I’m Not Mad


I’m Not Mad

They think I’m mad,
an aged mind that’s
simply given up.

They talk to me slowly,
check I’m not cold and
feed me like a baby.

I gurgle and dribble,
but I’m not stupid,
just confused and lonely.

Here they come again,
tucking in my blanket,
smiling but not smiling.

One day soon,
when I can remember the words,
I’ll tell them to stop.

Mike Jackson




“How exactly does it work then?”

“Easy really. As soon as we get hold of the babies me and mum freeze-dry them. This keeps them nice and safe while we travel from one market to another.”

“Doesn’t it kill them?”

“Course not. Makes them go hard and slows down all their vital organs, but they’re still alive. They stay like that until they get warmed up. Mind you does mean we have to sell them quick. Can’t afford to have them hanging around in the sun for too long. Once had one wake up midway through dad’s pitch. Didn’t half make a noise with all his crying. Scared a lot of punters away. Lost a lot of money that morning. Anyway, what have you got?”

“Twins. Only six weeks old. Mum can’t afford more kids. What’ll you give me for them?”


Mike Jackson

Originally a story for Angela Goff’s ‘VisDare’ prompt.

Time To Break Free?




As a fledgeling teenager, I dreamt of being a rebel. But between the rigid Presbyterian church we attended every Sunday and a father not afraid to wield his thick leather belt, I learned to conform.

Now, as a law-abiding, middle-aged man I pay my taxes. I don’t drink or smoke and have never taken drugs or cheated on my wife. Rules and regulations; bylaws and petty bureaucracy were made for people like me.

Hence my present dilemma. The arrow tells me to drive one way. So I do.

And I wonder if I will ever break free of this roundabout?


Mike Jackson

100-word story for Friday Fictioneers.

Picture courtesy of  C.E. Ayr

Job Advert



I recently read a poem by Joe Moran called ‘Job Advert’  which I found highly entertaining. So I have taken the liberty of copying the style of this poem and have written a job advert for an Assistant Headteacher. The more serious parts were taken from an actual advert.

We are seeking to appoint

an exceptional Assistant Headteacher

from the start of the academic year.

You will have a track record

of outstanding classroom practice

and the ability to lead

improvement in academic standards

and student outcomes.

As a member of the SLT

you will play an important role

in the overall leadership

and management of the school.

In addition, you will have

one or more of the following attributes:

an ability to read minds,

a skin thicker than that

of your average rhinoceros,

a lack of empathy.

You will be able to

upset the majority

and satisfy the minority,

while at the same time

taking the blame for everything.

The capacity to annoy parents

with an ill-chosen turn of phrase

or a withering look,

would be an advantage.

Being able to ingratiate yourself

with governors, Ofsted inspectors

and the Headteacher

is desirable

but not essential.

The post is for life

and you will begin on a salary

far lower than that of your predecessor

and with an inflated workload

and as an employer,
we are committed to valuing diversity.

Mike Jackson