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

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


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.
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:
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.
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.
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."


  1. Beautiful photo. Evocative words. Lovely. Simply lovely. :)


    Funniest thing, how mountains are. In geography in grade school (Why "grade", I wonder? Because it's a climb? Because we are graded? I understand "elementary" school, but grade? Gradus, L.: step. Okay.) some were colored in bright sienna and others in yellowy sienna, which indicated "rugged young mountains" and "old, worn down mountains", although the distinction seemed to rely more on whether they had been run over by glaciers or not. And indeed, the White Mountains of New Hampshire are great high mounds of earth, covered with trees often, and obviously smoothed by those glaciers, while the Rocky Mountains of Colorado rise majestically out of the plains all of a sudden and are mostly pointed at the tops. I once sat on a precipice on what I called the back side of mount Estes, a few miles out of Denver, and looked down at thousands of feet of rockslide, as if a third of the mountain were eroded or eroding away. I remembered the great pile of gypsum from my boyhood that was stacked up beside the wall board factory that used the buildings of the old Atlantic Shipyard; how we had climbed to the top of it and slid down, making avalanches around our feet as we descended without grace but with daring. I wanted to do that down the mile or so of the back of Mount Estes, but, of course, I did not, or I would likely not be remembering it.
    In the Smokey Mountains of North Carolina and Tennessee a grey fog curls, like Sandburg's cat throughout the mottled hills almost all the time, and I suspect but have no evidence to prove it, that the color gave the rebel forces the color of their uniforms, a kind of camouflage. Mountains are where the plates of the continents rubbed together and crunched themselves into what we perceive as beautiful, awe-inspiring shapes. I don't suppose that mountains know that beings think they're beautiful. Makes me wonder 'bout lots of stuff.

  3. Voyage of a Journey’s End

    Mom was 62 when she died in the winter of 2007. It was especially cold that year. Dad did not take it well and finally gave up the ghost on June 17th three years later. They were very close and there was nothing to keep him from it. He was truly a great man and I knew that I would miss him terribly. My life was just beginning to return to that vacant sort of normalcy when the package came in the mail from the lawyer’s office. Inside was a small envelope bulging with its contents and on the outside, written in Dads hand, was my name. I must have stared at it for an hour there in the kitchen. It sat on the counter for two days next to the coffee maker when, on Friday afternoon, I decided to take it up the mountain. It was an all day hike that Dad and I had made at least once a year when I was in my teens. He and I found a special place high on the top where a single Weeping Willow tree grew in the midst of a vast pine forest. That Saturday evening I sat under that tree and opened the envelope and pulled out the thick letter that my Dad had written to me. It began with, “Jeremy, My life has come to an end. I want you to know that I loved you with every bit that was me but I am not your real Father. Let me take you back 40 years when your Mother and I met…” The letter slipped from my grasp as the tears slipped from my eyes. I sat for a long time watching the fog roll through the valley below wondering if I wanted to read on. I think I sat there all night.

  4. It's nose numbing cold, its eye creakingly dark.
    I trundle out of bed, pull on three pair of socks, thermals stuck between the second and third layer of wool skin.
    Blotched fabric swishes over my legs, hitching on my knees. I groan as I stand up and look out the window through the frost paned glass.
    Squinting I see the sun peaking though the mountain tops still swaddled in misty quilts.
    Standing up arching my back the thermal swims over my head, I dive through the collar of the cotton waffle knit.
    I barrel through the door pulling on my marshmallow parka, vested in orange and stand on the porch, for a moment before heading to the blind with coffee for the boys.
    I have a love hate relationship with deer season.

  5. Standing there naked, I was struck by how beautiful it was up here. And damn cold. Seriously, it is almost impossible to take in the glory of an awe-inspiring vista while shivering and clutching yourself for warmth. I am too tired to explain it all. But take it as fact that if in any way I could have ended up in this spot with clothes across my back and maybe a nice cup of coffee, that is how it would have played out.

    It just wasn't meant to be.

    Somewhere a few weeks ago, I lost my family, my life... everything. I guess that's obvious considering my current state of birthday-suitedness. You have heard that curiosity killed the cat, right? Well, I ain't dead, but frankly if it gets much colder that may be up for auction. I still have a few hours left to make this right. I can still fix this. I think. The envelope is gone. I am pretty sure of it at this point. But I may be the only free person in the world who read it. That gives me something to work with.

    Sure wish I had some boots and a coat.

    And underwear.

  6. Thanks again to Kat! And Linda, I wholeheartedly agree with your kind words about Kat's writing. Chuck Galle, Brian Potopowitz, krowles1981 and FilmGuy - thank you all for writing! Your stories were a joy to read, and you helped make our first guest post day a success.