Daily Prompt: The Clock
(use the following sentence: I heard the car door slam, and immediately looked at the clock.)
He was walking with three other buddies, who were all tighter than the hug of a mother before her son leaves to war. I’d been called by the police to come pick him up a week before, because evidently he and his bud’s were “walking briskly” and this alerted the police to the possible crimes they might commit if left to continue on briskly. I was furious with the officer for calling me to come pick him up at the hardware store parking lot, and proceeded to give him a large piece of my mind. They had been headed to their friends house, and were in a hurry. I thought this officer needed a huge wedgie, and I gave him one.
He was 14, what did he expect. I got used to my son spending the night with friends, and not bothering to call me and tell me he wasn’t coming home, because he had a mind of his own. We didn’t have cell phones yet, and I trusted him, because a lot of the time, he appeared to be smarter than me. He was a determined strong-minded smart young man, and I wasn’t the type to nag for him to call me with his whereabouts, knowing it would tick him off if I started calling the hundreds of friends he had looking for him, and also knowing several of his friends’ Mothers considered him their son also, so I always trusted he was fine. We live in a small town, with not much to do other than hang out with friends at each other’s houses. We had no gangs, or strip bars, or anything remotely dangerous to a young man. And if the forest wasn’t on fire, it was all good.
I heard the car door slam, and immediately looked at the clock. It was almost 2 a.m. Then I hear another car door slam.
“What was that?”
“Probably the neighbor, they were fighting earlier.”
I hear the front door open, and heavy footsteps, and sit up in bed, reaching for my sweatshirt to cover the chill.
“Mom,” pound, pound, on my bedroom door, “MOM!”
“What?” I answer as I’m getting out of bed. I’m beginning to get angry, getting woke up at this hour when I have to get up for work in only 3 more hours. I jerk open the door, and my son is there, looking horribly upset, with a policeman standing behind him.
“What, what is going on? What’d he do now?”
“Mom, Dale died.” The police officer steps up and adds,
“Mam, I brought your son home tonight, there was an accident.”
“Mom, Dale died.” My son keeps repeating this, but it’s not sinking in. I’m still groggy, and look at the officer, and say,
“What? Is he in trouble?” Clearly I’m not getting the picture, so the officer says,
“Mam, Dale Miller was killed tonight, hit by a drunk driver. I brought your son home, because he’s in shock, and we wanted to make sure he got home alright.”
“Oh, ok, I didn’t understand. Oh my God, sweety,” I pull him into a hug, but he breaks away and goes to his room.
“What happened,” I ask the officer again, as he’s heads for the door?
“It was a hit and run, we know who it was, but haven’t located him yet. Evidently the boys were walking to McDonald’s and the man was drunk, and didn’t see them, his headlights weren’t on, and he hit and killed Dale.” He paused a moment, looking towards my sons room, and then added softly, “They watched him die. They couldn’t get anyone in the nearby houses to wake up and call 911. It was pretty traumatic.”
I told him thank you and he left.
I knocked on my sons bedroom door, and he opened it, looking like a ghost. I stepped in and sat on his bed, but he was moving around, picking up clothes, rearranging items on his desk, then finally said,
“I can’t believe it. He died. We couldn’t get anyone to fucking wake up. No one would call 911. Fucking assholes. I watched him die, Mom!” He turns to look at me, and I had nothing to say. What can you say? What is there to say? He was in shock, 14, and had just had the most incredibly painful experience of his entire life. I shook my head sadly, and he went on,
“We were going to get something to eat, we were at Brian’s house, so we were gonna get a burger. This asshole comes from behind us, doesn’t even have his lights on, we didn’t even hear his car. God, Mom, Dale pushed Brian out of the way, we think. He heard the car and turned around, he was walking on the outside, and Brian says he felt a little push from him, right before he got hit.”
In my mind, I’m thinking, Dear God, Brian will never forget that, neither will my son. What a heroic last gesture for his friend to have made. He was a super good kid, had played soccer with my son for 3 years, his Dad had been their coach. Oh, Lord, this is gonna destroy him. He was one of those Dad’s who volunteered for everything, coaching all year long, so he could be with his kids in some way. Of course, it would destroy any one, but I could almost feel the deep devastation his father would go through.
I so wanted to hug my son, but he was too upset, a flighty little bird going from one mindless thing to the next, finally showing me the door as he left to get a soda.
I followed him out, but he quickly got the soda, went back into his room and shut the door.
I knew he didn’t want any more company, and turned the lights out and went to bed. I lay there wondering how broken my son’s heart was, his friend from grade school was gone. And the most horrifying thing for him, was watching him go. I had no idea what that felt like, the utter helplessness, or how much guilt he would begin to go through, the “what if’s” that would begin to run through his mind. I had never had to deal with that part of grief before, where you are just close enough to the horror to feel guilt about every aspect of it. Who wanted to go for a walk to get burgers? Who decided on the road where they would walk, what position they were in? All the things leading to guilt, that should never even be there. Guilt that is totally unrelated to the blame that should only go to the drunk driver. But at 14, or any age, as I found out recently myself, the guilt can be overwhelming, and not even remotely warranted.
He turned to his friends for solace, and as time went by he seemed to get past it. He knew I was there if he wanted to talk, we’d always been able to talk about anything. But I knew he would never be the same again. His own heart had been broken the year before by his selfish father, and he had become more determined and stronger than he’d ever been before. I knew his father’s rejection would always hurt him, but losing his friend on this night, became the catalyst that defined him as a man.
He’d always been a good friend, the kind you could count on, but as he grew older his friends became his life. He always puts them first, helps them when he can, and he is always the one they call if they need something. And he wouldn’t have it any other way.
Daily Prompt: Cupid’s Arrow
(bonus points for poetry)
An Angel from long ago
looked down and cried
where is the love?
Missing in her life
a single hollow walk.
a wasted heart
so much more.
over empty men
raising boys to men.
each full moon
she prayed for
a love to always
ALWAYS be there.
Digging in his quiver
he found a bent sliver
Blessed it with God
and shot it right
into her butt!
Daily Prompt: All About Me
(Why did you choose your blog title?)
I didn’t choose my blog title, my friend did. I asked for suggestions on my Facebook site one day, got several I can’t mention here, because my friends know me too well…but my friend Sunshine, who is just that, came up with it to describe all the different facets of me. She knew I am a writer at heart, first and foremost, maybe not a great writer, but one who is a lifelong addict. She is an artist herself, painting herself into her gorgeous landscapes and abstracts, and has always loved my stained glass creations, which to me is an honor from someone else so very artistic.
As you probably guessed, the Shards of me are many; writer, poet, amateur photographer, artist in drawing, and a tomboy through and through who loves to use power tools, ie., grinders, soldering iron, saws and screw guns. I get my joy in making stained glass from the simple love of working puzzles, something I shared with only my Father, spending hours and hours putting huge difficult puzzles together when we were snowed in. Which is what I do after drawing the picture for the stained glass, I then have to redraw the lines into a puzzle of sorts, so that the seams are supportive, yet all part of the flow of the picture, and of course, piece it together.
I also get my love of sick little limericks from Dad, which I usually try to tone down from what he taught me over the years, giggling for many hours at a time, into the poems I create.
I only have one photograph in my home that my Father took, it is framed on my wall. It is all I have left of him to remind me that he passed on to me my creativity and love of photography and poems.
I am not only a writer with deep thoughts, I am also your typical woman, who has had her heart broken many times, lived a very hard, poor life with only one sure thought ever in my mind: God. My creator, who created everything I love and see each day, and try to capture in my art.
Thus, the many scattered colors and thoughts and broken bits of… Shards of DuBois.
Weekly Writing Challenge: Characters
This is a chapter in a novel I wrote about my childhood, but I just had to include it in today’s challenge, because it still makes me laugh to this day! The characters are of course, two of my brothers…. 🙂
They’d been playing by the pond in the front yard for hours, pretending to fish, pretending to gig for frogs, pretending the water wasn’t nasty so they could wade in to cool off. It was a stagnant pond and only had a few bass in it that Dad had caught up at the other lake and had put in the mosquito infested pond for fun. They didn’t usually last the summer, either caught or just floating dead for no reason other than there probably wasn’t enough food in the pond to survive on. The only thing she ever saw moving in it were pollywogs and worms and skippers. She’d seen a fish on TV one time that could stick its tongue out of the water and catch mosquitoes, but she figured bass didn’t do this because they had a million mosquitoes.
Her brother Duck was on the hillside whipping the sticker bushes and plants in a circle all around him with a nice sized switch when he froze mid swing, and started coughing out the words,
“Get. Dad. I. Think. A. Snake. Went. Up. My. Pants.”
The Grin began to smile, and she began jumping up and down yelling,
The Grin loved to run and took off at a sprint up the hill to the front yards, then spotted Dad coming out of the Garage, and ran towards him yelling,
“Duck says a snake just went up his pants.”
Dad turned right around and went back in the garage, grabbed a hoe, and head back out following the Grin down to the pond.
Duck had almost wet his pants, but had begun shaking a bit instead, holding his crotch thinking he’d rather have it bite his hand, and hunching over a bit trying not to pee on its head and piss it off. His eyes were wide open, and he kept pointing at his left leg, whispering,
“A snake crawled up my leg. A snake crawled up my leg.”
She stood there wondering what the snake would bite first, while giggling to herself because her big brother was scared shitless. He wasn’t usually mean to her, but he called her stupid all the time because he always got straight “A‘s“, and ugly was always added for good measure, and it made her smile wickedly to see him scared for a change. Not his usual calm, book worm manner.
Dad walked up with authority, to about three feet from Duck, and said,
“Are you sure it’s a snake? Did you see it?”
“No. But. It. Feels. Like. A. Snake.”
“Well take your pants off slowly, and step out of them.”
By now the Grin was sitting behind Dad about 10 feet, doubled over shaking with silent laughter, pounding the ground with his hand every so often, because he never laughed out loud. He was the silent grin. Tears would eek out the corners of his eyes, but rarely did you hear a sound. She was holding one hand over her stomach and one over her mouth to keep from laughing out loud. If she looked at the Grin, she wouldn’t be able to walk up the hill and if she laughed out loud, Duck would get her later, this she knew. So she head up the hill, keeping her face away from Duck’s, and reached the Grin before Duck realized he had to take his pants off in front of them.
She didn’t know which would be worse for Duck; pulling his pants down, having his thing-a-ling bit by a snake, or having his pants around his ankles while a snake swung from his thing-a-ling. All of these things were playing out in his mind: she could see it on his pale face as he thought it over.
