Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner


The opening sentence for the January 29th Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner:  “The last time, everything fit in three duffles…” (A ‘duffle’ is a carry-all bag… if this word does not acclimate across geographic cultures?)

 Three Duffels

When we moved in, everything fit into three duffels.  Moving out five years later, only two. One if I didn’t take the knick-knacks and debris of our five-year marriage. I didn’t want those things. I wanted a new start, a leaving-this-life-behind-leave-taking.

The funeral was over. Flag folded. Salutes fired. Mike’s brother was coming to sell the apartment and furnishings. Our things; our lives together. I knew he wanted to talk, draw me deeper into the family, but I wouldn’t be here when he came. Ever time I looked at him, I saw Mike in his eyes.

Life was good. And then it wasn’t.

The traffic stop was good, until it wasn’t.

Mike was alive and then he wasn’t.

No widow’s club for me. I’d grown from daughter to wife to mother.  Mike would not see our son born; would never know he left a son behind. Locking the door behind me, I drove away.

Life would be new and then it wouldn’t.



Daily Post Prompt 1-29-2016

Saturday Night
Tell us about the most exciting big night out you had recently.


Saturday Night

He hadn’t planned on going out Saturday night. He’d gathered DVD’s and popcorn and, to be honest, a tub of ice cream, planning to stay home and mourn the occasion of his girlfriend dumping him. More than dumping him, kicking him down the damn hill. Besides, if girls could drown their sorrows in Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, he damn well could as well.

Not to brag, but he wasn’t something the cat dragged in. Tall, athletic, smart…. what the heck did she want?

Apparently, not him.

Slumping on the sofa, he stuffed a handful of popcorn into his mouth, settling in for the night. His first thought when the doorbell rang was she’d come back to beg forgiveness. Trotting to the door, he pulled it open, barely ducking in time to avoid the sword swing meant to separate head from body. His head from his body. Ah, hell.

Slamming the door, he leaned against the wood, panting. He hadn’t been drinking, swear he hadn’t. Trolls in this day and age? Really?

This particular troll slammed into the door, boom rattling the house around him. The blow knocked him head over heels into the living room, staring at the splintered ruin which had, just moments ago, been their front door. Mom and Dad were going to kill him!

A leg, thick around as his body, pushed through the wreckage, followed by the rest of the huge – understatement huge – troll. What were they feeding them now? Miracle Grow?

Scrambling to hands and knees, he slid across the carpet, pulling his sword out just in time to block a downward swing, grunting with the force of the blow. His free hand grabbed a handful of the jacks his mother kept in her crystal bowl, flinging them at the floor in front of the troll.

The troll wobbled. He dove over the sofa, staggering into the kitchen, catching himself on the counter as he stumbled.  Swinging the sword back, the blade severed the wire bracing the portcullis above the door. Wood and metal smashed to the floor, cutting off it’s lunge, but not the earthquake tremor as the troll’s body slammed into the barrier.

Grabbing a survival pack from the pantry, he dashed out the back door, leaving it open behind him, hoping one unbroken door might assuage his parent’s anger.

To think he’d wanted to stay home and be miserable?  Hell, no. All signs pointed to a great Saturday night.  And it wasn’t near over yet!

Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers


This week’s photo prompt is provided by Sonya, owner of the blog, Only 100 Words. Thank you Sonya!


Sunflowers cling to life, anchored to the earth between sidewalk and sky. I spend hours at my window, watching them grow, tiny green stems to taller-than-me stalks, flowers sunbursts against the red brick wall.

They are my strength, the sunflowers. Nothing defeats them; nothing defeats me. They put me here to break me, but I am unbreakable. I am the sunflowers growing from scarce soil to the sun.

The door rattles behind me. They are coming. The howls of inmates rise behind me.  It is  time for morning medications. Another day in paradise.



JSW Prompt 1-28-2016



Just Start Writing Prompt –  I’ve been doing these prompts since I started my blog. Feel free to jump in and add your own post. You can put them in the comments or create a pingback. Depending on how many respond, I will post them on my site.  If you decide to join me, thanks and have fun.



Daily Post Prompt – Just Another Day

Just Another Day

Our days our organized around numerous small actions we repeat over and over. What’s your favorite daily ritual?


Just Another Day

He stood by the sink, staring out the window, eyes not really seeing anything beyond the paint-scarred frame. His fingers traced the edges of the sink, metal bordering porcelain, both cold, one smooth as silk and the other an entirely different kind of smooth. It was the little things, he thought, the little daily rituals, which kept him sane.

He heard the kids upstairs, galloping back and forth when they should have been in bed, but he didn’t have the energy to trudge up the stairs and tuck them in again. Energy had abandoned him the moment he’d been told, thus the week of dishes in the sink, scattered food boxes, remain of the life he’d once lived scattered throughout the house.

The only things he did do now were the little things. Shower. Brush teeth. Meals, mainly take-out, unless a neighbor stopped by with food; dishes shoved in through doorways because no one wanted to be stuck in his circle of despair. Nobody knew what to say. They stayed as far away as possible.

He didn’t blame them. If fact, he’d rather be alone. Alone was his comfort; no pressure; no need to pretend. His mind returned to the only ritual he now practiced religiously.  Rain or shine, head bowed, kneeling before the two tiny graves. Crying. Dying. Tiny little bodies in tiny little graves.

Upstairs, the noise of the children vanished and he knew, once again, they’d gone away, back to the tiny graves their mother had put them in. Two sharps cracks of a pistol.





Quote For The Day 1-28-2016

“And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince