The ‘Gray’

d’Verse prosery

Despite weeks of training, I’m anxious. Truth is, nobody really knows whether this will work… Really, it’s all theoretical.

I see Prof. Chow signal towards me. Repairing and repurposing this extraterrestrial portal technology was her idea; her excitement is palpable. She claims there exists a colorless, muted realm, parallel to our own, in which peace reigns supreme. Prof. Chow calls it the ‘Gray’.

Here, the world is on the brink of nuclear annihilation; but Prof. Chow believes the Gray can save humanity. According to her, this represents our only hope. I’m told we have just enough juice to send one person through the portal and back again.

Taking a deep breath, I step onto the orange platform and let the crackling, prismatic energy waves draw me in. My inadvertent scream goes unheard over the portal’s roar.

Then, in the tender gray, I swim undisturbed.


d’Verse prosery is flash fiction with a beginning, a middle and an end, in any genre of the author’s choice, no longer than 144 words. This very short piece of prose must include an assigned line from a poem, within the 144 word limit. Writers may change the punctuation of the assigned line, but they may not insert words within the quotation.

The assigned quotation was:

In the tender gray, I swim undisturbed

Celia Dropkin (1887 – 1956), ‘In Sullivan County’

57 thoughts on “The ‘Gray’”

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