Bar Room – Flash Fiction

The bar was full with people easing themselves into their next moment. He sat in the seat nearest the wall and felt comfort knowing the wall supported him. He rubbed his forehead with the palm of his hand. His fingers flared out slightly while he did this. He felt shame. His father would often rub his forehead the same way, telling the world how irritated he was. He closed his hand into a fist and set it on the bar. The rumbling of the men and women drinking and talking, seemingly without care, eased him. Looking at his closed fist he counted the scars on his knuckles. Remembering clearly where each came from. His beer was empty but he wouldn’t ask. He would sit and wait until the bartender asked if he’d like another. It was always this way. The rumbling went on and the wall wouldn’t leave him.


Thank you for reading and Cheers!

I invite you to learn about my self published book.

Or, read the reviews via the amazon link below.

Don’t Be A Sally – Based on True Events

If you enjoy beer with your whiskey you may enjoy this story.  It’s based on true events. The hardest working men and women I know drink.  They’ll watch the foam slide down the glass and empty the contents and order another.  Some are covered in mud and dust from working in the fields and other’s pull on their suit to be sure they haven’t wrinkled.

The first chapter is tough.  Don’t Be A Sally is based on true events. Cheers.Sugar Loaf

Photo taken by me.  Use your smart phone, kindle, laptop, or iPhone reader and click the link below to read the story.

A Short Story – Based on True Events

From time to time I’ll mention a short story I wrote for my cousin. He was in a tough situation and the only item left for me to give was to write. And I did. I wrote from the heart. He read the story and loved it. His mother read the story and his life was changed. She no longer enabled him to drink. Cutting him off, he became homeless.

Fast forwarding to the now, he’s employed and doing well having just hit his one year mark. He called to talk about that, life, our family. I love my cousin.

After I wrote the story, Megan, self published it for me. It’s called Don’t Be A Sally- Based on true events. I make mention of this story in my ‘About’ and haven’t a clue if any of you have read it. It’s not perfect and it’s not professionally edited.

Megan is the reason I write. She found a box in the closet.  I had printed a few short stories I’d written while in College and placed them in the box, forgotten. College was a decade ago. I wasn’t sure I could write. I wasn’t sure I ever could. I wasn’t an English major. I know very little about the proper usage of anything. Oddly enough, I don’t want to know. I know that words land on the page and somehow they came from me. That’s all I want. I don’t wish to be perfect, only perfectly me.

Now these words chase me. I can’t make them stop. I can’t ignore my past and I won’t. Eventually I’ll write about that too. But, not yet. For now, I’ll finish ‘Colby and the Ravine’ a novel about a child’s innocence lost, written for adults. The ravine is the ravine I grew up in. I might as well have been a stick lying at the bottom of the ravine. I fit well there.

I didn’t mean to sit down and write this post. Now, here it is. It’s December 7th and I have to publish this post. 7 is my favorite number. It’s a number I feel thankful for.

Bar Stool Happenings

I sat at the bar. My mug was full of beer. The man to my left talked of politics and the three men to my right talk of the bartender. When she turned to pour a beer they said, under their breath, that she had a nice ass and her chest was large. My beer was good. The man to my left wanted to tell me about the kids in school. He said that kids no longer received the education he did and that the country would die. The three men to my right talked of her tits. My beer was in front of me. Then, the man to my left told me about his father. His father was there, on D-Day, and he knew. The men on my right wanted to know if the bartender realized her chest was large. My beer was empty.

In Which We Are Amused – A Short Story. Cheers.

Written by M. Taggart-  Fiction.

Standing over the toilet, he held onto himself and wondered, “Why?”   It was just last night he had told himself, no more. The bubbles grew and he hit them with a part of himself.

She was laying in the other room, in his bed.  Thinking she was asleep, he opened the fridge door and pulled out a can of beer.  The can echoed as he opened it and that was fine with him.  He placed the beer down, empty.

He looked at his kitchen and thought, “I’m a failure.  Look at this.”

The room was trying to spin, but he held on, settled it down and looked in the direction of his bedroom door.  It was open.  It looked dark, too dark for comfort.

She heard him relieving himself, with the door open.  She listened as it went on for at least three minutes, but “How was that possible?” she thought.

She’d met him that night.  He was very handsome and they’d had dinner, he paid, and now she was here.  Naked and smelling his sheets.  They smelled like him and she didn’t know why, but she wanted to keep smelling them.  She heard another can of beer being opened and wondered why he wanted to do that.

He stepped past the kitchen counter, which caught his hip, and fell.  The wood floor helped to slow his fall.

“Are you alright?” she asked.  She’d gotten up from his bed and was now viewing him.

