Response – JSW Prompt “Winter” 9-21-2017

Feel free to join in and respond to the prompt. Please try to keep your response under 300 words. If you reply, I will re-blog your post to my site (sometimes I am slow, but I get there).

Winter, Stanza I

He turned to look at her.  “Well, yeah, where else would I be?”

She hadn’t moved and he wasn’t sure if she wanted to hit him or throw her arms around his neck. To occupy his mind, in the meantime, he flipped the two pancakes on the griddle.

“You,” she accused, ‘were leaving.”

He considered a moment.  Glanced over at her.  “When you kick me out.”

She cocked her head. “What do mean when I kick you out? Not only did you tell me you were ‘so out of here,’ you also told me you wouldn’t be back.”

He flipped a pancake, focusing on his task.  “I lied.”

Sinking down into one of the chairs round the table, she ran her hands through her hair. A sign she was upset, as if he needed one.

He moved over to sit beside her. “Look, we had a fight, we both said things we didn’t mean. At least, I said things I didn’t mean…” Hoping she might jump in, but she didn’t.

“It was stupid fight and…. I’m sorry. I messed up.” He glanced at her face, seeing the tears in her eyes. “I mean it, Ra, I messed up.  I don’t want to be anywhere but with you.”

The tears fell.

“Can we…. try again?”

“I…” Something like pain, not sadness, crossed her face.

He took her hand.  “Don’t say anything yet.  Just think about it, okay?”


“Maybe I could say something about it?” A voice asked from the hall.

They both looked. A man stood there in sweat pants and nothing else. “You must be Daniel,” he said, stepping forward to offer his hand.

Daniel rose, accepting the hand. What he would not accept was the victory in the other man’s eyes.

“You gonna make breakfast for me, too?”


“Come on, babe,” Darren said, sliding an arm around her waist. “Or should I leave you two alone to work things out? Whatdaya say, Dan, need to work things out?”

“Actually,” Daniel replied, stepping back, avoiding Ra’s eyes, “No, I think… I think things are pretty well worked out.”

“Daniel,” Ra said, grabbing his arm, “please. Let me….”

“Explain? I think I get the point. We argued last night. I left. You hooked up with lover boy there.”

He wasn’t going to show the ripping, tearing, motions slicing right down through the middle of his heart. Turning away, he grabbed his coat, jerking it on as he strode through the door.

“Dan, wait!’ she called, hurrying into the cold after him.

Their breath wove frozen words they would never speak, hieroglyphs vanishing into the cold like exhaust from a car vanishing into the night. In the end, there was nothing to say.

Driving away, Daniel pulled out the two tickets he’d purchased for London.  Wanted to rip them up and throw them into the snow, but he didn’t.

He didn’t know how long it took a broken heart to heal, but he guessed a long time. Looked like he would be traveling alone.

For awhile.










The Neighbors – Part 5

There are those among us who live false lives. Nasty men. Vicious women. Forgotten children. They are the monsters.

Am I one? Some things are best discovered on your own.


It rained all week, a whole bullocks of thunder and lightning and, of course, hail. It wasn’t I minded the rain so much as I hated being stuck inside this hollow house, trapped as surely as the legless man on the corner, begging change as a replacement for vanished legs.

I felt the same absence in my own life. Not vanished legs, but something I could not put into words. Something I could not hear nor touch nor smell. Something brought in uninvited, leaving me lost in the dark halls and empty rooms of my life.

A week has passed since Pumpkin had disappeared and many times I had considered ending it. Little girls need to learn the meaning of grief, of emptiness which lasts forever. Or maybe not. I don’t understand children, one reason never to have my own. I had no wish to pass my genes onto future generations.

No, my genes had atrophied inside their own prisons, trapping me forever.

Last night, I opened the basement door and went down. “Here you go,” I said, settling down the plate of food. Why had I started to talk to it? When had I started?

For the first time, I stood there and watched it eat, trying to see some redeeming feature, some reason for its existence, but I had none. I should have gotten rid of it when it first came to me, but I hadn’t. Something in its brown eyes twisted the blackened part of me enough to stay my hand.

Now I looked down at soulful eyes (do I even know what that means? Soulful? How can I?) I have no soul.

Is that why I stayed my hand? Why I called shelters and printed posters and walked a little girl – not my little girl, no never – around the neighborhood when I had plenty else to do. When children and dogs had no place in my life nor did I want them too? It moved closer, whining, leaning against my leg, nosing at my palm. I booted it away.

When I went back upstairs, I still felt its solidness against my leg, the softness as it touched my hand. Unafraid.

Friday Fictioneers 19 August 2016



Photo provided  by  C.E.Ayr 

It had been years since they’d found the wasp’s nest on the beach and taken it home. They were stars in their own orbit, blind to the rest of the world. Until they weren’t.

“Look, each chamber is separate, yet conjoined. We are the center  and each separate chamber is another aspect of our lives. Maybe your divorce is here and my first crush is here.”

“What happens when we run out of chambers?” he’d asked

She smiled sadly and never came back.