JSW Prompt 3-19-2017



Apparently so, given his facial contortions.

“Haven’t you a serious bone?”

I laughed. That could so go the wrong way. “I’ve got lots of bones, ” I said instead, “But I’ve never known one to be serious.”

“Color me surprised.”

“Blue maybe? Or red… maybe meadowlark….”

He sighed.

I rolled…. “Oh, damn, I did it again .”

I could almost hear his thoughts, he was projecting so loud. As well ask why the sun rises in the west or sets in the south. Why the sky is green and flowers puke.

“Come on, Doc, you know you love me.”

“Love is a very liquid concept.”

“Gotcha,” I laughed, sliding sideways, head hanging off the side of the couch. I rolled my eyes at him, grinning upside down.

“It’s time to go back to your room,” he said, rising from behind his stalwart desk. “Austin will take you.”

My eyes rolled and rolled and rolled……..





Daily Post One Word Prompt – Maddening



He set the book in his lap and leaned back, nape of his neck resting against the rough horse-hide of the chair. Not his choice of sitting accouterments, but then again, this wasn’t his place. More a borrowed place.

Regardless of ownership, he loved this place. It allowed him to escape the endless ebb and flow of the world. Of reporters and paparazzi; a million people calling his name, pulling him in a million difference directions. The second leg of their tour started in two weeks and he was wiped out. He loved touring, loved interacting with the fans, but the older he got the more downtime he needed if, for nothing else, the fragile thing he called sanity.

Not that he considered himself anywhere near sane. Life in the music biz had never been sane. His parents had called him high-sprung; his friends crazy and the band members, probably, an arrogant prick.  Which, he was. He was all of the above, but fronting a band like The Secret Agents and being the main creative genius, didn’t tend to engender one towards sanity.

Jay walked in and sank down into the other chair, shifting around to get comfortable. “I hate these chairs.”

Chris raised his eyebrows. “And you are sitting there why?”

“To bug the hell out of you.”

Chris snorted.  “Well done, Jazzman. Well done.”

“The call earlier was Kerry,” Jay said, leaning over to look at the book in Chris’ lap. “He’ll be back by the beginning of next week.  Rudy should be here by then, too.”

Kerry was thir bassist. Rudy the drummer, both coming in upon the departure of an original band member.

“So why the hell are you here and not amongst that gypsy band you call kids.”

“It’s so not a gypsy band,” Jay protested.

“How many kids is it now?” Chris asked.  “Ten… twenty?”


“And one on the way.”

“Well, yeah.” Jay blushed, faint redness spreading across brown skin. “I’ll be heading home for few days so I can be back with the others.”

They fell silent.

“Are you all right?” Jay asked.

“Yeah,” came the answer, more upbeat than was the truth. He was never wholly all right, but he’d learned to keep himself to himself. It made things easier all around. No one need know the maddening world inside him.

He felt Jay watching him, figured  he wasn’t fooling the other man.

“No more broken mirrors,” Jay said, suddenly serious.


“Make sure you eat.”



“Yep.” He was lying and they both knew it.

Rising, Jay lay a hand on his shoulder.  “Call me.”

“Yep.” He didn’t watch Jay walked out. Heard the faint sound of the outer door closing behind him.

Alone folded him inside. Hidden, sinking into the disorder of his own mind.




Quote For The Day 10-23-2016

“War may sometimes be a necessary evil. But no matter how necessary, it is always an evil, never a good. We will not learn to live together in peace by killing each other’s children.”
Jimmy Carter, The Nobel Peace Prize Lecture

Daily Post One Word Prompt – Storm


The Neighbors, Part 3

There are those among us who live stormy lives. Nasty men. Vicious women. Forgotten children. You will never see them. They pretend normalcy; friends and neighbors and co-workers. Inside they are monsters.

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

It was storming the day the dog disappeared. Pumpkin. Janice’s little mutt.

She showed up at my door, with James, to ask if I had seem the little thing. Such a sad little tear-stained face. Boredom for James.

I knelt down, smiled my smiliness. “No, I haven’t. Maybe Pumpkin ran away.”

“Pumpkin would never run away,” she replied, eyes red-rimmed and serious. “He loves me.”

“Perhaps he got lost in the storm.”

Tears welled.

I looked up at James. “Have you called the Shelters?”

They didn’t deserve her really. Boredom. The curse of modern life.

“Come in,” I continued. “We’ll call to see if anybody found Pumpkin.”

