This week has been exhausting, in real life and in the news, which is increasingly hard to accept as real life. How has it come to this? Caged children. Nonetheless stories remain important and so here are a very few, very short stories from this week. Six-worders, microfiction, fake headlines. Call them what you will, here they are.

In related news I am reading poetry almost exclusively at the moment. I love, love, love Simon Armitage’s piercing, funny collection The Unaccompanied.  His poem Poundland made me gasp aloud in a motorway service station cafe. It is so accurate.

I am part-way through Train Songs, an anthology of poems linked to railways. Some unknown poems, some very famous.  This is the night mail crossing the border… Hear WH Auden’s famous poem here.

I have also this week read Sawn-Off Tales by David Gaffney – a collection of extremely short stories, each one page long, each brilliant – shocking and hilarious and disturbing. Try, for example, Intimate Zone. Read it!

Meanwhile I have been unable to resist starting Django Wexler’s Guns of Empire even though I have a LOT of unfinished books already on my shelf. Sometimes you just have to do what you must do. And, full disclosure, I may have also watched this Elon

elon musk success rocket launch silly fun things are important

Elon Musk watching the Falcon Heavy launch. Image by National Geographic.

Musk post Falcon Heavy launch video, which I found very cheering, several times. Sometimes, hard work and dreams do pay off.

And it reminds me that even when you are striving to do something very difficult, it’s important to have fun. At one point Musk says (of sending his own car into space as Falcon Heavy’s first payload) “normally for a new rocket …they would launch like a block of concrete or something. But that’s sooo boring.” (Hear that at 08m:45ss).  Exactly. Adventure is bound to be hard. So when you see a chance to make it fun as well – a chance to laugh – you better take it.

This week’s six-worders:






That’s it! More next week. Reply below to let me know what you think!