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*Cue dramatic music*  “It’s the Ciiiiirrrrclllllllllle, the Circle of Liiiiiiiiiife!”

I clearly remember the first time I saw The Lion King.  It was July of 1994, me, my toddler, my newborn, and my mother in a classic big-screen theater.  I remember being awestruck by that song, and that stunning opening scene.  Mom?  She said, “It’s awfully loud.  They should turn the volume down.  I should go ask them to turn the volume down.”  My newborn?  Slept through the whole thing.  My toddler, completely unfazed by the loudness, but raptly attuned to the visual feast on the screen.  She still loves great animated films.

There we were, four people, different phases of life, different experiences with the same moment.

Those two children are married now, contemplating their own families.  Mom has passed away.  I’m forging on into my fabulous fifties and looking forward to the next great adventure, fully preparing myself to be the coolest grandma in the universe!

Damn, those phases went by quickly!  That circle of life is spinning so fast I’m getting dizzy.

This month’s stories feature some of the trials and joys of life’s journey through some of those many phases in the circle of life–from a futuristic childcare dilemma, to a tender coming-of-age story, to the problems and opportunities of being an independent adult, to the challenges of caring for aging parents.

We know you’ll love every word.  We do.

And to all the moms out there, Happy Mother’s Day!  Here’s a bunch of flowers that you don’t have to try to keep alive.

Suzanne Vincent

Suzanne Vincent is the editor-in-chief of Flash Fiction Online. That’s what people think anyway. Actually, she’s really a pretty ordinary middle-aged woman packing a few extra pounds and a few more gray hairs than she’s comfortable with. As a writer, she leans toward the fantasy spectrum, though much of what she writes is difficult to classify. Slipstream? Isn’t that where we stick stories when we just can’t figure out where else they go? Suzanne’s first professional publication was right here at FFO, published before she joined the staff: “I Speak the Master’s Will,” — a story she’s still very proud of. While she doesn’t actually have time to blog anymore, she once did. You can still read her ancient posts on writing at The Slushpile Avalanche. Suzanne keeps a house full of kids (3), a husband (1), and pets (too many to number) in Utah, USA. Yes, she’s a Mormon. No, there isn’t another wife. Mormons haven’t actually practiced polygamy since the 1890s. Too bad. She’d love to have another woman around to wash dishes and do laundry.


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