welcome

welcome readers & writers! in this cyber space please find: + a photo writing prompt + a place to post your creative writing response (poem, memoir, short story or the like) to the prompt + a community of readers and fellow writers excited to read your writing + morsels of genuine fiction, poetry & creative non-fiction as the blog is updated. share a response as often as you'd like. everyday discoveries from my life, captured on film, will serve as prompts. this is not a place where we will critique one another's work; however, words of encouragement or praise for writers who share their work are most welcome. writers, share your story, poem or creative non-fiction response to the photo by clicking on comments; word count is flexible. cheers! demery

Friday, December 24, 2010

blessed


readers & writers, welcome! thank you for stopping in. this will likely be my last post until january 3, though i may be able to pop in while our family's on vacation. while i'm away, feel free to read or write on this or any photo in the archives. 
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for this week, a blessing to go with this photo of a painting done by my husband's grandmother Constance ~ long gone to be with the angels. the words of this blessing, drawn from the daily prayer of a celtic community in chatton, ireland, sing out my wish for you, and for the whole wide world.
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May the peace of the Lord go with you,
wherever he may send you.
May he guide you through the wilderness,
protect you through the storm.
May he bring you home rejoicing
at the wonders he has shown you.
May he bring you home rejoicing
once again into your doors.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

freckled


readers & writers, welcome!
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writers, join me in writing about today's photo prompt. click on comments below to share your poem, short story or creative non-fiction response. cheers!
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"Would you like another, miss?" Adin shaded her eyes, squinting to see the waiter standing over her in his white polo shirt and khaki shorts, holding an empty pina colada glass in his hand. "Please," she said, propping herself up on her elbows. He nodded, tossing her a wink as he turned away. 
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She sat up, stretching her fingers toward the sky and her toes in the general direction of the ocean, which rolled and shhhussshhheed just yards beyond the resort pool. She examined her arms and legs for signs of sunburn, supposing that she should put on some more sunscreen. "You'll freckle, dear..." Her mother's voice scolded faintly in her mind. How many years had Adin spent, at her mother's urging, confined to the shade circle of a beach umbrella or nearly suffocating in a 'lightweight' cotton wrap. And still she'd end her vacation covered with tiny freckles, a smattering across the nose, many more on her body, scattered like so much glitter across the surface of a Christmas ornament. They'd last a month or two then recede under the milky surface of her skin until next time. 
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But now, one week post finals, six months to college graduation, she'd finally realized that mother's voice, though it would always bob around in her sea of thoughts, no longer had a place as the voice heard above all others. Adin flipped onto her belly, resting her cheek against her soft nubby towel. "The thing of it is," she drawled, more relaxed than she remembered being for years, "I like my freckles." 
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Monday, December 20, 2010

wanted


readers & writers, welcome!!
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come write with me, my writing friends. short story, poem or creative non-fiction, warm your writing self up and give your creativity a boost for the day... just click on comments below to share.  
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wanted
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one jolly old elf
oft' seen on twelve twenty-five
shouting, 'good night all!'
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seen this man? please call:
the North Pole, Mrs. Kringle
"it's near time," says she
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with twinkling eyes
"my Kris always goes fishing.
to relax, unwind.
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the sleigh is lubed up
ready to fly. all we need
now papa is you!"
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Friday, December 17, 2010

topped


writers & readers, welcome!
* * * 
writers, care to join me in a writing warm up about today's photo prompt?  click on comments below to share your short story, poem or creative non-fiction piece.
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Kyra fiddled with the backing of the glossy bow, struggling to peel it back despite the fact that she had no fingernails (chewed to the quick). She'd turn forty next week, New Year's eve. She marveled at the fact that, twenty-five years later, she couldn't wrap a gift without thinking of that one Christmas, when her true love showered her with a gift every day. Not partridges or pear trees, mind you, but mixed tapes and simple trinkets fraught with meaning. And on Christmas day, her first ring (which she would, sometime in college - when the drama of their relationship had wended its way to a peak - mail it back to him in an envelope stuffed with poetry and dreams and recriminations and ultimatums).  Then it all had fizzled and dispersed like the smoke after fireworks. At the time of the great gifting she thought that every boy was so sweet, that every boy would shower her with gifts and compliments and undying love. She chuckled now. That hadn't been the case. Not in the least. But life had brought her so many good gifts, simple and complicated, each one fraught with meaning.       

