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from Flash Fiction Collection by Jo Hawk

Copyright © 2019–2022 Jo Hawk

The Greatest Gift

As the day approaches, my anticipation increases. Doubt wrings conviction from my heart while my head constructs lists designed to weigh each decision’s consequences.

My worry consumes me, and my mother sends me to visit the shrine. The Omikuji will predict my future, she says.

Thousands of paper strips tied to pine rods dominate the temple grounds. I fear the multitude of curses and bad fortunes others have tried to leave behind. Still, I make my donation and follow ancient custo...


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