Then Dad turned around to look at her and the Grin squirming behind him, with a huge smile on his face, and grimacing as he tried very hard not to laugh out loud also. It was only a second or two, that smile on his face, before he went dead serious and turned back around to Duck. But she had seen it, and it was the first smile she had ever seen on Dad’s face that didn’t look fake. He was an insurance salesman, and they had to smile all day long to make the deal. This of course, made the Grin loose it and he rolled back onto the ground aahhaha-ing out loud, which was so rare she began to giggle too, regardless of her imminent death.
A second later, Duck had undone his pants and was slowly lowering them down to where he could step out of them even with his shoes on. Dad was serious, expecting a snake to pop up any time now, and held the hoe up in the air, just waiting for a chance to come slashing down. Duck lifted his right foot up, while pushing his pants over his shoe, almost lost his balance, but stepped back down with only a little jerk. He took a deep breath while his audience became focused again watching each movement in silence now.
Duck slowly began to pull his left foot up just as a huge Bull frog jumped out of his pants and right up at him, hitting him in the chest and knocking him backwards into the sticker bushes, pants around his ankles, before hopping a second desperate leap all the way into the pond.
Dad sat backwards onto the hill, dropping the hoe and began laughing, a chuckling kind of relieved laugh, wiping off his forehead with the back of his hand. The Grin had lost it completely now, and was howling out loud and pushing against her shoulder, managing only two words,
“A frog! A frog!”
Daily Prompt: Whoa!
My 1968 Mail Jeep was no longer safe to drive, the steering wheel could turn half way around and nothing happened. My youngest son had killed my scooter, a little blue mini Harley, that I loved to pieces, by jumping a few curbs with it like he was Evil Knievel. Thus, I was walking the three miles to work each day, and three back home, because I couldn’t afford to lose my job. Thank God it was Spring.
It was around 6am, the sun was just beginning to peak at me from between the mountains. It had a difficult route to reach me, with so many rain clouds blocking it, but I kept my eye on it as it lit up the different clouds it hid behind with beauty. I walked on through the rain, watching the clouds above zipping by and hoping they would win the race to Seattle and leave me behind.
I’ve been trying to trust in the Lord Jesus for several years now, trying desperately to allow Him to lead me, guide me, and teach me as I walk behind Him. Stumbling most of the way, He has repeatedly picked me up and carried me through much trouble and sadness. So on this wet, slightly cold morning, the rain is a bit bothersome, and I have already gotten past the few verses that I can remember of “Singing in the Rain,” and am smiling yet getting very soggy.
So I start talking to Jesus, my friend, and usual companion, while watching the rain streaking in front of me, at a 45 degree angle due to the wind gusting from the right side of the road to the left. I’m on the right side of the road, not with my thumb out, but still hoping someone I know will pass by and give me a lift. There is a beautiful little pasture on my right, with cows still ranging free, at least as far as the fence.
So I smile at the view, through the rain, and ask God,
“Could you please stop the rain, just until I get to work Lord, I’m so tired this morning and my coat is soaking through?” Then I quickly thank Him and praise His Holy Name, and continue walking.
Within a matter of a second or two, I look up from the puddle I was avoiding and to my amazement I see all the way down the road through a tunnel of NO RAIN. I enter this tunnel, and hold up my hands, amazed that they aren’t getting wet. But this doesn’t blow my mind. What blows my mind, is in front of me, as I’m walking, I can see rain coming down from above on the right of my tunnel, at the same 45 degree angle it was just a few seconds earlier, but on the left side of the tunnel, IT CONTINUES going down at that same angle. It’s as if God has cut a tunnel for me alone, all the way down the road, but the rain is still falling from one side to the other.
I wish to this day I had my camera with me, to capture this little miracle forever, but I don’t think God would’ve wanted that, or I would’ve had it in my purse like usual. But I will never forget it, because I continued to walk the last two miles without getting wet, all the way to town, and just as I approached the cross walk to cross over the street to work, I stepped back into the rain. It was amazing. Glorious. A true little Miracle just for me from God above.
There is no way on this planet to explain it. Nothing could have caused it to happen, except God. And I believe this with my entire heart and soul, because I SAW the rain continuing on the other side of the tunnel, appearing from no where, and splattering on the road to my left as I walked by.
Luckily, my oldest son’s friends had seen me many times riding the blue scooter through town with a huge crazy grin on my face. They had began to embarrass him to death, teasing him about his “Harley Momma;” thus he bought me a car to end his humiliation. hahaha
This is a TRUE story!
And never forget, God is GREAT! He can move mountains!! Never EVER think He won’t help you if you ask.
And may God Bless Each and Every One of You Today!!!
The Silent Slew
They head out each morning an hour before the bell rings, and walk past the school and park, to the callous and diabolical slew of the river nearby. Always waiting quietly, eerily, with no current to speak of since it’s a dead-end to the river. In his mind it was a heartless slew he could never forgive. Dark green, motionless death. Yet he couldn’t stop himself from coming every day.
Emily was a dainty lil’ thing, only six, and since her Dad works at home, this is their morning routine before school. He doesn’t go out much anymore at all, other than once a month he takes out his wife for dinner and drinks somewhere fancy, her requirement for happiness. She’s so busy with her store, it’s more than enough, plus she has her book club, writers club, Tuesday casino night and hump-day-drinks night with the girls. So once again, he’s the stay-at-home Mom. With Sam it was great, every minute they were together they were having fun, they had been closer than best friends. But with Emily, it seems forced. Well maybe not forced, he does love her, just awkward, like a mother duck raising a kitten.
He loves her, just like he loved Sam, but realizes there is something missing in their relationship. When people stop him and say, “Your granddaughter is so adorable,” he just smiles a half-smile and walks away before she happily informs them that “This is my Dad!” He’s not embarrassed, it’s just getting old, him and the annoying people who assume incorrectly and comment on something they know nothing about.
That’s not what bothers him, it’s just an example of the awkwardness. It’s not the age difference, it’s a connection. He can feel that something is missing from their relationship, he feels it’s deeper down. He’s never been very close mentally to her, not like he was with Sam. He was still alive when Sam was alive. He threw a football to Sam every day for most of his life, taught him how to ride his bike, and mini-bike, and how to ski, snowboard, and Rollerblade. Every step of his childhood from homework to girls, he had been involved. He had been lucky to have a job where he only spent a couple of hours away from home each week if at all, working on IT issues he could sit in his home office each day, only going to the corporate office for meetings and such. He’d coached Sam’s soccer team in junior high and was an assistant coach on the highschool football team, always so involved in Sam’s day-to-day life.
But with Emily, things were different. He couldn’t seem to connect with her or her dolls and teacups and play high heels. She rarely rode her bike; it still had training wheels on it. Her friend Sara taught her how to skate, and he knew he was being silly, she was only 6, but still when he was aware enough to have thoughts, it bothered him.
They held hands, swinging slightly to their strides, and crunched across the gravel on the bridge that spanned the river. He’d been walking this path for 8 years now, every day since that day. The one where his world stopped. The one where life will never be the same again, after a phone call from a friend saying, “Sam’s been in an accident.” That day is etched forever into his brain. It seems to cloud over other memories, not letting new ones form, or even seem real. Some days he doesn’t know if anything is real, it feels like his brain is floating along, like when your asleep, jumping from one real moment to another a week later. Like consciousness is one second, then nothing for three days, then another single moment of consciousness. The time in between spent floating, not slow motion, but floating motion. It’s the spaces in between. He rides them like a kite. Up, down, sideways, just rarely landing.
The spaces bother him, when he remembers there should have been memories there. Like when he runs into the football coach, Tom, that he coached with for three years, the floating stops. Reality starts again while he responds to Tom’s “Hello, how ya doing?” or whatever mundane question pops in his head? He answers, “Just fine,” then time floats away until he has to perform again. And for some reason, when he’s floating, he doesn’t ever think about Emily. Or anything else, for that matter, except Sam. It’s only Sam. What would Sam be doing now, if he had lived through the accident. Is Sam here right now, hanging out as a spirit or something, here at the river where he died? He’s looking right now at the exact spot where his car hit the tree and slammed off to the right and down into the 10 feet of water in the slew of the river below. It was such a pretty spot. He had to come here every day, every single day. It wasn’t something he could stop doing. It was programmed into the Float Aimlessly program his brain had mapped out in 0’s and 1’s.
He couldn’t stop the floating either. His mind just flipped into a different gear, and took over the control of his thoughts. Some days after he arrived back at the house, after safely dropping Emily at the school on the way back, he wouldn’t be able to work all day. He wasn’t even aware he wasn’t working. He just sat down in a chair, leaving the door open, his coat on, and floated until his wife came home with Emily and startled him into a moment or two of reality called loosely, dinner time.
So when his wife turned up amazingly pregnant at her age, it hadn’t even occurred to him that she would decide on her own to have another child. One moment she was slapping him, and telling him loudly, the next they were rushing to the hospital to deliver her. Then boom; there she was. He didn’t even remember having sex. Thank God they had decided to have a Nanny at first, because if they hadn’t Emily would still be sitting in a diaper, the one she came home from the hospital in. It was only in the last few weeks since she started Kindergarten that he was once again responsible for a child. Literally some days smacking himself repeatedly, just to get her ready and out the door. After his wife had smacked him a few times, more than he could count actually, he realized it actually worked. Just a quick pop on the forehead. It would focus his brain long enough to stay in the real world, and take care of his daughter.
Emily tossed a rock at the water, sending out rings, mesmerizing rings. He shook his head. Looked down at her and asked,
“Would you like to learn how to skip a rock?”
She nearly erupted with happiness. Bubbling out like champagne, a string of happy words linked together in a pink flow like,
“Oh can we, will you Dad, will you teach me, Oh yes, I so want to learn Dad, any rock, any kind of rock, you can make it skip? …” he just smiled, floating a second. Then he shook his head again, rattling the thoughts a bit, and took her hand. They walked a few steps as he looked at the ground, stooped over to pick up a couple flat shaped rocks, then they walked to the end of the bridge and down the trail, taking a little side path to the water. Emily was bouncing. It was the only word to describe her joy, she bounced. He had called her Tigger, maybe once or twice, he couldn’t remember, but it should have been her name.
He began to explain it to her, showing her how to hold the rock, how to let it fly, how to bend a bit lower to the ground as you zing it across the water. She had it mastered in three throws, ran back up to the bridge trail and found a couple more rocks, while he floated. His eyes wandering back to that spot again, across from him now, across all that water that had been so unbelievably unforgiving. Silent now, yet so cold and cruel then. Ruining any chances he had of surviving the crash, a strong football lineman, going off to college that next month, trapped inside his Audi and surrounded by the cruel dark green water. Even if he had been conscious, it wouldn’t have cared. Some moments, he hated that river. Hated it with every inch of his being. Just some moments, when he wasn’t floating, but the anger rose instead. Sometimes it took over, stopped the floating completely, and he was alive and aware and angry for a time, stomping around the house, slamming doors, before sitting down to rest again when thankfully the Float Aimlessly program kicked in again.