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

passed


welcome, readers & writers... i'm sick as a dog here, and coughing, as they say, to beat the band. need a full night's sleep. hope your week is treating you better than mine is treating me!
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today's photo prompt is another close up. this little box belonged to my dear old friend "aunt" ruth, who passed on two years ago this month at the fiesty, warm, and wonderful age of 89 years old. she is our oldest son's godmother (his first name for her was "aunt joop"). she loved sweet little knick-knacks like this, and often she'd have a few treasures tucked in her handbag to pass along to my boys or to me. writers, come write with me! poem, creative non-fiction or short story - just click on comments below to share. readers, comments are open to you as well.
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5. 7. 5. (x2)
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through the wardrobe door
Joop has gone to see old friends
beloved family
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she comes back sometimes
it's true,  she comes to see you
to whisper love, hope

Monday, December 13, 2010

hitched



readers & writers, welcome! thank you for stopping by. hope you had a chance to rest & play this weekend. we enjoyed a couple of beautiful days out in the country with some friends.
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writers, how about some writing play around today's photo prompt? click on comments to share your poem, short story or creative non-fiction response to the photo. writers, comments are open to you as well. here's my spin on the photo:
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Happy unanniversary, my sweet. Happy old ordinary day. Happy scrambling around to make sure all the kids have clean socks to wear today. Happy bowl of soggy cereal because you poured it before remembering another lunch had to be made. Happy sitting up listening to me cough half the night, and thank you for snuggling close anyway. Happy day packed with meetings and I won't see you until late, after the homework is done and dinner is made and stories are read. Happy sopping up the puddle of water on the kitchen floor hoping the refrigerator might hobble through on its last chilly legs until January. Happy I'll do the dishes, you set the breakfast table, and then we'll do it all again tomorrow. We're in it. I love you. Happy unnanniversary. Happy old ordinary day, my sweet.

Friday, December 10, 2010

surrounded


welcome, readers & writers
 * * * 
hope you've had a good week and that your weekend plans are shaping up nicely. how about a writing warm up for you writers out there? poem, short story or creative non-fiction response to today's photo prompt, just click on comments below to send it in. see below for my short story spin on the photo. readers, the comments section is open to you as well. thanks for stopping in!
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Lil is taking her boys and leaving for the holiday. Leaving me here, in their wreck of a house. Alone. I know I should be happy for her, finding someone to love after so many years on her own. I know I have no claim on her and the boys, no reason to be resentful. I'm just a boarder. And a friend. But first a boarder. I mean, I always pay my rent on the first of the month, if not a day early. Don't I? I keep my belongings contained in my room, and my food on my shelf in the fridge. I take care that nothing spill over because if it did I might never find it again. 
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When I can no longer hear their car on the street, I jump up from my place on the couch and peek out the window to be sure they're gone. I giggle and my breath warms the moisture on the window, causing two drops to race to the windowsill. I flip on the TV, clicking through all the channels until I find the family Christmas movie channel.  It's a marathon of movies today, which is good. A mess like this will take hours to conquer. 
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And it does. Not only picking up the clutter and carrying it away to the bedrooms, trying hard to guess to which boy each thing belongs. But the trash. And layer upon layer of dust and dirt and the gritty dry puddles of spills never quite cleaned up all the way. At last, when I look around and feel I'm in another house altogether, I go to the garage and dig through their Christmas bins. They hadn't bothered since they knew they'd be leaving. I find a tabletop tree, the kind with the lights wired into it and the ornaments glued on it. I plug it in and take a seat. It's well past nine. 
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Too tired to think of cooking, I pull on my coat and go for fast food, bringing it back to the couch to inhale it. The Coke is so cold it's almost frozen. The lights on the little tree are blinking. McCauley Caulkin is hugging his mother. Another movie will begin soon. I sigh and cuddle up in the chenille blanket I'd found, and washed, and arranged with care on the back of the couch. It's not until I drag the final crusty french fry through the last streaks of the ketchup on my plate that my heart misses a beat. I sit up and look around. She's going to hate that I did this. This will not feel like a gift to her. It will feel like judgment.
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"But what am I supposed to do?" I say to the scrolling credits. "Put it all back?" I seriously consider the possibility, then dismiss it. It will have to be my gift to myself. A clean room in which to spend Christmas alone. I prepare myself for the likelihood that she won't say thank you.
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And she never does. She never says a word.
    

