The Stingray by Miranda Gillespie

I go down to the bay in the dark.  We meet at the pier; dressed alike in our second skins.  The sun begins to come up somewhere behind Arthurs Seat, air-brushing the sky turquoise.  We shiver and wrap our bare arms around ourselves while we wait for the stragglers; giggling in the half-light, making jokes about what new hell we will experience today.

‘Okay ladies,’ the trainer says, and the torture begins.

 Eventually, red-faced, exhausted, I collapse on the sand.  We have pushed up and chinned up and kneed up and I am finished.

The sun is over the hills, glinting off the mirror of Port Phillip Bay, the dog walkers are filtering down to the water’s edge, clutching bags, nodding to each other.  The small waves curl against the sand in a gentle rhythm, my pulse begins to slow.

Kate comes back from the toilets and says ‘ready?’

We take off our shoes and run into the water in our lycra, screeching as the cold meets our skin with a shock that feels electric.  I dive down in the shallow water and my face skims the sand.  Our voices amplify across the surface of the water, stealing minutes from the hectic morning ahead. 

 A dark shadow approaches.  We freeze and fall silent and my heartbeat seems to shimmer the water as a stingray passes, gliding between us, smooth and purposeful.  It disappears into the blue; we both release a rush of breath and laugh with relief.

I drive home, leaving a large wet imprint on the seat.I will see it later on the school run and amongst the rush and noise and screams to hurry up I will remember the stingray, its powerful grace as it flowed past us and away.

This is my voice.

Legacy Lady by Andrea Rowe

I am the dust on the mantle, the sepia steely-eyed matron. I am the memory of Committee Presidents, the name on Honour Boards, saluting legends, leaving legacies. The plaque in the park. The bequest to a town. The clipboard ticking Mistress who would not let them...

Winter Words Week 5: Arthurs Seat by Muriel Cooper

MICROFICTION MANIA MONTH 2020 Read the 150 words (or less) works of our weekly winners who were given specific place, character and word prompts to write to.This was a People’s Choice voting initiative for our members during lockdown.Place : Arthurs SeatCharacter :...

Writing woman by Liz Hicklin

The voice of a retired widow, with time to indulge in the glories of our Peninsula. I wake every morning to a view of the bay; fishing boats, still on glass, cruise ships leaving, distant view of the You Yang’s, sail boats bobbing in the evening. University of third...

Winter Words Week 4: Sufficient by Anna Shelley

MICROFICTION MANIA MONTH 2020 Read the 150 words (or less) works of our weekly winners who were given specific place, character and word prompts to write to.This was a People’s Choice voting initiative for our members during lockdown.Co-Winner: Anna Shelley. Word:...

The Swim by Muriel Cooper

The old beagle looks up from his basket. His muzzle grey and his eyes bleary.“Come on, Barney, my old darling. Time for your walk.” He perks up when he sees the lead, his tail wags, he struggles out of the basket and licks her hand as she clips it on his collar.  They...

The Guardian by Rebecca Fraser

I am a Guardian. Like my mother and her mother, and her mother before;
Nurturing, protecting, weaving
the tapestry of family and community with small, tight stitches.