100th Post

This is my 100th blog post! *throws confetti* 100 posts in six months –I don’t know if that’s something worth celebrating, but I felt it was worth a brief mention.

Now on with the post! Here is my response to this week’s See*Photo*Write Challenge at 1st Writes:

The Lonely Mist

Veronica felt as bleak as the lake looked. Summer was over. Everyone had gone home -everyone but her. Living near a popular summer vacation spot wasn’t so sweet when fall rolled in like the voluminous veil of vaporous haze swirling above the water’s surface, shrouding the lake and Veronica both in melancholy.

The longer Veronica sat, the more expansive the fog became until Veronica could no longer see the rock beside her — a big problem when Veronica suddenly felt trapped within wispy walls of soupy clouds, as if  the mist was alive, breathing, throbbing and pulsing with energy, feeding off of Veronica’s loneliness and desolation.

Brother John

Here is my response to this week’s See*Photo*Write Challenge at 1st Writes:

John’s words startled the serenity surrounding the Sieur de Monts Spring. “Now that Mother is gone, I can finally put you where you belong.”

Elizabeth’s attention was elsewhere as it usually was. John had spent a lifetime dealing with his sister’s flights of fancy. For years John had suffocated under the weight of caring for his mentally ill sister. In a few hours, he’d be free; he’d finally be able to breathe.

Bull frogs along the bank croaked; crickets chirped; insects buzzed. A luminous fog veiled the water’s surface. John had been waiting for the opportunity to commit his sister to a mental institution. Now that the moment had arrived, he felt no reservations.

“Are you sleeping? Are you sleeping, brother John? Brother John,” Elizabeth’s childlike voice singsonged.

Despite the heat of the day, John felt chills creep down his spine. Before he knew what was happening, Elizabeth swung her parasol at him, knocking him into the water. Sputtering and choking, he rose above the surface only to be pushed back down by his sister’s surprisingly strong hand.

“Morning bells are ringing; morning bells are ringing…” Were the last words John heard before his lungs filled with water.

See*Photo*Write Challenge Response

A few captions popped into my head when I first saw this photograph:

  • Garfield vs. Nermal
  • The first rule of fight club is don’t talk about fight club.
  • Furry Tale Theater presents David vs. Goliath

A different dialogue developed as I looked more closely at the photo.

“Hey, buddy! Long time no see!” The orange tabby cat stood on his hind legs and opened his fore legs wide in a welcoming gesture.

“I know it, brother!” The smaller gray tabby kitten rose up on his hind legs and spread his tiny paws. “Where you been hidin’?”

“Oh, you know — here and there.” The two cats quickly hugged, well more like bumped chests, and dropped down to all fours.

“Not goin’ to give up your sweet spot, uh?”

“Not a chance.”

See*Photo*Write Challenge Response

Say to those with fearful hearts, ‘Be strong, do not fear; your God will come, he will come with vengeance; with divine retribution he will come to save you’ (Isaiah 35:4).

“Here, crabby! Crabby!” Justin called, cautiously leaning in for a closer look at the interesting animal crawling alone on the dry grass. Toes curling in his blue flip-flops, he bit his bottom lip and watched as the crab waddled slowly forward.

“Where’s your mommy at?” Justin looked around but there were no other crabs in sight. “You shouldn’t wander off from your mommy, Crabby,” Justin scolded. The wind lifted the tails of his plaid shirt. “Your mommy is going to be mad when she finds you,” he warned. But the crab merely continued to waddle aimlessly ahead as if he hadn’t heard a word Justin said.

Tiring of the crab’s unresponsiveness, Justin sighed and turned away. “Uh-oh!” Turning his head left and right, Justin searched for the sight of his own mother, but couldn’t find her. His belly bubbled with panic and his eyes filled with tears. “Mommy! Mommy!” Justin screamed and spun in circles.

Justin had never been so scared before in his entire life! Suddenly Granny’s voice whispered in his ear, “You are never alone, sweet boy. God is always with you. When you’re scared, just pray and God will help you.”

So Justin prayed, “God, I’m sorry for wandering off like Crabby. Please let me find my Mommy and I promise not to do it again.”

Then Justin heard the best sound in the whole world -his mommy’s voice calling his name. He spotted her in the distance and took off running in her direction. She saw him and also started running. Their bodies crashed together and they embraced in a tight hug.

