Ice on the rocks flash fiction

Ice on the rocks

This week at the Carrot Ranch, Charli Mills discusses her daughter’s existence in the treeless landscape in the northernmost town in the world, Longyearbyen on Svalbard, Norway.

This video provides an introduction to Longyearbyen.

In her post, Charli warns that “The reality of climate change impacted the polar regions of our world first. Think of the Arctic as our canary in the coal mine … To say the Arctic is the canary means that our planet is changing so rapidly that species are dying.”

Evidence of those changes is discussed in this recent National Geographic article

and, while this video shows the changes to the Arctic sea ice from 1979 – 2018,

(Read information accompanying this video here.)

this article shows the situation updated to April 2019.

With the effects so evident, it is hard to fathom that there are still some who deny the climate is changing. To what end?

The phrase ‘on the rocks’ often refers to a beverage, usually alcoholic, served undiluted on ice. It can also refer to something in difficulty or failing. It was a combination of these meanings, minus the alcohol, I used in the title.

Charli Mills' flash fiction challenge Ice

Charli’s discussion introduced her flash fiction challenge to In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story without ice. It can be a world without ice or a summer camp that runs out of cubes for lemonade. What does the lack mean to the story? Go where the prompt leads!

I took it a little differently.

Let’s Hear it for Ice

A world without ice —

That made me think tw—

Two times.


A world without ice

Would not be so n—



We couldn’t play games

With a six-sided d—

Numbered cube.


We couldn’t have fries

With a side-serve of r—

Food grain.


Our food would be bland

Without pinches of sp—



A world without ice

Where rule is by v—



A world without ice

We’d all pay the pr—



A world without ice

I’d say in a tr—



A world without ice

I’d even say thr—

Three times


Would never

Could never

Be anything nice!

Thank you blog post

Thank you for reading. I appreciate your feedback. Please share your thoughts.

48 thoughts on “Ice on the rocks

    1. Norah Post author

      Thanks, Anne. I wasn’t thinking potato chips, I was thinking stir-fries but it didn’t fit the rhythm and I couldn’t think of a substitute. Because I was focused on the stir-fries, I didn’t realise that it could be interpreted differently. Thanks for pointing it out.
      Yes, definitely one or the other. 🙂


        1. Norah Post author

          That’s a possibility. I’m not keen on lentils and have probably never tried dhal so I didn’t think of it. It would definitely work. I should have researched what to serve with rice. 🙂


  1. roughwighting

    Your poem/comments are perfect to the challenge. You WIN the challenge. Ice on the Rocks – great title. And our life will be “On the Rocks” if we continue to ignore the need to take better care of our Earth. The point of those who want to ignore the crisis? Money – they want the big bad companies to continue spewing forth poisons to MAKE MORE MONEY. URGHHHH.
    Wonderful work/words here Norah.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Norah Post author

      Thank you for your lovely comment, Pam. I’m pleased the message of my poem and the post’s title was clear. Yes, the environment doesn’t have enough champions putting their money the right way round.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. D. Avery @shiftnshake

    Very well done, Buddy. The title. Too perfect. The presentation, taking the expected word away- mimicking the dissonance and tension of this grim situation. But god bless us we are still playful, seriously so. Very well done Buddy. N’ice.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Charli Mills

    Thank you for finding and sharing that video on Lonyearbyen. It gave me a better visual of where my daughter is. I don’t know how they manage the long polar night. The sea ice has been melting which sets off a chain of events, including more extreme weather events. How people can’t see this, blows me away. And your 99-words is great play!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Norah Post author

      Thanks, Charli. The long winter nights would take a bit of getting used to.
      I’m pleased you enjoyed the word play. I wondered if it was a bit trite, but I guess even children playing in the sand know a lot more about what’s going on than we often give them credit for.


  4. thecontentedcrafter

    That’s so clever Norah 🙂 Even taking the word away makes such a difference. I’ve been keeping a closer track of what is happening to the South Pole because I have a friend who spends time there who has made me very aware of the changes. I found the video most interesting to watch, thanks for sharing that. I have often thought it would be a most interesting experience to live through a polar winter. Imagine, four months when ‘day’ consists of twilight……. it has to be a whole different way of life drawing on different life skills and personal resources I imagine.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Norah Post author

      Thanks, Pauline. I didn’t feel very clever – just trite, but it’s what came out.
      There are big changes in Antarctica too. Does your friend holiday or work there? The husband of one of my previous work colleagues worked there for many years collecting meteorological data.
      I agree, 4 months without sunshine would be very different from our bright days. It would be difficult to adjust. I would hope that melanoma wouldn’t be a problem though. That would be a positive thing!


      1. thecontentedcrafter

        My friend is a geologist who spends months there every couple or so years and so can really see the visual differences, as well as the more hidden responses. He’s been saying (to me) for at least ten years now ice melt is accelerating faster than predicted and faster than reported.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. J.S - WEW

    Nice post. Climate is changing, but the mindset of governing authorities is not changing, and this is creating more anxiety. I have recently published a post,
    Natural Disasters
    Hope you will enjoy reading this article. (Climate change is also one of the reasons behind these natural disasters).

    Liked by 1 person


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