The tree he was leaning against felt just cold and wet enough it seeped into his skin, bringing him back. Emily had a good arm, he thought, then told her, and she began bouncing again. They needed to go, or she’d be late for class, but she streaked up to the rocks again, picked out a few more, and he waited while she zinged them into the quiet green water, now content for some reason. Only disturbed by the million rings Emily was creating. He took her hand, brushed off the dirt, and helped her along the path back up to the bridge. As they walked across, he looked to the left, at the spot, and tears welled up around his eyes, blurring his vision. He could just make out the huge cross that held his football jersey and his old hiking boots hanging from a nail. He always wondered who had put the boots there, too. His best friend had placed his jersey over the cross, making it a hanger; the school had retired his number, hanging a special jersey in the gymnasium during his funeral services.
He looked down at his little girl, skip-hopping along beside him, glowing with happiness, bubbling out chatter he couldn’t follow even if he had been aware, and wondered why something so simple as skipping rocks had made her day?
Daily Prompt: Choose Your Adventure
(Start an adventure and let reader finish it)
I stand at the top of a mountain, wearing ski’s and my backpack, watching the helicopter fly away noisily. I wait for twenty minutes, to be sure no avalanches started due to the vibrations it makes. A water bottle hangs off one side of my backpack; on the other perfectly weighing both sides is a bottle of Bacardi. My gloves are rabbit fur on the inside, my hat a crocheted beanie made by my friend, and my coat is fleece lined and waterproof. I have on long underwear under my ski suit and two pair of ski socks. I have four instant heating pads for my toes or hands, the kind you just crinkle to make heat up. They last a few hours each and can save a toe or fingers from frostbite.
I have made sure to include waterproof matches, instant dehydrated marine soldier packets of food and a bottle of coke to go nicely with the rum. It’s for those cold nights, which means every night until it runs out. Not to mention the always included army knife and one multi-functional girl scout pan, that also has two bowls nested inside, a fold-up cup and a folded spoon. And of course, a roll of toilet paper; there are no leaves up here, only pine needles. Dangling from the bottom of my backpack is a waterproof sleeping bag and one man tent. Across the very top is a wolf fur-lined hood, that can drop down over my head and can be tied down when hiking through blizzards. Strapped to the outside are a small pick with a wicked sharp point and an equally sharp axe.
You can never really tell what kind of weather you might have up here: one minute its gorgeous, the next its a blizzard, the next it’s pounding ice pellets. All with a huge wind blasting 90% of the time, trying to blow you off a cliff or helping you hit sonic speed on the way down. Either way it’s a bit much to handle at this altitude while flying, but the good news is your screams are carried for miles and miles.
Helicopter skiing is incredible. You are completely alone in snow that is untouched by everything except wind, heading down a mountain range or two in backcountry that is out of reach of the ski patrol and a weeks hike in by anyone trying to find you. Breaking a leg is not recommended.
Neither is antagonizing a bear, or any other large animal, and there are many there you may never see. Most people don’t know this, but when you hike anywhere above about 500 feet, or the snow line, never hike under rock formations or huge overhangs even if they look inviting and peaceful and think, I’ll just rest here a moment. The day you do this is the day you become cougar food. Always look up. Hikers tend to look down at the path they are following and this is very dangerous in the wild.
So my twenty minutes are up, I adjust my pack comfortably, tuck the stray hairs under my hat, pull my goggles down over my eyes, pull my gloves on tighter, take a huge deep breath and push off of the highest peak of Mt. Rainier. My grin freezes on my face as I fly across 50 feet of untouched powder; the path I follow already planned out and confirmed while standing there enjoying the incredible view of most of Washington state. I come up to the first real jump of about 40 feet from one overhang of snow to the lower ledge below, and fly like an eagle for at least 3 seconds of pure bliss before I …
Holes in a Sprinkle Can
I feel like I should be more than
holes in a sprinkle can
trying to wash away the grime
weed another invading rhyme
empty as a space in time
I feel like I’m usually just
stored cotton ball’s smelly must
an old book covered in dust
a dull cracked marbleized bust
a water pipe beginning to rust
I feel inside I’m so much more
than a stubbed toe throbbing sore
or a beaten throw rug on the floor
a balloon escaped out the door
read only once like a book page tore
A Quick Snack
Romeo: wanted on 4 counts of Murder in King County!
wet on my lashes
blink, blink, blink
robin’s fly by
spider catches my eye
creep, sneak, creep
holding my breath
run, run, up,
slink, slink, slink
back to the bush
twitch, twitch, twitch
wait, coming back
hunker down, freeze
fly, sigh, fly
land, hop, hop
one foot, two foot, one
feathers rise, wise, rise
focused eyes follow
green, yellow, gold
flit, sit, flit, sit
pounce, bite, tight
sink, sink, sink
I’m so proud
a gift for Mom
take it in the house
wink, wink, wink
Daily Prompt: Writing Room
I leaned against the crust of a tree, my laptop open and fingers paused on the keys. The cold wet seeping through my jacket and jeans. The Genie appeared again in a pale puff and asked,
“Your second wish is for a writing room?”
My first wish he had already granted, my laptop and battery would never die.
“Well, yes, I was just thinking how nice it would be to have a luxurious tree house, where I could write in peace and comment on the Glory I see each day.”
“If this is your request, say it now.”
“Ok, I wish I had a luxurious tree house where I could write in peace and comment on the Glory I see each day.”
Directly above me, a magnificent tree house appeared, with a spiral staircase leading up to it and a small covered porch. I jumped up, dropping my laptop on the ground, and began to climb.
It was beautiful: created in all wood, windows on all four sides. There was a tiny bathroom off to one side. A small sink and refrigerator and of course, a coffee maker plugged in, brewing, with a cup next to it, in an alcove next to the bathroom. A huge skylight above let the sunshine stream in. I opened a window and could hear birds chirping. I open the freezer and it’s filled with frozen pizza’s. I opened the fridge and there is fruit, salad makings, cheese, and a case of Sutter Home White Merlot. Two wine glasses hung from a shelf nearby.
There is a huge soft, purple recliner next to one window. I noticed immediately there were several hundred green peas piled in the chair, and instantly realize my Genie has a hearing problem.
I turn smiling hugely to thank the Genie, but he’s already gone.
I ran down the steps to retrieve my laptop, then back upstairs to my new dream writing room. I look in a drawer and find a wine opener and bust open the wine, my favorite, and Christen my new writing home. I realized I should’ve added a bed, so I could live here forever, but it hadn’t occurred to me. I have tunnel vision when it comes to writing. I tend to block out little unimportant details like a bed, or a media center, or a hot tub and olympic sized pool. But hey, I still have one wish left.
Maybe I should make a list.
Even if you DON’T believe IN God…
…just the sheer number of different species on our planet should blow your mind…all living and growing and changing side by side, for millions of years….all a special arrangement of DNA, not even counting RNA, for all you scientists out there.
Look in the sky, how many pinpoints can you count? Those are just Suns. Just like ours, with possibly 8 planets circling each one. With species living and growing and changing on each one, side by side, for millions of years, all made up of pretty much the same shit we are. Someone once said, not sure who so forgive me here, but “We are all made of star-dust.” And they are right.
Look at the bugs in your backyard, or house, depending where you live. There are over 4,500 species of cockroaches alone…which totals possibly millions of cockroaches to every single human. Eeeek. Take insects; there are over 900,000 different species of bugs, which in turn means it is approximately 80% of the species on the planet. Icckk. And I’m a tomboy!
Every single snowflake is different.
Every single sunset is different.
Every single blade of grass.
Every single hair on your head.
Every tiny molecule of oxygen and hydrogen we inhale is created on this planet, by another species; many create our food, many create our water, our needs are met by EACH OTHER. ALL our needs are met by ANOTHER. Even Humans contribute to life for others, even if only as fertilizer.
So just stop for a second, look at the Majesty created in just your sphere, look up at the Heavens at the other galaxies we know exist, and tell me it happened by chance. I will tell you, you are a moron. That’s just my opinion though.
As a small child I used to lay on the side of a hill, one of our yards, in a blanket and look up at the clouds…and at age 5 I think, I probably realized how incredible our planet is. I was too young to apply that to much else, like species, or universes, mostly because I didn’t even know what those words meant at the time, but I was in AWE. I would lay there for hours, watching the different clouds changing, moving, becoming. And I was in AWE.
I still am to this day.
We claim as a species to be so very intelligent, we SAY we are the most intelligent species on the planet, yet we are the ONLY species on this planet DESTROYING our own HABITAT. We think that because we have studied so much about our lives on this planet, that we KNOW so much about it, that we KNOW we’re the most intelligent species.
Yet, our ignorance proves our intellect.
SOMETHING had to have created it all, started it all spinning and expanding, and existing.
We KNOW as scientists, our brightest minds throughout history have confirmed, that YES, you cannot create something from nothing.
YOU cannot create something from nothing.
But something DID. And it was nothing on our planet. It was not aliens from another galaxy hovering in the sky. They too were created by something else. It was not some mad scientist. It was not some accidental smashing together of two microscopic neutrons. It was not a black hole, because it too is created by something else.
SO TELL ME WHAT?
Tell me there IS NO GOD!
And, I am sad to say, most likely, I will pat you on the head and tell you to go play outside.
One Breath Away from Eternity
I watched her eyes glaze over,
emptiness filling, yet
getting a bit brighter,
I’ll never forget.
Seconds away from Eternity,
a heart-stopping shock,
feeling her last breath,
my world began to rock.
Did she see His face,
or still just her friends’,
before she came back,
losing herself in pain again?
Did she know what was coming,
as she cried her last words,
seeing a glimpse into beyond,
her meeting with her Lord?
The pain was too great,
it was all she spoke,
I pray for her soul now,
knowing she was broke.
I didn’t pray then, it haunts me,
now knowing what I know,
Forgive me my lost sister,
So I can let go.
They say, this too shall pass,
but that is for me, not her,
it doesn’t help much,
I’ll never be sure…
You were only one breath away,
from an incredible serenity,
I pray for your soul now
to always be loved in my Lord’s Eternity.
Amen. Rest in Peace.
In reaction to Chief of the Least, a follower of mine:
It was like, as he slowly stepped down from his ladder of authority, each step brought him closer to Jesus, because each step showed him JUST HOW FAR away from perfect he really was. Each day he stumbled, he realized how AS HE GREW CLOSER TO GOD, HE REALIZED HOW FAR FROM HIM he was….and it was almost exponential. Each time he had a condemning thought, or judged someone, thinking he had this right as an apostle and a learned man, he realized he was just that much farther from his goal.