Smiling, wild eyed, and naked, he replied “I’m good.”

“Do you think they’ll be upset?”

“Downstairs?  I don’t much care if they are.”

“That’s not very nice.”

“Neither is the counter, but who cares.”

“I care,” she said with a serious look.

“Really?  Why’s that?”  Shifting and lifting himself up, watching her, watch him.

“I care because it was loud.”

“And did you care when you were loud?”

She covered herself with her hands.  “I don’t remember.”

“Let’s not bother with this.  Want a beer?”

“I’d rather a water.”

“A water with Whiskey?” He asked.

“No, I’d like a water.  No whiskey.  Do you drink often?” she asked.

He walked slowly to the sink and reached into his cupboard for a glass.  He filled the glass with water and turned to her, “I drink when I’m drinking,” and held the glass out for her.

“That’s lovely,” she replied and tried to be upset.  He was smiling at her and his arm was reaching toward her.  “He had a nice smile,” she thought.

“I’m not going to stand, and hold this all night.  I think you ought to come get it.”

“Who talks like that?” she asked.

He looked down, at his floor, then at his counter.  It was rustic.  There was a coffee maker and a dish dryer on top of the counter.  At the back of his kitchen there was a towel for drying dishes.  He looked at the towel.  Nothing was to see.

She watched him, “He’s not like anyone I know.  He’s handing me a glass of water, but, I see a life,” she thought.  She stepped closer, closing in and reaching.

She was naked and reaching, and he watched her, “Is this a first?” He wondered.  She’d seen his kitchen and his kitchen sink towel.  She asked, “Who talks like that?” and he looked again at the towel.

She stood, just behind the counter, enough for him to see what he liked.  “He looked sad,” she thought.  She wanted to smell him, his shoulders, and his cheeks.

“What are you doing?” he asked.

“Watching.  I’m watching and thinking,” She replied.


Ahhh, more to come on this one.  I think. –M. Taggart.


Note: If you enjoyed this story, you might also like my self published story, Don’t Be A Sally- Based on True Events- Which you can find on amazon and in your iBook store.

Don’t Be A Sally – Based on True Events

His heart pounded in his chest and his ears rang. He was in hell. He was sure of it. This moment; with this feeling of sickness, and pure hatred for what he felt, was hell. Welcome to hell.

No vomit came from his stomach. No vomit came from his throat and no vomit came from his mouth. His mid-section wretched up and down looking like an October cat in a filthy dance. Up and down his body rose and nothing came out. Yet he smelt his own vomit lingering all about him. Again, he rose up, and again he produced nothing. Beads of sweat were on his forehead and it wasn’t long before they fell onto the surface of the tub. He lurched heavily downward with a massive cough and something came up. Something vile and red landed onto the tub’s floor. Black. He saw nothing but black as he slowly faded and fainted again.

The full story is published and can be found via a link on my profile.  – M. Taggart

An excerpt from Chapter 1. ‘Don’t Be A Sally’ –  Written and published by M. Taggart

The Way It Is – A Short Story. Cheers.

Written by M. Taggart 8/3/14

Fiction:  This short story is much about the confusion that comes along with any relationship.

Copyright 2014 by Matt Taggart, aka -M. Taggart


 The Way It Is


He could feel her staring at him.  He rubbed his temples with his thumb and forefinger.  Unsure of what she expected from him, he lowered his head further.

“We can’t expect this to continue if you aren’t willing to handle it.” She said.

“I’ve handled it.  I handled it years ago,” he replied.

“I don’t know that I’d agree you’ve handled it.”  She said.

“I have.  In my opinion, it’s you making this an issue, all over again and I’m not going backward.”  He noticed the wood floor seemed to be bowing into him.

They were sitting at a pub.  The pub was in town and was nearly empty.  It had a fireplace and hard wood floors.  On both sides of the fireplace were windows and the water was after that.

She sat, looking from him, then to the water.  The fire was nice, but it wasn’t giving away secrets today.  The water looked cold, she felt cold.

It was pulling him inward, again, as always when this was the topic of concern.  Then, he thought, what about tomorrow at this time?  Will there be a different topic of concern?  One that fits the moment, or one that fits the convenience of an angle?  Pulling him further in, it was.

“You’re doing it again.  You do this every time.  Shutting down isn’t going to help you.  It’s not going to help you grow and it’s not going to help us.”  She said with an edge of frustration.

He wondered how she could know whether, or not, it would stop him from personal growth when he’d already grown from this and had already gotten passed it.  He felt it was her who was stuck and couldn’t get past it.  It was her who was beating on him, for something that had already beaten him down.  She was stuck and now taking it out on him.  And the floor looked even larger and softer than a few moments ago.