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

dreamed



welcome, readers & writers!
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writers, are you ready for a writing warm up? you can go my direction on today's photo prompt (and write about dreams that have been floating around in the night at your place) or you can go your own direction all together. poem, short story or creative non-fiction, share by clicking on comments below. readers, your comments are welcome, too. thanks to all for stopping by!
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After having a kind of strange and kind of wonderful dream last night, I took an unofficial poll this morning among my family members.  Our various dreams were too vivid, scary, lovely or bizarre not to share.  
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In my dream two dear but distant friends, Presbyterians (this seemed to matter for some odd reason) showed up. One wrote out a 'prescription for wellness' which included hand drawn pictures of apples and the presence of another child in our lives. The other friend stopped by and just so happened to leave a small child behind... a beautiful boy with dark skin, dark hair, and dark eyes who took to us all immediately and, when I met him, wrapped his little arms around my neck for a big hug. We couldn't figure out who he was or how long he was staying. But I kinda loved him. 
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My littlest son woke up crying this morning. Being that he's five and doesn't usually do that anymore (thanks be), I rushed to his room and found him sound asleep. I asked him if he was okay. He woke up and looked at me like I was crazy, "I'm fine, Mom." He didn't remember crying out, but a little while later he came to tell me that he had a dream in which red ants were biting his hands and feet, and when he tried to pick them off their legs got stuck inside of him :(  I believe I'd cry about that, too.
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This prompted me to ask my husband if he'd had any dreams he could remember. He said he'd dreamt that he had to critique people's writing (ahem) as it came up on the display of a gas tank. He said the grammatical mistakes and errors kept coming and were endless. (This is not as antagonistic toward his wife as it might sound, as he is a professor and this is grading season). Still.
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Son number two said that his dream involved his brothers, an abandoned house, and chipmunks with wings and bird feet. Cool.
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My oldest couldn't remember any of his dreams from the night...  So that's the news from our house in Austin, TX - where, to steal borrow Garrison Keillior's description of Lake Woebegone, "the men are good looking, the women are strong and all the children are above average."
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come write with me!
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Monday, December 6, 2010

mended


readers & writers, hello & welcome! 
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as the weather grows colder i'm noticing a tendency to draw closer to things, for warmth maybe. today's photo prompt is a close up of denim fabric. writers, if you're up for a writing warm up, join me! poem, short story or creative non-fiction - submit it below by clicking on comments. readers, comments are open to you as well. thanks to all for stopping by, and have a great monday.
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5. 7. 5. (x2)
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sad "blue jean baby"
heavy-hearted, rent, alone
torn apart, lost, dark
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in wisdom she seeks
women friends to knit her strong
soon now, whole again 

Friday, December 3, 2010

trimmed


welcome writers & readers - happy friday! 
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i'm so thankful it's the weekend, though a little overwhelmed at how jam-packed it is with things to do. one cheery task is that the tree, which currently resides in our living room, must be lighted and trimmed. though i'm not thrilled with the blurry edge of the photo, i love how we can see individual needles clinging to the branch. the intricate beauty of this inspires me, and i hope it inspires you writers as well.  come write with me! poem, short story or creative non-fiction - 300(ish) words or less. share it by clicking on comments below. readers, comments are open to you, too. thanks to all for stopping by  = )  