It almost seems like guilt multiplied, but it is exactly how I felt these last few weeks.
I was SO angry at myself for NOT reaching out to God in the ONE moment I should have…the ONE moment that could have saved a life, and I completely forget I believe in God. The ONE time my faith was needed desperately…and I failed.
How very humbling that was for me, as I am sure Paul felt the same at moments, maybe not in the same situation, but feeling such incredible guilt and regret, and realizing how far I have to go!
So thank you, Chief of the Least! I know God guided me to your blog for a reason, and I thank Him and You for helping me see, I am not alone on my walk behind the Savior. Others have fallen as far as I, and of course, He still loves us….
we must just continue to walk on…without our head held so dang high!
Daily Prompt: Through the Window
A sky so white that it’s almost blinding. Not what you’d call overcast because it’s so bright, but the Sun is clearly losing a game of Red-Rover with the rain clouds.
Teardrops dangling precariously from each needle, winking coyly in the bright morning light.
The rise of a mountain top just over the trees; Western pines, Douglas firs and a few wayward Cedar, towering over the rest in a forever Christmas state. An Alder or two trying to blend in, but labeled an outcast by all the aforementioned. A weed sucking up their water, they try to shade it to death. The simple row staggeringly tall, yet mowed into submission and forced to wait in line. Waiting until the evil insurance company comes along and demands they die now, rather than at the end of their life.
The mountain a few miles in distance, rising above everything else by 1000’s of feet, it’s only competition its sloping front, cut and severed from its Mother by a river that was just a trickle of runoff a million years ago. I love this mini-me of a mountain, because if you sit at the top of it, Eagles will fly right by you less than ten feet away through the small canyon that has formed. Birds will eat from your hands: I have a picture of my son when he was only 8 or 9, holding out his hand, with a small bird eating a crumb, from this same rocky spot.
The peak of the mountain looks much like a haystack, and from the angle of my home, this is what we see; just a giant forest-covered mountain with a giant rock on top, resembling a hay stack. Reminds me of a Russian fur hat worn by women, not too tall. Plugging the volcano that reared its ugly head a billion years ago, blasting out the huge tilted crater we see below the rock. I have friends who live directly below this blown out section, who say the soil and rock they live on used to reside at the top. Which looks to be true, if you know anything about Geology. It’s the perfect picture of a collapsed volcano that has blasted down the mountain. This is the back side of Mt. Si, rarely seen or talked about, because the front is spectacular. But here on the back side, or east side, I can also just make out Wallace Falls, just a stripe of grey on its face of green peaking through the hanging clouds. Even from here, a few miles away, I can still see it moving. It’s pounding with runoff from the snow above, just icing the top of the grange behind it.
If you were Sasquatch and living in the peaks to avoid humans, from Mt. Si in front, along the peaks going North, you could make it all the way to Alaska. Which, by the way, is on my bucket list!
Daily Prompt: Ode to a Playground
At night, if we were fighting amongst ourselves, we were forced to run through the dark, all the way to the massive darker, brooding, creepy, scary-ass barn and draw a huge white X in chalk on its side, big enough Dad could see it from the house. This was our punishment; at night.
During the day it was Disneyland in our back, back yard. We loved every inch of it. At least my 6 older brothers and I loved it. My older sister was a stick in the mud and only read books. We on the other hand had wars in it, played tag in it, hide and seek, climbed up the inside open walls with ropes like Ninja’s, jumped from the 4th story window to the first floor hay pile, piled up old mattresses under the 3rd story window and jumped nearly to our deaths from it. That was because if you hit the mattresses just right, the entire pile fell over and the boys would kill you for being a moron.
We made up games, held crazy challenges, and snuck out on back of the old horses that lived on the 1st floor, nagging the nags until they would break into a trot, and only getting to ride for half an hour or so at a fast stroll before they would head back inside. They weren’t our trusty steeds. We made several trips over the years to the local ER with pitchfork holes in our legs, nail holes through our bare feet and many cracked heads, due to that barn.
It was enormous; four stories tall, covering about two acres total, and supposedly the largest in the state when it was built. It was made with foot square wooden beams, hand hewn, and secured with foot long wooden pegs. When we moved into the farm-house, it immediately became our playground. We had races across those 4th story beams, because there was no 4th story, it was just open air; and in the middle of the barn, it was air all the way to the 1st floor. The beams were placed at an angle, like a diamond, so you couldn’t just run normal. We would scoot, shimmy, crawl, and my one psycho brother would even gorilla-run across those beams, in races we could literally have died in. We were fearless, well most of the time. We were Trolls and Dragons hiding in the closed stalls, Aliens creeping along the walls, Knights and Kings and Queens, and sometimes even Horses.
At night, the imagination took over and the dark monster blocked out the moon it was so big and just had to have ghosts and vampires, and eeeeek, the headless horseman in it; we were sure.
But during the daylight it was our wonderland. We pulled wood off and out of it for years, using the planks for making tree forts and ground forts, or whacking each other with them. We found jars with rusty screws to give us Tetanus and nails to hold our forts together. We found tools of every kind imaginable for our wars, like machete’s and saw blades and pitchforks and rebar swords and Thor hammers. And we used them. Never once thinking we might kill one another. We were invincible. My one brother was a tad bit schizophrenic and thought he was Thor, Batman, Superman, Tarzan, and his favorite, Spiderman! This was up until … well, today. He still believes he’s Spiderman.
I spent about 10 years solid of my childhood playing in that barn. Which is why I love barns, I suppose.
But the barn was torn down years ago, sold at an auction for all the miles of red-painted wood artists love to use, and the wooden beams and pegs were re-used in some fancy loft somewhere, I’m guessing.
Barns hold a certain comfort; a way of knowing if all else fails you can still conquer the land.
Yet to a child they are an enormous playground and magical wonderland.
He Carries Me
He carries me like a fat lazy queen,
across a slippery slope,
guarding me constantly with His life,
He knows I just can’t cope.
I play and giggle like a bobble head,
posting with the gait of His lope,
He doesn’t care if I laugh all day,
He just doesn’t like me to mope.
Over rocks and treacherous terrain,
I hang on to His love like a rope,
He knows I’m still just a child,
He likes it that way, it gives Him hope.
Daily Prompt: Sliced Bread
I can remember when I was a wee sprite, hearing my also wee, dark-skinned friends calling white-skinned people standing in a line: sliced bread. I also remember my Grandfather calling dark-skinned people porch monkeys. I never understood why.
That was almost half a century ago. Today, there are so many other nasty childish names more hurtful, more stupid and more IGNORANT than those.
It makes me Wonder (lol), really wonder why people still care about the color of skin. Any scientist, even a beginner, learns early on that the sun determines skin color, darkening it as a protection against too much Vitamin D being absorbed into the body. Yet all across the world, there are people who think for some reason they are better than another, based on their skin color.
WE ARE ALL HUMAN! Which means we should be at the very least, HUMANE !!!!!
We don’t live in caves anymore. Almost every single nation on our planet has some education.
So why is this STUPIDITY perpetuated continually to this day?? How CHILDISH and blatantly IGNORANT!
What about Sunlight don’t you get? HAVE WE NOT COME FARTHER THAN THIS IN 2000 YEARS????
IF aliens ever do land on our planet and commune with us, which I doubt they ever will because we are like bugs to them intellectually, but if they did, don’t you think they would tell us that they all sit and watch our telecommunications in space, like we’re the Comedy Central Station???
And if skin color was all it’s cracked up to be…..I would be PURPLE AND BLUE, WITH RED HIGHLIGHTS!!!!
Daily Prompt: Shipwrecked!
“Wake up doofus, time to go.”
Samuel, also known as Slippery Sam, Suckup Sam, Stupid Sam, and of course, doofus, sat up slowly, rays of light making his Spiderman pajama’s glow a bit. Doofus was only used when Danny was in charge for some reason. It was his declaration of authority for whatever adventure they were about to attempt. Sam scratched his messed up head of curls, stretching them out with his fingers.
They were born on the same day, only a year apart, which sucked most years for both, having to share the day. But as they got older, Sam naturally liked just about everything Danny did, so it didn’t matter much. Danny was the thinker, and usually the leader, Sam was the artist, the follower and for some reason, more confident in himself than Danny. He was a worrier; while Sam dreamed.
Throwing on their clothes and grabbing their backpacks, they tossed them over their shoulders and head downstairs, sneaking past the creaking 5th step. Into the kitchen, silently Sam got the bread and plastic bags down, Danny got the jelly and peanut butter and a knife out of the drawer. They whipped up 6 sandwiches in less than two minutes, all the while listening for Mom, and trying not to make a sound.
They made it. Out the door, down to the little dock, and after throwing their bags into their tiny blowup sailboat they grabbed their fishing poles and little green tackle box, and two oars…just in case. The blowup sailboat was only blown up on the bottom by Dad’s air pump; the sail was actually canvas on a sturdy little pole that attached in slots on each side of the boat. It even had a small anchor, and rings for oars in case there was no wind. The sail was about as tall as Danny, and the boat held them both nicely without having to squeeze in.
They were never allowed to play in it unless someone was around to watch them. They lived on the West side of a tiny bay inlet on the Northern side of Bainbridge Island. Mom was very strict about this. Dad backed her up, which was why they were sneaking off today. Both wanted to be real pirates for a day, and fish for their dinner, and bring it back to have Mom cook it up fresh. Neither were old enough to be making this decision, heading out into the Puget Sound was a very dangerous thing for real boats. Mom didn’t want to buy the damn thing, but Dad talked her into it when both boys made such a big deal about becoming real sailors…or pirates, whichever idea came to mind first.
They’d been planning for three days, since they got it on their birthday. They had the plan down, even did a run-through yesterday, just to see how long it would take; they timed it at under 4 minutes, and did it in under 5. Sam was also a slow poke.
There wasn’t much wind at this hour, the calm of sunrise gracing the water for half an hour or so. Then the waves would begin to pick up again. They rowed quietly, both facing out to sea, sitting next to each other instead of across from each other with the sail between them.
“Should we eat a sandwich?”
“We just started doofus, come on, row.”
Ten minutes seemed like half an hour, as they rounded the inlet’s mouth, about 100 feet from shore. They were brave, but even Danny knew better than to go past the waves breaking a couple hundred yards out, because you can’ t get back. Dad had taken both boys out on his kayak to show them how the current and waves breaking off shore worked. He was teaching them ocean safety, and how to be good sailors.
Danny was manning the sail with his knees while he paddled, just trying to keep wind from hitting it.
“Mom’s gonna kill us if we’re not back in time for breakfast.” Danny said.
“I’m hungry. Lets have breakfast, then row some more,” Sam said.
“OK, but just one for now.” Danny was hungry too, both never missed breakfast. Mom usually made pancakes or french toast each morning on the weekends; it was rare for the boys to want to miss it.
