Gum by Susan Tepper

At the rim of the spaceship there’s a ladder and a rail. I don’t understand why because they won’t let us go outside. I don’t understand why because the spacemen went outside. They got to walk on the moon. We bought first class and we are stuck inside all day and night. It’s not good to be confined without fresh air. I mention this to Dad who just laughs and pats my knee. Well it isn’t. I know that for a fact. But Dad just reads his newspaper and chews gum. Every few hours a new piece of gum. Have some gum he tells me. I frown and look away. Gum gives me headaches. But he doesn’t know that. He’s just the Dad. My mom knows that but she stayed behind. She said she’d take her chances.


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Filed under Susan Tepper

19 responses to “Gum by Susan Tepper

  1. Hmmmmm… take her chances? Seems somewhat ominous but I still thought it funny!

  2. Just awesome, Susan. That last line answers the big question. Superbly written!

    • I wish I knew what the big question was, Susan, I seem to be blinded to this story, but thanks for your comment! At least I must be on the right track– the right spaceship.

  3. len kuntz

    quirky and mysterious. nice, susan!

  4. great story, so much written in the space(s) of the writing.

  5. Darryl P.

    Love the quickness with which this gets the job done. Everything perfectly suited to state the case. I’m a big fan of beautiful sentences, too. Nice.

  6. The line about mom taking her chances — sucker punch. You always have this way of cross-cutting the emotion at the end. Peace…

  7. Well done! I like the juxtaposition: gum – spaceship! Sticks in the mind… seriously original. Thanks.

  8. John Riley

    Love the ending how the idea of gum holding them together resonated after I’d finished reading. Great story.

  9. Alexandra Pereira

    Really enjoyed this little, but BIG story, Susan! :-)

  10. Pingback: Week #46 – Another world | 52|250 A Year of Flash

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