The Fortune Cookie Philosopher
can't help those who won't listen. She sits in a two room office over-looking Mission, offers pointers on better living through bigger thinking. A few patrons of the nation's Chinese restaurants seek wisdom, they take her words to heart. The rest are there for egg rolls, volume chicken, egg fu young. These diners value the cookie proper, more so than the slug of truth she typed for them on the rectangle. Mission is dicey past sundown. Potential distractions float through the window, but her best insights alight in later hours. How to live less messily. How to be braver than you used to be. How to polish to a shine, and when to take out the garbage. It's all in the cellophane-wrapped wafer that a member of the wait-staff gave you after you taught General Tso a lasting lesson in All-You-Can-Eat. She can't make you improve your mind. She just writes these things.
Todd Mercer's story "What We Learned From Honesty Day" won the Grand Rapids Festival of the Arts Flash Fiction Award for 2015. His digital poetry chapbook, Life-wish Maintenance, appeared at Right Hand Pointing. Mercer's recent poetry and fiction appears in: Apocrypha & Abstractions, Bartleby Snopes, Blast Furnace, Eunoia Review, Gravel, The Lake, Liars' League NYC, Literary Orphans, Misty Mountain Review, The Magnolia Review and Main Street Rag Anthologies. Todd Mercer is Poetry Editor at The Legendary.