“I was so worried about you!” Justin’s mommy cried tears of relief.

“I’m sorry, Mommy!” Justin wiped his nose on his mother’s blouse.

“Just promise me you won’t wander off again,” his mother pleaded. “You scared me!”

“I was scared too, Mommy, until Granny told me that God was with me and as soon as I prayed, I found you!”

“Granny told you?”

“Yep.”

Adrenaline and relief flooding her senses, Justin’s mother felt a skip in her heartbeat at her son’s words. Granny had passed away when Justin was only 6 months old! How could he possibly have recognized her voice?

Rained Out

The following is my (late) response to the See Photo Write Challenge hosted weekly by 1st Writes:

“This sucks! Can we go home now?” The rain had been pouring for at least an hour. Not that I minded getting wet while running and splashing through puddles. But the stupid thunder and lightening made that impossible.

There obviously wasn’t going to be a cookout today, so why were all the grown-ups standing around like a bunch of weathermen talking about whether it would clear up or get worse.

Well, things couldn’t get worse for me! I’d only come along with my parents so I could go swimming. Now that was definitely out of the question. I paced back and forth under the pavilion kicking little stones out of my way with the front of my flip-flop and sending dirty looks at my mom’s back.

When that failed to get any attention, I sighed loudly and plopped down at a wooden table. Propping my chin in my hands, I watched the rain and imagined having cool parents who went to yacht parties instead of picnics. I bet when it rained at a yacht party, they still served food. And fancy food too, like caviar and pate.

Finally my mom came over to tell me we were leaving. “It’s about time!” I stood up fast and took off running to the car, not giving her a chance to say ‘one more minute’ and not caring when the rain drenched me from hair to toes. It felt awesome!

 

What’s His Story

This week’s 1st Writesphoto prompt.

My Response:

Looking at you, I have more questions than answers.

When were you made? Who made you? Why were you built here?

At first I asked you these questions everyday I passed you, but you remained silent. Eventually, I quit wondering. Eventually, you just blended into the scenery. But here I am looking at you again and wondering what in the world is your story. But maybe you’ve been answering me all along. Maybe the clues to your story are staring me in the face. Maybe it’s like with charcoal rubbings on tombstones, a technique my mom told me about a few days ago as we meandered through the town cemetery. Maybe if I take a piece of paper and put it over the blue part in the middle of your body the words of your story will appear as charcoal darkens the paper; then again, maybe your story is whatever I want it to be.

Maybe you were a school project. Maybe the older kids built you for the younger kids to play on. Maybe you were meant to be a symbol. All I can say for sure is that only the core of your body is rusted out; your swings are still in tact. Maybe that’s a clue to your story. Maybe that means that your past doesn’t mattter. Whatever brought you here to this place is less important than the fact that you are here today and still offering children an opportunity to swing. You are a symbol of how the past is gone and what matters is the present. However we get to where we are, what matters the most is what we do while we’re here.

This Little Piggy

My Number 1 tip to new bloggers is to take part in blogfests and blog challenges. They provide a wonderful opportunity to stretch writing muscles, find inspiration, meet new bloggers, gain new readers, and grow as a blogger.

I mention this because today’s scheduled topic is blogging and my writer’s-group blog, 1st Writes, is now offering our own weekly challenge! (I’ll call it 1st Challenge for now.) Every Monday a new photograph is posted and readers are encouraged to share their response (if they are inspired) in a post on their blog. Everyone is welcome to participate. All we ask is that you leave a link to your response on the 1st Challenge post.

Do you know of a blog or blogger that keeps track of upcoming blogfests and/or challenges? If so, please share in the comments! Having a one-stop blogshop for blogfests and/or challenges would be very handy!

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Speaking of  1st Challenge, here is my response to this week’s photo!

 

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What an interesting little creature!

He’s short and pink just like me!

I wonder if he smells like me too? I move in as close as I can to the wires separating us.

He must have the same idea because he’s also right up against the fence.

We’re nose to nose now. He smells a lot different. I’m not sure I like it.

As I contemplate his smell, shifting and sorting the different scents, he suddenly sticks his tongue out and licks my snout!

What a daring little human!

I’m not sure how to deal with this. Is it rude if I don’t lick him back?