Damnatio Memoriae


Author’s Note: The title means “he does not exist” in Latin and was the phrase for the Roman act of striking an unpopular emperor’s name from all historical accounts after his death.

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My submission comes in at 97 words.

When the gulls started re-enacting Hitchcock films for us, we knew the end was near. Nature was rebelling and the battle wasn’t going to end well.  Storms came out of nowhere, fires raged, and the ground shook beneath our feet. When the assault stopped, we ventured outside, looking for a sign that everything had returned to normal. Sadly all we saw was devastation. I found the two gulls’ broken bodies and gave them a proper burial in the cement-like mud; weeping silently, I mourned their passing and with it, the loss of my place in the world.

10 thoughts on “Damnatio Memoriae

  1. Dear Jen,

    I loved the writing in your story, but could not make the final connection. I guess my brain is full of that cement like mud. I’ll keep my gaze focused on the comment section for enlightenment.



    • Thanks Doug, I was trying to go for the whole idea that an environmental disaster would be a human one as well. Not sure if I totally got that across though.

  2. Like Doug I found the very end a bit obscure, but still a good piece of writing. A nice way to get so much story across in such a small piece without it feeling like ‘telling’.

    • Thanks, I’m not sure about the ending myself. I had a different one but I was over the word count and I like to try and stay as close to 100 words as possible for the challenge.

  3. I wasn’t sure what caused the disaster, but I certainly got the picture of disaster and the end times. Welcome and I look forward to reading more of your writing.


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