“The process of assessing how you feel about the things you own, identifying those that have fulfilled their purpose, expressing your gratitude, and bidding them farewell, is really about examining your inner self, a rite of passage to a new life.” (Marie Kondo)
New clothes were brought home
as treasured items proudly worn.
Gifts of love once remembered.
And cloth diapers for three babies,
none of whom used wash and wear for theirs,
but they sure as hell wore them.
Old shirts, their purpose long fulfilled,
now used to clean, dry, or wipe.
They’re washed, then continue to serve.
Old rags have memories woven into fabric—
from experiences with life;
from when first worn, old rags aren’t discards.
They’ve simply changed uses. Like people.
And memories. Lots of memories.
“…a rite of passage to a new life.”
Look both ways,
from the marvel of the mint to the value of the venerable.
Mind the gaps, but for most, “it don’t mean a thing.”
Thanks to Rochelle @Rochelle Wisoff-Fields-Addicted to Purple for providing another Friday Fictioneers photo prompt. Her weekly challenge is for us to write a story of 100 words or less based on a photo prompt (thanks to Roger Bultot).
Genre: Narrative poetry
Title: Joe’s Plan
Word count: 96
Joe was okay for 96;
a walker, a bag, and caths.
not bad. no cancer.
she was long gone.
he felt guilty and missed her.
Joe had a plan.
one night, after the poker game,
the pain was too much.
at the hospital er, shingles, they said,
was not deadly.
that night in his bathtub
he used his .38 Special
to join with her,
just past the veil.
Joe’s girlfriend found him, cops came,
hazmet cleaned up. some family members
dealt with his stuff. all they ever wanted
was joe’s money. now it’s finished.
Look both ways and wonder why, but death awaits all.
Mind the gaps and keep your powder dry.
Many thanks to Rochelle @Rochelle Wisoff-Fields-Addicted to Purple for pointing me to another photo-inspired Friday Fictioneers. The weekly challenge she presents is to write a story based on the photo prompt, provided today by Ted Strutz.
My task is to write a complete story in 100 words or less.
Title: One Last Time
Genre: Fiction (Southern Gothic)
Word count: 100
Abject fear hit me when I saw his house, familiar feelings founded on my childhood nightmares with an abusive father and an enabling mother.
I love South Carolina’s low country but have few good memories, a good place with fine people. But not him.
I walked the three steps to front door. A gunshot stunned me. I ducked, looked around, then carefully opened the door.
He put the WWII .45 on the table and said, “Safety’s broke. I ain’t goin’ to no death house.”
“Well, Dad, you cannot live here. And you damn sure ain’t livin’ with me. Now pack!”
Look both ways for the life you’ve lived.
Mind the gap like a bad dream.
Thanks to Merril (from New Jersey) for hosting this dVerse bar challenge: Prosery Monday: A Time, to which I am responding on Tuesday. Merril says to write prose of less then 145 words in response to this line from the poem “A Time” by Allison Adelle Hodge Coke.
“when it is over said and done
it was a time
and there was never enough of it.”
Genre: flash memoir
Word count: 143
Title: L’esprit de l’escalier
Last Fall, I wrote a poem about watching my father drink coffee and smoke when I was a young child. Our father-son relationship improved slightly later in life.
I’d received good reaction to the piece, so I considered its potential for submission. I requested further feedback from a critique group (mostly fiction writers). I was aware of the potential risks, but I wanted to know their thoughts.
One person asked, “I did not understand the last few lines where you said, ‘I figured it out. He did too. In the end, it was just the end.’ Can you explain what you meant?”
Stumped for a good answer, I copped-out with, “He died”—a true but poor response on my part.
Now I could simply say, “When it is over, said, and done, it was a time. And there was never enough of it.”
Look both ways for answers.
Mind the gaps in the poetry of others,
it’s where we may find answers.
Today’s dVerse Poet’s Pub prompt for poetics is Looking out the window, provided by Peter Frankis. While the challenge was to take a picture, post it, and write about it. I adjusted time a bit. I used a picture I searched for and found that my wife took of me through a window, 48 years ago. This idea came to me quickly and I could not let it go.
The Window Behind Me
A window from the parlor to the covered front porch
of my parents’ home, a memory of chewing paint off the sill,
of watching adults sit and talk and wave as neighbors walked by.
For eighteen years, my view of the world outside
where wind blew, rain fell, thunder clapped, people sang,
cars passed and honked. Life beckoned me to the stage,
through that window.
What was I thinking 48 years ago? My young wife and new son
in the window behind me. Our future? Was I talking or listening to
a passerby? Was I thinking of losing that hair as it turned gray?
Four-years military—done! College degree, done! Responsibility
branded me an armed man. Was I up to it? Did I have life,
or had it taken me?
Would the photographer still be my wife after 54 years? Would I have two
more children and would they be in their forties with more kids?
Would I build two careers and retire? Would I write poetry?
I had time. I knew I would live forever. I did not even know what I didn’t know.
Now, I know. Some I wish I didn’t discover. A window from the past
reflecting the future. The present me, right here, right now, today.
I want to say, relax, you’ll be fine.
Look both ways through every window.
Mind the gaps and cracks.
Lannan banished him to Marfa, city of minimalist art,
in the hinterlands high-plains desert, a Trans-Pecos cowboy patch
in far west Texas. Controversial, wrangled, and angry (bless his heart),
Bloodaxe English poet Peter Reading endured being sacked
For having gallish cheek, remaining ununiformed 22 years,
being poet, For the municipality’s elderly,
as a mindless weighbridge operator and lover
of fine wine and birds, with gruesomely ironic humor.
Peter and I were born on the same Saturday,
he in Liverpool, I was not.
His revenge – Marfan and Shitheads.
Look both ways for hammering truthful humor
and light romantic comedy.
Mind the gap, said the man to the day tripper.