This was the first time she’d crossed my threshold.  I shuddered at the thought, but one must make sacrifices.

Phoning produced nothing. Nobody had seen, or found, Pumpkin.

We printed up flyers to post after the storm. Walked the neighborhood the next day, stapling up posters, looking for the mutt, calling its name.

We all lose those important to us.  Except the monsters.

The next afternoon, I knocked on their door, offering in my hand. James answered. Funny, but I hadn’t seen Jane since that first day. Move-In day.

He tilted his head like a cocker spaniel.

“How is poor Janice?”

“She’ll be fine,” he replied. “It’s just a mutt.”

My sentiments exactly, but it wasn’t my place to say.

I offered him the dish. “Pumpkin Pie?”

The Neighbors Part 1

The Neighbors Part 2

FRIDAY FICTION with RONOVAN WRITES Prompt Challenge #30-Favorite Song

Word Count is off! Let’s focus on the theme of the thing. Not many actually stick to the word count anyway. (SUGGESTED-No more than 500 if you want to try that.)

Using the prompt of ‘Favorite Song’, WRITE. Use your Favorite Song as inspiration for your fiction. Maybe it’s the title for it or maybe it appears in the story in some way? (REQUIRED)

DEADLINE IS: 23:59 EST (New York Time) Wednesday

Click Here for more stories.

Play this. Play that. Play my favorite song. Giggle, giggle, ohhhh, ahhhhh. What’s your favorite song you didn’t write? That you wrote? He’d heard them all and more. The songs, of course, but also the cries and pleas. The screams. From reporters. Talk show hosts. Fans. Whispered on pillows between intimacies done for very different reasons. And, on his side, just because he could. There had been a few years of drinking and a few of drugs – more to focus his attention, keep him going, – than for recreation. He’d never thought of drugs as recreation. Now, he didn’t drink and he didn’t drug and he didn’t….. well…. he didn’t do any of those things from his younger years. Except the intimacies.

What he did was music. In the mixed-up world of  stardom and fame, he’d clung to his music like he’s clung to his sanity. Music had always been his high, only he’d forgotten for a while. It’s hard to remember the truth when a gaggle of fans are tearing off your clothes.

“So,” asked the anchor of one of those morning shows – he’d have to ask his publicist which one – , “What is your favorite song that you’ve written?”

Over the years, he’d answered differently, just to keep everybody guessing. All part of the game of superstar and fan. Really, Superstar and the World.

His mind  flipped through the endless loop in his head, looking for the best answer. They would never learned the truth, because they didn’t want the truth.

They wanted Story.

Truth was, his songs were his autobiography.

“My favorite song?” Which would he choose? Heaven or Hell? He wasn’t a hell or heavens man. If he was, he’d be in deep shit. He’d come to believe each person created their own heaven and hell right here, right now, every moment of their lives..

“I always said if I wrote anything country, the title would be ‘My Love Is Like A Toaster, It Keeps Popping Up And Down.”

Finally, the right answer. His favorite song was the song unwritten, lingering just on the edge of consciousness, waiting to be heard.

Canned laughter. He no longer wanted a canned life.





Quote For The Day 6-10-2016

“Soon madness has worn you down. It’s easier to do what it says than argue. In this way, it takes over your mind. You no longer know where it ends and you begin. You believe anything it says. You do what it tells you, no matter how extreme or absurd. If it says you’re worthless, you agree. You plead for it to stop. You promise to behave. You are on your knees before it, and it laughs.”
Marya Hornbacher, Madness: A Bipolar Life

Daily Post One Word Challenge


The Voices never stop. Sometimes one, sometimes more, all yelling, all telling me what to do. I don’t want to listen, but I can’t escape. ‘Kill somebody.’ ‘Kill your sister.’ ‘Kill your dog.’

Kill seemed to be the only linking word between their demands.  Kill. Kill. Kill. But did I want to kill?  Of course, I did. I knew I should, I knew if the Voices told me something I had to obey. They were Gods, weren’t they?  Who else talked in my mind? Only Gods. Only gods.

‘Kill your mother.’ ‘Kill that stranger on the street corner.’ ‘Kill, kill, kill!’

I felt like….. Manson. Dreamed about blood splashed on walls and ceiling, dripping like rain to patter the floor red. Maybe I was Manson. Manson re-born… but wait, was he dead?  Did he need to be dead to be re-born?

They were getting louder, those voices, harder, meaner; always pulling my mind into corners where I didn’t want to go. But. I. Had.To. Kill.

I just didn’t have to kill those people….