Sarah Ann Hall

Reporting on writing in progress or, more probably, not; practising flash fiction.

#FridayFictioneers – 25/7/14 – Panda Geopolitics

with 31 comments

Every Wednesday Rochelle Wisoff-Fields publishes a photo prompt to inspire writers to write 100-words of flash fiction or poetry.

At any point during the following week, the Friday Fictioneers post their 100-word tales. Read the other stories by clicking below.

Thanks to Rochelle for hosting and Marie Gail for the photo. I didn’t go with the fork people idea – am looking forward to lots of weird and wonderful stories that did – but I do always use chopsticks when eating Chinese, and feel suitably superior to the forkers around me.


Copyright - Marie Gail Stratford

Copyright – Marie Gail Stratford


Panda Geopolitics

(Genre: anthropomorphic rhetoric, 100-words)

Look at that! Another piece of bamboo furniture. First it was scaffolding and housing, then paper. You killed with it of course, and went fishing. Now you strip, laminate, and turn it into floors, or extrude it into clothing. That’s when you’re not eating the shoots we could.

You say it’s sustainable: quick growing, a pest even in some areas, with rampant rhizomes racing underground. So why is my habitat lost? We didn’t chop it down.

You bemoan our lack of progeny, then stick us in zoos and wait for our bellies to produce invisible offspring.

And we let you.


Friday Fictioneers


Written by Sarah Ann

July 25, 2014 at 6:15 pm

31 Responses

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  1. Great story and a great message about the plight of pandas. I particularly liked the way you said how we destroy their habitat on the one hand, then on the other we’re complaining that their population is dwindling.


    July 25, 2014 at 7:20 pm

    • Well we do, don’t we? As humans we want everything all ways and are rarely happy to take responsibility for anything being our fault. Or am I being too harsh? I’ve just read your extinction story so might be taking everything a little to heart 🙂

      Sarah Ann

      July 25, 2014 at 9:16 pm

  2. Yes, if only Pandas can speak! But then chimps could sign language, and we still didn’t listen. We stick them in cages, too, after we take them out of their environ.



    July 25, 2014 at 9:49 pm

    • I think as a species we don’t like admitting our failings very much. We are useless at listening and not good at learning from history either.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2014 at 11:33 pm

  3. great message. if only they can speak… and if only people would listen. 😦


    July 26, 2014 at 3:37 am

    • I think it’s the listening that’s the problem, because deep down we know already.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2014 at 11:31 pm

  4. Poor pandas.

    I always use chopsticks, too, but I no longer feel superior. Just more comfortable.

    Alice Audrey

    July 26, 2014 at 5:10 am

    • The pandas thank you for your concern 🙂 And it just feels weird not using chopsticks when eating Chinese.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2014 at 11:35 pm

  5. Dear Sarah Ann,

    This is certainly a unique take on the prompt and a timely one at that. A pointed commentary and a well written story all in one.




    July 26, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    • Thank you Rochelle. The pointed commentary was definitely the panda’s voice pushing through not necessarily mine. We are still waiting to see if Tian Tian at Edinburgh zoo is going to produce a cub and there have been various discussions in the media about the politics of zoos, the UK”s relationship with China, the right/ wrongness of loaning pandas and so on – there is plenty for the panda to have an opnion on.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2014 at 11:42 pm

  6. Very good message. It highlights the sadness of the situation quite powerfully.


    July 26, 2014 at 4:39 pm

  7. Great take and very different with a message.


    July 28, 2014 at 12:25 am

  8. Dear Sarah Ann,
    Overuse of anything can be detrimental. I’ll raise my glass to the survival of pandas.

    All my best,
    Marie Gail


    July 28, 2014 at 12:27 am

    • You’re right about the overuse of things. Shame we don’t seem to be able to recognise that before we go too far a lot of the time.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2014 at 11:52 pm

  9. Well! Pandas unite. Up on your hind legs, pick up your George Orwell and your bamboo spears and to battle!


    July 28, 2014 at 8:39 pm

    • But where will they find the bamboo to make spears? I can’t imagine pandas running about with spears aloft, but bashing people around the head with a copy of Animal Farm is an image I’m smiling at. Thanks for comment 🙂

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2014 at 11:50 pm

  10. Unique angle.


    July 29, 2014 at 2:26 am

  11. Sarah Ann, I agree that it was very creative to use the panda’s point of view. I’m afraid that money talks loud and long. Animals don’t have much of a chance against the greed and politics in the world. It seems like it’s always too little and too late. Well written. 🙂 —Susan


    July 29, 2014 at 11:45 am

    • I don’t think any of us – fauna or flora – have much say, or sway, when money talks. Thank you for reading.

      Sarah Ann

      July 31, 2014 at 5:06 pm

  12. I like the panda’s POV. It makes me sad that habitats of many animals is being destroyed by humans. We seem to treat everything like there is an endless supply, but there isn’t.


    July 29, 2014 at 5:33 pm

    • We do seem to expect there to be an endless supply of whatever we fancy. I’m not sure how we reeducate ourselves into taking only what we need though.

      Sarah Ann

      July 31, 2014 at 5:16 pm

  13. Lovely! Maybe I’m just being a downer, but I feel we’re killing off the better half of the world. Pandas, polar bears, tiny frogs, migrating birds . . . soon earth will be very dull because it will be packed with only – us.


    July 29, 2014 at 11:03 pm

    • What a nightmare. A planet of only humans really would be a downer, bleak, miserable….Nope, gotta stop thinking about it. Thanks for the read.

      Sarah Ann

      July 31, 2014 at 5:03 pm

  14. Dear Sarah Ann, Good perspective on the bamboo and true! Poor Panda bears! Excellent – you have true talent! Nan 🙂

    Nan Falkner

    July 30, 2014 at 8:25 am

    • I’m blushing now. Thank you for the comment. I’m glad you enjoyed, but not sure about about ‘true talent’ 🙂

      Sarah Ann

      July 31, 2014 at 5:02 pm

  15. Excellent. A great message.


    July 30, 2014 at 8:29 am

  16. What a great perspective, such a powerful story.

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