Flash Fiction, Paul Cornoyer, and Me


The flash-fiction piece which follows was inspired by the work of the early 20th century American impressionist, Paul Cornoyer. He is best known for his New York City street scenes.  The Plaza After the Rain was painted before 1910. This moody painting perfectly conveys the  cold rain of spring, with the trees just beginning to leaf out, assuring us that the sun lurks somewhere beyond the dark skies.

Wikipedia defines Flash Fiction in this way: Flash fiction is a style of fictional literature or fiction of extreme brevity. There is no widely accepted definition of the length of the category. Some self-described markets for flash fiction impose caps as low as three hundred words, while others consider stories as long as a thousand words to be flash fiction.

Flash Fiction, for me, is generally around 200 to 700 words, and is inspired by an image or a melody–a short burst of something that fires my imagination to a brief burst of creativity. The short works that come out of these moments of insight often bear little resemblance to the piece that inspired them–I can’t account for how creativity works. I only know that I am deeply moved by the beauty and creativity of the world around me.

The great artistic, literary, and musical works of the masters who have gone before us endlessly intrigue and inspire me, feeding my imagination.

The Watcher

Flash Fiction © by Connie J. Jasperson, all rights reserved.

(originally published on WattPad, March 21 2013)

She stares out the window of her lonely room, watching the street below through the rivulets of water; blue and grey, washed away. Azure blue, the sky briefly shows itself and sunlight temporarily blinds her. Dry, elderly eyes watch as dark clouds once again overtake the blue. Rain pounds against the glass.

Rain beats down and passersby on the street below vainly seek shelter beneath newspapers and fragile umbrellas, dodging under awnings, leaping into taxis waiting to whisk them away to distant places where the rains of March are just a rumor.

She looks down at the black of her dress. In her mind she sees him in the casket, looking as if he’d merely fallen asleep.

Her damp woolen coat lies on the bed, where sixty two years of her life were spent with him. Sixty two years of quarrels, of passion, sixty two years of love and jealous anger. Sixty two years of ties that bound them more securely than the mere vows of marriage two young people once took ever could.

Slightly ajar, the door of the closet reveals his clothes, suits and slacks hanging ready for the man who will never again wear them. The book he was reading rests on the nightstand by his pillow.

She stares out the window of her lonely room, watching the street below through the rivulets of water, blue and grey; washed away.

The sky weeps tears that faded blue eyes refuse to shed.


Connie J. Jasperson is an author and blogger, and a regular contributing member of the Edgewise Words Inn staff


Author: conniejjasperson

Connie J. Jasperson lives in Olympia, Washington. A vegan, she and her husband share five children, a love of good food and great music. She is active in local writing groups, an editor for Myrddin Publishing Group, and is a writing coach. She is an active member of the both the Northwest Independent Writers Association and Pacific Northwest Writers Association, and is a founding member of Myrddin Publishing Group. Music and food dominate her waking moments. When not writing or blogging she can be found with her Kindle, reading avidly.

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