Laying down the oars, grabbing their backpacks and pulling out a sandwich, they floated along slowly being pushed out to sea. The riptide a bit farther down was going out, and they watched in fascination as a million tiny jelly fish swayed beneath their boat.
“There’s a gazillion. What are they?” Each were no farther apart than a foot or so, and just the shere number of them gave Danny the goosebumps. To fall in now would be terrifying.
“Don’t know. They’re everywhere,” Sam said quietly.
“I hope they don’t have needles like the needle fish and poke our boat.”
“Dad said Needle fish only look like needles, they don’t have ’em, stupid,” Sam said smartly.
Danny leaned over and punched Sam in the arm, Sam laughed, and said,
“You hit like a girl.”
“Don’t make me hit you for real, doofus, I will knock you out this boat!”
They were done with their sandwiches before they realized where they were. But it only took one spray of wave to wake them up to the fact that they had drifted way out, into the breaker waves.
“Oh shit, paddle Sam!”
It was too late, they weren’t big enough to paddle fast enough to get back over the breaker waves. They were now a 100 yards off shore, getting splashed a bit, and beginning to worry.
“Just relax Danny, lets drop our lines and fish a bit, and after we catch a few fish, we’ll head back, using all our superpowers, we’ll get back.”
The wind began to pick up, and their little sail filled right up like it was supposed to, and began to sail them out even farther, out into the open Sound. The waves were bigger out here, and they both began to lurch a bit, grabbing for the sides to steady themselves.
“Shit! I don’t think we can even drop our lines out here, I’m about to fall in.” Danny’s voice shook a bit, sending a loud signal to Sam that this was really not a good situation. Danny knew a lot. If he was scared, Sam should be. But he wasn’t.
The little boat was pretty stable in the foot high swells, only rocking off-balance every so often when a bigger wave rolled under them.
“Lets take the sail down, roll it up, it’s pushing us too fast,” Sam said.
“OK, good idea.” They struggled with the clasp, that locked the rod into place. It hooked into a “T” joint, with the rod that went across the boat to each side. They didn’t know if you pushed the tiny button, you could collapse it over, without removing it. They hadn’t had the boat long enough to discover the little black button yet, hidden on the underside.
The wind was too strong. They couldn’t get the sail down. The waves began to get a bit bigger. They were on their way to where, they had no idea. They rarely left the island, and had not been taught the names of the other islands they could see in the distance. But one was getting closer and closer pretty quickly. This seemed to calm Danny, hoping they would land on it before heading out into the open ocean. They were both just hanging on by now, being swept along with the currents and tides. Sometimes they looked overboard to see what they could see, but most the time they gazed around in awe at the huge ferry in the distance, giant cargo ships being loaded with cranes on the horizon of Seattle, and a few nice yachts too far away to notice them….their owners probably still sleeping.
Danny angled the little sail, enough to push them faster towards it, through the breakers easily, and almost there.
“We should just turn around and sail this thing back,” Sammy said smiling. Thinking they might be able to.
“We shoulda listened to Mom,” Danny said sadly.
“She’s always right. I kind of hate that,” Sam said.
“Remember when she warned us about the Dirty Monster?”
“Yea, she warned us,” Sam said.
The Dirty Monster stole little kid’s toys, if they didn’t keep their rooms picked up proper. Sam was still ticked off about all his Lego’s vanishing. Mom had warned them the day before, after she stepped on a Lego guy barefoot, and nearly fell over. But they hadn’t listened then, either, and that very night the Dirty Monster had taken all his Lego’s.
“We’re in trouble Sammy.”
“I know.” Sammy smiled a half-smile at his big brother who was clearly scared. Sammy still wasn’t scared, more curious at what would happen to them, then scared of it. He was a true adventurer. A dreamer, who dreamed of pirates almost every night, sailing away, stealing treasure from stupid people.
Danny was staring at the huge cliff at the end of the island they were bound for. It went straight up, like a giant dune.
“How high do you think that is?”
“Couple hundred feet, or so.” He was guessing. But, thank God above they were slowing heading for it. It was at least land, where no sharks were, no fish to nibble on Danny’s feet. He hated that.
“Think anyone lives here?” They gazed up at the now huge wall, a huge flock of pelicans perched in various spots across the top of it, sitting on rocks jetting out, flapping their wings at each other and squawking loudly.
“Maybe pirates,” Sam offered.
It had taken less than an hour for them to reach the island. They pulled the boat up onto the sand, making sure it was out of the water completely, and threw on the backpacks once again, walking along the beach as the sun rose into a glorious day.
“How long ’til someone rescues us,” Danny asked his little brother?
“Don’t know, but I’m hungry.” They took out another sandwich each, and chewed away as they walked the beach wondering if they would ever make it home. They sat down on a piece of driftwood; Sam put his arm around his brother.
At the top of the cliff, just a quick flight for the pelicans, who now cackled at the boys below and were stealing fish from the farmers market above.
Writing Challenge: The Devil is in the Details
He walked along, holding her hand. She in a yellow sundress, picking flowers along the way. They crossed a meandering creek; rested until all the nearby flowers were picked. He watched her smiling, dark eyebrows shading the steel-blue. Hers a bright aquamarine.
A bit farther down the path they paused while a hummingbird froze, humming at them. Her curls bobbed as she giggled. Birds stopped to listen. A squirrel lifted to see what the commotion was. He picked up a stick and threw it at the bushes, it ricocheted off a tree, startling the woods. Trees stopped swaying. The wind stopped singing. The darkness shrouded his eyes.
He squeezed her hand tighter, and started out again, his longer strides making her skip to keep up. She was happy to skip. Losing flowers along the way; she didn’t notice. Up a small hill, around a few boulders, and down into a small valley they went. Towering cattail swayed at her, a tiny nose peeking through, then disappearing. Her feet were getting cold as she realized her new shoes were now wet, and she was going to get into big trouble when she got home.
The sunlight disappeared as they neared the bottom, shadows began to play. Goosebumps rose on her arms as her tummy began to gurgle. The trees seemed to go on into Heaven as she gazed up. He stopped suddenly, kicking at a stray sticker-bush arm clinging to his pants. It clawed at him to stop him. He jerked free just as suddenly, turning to find her a few yards away picking at a Deadly Nightshade flower, smiling at her innocence. She bobbed back to him. He plucked a pretty purple flower from her stash and tucked it above her ear, flouting his cleverness.
She smiled like an enchanted fairy, glowing in a halo of yellow. He took her hand and began walking slowly, nearing an old cabin off the trail. It had flowers in boxes in front of the two windows; an old rocking chair rotting on the porch. The wood was separating in huge cracks in all the walls she could see. She spied the huge gingerbread man carved into the front door, and grinned widely, showing her missing front teeth.
Fern Cries over the Blue Plate Special
Holding her breath ’til spring, she cries out one last time,
“I’m stuck! Somebody help me!”
But only the trout hear her. They’re moving too slow, achingly slow in the cold murk. One pretty blue armoured fella heads her way, sees her bottom is still fluttering about in the tiny current, nibbles on her dangling rear ends and tastes bitter; but he likes it. He backs up to gaze up at her and says,
“Whats all the fuss about, Fern?”
“I’m stuck, can’t you see? Could you nibble around my full branches, chew away these evil cold claws?”
“Oh, but I like the cold to hold you so I can nibble; see, I can do rolls, and flips while I dine, and I used to spy hop but I got a serious headache yesterday. Doc doesn’t know what’s wrong, of course he’s half blind, and just keeps bouncing from one patient to the next, but even he said I probably angered the gods and shouldn’t have been spying in the first place.”
“But I can’t wave to my friends anymore, or tickle the armpits of the Bass. How will I bend in the breeze?”
“Well, if I don’t finish you off before the waters warm, chewing from the bottom up until the cold stops me, you should be fine!”
“How can something so horrid come out of something such a pretty blue?”
“I am ultra-marine, baby. Maybe you should consider the fact that I eat worms, too.”
“I’m a little dense, so I don’t quite understand your deeper meaning.”
“Does that make you blue?”
“No, I think I’m still a beautiful green.”
“Only until I’m done grubbing.”
Daily Prompt: In A Crisis
Walking on a pier, enjoying the sway of the ocean, lapping against the dock, sun at the perfect angle for some photography, snapping away with my piece of shit camera, my hip hurting, time to take a break. A wonderful muse watching me, watching the sunlight sparkle across the waves, reflecting from a pair of lonely eyes. Marble bench being buried under backpacks of every color, they watch suspiciously as I sit at the empty end. Gazing now together at the glorious morning, I ask,
“Would you like a cigarette?”
A soft, “No, I don’t smoke,” is all I get. Lighting up, crossing my legs, exhale and follow a sailboat through the haze. A nice easy quiet settles in. I smoke for a few lost moments, blurring my eyes to enjoy the sunlight. Curiosity kills the cat,
“Do you live here,” I am asked?
“No, I used to live by Mission Beach, years ago, but I’m just visiting this week.”
Cleaning a finger nail with another dirty fingernail, wiping it off on dirty jeans, then picking up a filthy bag and unzipping pockets in an orderly pace.
“Is the roller coaster still there?” I try to open a door, peek inside, the window is all that is cracked. A smile reflects a memory, creasing crinkles around the eyes, a dimple appears for the first time.
“Oh yes, it’s a big park now, with lots of games and a few other rides.” Pausing in the search for something, what was it, a gold-colored watch. Spinning the winder catching time up to speed, where did all those years run to? Cruel time blasting the past while carts fill every waking second, searching always down on the ground in the corners, under the boxes, for an endless stretch into a forgotten grunge.
“I loved that old roller coaster, all creaking wood, scared me to death just to get on it.” I smile widely, make eye contact for a brief second before the urge to search takes over again. This time a bag of chips comes out, half eaten, crumbled and tattered a bit. An offer in a quick lift towards me, but I shake my head no, smile.
“I used to live under the coaster.”
My heart stops, as I remember two decades back, the area around the rollercoaster, how it was just an arcade and bathrooms, nothing near to really sleep under. The coaster was rotting then, the ground below covered in grease and splinters and beams. A huge fence broken in several places encircling the trash filled, sandy grime.
I gaze at the harbor, ships of every time settle in; a retired sub almost a hundred years old, a riverboat nestled beside it; a huge yacht coming into the harbor to dock; and a Navy Aircraft carrier with blue lights glowing Fly Navy across the bay. The last century displayed before me, the modern reality beside me.
“Where are you from originally?” Changing the subject is all I can accomplish after that quiet confession. I lean down, scrape off the cherry on my cigarette. Stuff the butt in my pocket.
“I grew up in Michigan, down on the border, small town called Sawyer.”