In a few short hours my family will gather around this tree and cover it with beautiful things: lights that pierce the darkness, an angel to watch over us and direct our gaze upward sometimes over the next busy weeks, and ornaments that mark fourteen years of family life.  
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A grinning Nutcracker ornament from the very first Christmas I dated my sweetie, when we saw a production of the musical at the Fox theater in midtown Atlanta.  An adorable handcrafted clay snowman ornament bought on a weekend in Asheville, NC the same as we gave to our wedding party as thank you gifts for our (almost) Christmas wedding. 
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Baby's first Christmas x3. A dog bone with Maddy's name inscribed on it (still brings tears when we pull it from the tissue paper five years after she went to Dog Heaven). A ceramic Santa ornament from our second honeymoon trip, the one where we fought half the time and spent the other half in the sunken bathtub next to the blazing fireplace. 
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Fancy crystal ornaments from the in-laws, one for each year, that cost more than a day's wages and catch every bit of light in the room, never failing to enchant my boys, even though they're no longer babies. One ornament for each boy, for each year, some hastily bought on Christmas eve from the grocery store, some chosen with care and lovingly inscribed with their names - depending on how hectic life was that year. 
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I'm taken with this lovely tree, who in all of its natural beauty, will stand patiently with us through the holiday, bearing the many blessings and thankfully few burdens of our years together. 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

misted


welcome, readers & writers 
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i'm so excited about today! write away every day is celebrating our first guest post. for those who might not know, a guest post is when a blogger invites another blogger to be the host of her/his blog for a day. i invited one of my favorite bloggers (and authors) Kathryn Magendie to do a guest post for us today and she graciously agreed. so today's lovely photo prompt was taken by Kat, and the written response is hers as well. visit Kat's wonderful website by clicking here, and be sure to take a look at her published books, Tender Graces, Secret Graces, and Sweetie (just out this November!) as well; she is a gifted writer. thank you, Kat, for hanging out with us today on write away every day.
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writers, write along with Kat by clicking on comments below to submit your short story, poem or creative non-fiction piece. readers, comments are open to you as well. see below for Kat's lovely reflection on the photo:
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When it is cold, I sit with a throw over me, as if I'm an old woman, and I rock and drink strong black coffee. The mists come and go like ocean waves, recede and arrive, recede and arrive, breathing in and out, out and in. When the fog covers me, I am alone in the cloud, and I can think of nowhere else I'd rather be. The mists are ghosts, ethereal visitors, a great glowing white hand whose fingers reach across the mountains.
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The Blue Ridge/Appalachian/Smoky mountains, blue-gray in the distance, have stood for thousands of a thousand more years; some of the oldest in the world. No man could ever tread upon every living thing here, and no man would care to. I can see myself on that highest peek in the far distance—can you see it? I can see myself there, with my arms outstretched, and the wind will rush right through me and I let it and I am not afraid of what is below or behind or above; I just am. Nothing would discover me on the peak, but I would discover myself.
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And as night falls, and I become the wolf, I will howl once, twice, three times. Then, with my glorious snout raised in salute to the ancient ones, I will lope down down the mountain, into the woods, my paws leaving prints in the North Carolina soil. Sniffing the air as I run, I can smell the ones who love me, who wait for me. And under a buckeye tree I stop to rest, lick my wounds, for the night has been harsh, but I know no other way but to go forward. And I let loose one last long reaching ever-heard howl that says, "It is; this is; I just am."
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Monday, November 29, 2010

found



welcome readers & writers! 
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today's photo is of a letter we found in our gutters.  it was sent from australia to an address in minnesota. no clue how it got, unopened, to the gutter of our street in austin, tx... but it could make a great story! writers, come write with me. submit your short story, poem or creative non-fiction (300ish words or less) by clicking on comments below. 
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i'm back!  sorry for the delay... been working hard over here at my paying job :)  my contribution for this picture is below.  stay tuned for a special guest post tomorrow - by the all around wonderful author Kathryn Magendie whose blog you can find here.
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The letter was burning a hole in Sasha's purse. She'd tucked it there after checking her mailbox on her way out the door to the airport. She'd been expecting him to write. In fact she'd been pining away for nearly a year - checking the mailbox two and three times a day, even if the mailman had already been there. She'd lain for hours in her bed, unable to sleep, forming what words he would write, constructing each sentence in the way she thought he would say it, hearing each word whispered aloud, in his honeyed Aussie lilt. But his letter had never arrived, and she'd almost given up for good. Today of all days, the day before Thanksgiving, she found the letter in her box. She didn't have time to read it right now, or she'd miss her flight to Austin. Maybe she'd read it on the plane. And then again, maybe not. Maybe she didn't care what he had to say anymore. You don't tell someone you love them, that you'll be back soon, that you'll bring them out to see you, and then drop off the face of the earth for the better part of a year. A tear overflowed its pool and trickled down her face. Maybe she'd just toss the letter out the window of her brother's jeep and move on with her life. Just. Maybe.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

