December 14, 2011

Robert Vaughan


“Poor little me,” she mused. She is dripping with sweat while the rain spits bullets. She feels like flinging coffee at the Pope. What could be worse than an abortion in a Boston alley, the doctor a stranger. The father stranger still.

The Wedding March

The congregation whispers, fidgets, and breathes like bellows. The wedding party are running way behind schedule. Tensions mount as the ceremonial time passes. The bald pastor rearranges his papers. Checks his watch, the lines deepening on his face.

Her wedding party fixes, adjusts, makes last minute preparations. She can't seem to get her ringlets to behave, to twist in the manner they did at her run-through. “Do something,” she pleads with her maid of honor. Her panic mounts. She grabs the curling iron, snaps, “You're just making it worse!”

To calm her, dad leads her aside, into the narrow hallway. He wants to savor these last moments with his sole daughter. His pride and joy. He takes her hand, opens it face up in both of his. Says, “When I was your age, we could fit everything we owned right here.” Traces a circle in her hand with his finger. “We had nothing.” He sighs, thinks of his own failed marriage. He asks her, “You're sure you wanna do this?”

It takes her by complete surprise. The one question she wishes he might have avoided. She glances outside to steel herself, into the churchyard. The sun gleams on the gravestones. It feels like she's wearing ankle weights as the organ barks the wedding march.


Robert Vaughan’s plays have been produced in N.Y.C., L.A., S.F., and Milwaukee, where he resides. He leads two writing roundtables for Redbird- Redoak Studio. His prose and poetry have been published in over 150 literary journals such as Elimae, Metazen and BlazeVOX. He is a fiction editor at JMWW and Thunderclap! Press. He co-hosts Flash Fiction Fridays for WUWM’s Lake Effect.  His blog:

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