That rings a distant bell, reminding me of childhood. Three of my brothers running cross-country, one spending a week or two each summer running the dunes in Michigan.
“We used to camp up there at the Dunes Park each summer, my brother went to run the dunes a couple of times each day as part of their summer practice for cross-country. I grew up in Indiana.”
“Small world.” I got a friendly smile along with that, but not much more.
I take a sip of my bottle of water. Shut the spout. Light another cigarette. Try desperately to think of something else to say, to keep the conversation going. I heard a while back that most don’t like to be offered money, they’re not like the ones on the street with the signs. They’re the ones who have resigned themselves to searching to be able to hold onto their honor: their dignity, maybe not a proud dignity, but the kind that allows them the ability to hold their head high sometimes. At least when their not searching the ground; the corners and alleyways they pace day and night looking for hope. But when they walk in the open, or sit on a bench, they don’t cower. They sit quietly, pondering, wondering, and looking others in the eye.
“I’m Jessie,” as a grimy hand reaches out to me.
“Nice to meet you Jessie, I’m Deb.” We shake hands, both cold from the winter breeze. I stuff mine between my legs, trying to warm them, as a pair of gloves comes out of the bag. They are offered up to me also, but I smile and say,
“No thank you. I should probably get back, before my friends get there.” The gloves go back into the bag, along with the uneaten chips. How many times have they been perused, thought of, disregarded as stale, but kept just in case.
A simple smile makes me sick to my stomach as it sinks in; Jessie has no friends. I can tell by the sadness coloring the tilt of a bowed head. Greasy hair falls forward, a quick swipe pulls it back behind an ear self-consciously.
“It was nice talking to you.” Such a quiet resolve, surrounding this pile of bags, enveloping the cold bench.
What do you say in parting, I think. See you later, no. Nice talking to you too, no. I want to show love. I would sit here for hours talking to you if I thought it would make a difference.
It’s one thing to give, but if you give without love, you are the poorer of the two. You are the one consumed in poverty. You may not know it, but this person knew. They know you want to give, but they don’t want your money. They do, and would take it, but it would hurt them. And to love someone is to never hurt them. So how do you say, I want to help you, without hurting your soul?
“It was nice talking to you too,” I say, as I stand up, zipping up my jacket tighter. I reach into my pocket, pulling out my last $10 in cash, and hold it out, embarrassed, saying, “Would you take this, just to make me feel better.”
“No, but thanks. I don’t need it.” Jessie’s lying and I know it. Should I push it until Jessie’s embarrassed and forced into it? Make guilt felt for not taking it. Toss it on the bench. No. All would hurt. “I just want to know that you can walk over to Jack in the Box and get a burger for lunch if you want to, on me, like a friend would.”
Stopping to think this through, Jessie pauses, and I add,
“I’m really poor too, but my friends are buying me lunch today, so here, please, take it.” I smile trying not to show pity, only that it means a lot to me to help. I’m not sure what’s going on behind the hazel eyes, but in my head I’m saying; Please Lord, don’t let me hurt.
Jessie reaches out, takes it, and smiles at me, saying,
“Enjoy the rest of your visit.”
“I will. Take care, Jessie and may God Bless you.”
I walk away smiling, but look back in time to see the head drop, the money stuffed inside the backpack, hair falling in a greasy straggle, hiding the eyes of pain.
The Hard Way
I hate learning lessons, and I learned two recently, the hardest way known to humankind.
Which is pretty much how I always learn. Never easily, no that would be an alien me from planet Dream-on-dipshit.
I learned that I don’t turn to God as quickly as I should, instead I try to do things on my own still, even after knowing I’ve screwed up my life so many different times, in so many colorful ways. Still, I think I can do this…but I can’t. I learned I am not nearly humble enough. I am not humble enough to stop what I ‘m doing, especially in an emergency, and pray. Pray for guidance, help, peace in the moment. Nope, none of these. Did I tell you I claim to be a follower of Jesus. Pretty ironic. Especially when I dislike hypocrites so much.
The second lesson I learned, is humility. Not the humble part, the part where I have way too much pride in myself, believing I can handle anything because I have gotten through the same thing in the past, and also the arrogance part. I have a boatload of arrogance that I need to just push-off into the ocean. Not so much the conceited kind, but the kind once again that is based in living through a situation before, coming to terms with it, and then assuming I can handle it when it happens again. When I say assuming, yes, I know fully what I say. But it’s more than just being self-assured; it’s being SELF assured. Instead of leaning on God, and having HIM do what is needed. Having Him lead the way.
I keep hearing that song in my head, by Addison Road, called What Do I Know of Holy?, where she sings, “I think I made you too small.” We call Him ALMIGHTY God, praise His Words, His Majesty, His Holiness, yet do we even think about what we’re saying? We call Him all these wonderful names, yet not once do we really believe them. If we did, we would live completely differently. Completely.
Instead of pressing a button to walk across a street, we would just glance up and say Bless me Father, keep me safe.
Instead of wearing seat belts we would just know God will not let us fly out of that car doing 60 miles per hour.
Instead of telling your friend you won’t let them die because you know CPR, trying to show how confident you are in your own abilities, instead you take their hand, pull them close into a hug, and pray that God will take over from that second on.
Why on Earth would we ever not want to give it all to God? To be humble enough to rely on Him. And have enough humility to admit it to ourselves.
Being humble enough to ask for help from others, or God, takes a huge amount of strength. To ask and really mean, hey I need help here. Not just to voice your concerns and say you need help, that’s easy. What takes strength is admitting you can’t do it. To yourself and others. I know of no way to gain the ability to be humble. Is there an exercise I can do? Other than standing on a street corner screaming HELP?
Its one thing to ask God for help in your prayers, too. But to really believe He will help you, that He can help you from far above, floating around all mystical like. That He would help you, out of a gazillion billion trillion other atoms and pieces of dust and sky to help out, He chooses you. That takes real humility. The ability to realize you are not the answer.
Humble and Humility may be similar, even the same in some aspects, but I think in my life they are both missing. Along with most of the inhabited world. We need to make a point to Honor and Cherish and PROMOTE these qualities, instead of teaching self-assurance, or self righteousness, or self-possessed, or any of the connotations that begin with the word SELF.
This is where we lose a very important and honestly good part of our SELVES.
Daily Prompt: 1984
To begin this story about 1984, I must first back up a bit into 1983. Two days before Christmas, 9 months pregnant, I am visiting my Mom in Dallas when I get the call. They had a nice military base hospital in Dallas, and I was hoping to deliver with my Mom by my side. Being in the military was my first mistake, before my Navy-issued son came into the picture. My doctor says I must come back to the hospital, I am building up fluid around my son, and could have serious problems if I don’t. The first snow and ice storm to hit the area in 20 years hits, but my family pack me into the van, and we slide our way across town arriving after only 3 hours, to the airport that is only half an hour away. I arrive safely back home, at the armpit of the world’s very own Biloxi Naval Base hospital, where I get to spend Christmas alone.
I am forced to stay in this hospital for a month and a half longer, racing with the Eskimo women, according to my doctor, who will sometimes be pregnant for 11 months due to the seasons or some such nonsense. I sneak out almost daily, driving a friend’s car, and bring back the only thing that makes me smile; pizza. I walk to the beach each day and back, hoping to jump-start my delivery. I walk the stairs of the hospital hallways each night, trying to drop him with each step and strain. I begin to gain more fluid, gaining up to 30 extra pounds in just one month, insuring I will never be seen in a bikini for the rest of my life.
I am forced to be induced 13 times, breaking national and international records alike. Only to have labor start, hurt for a few hours, then stop about the same time my son decides to become breach. The doctor comes in, smooshes him around proper like, and we try again the next day. In case you don’t know this, military doctors do not like to do C-sections; they would much rather torture you repeatedly for months on end. My doctors words before he left to go on a 2 week ski trip are: If you don’t deliver before I get back, we will do a c-section when I return. I hate this man, with every inch of my enormous waddle.
On Valentines day, I am upset, due to the worthless, selfish, unloving father of my child, and decide; that’s it. I’m outta here. I pack up my stuff, and load up the car, and drive all the way home, so hugely pregnant, I can barely reach the wheel.
1984 is already in full swing, as I enjoy a few minutes alone, not being prodded and poked and stabbed with needles. A few hours later I go into labor. I know its labor, but I refuse to drive back to the hospital. Instead I am feeding my cat, listening to some Pink Floyd, sipping on a coffee, and swinging on the front porch swing, counting the minutes between each contraction.
I wait until I can’t take it any more, which is the next day, before finally calling the ambulance. The pain is out of control, and I seriously think I’m about to deliver the entire trip back. I arrive to cheers from the E.R. crew, who all know me by name. They quickly check me out, and decide I have time to put the epidural in, because if they don’t I will kill one of them slowly and painfully with a pair of forceps. After an entire month of inducing, I cannot take any pain at all, my body has been pushed to its final limits; they quickly hook me up.
They wheel me into the delivery room, spread eagle and facing the only door in the room, with a small foot square window right across from my vagina. Hospital workers, doctors, nurses, maintenance guys, all parade by the window, looking in at my wide open vagina, waving and holding up their thumbs. So proud I am finally about to burst, they each take a second to smile at me. I finally lose it, and demand they cover the stupid window, right as my stupid doctor waltzes in. He’s laughing, in a great mood, patting me on the knee, and telling me what a good job I am doing. He asks if I want a Big Mac from McDonald’s, like he’s gonna leave to go get it. I want to shove the spreaders up his ass, but they won’t let me.
It’s about 2 minutes before 2pm, and I am determined to get this done and over with in time to watch General Hospital. So, ya, one last enormous push, and out comes the well-baked child I created, pissed off at having to leave his nice warm jacuzzi and lap pool. The day after Valentines will never be the same again. Besides the incredible joy of finally having my son in the world, my greatest joy that day was spraying my doctor in the face with 30 pounds of nasty-ass fluid as he told me to:
“Push like you’re pushing me off a cliff.”
Well done, Momma. Well done.
How Cold Is It?
It’s trying to snow
the rain’s getting fat
too much hydrogen
cold as that bat
who flies over the Yukon
wearing nothing but a bra
she’s got a new boyfriend
who usually says OORAH
he keeps her warm at night
while the rain freezes below
knowing she’ll be flying soon
in her brass bra all aglow
you can always tell instantly
when the rain turns to snow
her teets get hard as boulders
and her boyfriend screams
(lol..I’m sooo bored)
meaning; like Trent:
adjective of outlandish description; can apply to any situation; refers to a person’s ability to create a visual description with the attitude of a writers temperament while strangling his muse with the rope he’s clinging to.
It’s like meaning your life has no direction, but taking the minivan to find the wind.
It’s like knowing your wife isn’t speaking to you, but writing two more paragraphs about a lady getting lockjaw from a dart.