gratified


happy thanksgiving, readers & writers!
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i am deeply grateful for so much, and very near to the top of the list this year is that i've discovered more fully this passion for writing. following the advice for aspiring writers, i started this blog. i had no idea what a joy it would be to write and read with you all! i never expected that the blogging community would be so affirming and nurturing of one another. thank you, thank you. blessings on your day. i'll be back on monday with a regular post. until then, feel free to write if you'd like - or just eat. eating is good!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

minted


readers & writers, welcome!  
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writers, feel free to spin a little tale/poem/musing about today's photo prompt. just click on comments below to post. i'll be back to write, but probably very late tonight when i return from seeing harry potter 7.1 with my big boy. love the movies. love harry potter. love my boy. thinking about what it must be like for an author to have gobs and gobs of people be inspired by something you've written... and what it's like to see your story spring to life on the big screen. pretty cool stuff. thanks for stopping in!!  come write with me :)
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I'm back! I couldn't find the words last night to write about Harry Potter 7.1  It was amazing. And it really defies review because it just is. There's no going wrong for this iconic story that is so much bigger than ink on a page or pixels on a screen. Judging by the audience in the theater last night, Harry Potter is a universal story which brings hope, joy and courage to people of all ages. It has and will help shape the character of my boys, and for that I am incredibly grateful. Have you seen the film? What is your response?

Monday, November 22, 2010

remembered


welcome, readers & writers! hope your weekend afforded you some time for rest and play. we did a lot of catching up around here; not restful or playful, but it's good to be out from under mountains of laundry, toys and dishes = )
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today's writing prompt is a photo of a plant that grows beautifully here in austin. it's called setecreasea pallida, or 'purple heart.' writers, hope the photo and/or the title inspires a poem, short story or creative non-fiction response in you. if so, come write with me and share your response by clicking on comments below. remember, there's no pressure to have the writing be perfect. this is just an exercise to boost your creativity for the day. readers, the comments section is open to you as well. thanks to all for stopping in!

Mary shifted on 'her' bench, tilting her face toward the glimmering sun for a moment before returning her eyes to the blood purple plant just across the path. She wasn't mad at the sun anymore, for shining. And she wasn't mad at the young mothers for walking by with strollers holding sleeping newborns or mobilizing wriggling toddlers. She wasn't mad at all anymore. Just sad. Eternally, unremittingly sad.
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Something about the setecreasea plants nurtured a stillness inside of her - though it was a stillness void of comfort or peace. She didn't feel closer to her son here, in the park where he used to run and shout and play, where he'd gotten in trouble once as a teenager when he got caught smoking his first cigarette. She would never be able to talk herself into feeling close to him when there wasn't enough of his body left to ship home from Iraq. The stillness she felt looking at the purple heart plant came because, when she looked at it, she didn't feel alone in her sorrow. This living, weeping, beautiful thing with its skin the color of bruises was her daily companion in pain. So they sat, in proximity to one another, getting through the day. Soaking up the sun. Mary inhaled what the plant didn't need anymore. The plant inhaled Mary's sighs, deeper than words.       
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Thursday, November 18, 2010

beheaded


welcome, readers & writers!  here's today's photo writing prompt - a little later than usual.  writers, would love to hear your creative take on the photo - story, poem or memoir - click on comments to share.  readers, comments are open to you, too.  thanks, all for stopping by.  see below for my spin on the photo.
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'ello all!  my name is Sir Nicholas. You might know me. My creator J.K. Rowling, God bless 'er, made me famous in her books about young Harry Potter. Nearly Headless Nick, they call me. Well, it seems I'm not nearly headless anymore.  Since I moved into this house with three young lads and one gargantuan dog, me head's altogether gone, now. Likely ended up in the washtub or under the sofa. Don't know how I'm speaking with you at all.  Magic, I suppose. That's one thing there's no shortage of here. Spells are always bein' cast about. Some are spells from the books, some are brand new made up spells like solar inferno, which - the lads say - engulfs its object in a ball of fire. Wands are flashing. Capes are flying. I hear a lot of talk about how many days until "number seven" comes out. Not sure what they mean, but it has something to do with me. And popped corn. Tin of tunny, I'd like to find me head by then so I could view whatever this "number seven" is. Ah well. At least maybe one of the lads might hide me in 'is pocket. Do ring me if you see it, won't you? 

