mother of thousands

Mother of Thousands by

Anita looked around for a place to put her cup.


“Oh, just leave it there,” said Charlotte, pointing to a gap between the pots on the side table.


Anita nudged it gently until the cup was safely over the rim.


“So, how are you?” she asked.


“Okay, thank you,” replied Charlotte.


“I see you’ve taken up a hobby,” said Anita, glancing around the room.


“Yes” replied Charlotte. “Actually, it’s turned into something of an obsession, but it keeps me occupied. It’s very therapeutic.”


“Do you have a favourite?” asked Anita.


Charlotte smiled. She had come across so many fascinating and beautiful species since she first set eyes on a succulent at the flea market. Charlotte had felt sorry for the thing as it looked so neglected, but on closer inspection she was fascinated to discover little plantlets lining the edges of the leaves. When Charlotte read the name on the label, she knew she’d found her calling.


“Kalanchoe daigremontiana.”


Anita raised her eyebrows.


“Mother of Thousands,” added Charlotte. “It’s considered a weed in some countries, because it multiplies so easily. I like to think more as…”


“It’s alright,” said Anita, reaching across to place a hand on her knee.


Charlotte let the tears run. Then she took a breath.


“These are my babies.”





Alex is a writer from Bristol, UK. His poems and short fiction have appeared in journals such as The Drabble, A Thin Slice of Anxiety and The Hyacinth Review.


Photo – Alex Rankin



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