Skate Key by
(307 Stories)

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Skate Key

Home from school,  a hurried snack,  bread with both sides buttered,  chocolate milk,  an apple offered but rudely refused.   (“Don’t be fresh, young lady!”)

Skates strapped over shoes,  no purse,  no house key,  no hanky,  just a skate key on a ribbon around her neck,  then out the door.  (“Be careful!”)

Down the block,  wind in her hair to Susy’s house,  a snack offered,  now politely refused,  and out again.  (“Be careful girls!”)

Now two wild skaters with wind in their hair.

Did they know those strapped-on skates had wings,  taking them to magic places just around the block?

– RetroFlash / 100 Words 

Dana Susan Lehrman 

Profile photo of Dana Susan Lehrman Dana Susan Lehrman
This retired librarian loves big city bustle and cozy country weekends, friends and family, good books and theatre, movies and jazz, travel, tennis, Yankee baseball, and writing about life as she sees it on her blog World Thru Brown Eyes!

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Tags: Roller skating, Childhood, RetroFlash


  1. John Shutkin says:

    Just terrific, Dana. You really have gotten the RetroFlash tone and content perfectly. I particularly loved the parentheticals parental quotes. And that “the skates had wings.”

  2. Wow, Dee! Fabulous use of 100 words! Took me right back to skating around the block with my first BFF. I can almost feel the weight of the key on a lanyard around my neck…the same key I used for hopscotch. I had a feeling you’d fly with the RetroFlash form.

  3. Suzy says:

    This is great, Dana! I’m so glad you decided to try RetroFlash. Don’t forget that your name and “RetroFlash/100 words” don’t have to be part of your word count – so you actually could have written 5 more words. Not saying that you need to, it’s wonderful as is, just that you could if you wanted to.

  4. Dana, this is great! The flash thing released a great voice from you!

  5. Betsy Pfau says:

    Loved the way you used this form, Dana, really poetic. I could feel the close bond between you and Susy (my first BFF, too), the urgency to get out the door, the warning from both mothers and the lyrical freedom conveyed on your skates with the wind in your hair. Really great portrait painted.

  6. Laurie Levy says:

    I love this, Dana. As someone who remembers very well those skate keys worn around the neck, you took me back to happy childhood memories. Thanks!

  7. Marian says:

    Wonderful Flash, Dana. You hit the “notes” perfectly, and I can see you flying down the sidewalks just like we did in our neighborhood!

  8. Very engaging and evocative. My favorite element, from the point of view of technique, is the use of the parental voice with brief utterances in quotation marks. Like any good poem, a few words successfully convey a great deal.

  9. Joe Lowry says:

    Ah, life was so much easier, fun and care free when our age was in a single digit. Thanks for taking me back to those times.

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