  

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

dog-eared


welcome, readers & writers!
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here is today's photo writing prompt - writers, poem, short story or creative non-fiction, write away!  click on comments to share. readers, comments are open to you as well. thanks to all for stopping by!

5.7.5.
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lost in a world of
simple words, antique stories
lovley ways and days


imprinted


welcome,  readers & writers!
* * *
today's prompt is a photo of a necklace given to me by a dear friend. some memoir-esque thoughts about the necklace and the friend are below. that's my response to the photo. writers, what's yours? click on comments below to share a story, poem or non-fiction response to the photo. remember, these prompts are intended to provide you with a writing warm up. so there's no pressure to produce an award winning piece of work here. just flex those creative muscles and we'll all go "oooh" and "ahhh!!" readers, comments are open to you as well. thanks, all, for stopping by.
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One of my college roommates came to town this week. What a joy it was to see her! We've stayed connected these uh-humm many years - a) because she's much more organized, patient and persistent than I am (thus a better correspondent), b) because, until recently, we had the good fortune of living a half a day's drive from one another - and the chance to cement the friendship as adults, and c) because we can completely and totally be ourselves around one another. We know the good, bad and, well, badder history of each other's lives and we love each other all the same. 
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My friend is one of the strongest people I know. She's been through more heartache in life than one person should ever have to endure; and yet she has been able, through sheer will sometimes, to be positive, vulnerable, open and hopeful to life. 
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Some years ago, when she was in the midst of a terrible crisis, I drove out and offered help in whatever very limited way I could. As I was leaving, she gave me the gift of this necklace. She explained that the word thanks, imprinted on the silver, was not only a literal expression of her gratitude to me, but also an offering of gratitude and thanks for life's blessings. That she could find it in her that day to give a gift to me, or to even say the word "thanks" out loud tells you volumes about her character.
I wear the necklace often, always remembering my friend - what she's lost and what she's gained through these many years.  I wear it with gratitude for her and, inspired by her, for life's many blessings. 
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come write with me!

Monday, November 15, 2010

found


hello readers & writers! 
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here is today's photo writing prompt... something i found out in a field. writers, write away! poem, short story or creative non-fiction, i'd love to hear your spin. here's my 25 cents worth  :)
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With her ten tickets clutched tightly in one hand and her Granny's hand holding tightly to the other, Jarellyn scouted out the whole carnival before deciding which ride to do first. No matter that most of the other kids were wearing wristbands that meant they could go on as many rides as they wanted. No matter that most rides cost two tickets, meaning she'd just get to ride a handful.  Jerellyn's chubby cheeks were lifted in a big grin. 
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Granny had said they might not be able to come at all. But then, when they were cleaning out the coat closet, Jerellyn found a five dollar bill squished under some shoes. Ten tickets, two hotdogs, two sodas.  More fun than Jerellyn had seen in a long, long time. Since Mama left. 
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And she'd be able to talk with the girls at her lunch table about the carnival. She could say she'd been there. She could say her favorite ride. She could laugh about the silly clown running around making balloon animals and spraying people with a squirting flower. They paused for a minute; Granny needed to catch her breath. But just for a minute. Jerellyn, so excited to know that she'd be able to see the whole block from the top of the ride, tugged Granny toward the ferris wheel. The whole darn block. "This one," she said to Granny. "It's gotta be this one."
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come write with me! 

Thursday, November 11, 2010

trained


welcome, readers & writers! 
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writers, looking for your pet stories, poems or creative non-fiction (memoir, anyone?) thoughts today. click on comments below to share.  readers, comments are open to you, too.  here's my doggie memoir, a memorial.


