Here is another of those two-sentence stories with poetry added. Read here for the first one and explanation of why I wrote it and got started on this idea, and search under the category Fiction/Poetry Combination for others in the series.

I like doing this form of minuscule story. I can handle two sentences, I think, and it is fun.


The lobby of the office building was tropical-warm, the crust of snow on George’s expensive coat and boots melting immediately as he cut across a just-mopped section of the floor, ignoring the protective mats and moving with the confident strides of a fellow much too busy to waste time making things convenient for some janitor guy and his cleaning routine. The elevator door opened on cue and closed just as smartly, getting right to the business of speeding his personage to upper-floor doings of consequence, while the guy mopping the marble floor moved his bucket and started clearing the path of gray slush George had left behind.


Tanka 76

a winter morning
a walk in the clean hard cold
a tailored wool coat
flecked with falling snow. Inside
a man mops the marble floor.


Easton Road in the snow
Glenside, PA
Taken from the Easton Road overpass at the Glenside train station, 2015.

8 thoughts on “Actor

    • Yes. This came from a glimpse of someone cleaning the floor (not that we have had snow yet, thank goodness) and it made me think of how often I’ve seen a clean floor tracked all over as the person is cleaning it, and I always feel for the cleaner, who has to see work unappreciated and having to be redone over and over.

  1. Love it! The juxtaposition between George and the janitor is really effective. George reminds me of so many of the commuters I used to encounter in London who were so focused on getting from A to B that they were barely aware of their surroundings let alone the people they were adjacent to. It was a type of tunnel vision that struck me – as a non-city commuter – as quite rude as they would shut doors in people’s faces or knock into people without a glance let alone an apology. They certainly would not have noticed a janitor or his/her efforts.

    • Thank you. Yes, this is exactly my feeling. People dismiss other people as just being part of the environment in so many circumstances and I hate that (having been on that side of things in quite a few jobs. Even sometimes selling art).

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