“A Message from Janis” A Short Story

“A Message from Janis

Janis Joplin

by Mort Laitner

I opened my inbox and scanned my emails.

One caught my eye. It read:

Janis Joplin                 9:18 AM

Message from Heaven

This is not a joke!

How could I not open an email from a woman who had taken a piece of my heart. I remembered her smile, her beads, her rings, her frizzled hair, her bracelets and her bluesy voice.

I tapped on the message and began to read:

Dear Mort,

I read your short story about Jimi and the US Postal Service becoming cool. I am writing to you to request you  write another short story about me to your readers.

Here is what I want the story to be about:

  1. Thank the post office for putting my mug on a stamp. I don’t deserve it. Tell them that I love the photo they chose. Thank them for saying that I ‘m recognized as one of the greatest rock singers of all time and calling me an icon of the sixties. I love being included in the Music Icons Forever Series.
  2. Tell them I talked with Jim Morrison, and he said, “I am extremely jealous that Janis and Jimi got stamps before me. Please put me on a stamp! I am starting to lose my self esteem and I’m sick of hearing Jimi and Janis brag.”
  3. Tell my fans there are no Mercedes Benz in Heaven.
  4. Tell my fan, I’m sorry for checking out so early. Twenty seven years old is way too young to die.. But I was always into cheap thrills and they cost me dearly.
  5. Don’t do heroin and moderation is not a dirty word.
  6. Don’t forget to insert my favorite quote in your story. “Don’t compromise yourself. You are all you’ve got.”

Mort, remember, “freedom is just another word for nothin’ left to lose.”


Your friend from up above.


I paused to laugh.

What a cute prank!

And then I thought how much I missed her.

Follow Mort at Mortlaitner.com, Facebook, LinkedIn and @LaitnerMort



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