Maddy was the best dog I could ever hope to have, though to say "have" her doesn't feel quite right. I wasn't her owner, and I definitely wasn't her master, because - though she loved me - she never obeyed me much at all. She was just family, I guess. A furry little Ewok (black chow chow) about the size of a small watermelon when I brought her "home" to my college apartment, one which didn't allow pets, by the way. At full grown she was the size and shape of a big kid black bear. Once, when I took her for a walk around my apartment complex, a foreign exchange student very new to our country asked me, in a tremulous voice, "Is it bear?" She looked relieved to know that we crazy Americans aren't out walking our bears every morning.   
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Maddy-girl was sweet and stubborn, smart and playful. She thought about being fierce for about ten minutes when she was a pup, but once she was too big to growl at people from under furniture, she decided to go the docile route. She loved, loved to run and be chased... which made life difficult sometimes. At the least convenient moment possible she'd squeeze her way out the door as I was leaving or coming home and take off. I - and anyone else kind enough to help - would run after her for blocks. She was super fast. Every once in awhile she would stop, panting, and smile at us, watching until we got almost close enough to catch her, and then she'd take off again. She did this game for years until she got old. Eventually we stopped chasing her because the whole thing would end much faster after she'd had her run and come back home with a grin on her face. 
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By the time she was twelve, almost thirteen, she was not only my dog anymore; she was well loved by my husband and my two boys (one on the way). She'd been with me through college, graduate school, a number of very broken hearts, engagement, marriage, and two new babies. Always gentle, always sweet. In her last few years with us she mostly slept and watched the children play. She couldn't see or hear very well and so would kind of vacantly wag her tail when you'd talk to her. And she never played her chase game anymore, something I was grateful for. 
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On the night of November 1, 2004 - All Saints Day - in the chaos of the bedtime hour, I put her outside to do her business. I took a little longer getting back to her than usual and when I opened the door she wasn't there. She'd wandered off to our front yard and, heartache of heartaches, been hit by a car right in front of our house. Writing about the rest that night, and the days that followed, is too long and still too hard. 
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But I will tell you that several months later, still feeling awfully guilty and empty and sad, Maddy came to me in a dream.  I was walking up and down the aisles of a warehouse like place looking for her.  I rounded a corner and saw her way at the end of an aisle. She came running to me, grinning. She was young and spry and just herself. I knelt down and hugged her, feeling her silky woolen coat and kissing the bridge of her soft nose.  After that dream, there was peace. I miss her still, but I know she's okay. And I fully expect to see her again.


come write with me!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

found


it's wacky wednesday, readers & writers!  since we don't have spoof saturdays anymore, we've got to be wacky at least a few wednesdays out of the month.
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so join me today in writing about this rather nasty, mysterious found object... Dr. Seuss style! Poem, story, or really creative non-fiction... rhyme away! writers, click on comments below to share your work or to heap praise on the hilarious, brilliant work of others.

white foot, light foot
ghost foot, gross foot
muddy, cruddy, narrow toes foot
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creeping, sneaking, on the path
reeking, leaking, needs a bath
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feeling sick now, need to go
methinks he's glad i said hello

thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

stained


welcome readers & writers!
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here's today's photo prompt. writers, what do you make of it? story, poem or creative non-fiction - share by clicking on comments below! readers, comments are open to you, too.  

Monday, November 8, 2010

wooded


a good monday to you, readers & writers!  hope your weekend brought time to rest and play.
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here's my spin on today's photo writing prompt. writers, please jump in and share whatever poem, story or creative non-fiction thoughts arise when you look at this photo. readers, the comments section is open to you as well. happy reading and writing!


What kindness there is in the wise layers of this tree - to provide a row of steps for passersby? How many feet have lighted on these ragged roots? Four furry dog feet, pulling her person forward, "Faster! Faster! To the river!" The scuffed up dress shoes of a businessman on lunch, claiming a break from the neon glow of his computer screen. Hiking boots, fresh from the box, laced up by a woman ready to get up off the couch and be in the world again. Two sets of sneakers, his and hers, close together, holding hands, deep in puppy love, happy for every moment that's theirs to spend before going separate ways to do homework and chores. Twenty, fifty, maybe even a hundred people a day, tread the path, down the stairs, to the creek, to revel in the wonder of the world. Thank you, sister tree, for easing the way to Eden. 


Come write with me!