How are we feeling today?

Persimmon fruit allergy, they told us to our angry, itchy face, our butt red from Dad’s swats. The farmer told him we came over his fence, stole his fruit, and took as his price our shared bicycle.

Sympathy for the man who hurt us? Do you think we’d mourn that he is gone? Love that he never gave; we lived only with hostility.

Therapy, they said, would make us whole, united. We’ve grown fond of the crowd within our brain; the different aspects make us unique. The ones who protected the child within and entertained her when she was alone and scared, and trapped.

Children love to play, dress up and pretend to be happy homemakers, race car drivers, movie stars, astronauts, and royalty. They slip on and off each persona with the easy acceptance of who they are within that role, unlike their parents who watch and wonder why they never became what they dreamed they’d be as adults.

Notes: I started with Child to Adult first, in omniscient but the following piece was Persimmon to Bicycle in first person plural that started as the story of siblings. But then the 3rd prompt (Sympathy to Hostility) that forced no adjectives and words on 6 letters, resulted in a more brutal piece that made me think the 2nd piece was just one person with multiple personalities. So I went back to the 2nd piece and made the body parts singular but the thinking plural. I then was prompted to find a connection and do a new word and I thought therapy based on the notion of multiple personalities, and that resulted in Therapy/Trapped, which felt more unifying to have the end piece be my first piece as a sense of calmer out of body perspective of the whole issue of why children don’t always end up to be what they want as adults.

Nina Miller is an Indian-American physician, fencer, and creative. Her work can be found in TL;DR Press’s, Mosaic: The Best of the 1,000 Word Herd Flash Fiction Competition 2022, Bright Flash Literary Review, Five South, Roi Fainéant, Five Minutes and more. Find her on Twitter @NinaMD1 or