It’s like being sick of your neighbors’ dog barking, and setting a pile of shit on fire on his porch and ringing the doorbell.
It’s like being depressed on a rainy day, hoping even the raindrops get sucked into a sill.
It’s like taking a prescription to enhance growth, but worrying more about the anal leakage.
It’s like being on the elevator, farting silently and reacting in shock at the pretty girl next to you.
It’s like trying to say you’re not a good writer while you smoke a pipe, because you’re afraid of being seen in tweed.
It’s like having a trusted friend next door, who’s heard you blow your nose in the shower.
It’s like showing how the world works, by yanking your ding-a-ling.
It’s like seeing the work of a great painter, and telling him you love to use sidewalk chalk.
It’s like loving your grandmother, but buying her a picture of a rocking chair.
It’s like being so lazy it’s too far to go upstairs, his reason for peeing off the balcony.
A Fallen Feather
We walk hand in hand for a bit,
stopping at the sight of a butterfly,
green and blue, cousin to a hummingbird,
nosing around the amethyst cones.
Drips of pine scented stillness
fell lightly encircling our pause,
His hand squeezing mine tenderly,
His thoughts easily unspoken.
The rock I chose to rest upon,
cold and slipping dead leaves,
an anchor to my lonely drift,
soaking through my bones.
He lets go to speak to a Blue Jay,
it chatters ceaselessly making no sense,
bringing back a fallen feather,
He lets it fall at my feet.
I reach for it foolishly,
His eyes warm,
saying she’s flown,
just beyond my aching grasp.
glow of a candle, fire in the flame
spark of wonder, we’ll never be the same
touch of love, laughter all day
ornery and kind, just her way
loving life, living wild and free
the only way she could truly be
gone too soon, gave all her love
glow of fire in the heavens above
Weekly Photo Challenge: Resolved (with story)
This is one of the few pictures you will ever see of me, and my sweet little grand-niece Aviana, tearing up the California/Yuma desert in a razor quad. We bonded almost immediately, kindred spirits we were, so alike in so many ways. I’ve never met her in person, or her mother, before this week I spent in Yuma at Christmas. But I knew instantly, this little person was going to need a caring loving crazy aunt, to be there for her. The reason I knew instantly, was because the first person to mention her name, called her Devil Avi. And it chapped my ass. I don’t remember who said it first, because as more and more of my family arrived, various members would talk about her in the same way. As an outsider, you tend to hear the same stories from different people, in different ways, it’s comical, but they live in such a small town they know everything about everyone, and re-tell the same famous stories, etc.
And in my family growing up, my nick name was Ugly or Stupid. And I tell everyone I know, it had scarred me my entire life. I may be fine now with who I am, completely happy about everything about me, really, but it took me years to get here.
It was days before I met this poor little soul, who everyone had decided to nickname and label like they did a can of beans. I was truly dying to meet her, due to being family, but also due to this horrendous reputation of a 6-year-old girl. When the time finally came, and she made her mark, in the form of trying to set me on fire and spilling hot chocolate all over my legs and boots… well lets just say Aunt Debi had a few words. lol not with her, other than to take away the burning stick, and say, “We never play with fire!”, but with her Grandma, who immediately informed her Mother, who made her come apologize quickly and very seriously, to the point that she began to cry as she tried to look me in the eye. I immediately reassured her I was not mad, and hugged her, saying I’d meet her by the fire in a bit, after I washed up.
Being the kind of open person I am, really an open book once you get to know me, I have no qualms about telling the blatant hard ass truth to anyone, even a child. Now sometimes I have to go back and apologize, like this evening, because sometimes I am a little too graphic. So I have to go explain myself to the parent and apologize and let them know they can call me anytime, if their child has nightmares, and such. I really go too far sometimes, but 99% of the time, it’s all good.
Little Avi and I are sitting by the fire, she inches her way over to sit beside me, sits a while, gets up again and starts playing with the fire, just poking at it, just like I am, and I ask her, “Have you ever seen a burn victim?” Thus starting my lesson in why we do NOT play with fire. I went on to describe in detail how horrifying they look, their skin is never the same, how they peel the skin repeatedly to make it regenerate growth and just how very painful that is. But giving credit where it’s due, this little 6-year-old girl asked smart questions, listened intently, and understood everything I was explaining to her, without trying to scare her, I told her the solid truth. And then I pointed out, that what’s worse than all of that, is if YOU are the cause of it happening to someone else. It’s hurts YOU inside, for ever. Avi understood, and sat quietly for some time, before bursting up and exploding back into the house to get more food.
That was when I decided I had better inform her Mom what I had just did, who didn’t mind at all. Little Avi was apparently a huge handful, and any help her Mom could get was appreciated. Her Mom and I talked for hours that night, and I made sure to point out that calling her Devil Avi was not acceptable. She needed to make everyone stop that right now. Life is hard enough, for a little girl, full of spunk and piss and vinegar, to have to get through without unnecessary scars.
So ya, maybe Avi will still be fascinated and play with fire, just like me, but maybe in the future she will think twice before doing something dangerous. All I know, is little Avi is a very smart little girl, who needs more people to explain things to her, than she needs criticizing her and putting her down every time they say her name. She didn’t leave my side the rest of the time we were together. And in the quad, with ONLY her favorite GREAT Aunt Debi driving her, she wanted everyone to know, we got up to 30 miles per hour, and she wasn’t scared.
Daily Prompt: Resolved
I resolved years ago, not to be so resolute,
This D is way too tenacious, instead I became a mute.
It didn’t last long, intent on persisting,
this dogged drive barked at me unrelenting.
I stood unflinching, while it nearly drove me mad,
valiance settled in to become the latest fad.
Undaunted I rose, never to be adamant again,
a tad bit unyielding, determined to win.
I opened my mouth, spit out a staunch vindication,
got shook by a rigid and unshakable revelation.
One mustn’t always resolve an issue with willpower,
consummation is always better, if only by the hour.
Daily Prompt~Forever Young
(Would you drink from the fountain of youth?)
She pokes her wee pointer finger
into the spill, tingles like caterpillars,
cold yet sparkling, she blurs her eyes
smiling at the diamonds she creates.
Leaning in, her tongue reaching out,
ignoring the frogs hello,
she tastes the shock of eternal chill.
“Oh NO!” her mother cries, running,
too late, towards the abiding beauty,
that pulled her baby too close,
her heart sinking, falling, knowing
her future has been poached,
an elephants’ tusk of sorrow.
No prom dress, or pure white wedding,
no screaming grandchildren to show off.
Lost her hope, she enfolds her loss,
four years forever she will be;
was why they called it
My thoughts on this post by “nobodysreadingme” at http://nobodysreadingme.wordpress.com/
Post is: “My thoughts on Nighthawks” with a picture posted, that you are supposed to figure out what is going on in.
Just thought it would be interesting to do this, so here goes:
“Want another one, buddy?”
“No thanks,” rolled out deeply, almost a grumble, yet obviously in a slightly altered voice.
“Look Chaaalie, I broke a nail. Now were gonna have ta leave ooerly.”
“Who gives a shit about your nails? No one. Drink your coffee.”
I reach back, grab my rag, and shine the already shining glasses, it’s what I do.
This stereotypical life I live is killing me. Day in, day out, they come in; I listen to the same bullshit over and over again, just different colors and different shapes streaming by in a scroll of boredom. If my stupid selfish asshole brother hadn’t screwed me outta that money, I wouldn’t be here washing fucking glasses. Yea, it’s steady. Yea, it’s a job, with pay. But I’m gonna blow my head off if one more stupid bimbo comes in crying about breaking a fucking nail. I swear, I will. I’ve got a gun, and I’ll shove it…
“Can you warm it up?” Bimbo’s boyfriend asks as he slides his coffee cup towards the edge of the bar, it stops after only an inch hangs over. Pretty good slide, but I can beat it. With coffee though, I’ll be pushin it.
I take the cup, dump out the cold coffee, and turn to the coffee pot behind me. My face is long and monstrous looking back at me. My eyes are lines with black centers. My stupid hat is a wizards; abracadabra you’re dead. I pour the coffee, and slide the cup across in front of the bimbo, making her lean back so I can take a look at the only thing I see. Perky but too small on a bony ribcage don’t impress me at all. The cup stops in the boyfriends right hand, and I smirk at his smartass look.
“I’ll take a whiskey.” That voice just bothers me, I’d swear it was a woman trying to disguise her voice into a mans. I grab the bottle of JD and pour a single shot into the sparkling glass. As I step closer, instead of sliding it down the bar because I gotta get a closer look, I place it right in front of the guy, looking hard at his face. There is no make up on, just dark green eyes glaring back at my intrusion. There are a few wrinkles around the blanket anger, and lines etched from the lips up to the nose. The lips aren’t thin or thick, the nose has a few pock marks from a teenage acne attack. I realize I’m still staring, and step back, turning and picking up my shot glass and rinsing it quickly for the next pour. The face was so nondescript it could be either a man or a woman, and the voice just grates at my nerves.
The supposed man takes a sniff, holding the glass with his pinky raised, then takes a quick sip. I know at this moment it’s a woman, but it’s too late. Her left hand has come up over the bar, with a small dainty Ruger Mark III, and my heart slows to a single beat.
He pulls off his hat, and her auburn hair tumbles down as she smiles, then shakes it a bit off her face. Her target; I immediately think is the boyfriend with the bimbo. She’s quite stunning now with that manic grin on her face, and muscular enough for me to realize she’s in great shape for a woman. I back up a few steps. But I’m wrong again, when she giggles as she shoots the bimbo in the chest. The boyfriend nearly falls on his ass as his stool tips over, as he pushes himself out of the line of fire. Brave and devoted. She shoots him in the stomach.
I don’t want to know anymore, no more sad-ass stories, no more anger, at this point in time, while time stopped, all I could think was, I hate my fucking brother more than life…
Daily Prompt~Plead the Fifth
(Is there a question you won’t answer?)
Plead the Fifth
I have a real lifelong problem with blatant honesty. If you ask me a question, no matter how personal or private you make think it is, I will answer your question. Sometimes I am even blunt about it, if you happen to be an idiot and need to know the truth in an instant. I am also very good at telling you you’re an idiot, without you even realizing it, because I will phrase it in such a way as you will not even recognize it. Which isn’t very often, and I find more and more I do this with management types, especially where I work part-time. (smirk)
Otherwise, you may ask me anything, and I will tell you the truth. I find it is easier and over the years I have learned how to condense myself, by omitting information that wasn’t asked, but still not afraid to let the world know just who I am, what I believe and the giant shoes I am trying to follow along behind. I have told complete strangers about my sons and huge family and my opinions about government are well-known. If you’re crazy enough to ask me about my beliefs, I will go on and on until you walk away.