“I think it’ll be fine.  We’ll be fine.  If we both want this to be fine.  What was, is not, what is.  We’ll be fine if we both want this to be fine and we’ll be done if we both want this to be done.  Or, if you want to be done.  I don’t want to be done.  There’s three scenarios there, for you, to ponder.  I think we’re fine.”

“Look at us, how are we fine?  I can’t trust you and you have such anger inside that you don’t see it.  You destroy everything around you, in time.  And you’ll destroy us.”  She said.

“That’s helpful.  Thanks.”  The floor no longer looked as interesting as it did.  Looking up he saw nothing but her face.  How beautiful she was.  How upset.  How angry.  He saw her eyes, strong, and pushing.  She was rather pushy, he thought.

“What are you smiling about?  This isn’t funny.” She said, annoyed.

“You’re pushy.”  He said with smiling eyes.

She shifted in her seat, breathed deeply and rolled her eyes.  The smack of her hands landing on the pub table was louder than expected.  The bartender pretended not to notice.

“Don’t make me angry.” She said.

“Oh please.  Go ahead, get angry.  That won’t help us to grow.”  Again he smiled with his eyes.  He noticed his glass of beer was nearing empty, though just a moment ago it was half full.  The side of the beer glass had small clusters of foam slowly moving toward the bottom of the glass and he wanted to see how long it might take for them to collect; together again.

“Stop it.”  She said.

“Stop what?  You weren’t exactly the easiest to be around today, and now you’re pushing me and want something I can’t give you.  Now, that it’s not going your way, you’re telling me to not make you angry.  Am I missing something?  Should I not have an opinion?”

“You’re twisting this all around.  I only wanted to talk about how to get us past this, and you won’t do it.”

“It’s not that I won’t do it, it’s that I’ve already done it.  Long ago, without you.  You’re playing catch up and I’m doing the best I can.  What do you want me to do?”

“I want you to get help.  See someone.”

“That’s not going to happen.”

“Why not?”

“I did.  It didn’t go well.  I’ve found that true professionals, don’t exist.  Individuals exist.”

She felt her frustration, anger, and disappointment rise and wanted to be away from him.  She thought, if he wasn’t to get help, they’ll never get past any trust issue.

The bar tender watched the couple as they talked.  She was loud enough to hear, he wasn’t.  He noticed that the man was almost overly aware of other people watching and knew how to shield his words from being overheard.  The women was beautiful.  She was quick with her movement and spoke in a determined way.   He thought they seemed O.K.  But not a great fit.

“Are we going to have another round?” He ask while she flared her eyes angrily. “The bartender’s coming.”  She didn’t answer.

The bartender was handsome.  He strode toward them with a steady, calming walk.  Already smiling as he made his approach, his attention was on her.

“Would you like another round?”  The bartender asked, noticing the women’s low cut shirt and viewing.  Looking up he saw the man awaiting him.  He saw.

“Yea, we’ll have another round.”  She answered smiling brightly at the bartender.  A smile that hadn’t been shared with anyone, like that, until now.

With a straight face he didn’t take his eyes from the bartender until the bartender looked away.  He wanted him to know, and he did.  But, he wondered, did she?  Did she know?  Does she care?  Is it what she wants?  And what happens, when one day, it goes too far and I say something, or worse, do something.  Then will it be me that’s solely out of control, or will it be a shared responsibility?

“What are you doing?” She asked, now looking at him, but with not the bright smile she offered the bartender.


“About what?” She asked, again with the pushing eyes.

“About life, about how things fit, about how people fit.  About future happenings and will you remember.”

“Remember what?”

“Remember all that’s happened to lead to the moment that is.”

“You’re doing it again, Stephen, honestly, what are you talking about?”

No longer sitting within himself, feeling alone, but with intent in the here and now he looked at her and replied “It doesn’t matter.  I don’t always make sense to myself.  So put that aside.  I do know this.  At the end of each day I ask myself, do I want to be with her.  Yes.  Every day the same answer and every morning the same answer and every mid-day the same answer.  I know I have issues, but I always know what I want.  I want you.”

She breathed in quickly.

“Please don’t cry, hon.  You cry in public too often.”  He said smiling, but this time with care.

“It’s better than me walking out.  Or you walking home.  Which also happens.”   She reached her hand to his, covering his.

He moved his hand to cover hers and gripped firmly.

The bartender noticed from a distance and thought it didn’t matter.  They were getting along well now, but there would be a chance later.


Note: If you enjoyed this story, you might also like my self published story, Don’t Be A Sally- Based on True Events- Which you can find on amazon and in your iBook store.