPR role-play and drink lemonade while she watches me pack and move her thirty-five or more boxes of clothes and books, two record players, sofa, mattress, antique oak bookshelf, miniature schnauzer and a piano from Los Angeles to the backwaters of Missouri to live with her stepfather, an expert cock-blocker, trained in Vietnam, whom amongst disgruntled army buddies was so well known as a Calvinist crusader, they called him The Wedge—a stepfather who should wait to hear sex noises just outside her door before waltzing through the room, sawhorse in one hand, running chainsaw in the other, who should invite his father over to blow cigarette smoke through her window and whisper I can hear you, waiting silently for an hour to hear more sex noises before doing the Charleston through the room in desperate search of a 75 watt light bulb he swears was in here just a minute ago, who when I pack up my things and mention in passing I’m going back to L.A. because it’s where I belong and I’ve always been more of a city person anyway, should jump up and down and say, Yoo-hoo honey now I can have you all to myself cuz baby if it’s good enough for Woody Allen and whatsername it’s good enough fer us, now git back you city slicker she’s my squeeze now.

david moscovich

How to get your flash fiction in Artvoice!

In the Margins occasionally features flash fiction by local writers. The flash fiction editor is Forrest Roth. Submissions running 500 words or less can be sent by e-mail to or by mail to Forrest Roth, Flash Fiction Editor, Artvoice, 810 Main St., Buffalo, NY 14202. Please include a SASE to have manuscripts returned.

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