I’ve always tried to live by the honesty code, which in my mind, is “always be honest”, unless speaking directly to a police officer. hahaha There I tend to draw the line. Only because in my experience, when I tell the officer,
“Did you see the moron in front of me who was talking on his cell phone, eating a burger and driving with his elbows….?”
This gets me nowhere. Honesty usually results in me getting a ticket. Wether it be swerving to avoid an elk, a mouse, a butterfly, or into the ice cream store I didn’t see a second ago, it never fails, I get a ticket.
Thus in all I do I am completely honest, with this one exception I have learned over half a century, where I will always plead the fifth.
Leave it to our great country, the USA, to include the one option of just keeping your mouth shut, because what comes out you may have no control over, and will most likely get you thrown in jail. This is why we live here…we are the greatest country in the world. hahaha
Black Cherry Season
Placing the Mason jars on the shelves, I hum a tune I sang to my sons. The tiny flash behind me reflects off the glass in a timed staccato. My brain doesn’t process it any further than to acknowledge it, think,
“What?” Then back to arranging the jars of my freshly made organic Black Cherry topping, dreaming of the first bowl of ice cream I smother in it, the smoothies it will enhance to beyond my ability to drool.
Eventually I walk up the steps of my dreary basement, to the tiny patch of grass pleading to grow and back to the front porch. I feel the hair slightly rise on the back of my neck; a cool touch stops me in my tracks. Little air is stirring. I feel the slight movement of the trees above me, a rustle in a void of noise. Time has stopped for me, I look slowly around; everything is just a touch blurry.
I continue to listen for noise but only a squeaky hinge speaks up. I walk down the two steps to the gravel below, and walk towards the main road. I see no one, I hear no one, but I can hear searing noise on the highway past the road. My heart begins a slow knocking, until it’s banging to be let out. I’m running in slow motion, I feel the empty haze pushing me back. It takes a season of my life to reach the main road, only a few hundred feet from my porch.
No cars in sight, so I push my way across the road to the wild stickers and half burnt trees from the wildfires that raged last summer. I grip the wire of an aging fence, and face the horror below. All the way to the overpass south of me are cars and trucks crashed, smoking, burning, with bodies from a horror movie strewn everywhere. Pieces of cars, pieces of people, all slightly smoking and ripped from their original design. No one is moving; no one is running for help. No one appears to be alive.
I lean back against the dead Earth of the berm, tears begin to form like soldiers lining up in a mess hall; they fall into line and wait their turn.
Several minutes fly by without notice, before I wipe my eyes and try to stand back up. It takes two hands. I walk away slowly, looking down the road, up the road, beside the road; the loneliness blankets me weighing me down. I trudge farther than I think I can, and make it back to my porch.
Where are my sons? Where are my cats? They were outside, as they always followed me when I went outside: stupid cats. I reach for my phone, remember its dead, and my heart sinks to my uterus.
My brain begins to realize it must have been a nuclear bomb, and I had been sheltered in my basement. At least from the original blast. The radiation poisoning was killing my cells as I thought about it.
I turned and went back into the yard, noticing the kale was brilliant, and the purples intense next to the bright green. It was at its peak, among the dead Tiger Lilly’s.
“Twinkie, Romeo, Sweetheart, Misster Kitty,” my voice cracking as I called.
I stopped at the dead Purple Majesty Millet cat tails, now just black and brown seeds, and slowly drag my hand up one, pulling off a handful. I lean down and scrape my fingers into the dirt, dump in the seeds, and fold the dirt back over them. I pat it down, then brush my hands off on my pants as I stand and weep.
Turning away, I wipe my arm across my eyes, look around through a rain covered window; still no cats in sight. I head for the doors to the basement, and carefully step into them over the doors edge. Down the 13 skinny steps I go, holding onto the cold damp walls for balance. I walk back to the back again, select a jar of Black Cherries, and slowly make my way back up the stairs.
Weekly Writing Challeng~Break the Ice
Break the Ice
He flew. He knew he was hauling ass, going at least 30 miles an hour, but he also knew it wouldn’t be enough. The original crack had made the hair on the back of his neck stand at attention, and could have woken the mummified children of the dead. The thundering behind him was growing into a monster of enormous size, pounding after him like evil African drums, wildly off rhythm, bent on hammering his body into splinters along with the trees.
The sound reverberated across Mt. Mackenzie echoing back and forth across the peaks. It grew closer as he dodged trees and rocks, jumping here and there, but nothing too big; just enough to keep his momentum going. He couldn’t take the chance on big jumps or mogul covered hills, he had to take the fastest and safest route and prayed with each turn,
“Help me Lord,” to make it down before it hit him.
Unfortunately, it was traveling at around a hundred miles an hour, and if he hadn’t decided to hit the South Bowl area once more, he’d have been down in the lodge by now. Or if he had skied slower and enjoyed the view, he’d still be on the opposite side of the ridge. As his bad luck would have it, right after he crossed over “Vertigo,” down the “Z” of the “Ripper Connector,” as he paused at the top of the ski lift, “Revelation:” he had one.
A giant avalanche was just starting. He took off after deciding to take “Kill the Banker” straight down underneath the huge ski lift, and the second it was on top of him, deploy his avalanche boobies and head away from the huge lift poles. They could easily be ripped up and become giant battering rams, or he could be hurled into one like a fence post in a tornado.
He’d been on the Ski Patrol for over 8 years, and absolutely loved this mountain. He had prided himself on taking every run once a week, so that he would learn them inside and out, like no one else. And what he thought as he raced through the “007 Glades” was that the avalanche would take out the lodge and everyone in it, because it sat at the bottom of the huge resort, which naturally had all the runs designed in the tracks where avalanches had carved the face off the mountain over the years.
Normally they blasted any areas that were just starting to become unstable, before they had a chance to become monster size, the kind that swept the entire face clean of all debris. Debris being tree’s, lifts, buildings and of course, people. This one had started fairly far up the mountain, probably from one of the lips along the lower ridge, where the windswept snow piled up, precariously teetering over nothing but air.
During a smooth section in his run, he looked to his left over his shoulder, and there it was. A massive cloud of swirling chaos rolling towards the lodge in complete abandon, down the “Cannonball Run” or there about. It was too late to even say a prayer other than the expletive,
“Dear God Help Me!” Which he did.
The sound was a deafening roar. The trees toppled like Lincoln Logs, breaking and crashing into other trees and decimating anything in its path as the abominable monster clawed its way towards him. He had a quick saving idea, to head off to his right and back up hill a bit, and hope it went on by him, without grabbing him and tossing him like a salad.
Tucking and turning at an opening in the thick forest glades, he took the old closed loop of “The Last Spike.” Feeling the push of the avalanche as its first deadly flakes hit his back; he dropped his poles and pushed the button to automatically inflate his avalanche boobs. If they had nipples, they would’ve won awards, but there were handles in their place, for the poor soul to cling to, hoping they would keep him floating on the surface of the avalanche, rather than being buried alive just a few feet below.
They started out as just a heavy scarf around the neck that snapped onto the pants waistband. They were making them now in fleece covered materials of all colors, but he liked his neon green one the best. The front of the scarf panel exploded out like a car’s air bag, instantly filling with the surrounding air, and kept going until it was full, resembling two enormous breasts. He and his buddy had insisted they look like this, just out of pure orneriness. Only where nipples would have been, there were two flat handles to slide hands through for extra grip. Of course this way, a guy would always know where to put his hands; no instructions needed.
They did little to stop the battering of objects now churning in the snow, but they did do two things. First they helped to lift a person weighing up to 300lbs to the lighter surface snow or very near there, where they could hopefully dig themselves out if necessary. Second if totally buried, they could be used for oxygen, also, buying a person time until rescue could be made. Being in front, instead of in back like the first made airbags, in front they protected the head and face, and the person could literally bury their face in them. All recently designed by himself and his buddy, after losing their friends a year ago in an avalanche in Washington State, where the snow is so wet and heavy there are no air pockets to survive in. All four of their friends had smothered as they tried to dig their way out from under 3 feet of lousy wet snow and ice.
Pieces of ice mixed in made the heavy snow reinforced because the dry snow stuck to its moisture, making a framework of strength in the huge heavy pile, making it harder to dig through. Thus their small side business of ski patrol safety items was called “Break the Ice.”
He didn’t know why all these silly thoughts were crossing his mind, other than he was about to test his boobs for the first time, in real time. He was lifted up by the crushing wave, his ski’s ripped off within seconds, his hat lost forever, and his adrenalin flooding him in a freshly washed chill. His last clear thought: I hope the people in the Lodge are ok. This right before he was slammed up against a tree so hard his right breast exploded as it gave its life for him.
He hung on to the tree with his right arm, dazed by the crash and struggling to avoid the blackness in the corner of his eyes, hoping to still be there after it went by. He was quickly picked off again, and thrust on down the looping trail. He was on the outside edges of the avalanche, which is good as far as avalanches go, where there is less movement, less violence, and a chance of survival. As his beaten body came to rest with his head and chest above the snow piled around him like cement, his last conscious thought was, “thank you, Raquel,” to his fondly named left breast.
Daily Prompt: Me Time
On an Angel’s Sigh
mass of moving gleams
lamenting of a whimpering mist
layered across emptiness
relentless in pursuit of touch
you sing around a whispering corner
your biting caress moves away
drawn by fate
not a return trip just a hill
flowing up on an angel’s sigh,
swirling around its skirt
a wall of shifting walls
a thickness only one sliver deep
reigning in a stinging bitterness
chafing yet fleeing before caught
a feverish life ended
sparking a flame of thirst
not in vain little one
you’re a mantle of esprit chill
shivering briefly until moon rise
shining in the face of death
a fall of created light
a glare of silent white
(just me time watching snowflakes) ♥
Daily Prompt: Flawed
They say I’m crazy, a wild hooligan,
who’s out of control, a happy insane.
They say I’m immature and unstable,
the backside of my parents’ pain.
They say one day I will fail badly,
Never reaching their intended goals.
They say she wastes her time playing with glass,
Creating art begets an idle soul.
They say she carouses, staying up all night
wasting her midnight hours on type.
They say I’m not determined enough,
my wild dreams nothing but a pipe.
They say I’m selfish, always off somewhere,
Choosing mountains over their company way.
They say the ladder is tilted I’m climbing,
yet I soar with Eagles every day.
They say she’s always joking about something,
Never serious enough, or even somber.
They say she’ll never amount to anything,
Like position and money are greater than a number.
They say too much they know nothing about,
and are missing life’s joy and peaceful pass.
They say I just don’t appear to care,
but I really don’t give a rat’s ass!
(inspired by my deep friend, TobyOne Kenobi… :o) hahaha )