Friday Fictioneers for July 1st 2022

To kick off the lyrical month of July in the year twenty twenty-two, Mistress Rochelle stayed close to home again by drafting from hubby and sending us a photo of a 1960 International Harvester pickup truck, credit to her musical goy-boy-toy, Jan Wayne Fields.

Some folks name their cars and trucks, even the ones used to earn some extra college moolah in the mid-1960s.

Click on the flower truck for a ride to Rochelle’s page to see the root cause of Friday Fictioneers. (PHOTO PROMPT © Jan Wayne Fields)

Genre: Flowerchild Fiction
Title: Poppy Redux
Word Count: 100

***

I paid little attention to my surroundings as I picked out flowers.

I heard, “Hey asshole. Long time, no see. How’s it hangin’?”

“Poppy?” I looked closer at the pickup.

“Holy shit. You must be over fifty.”

“Sixty-two. I’m haulin’ flowers now. No more runnin’ grass like with you guys back when.”

I said, “Sorry, man.”

“No worries, Bill. I’m the new chick magnet.”

The flower farm guy walked up.

“Hey man, how much you want for this rust-bucket, farm boy, pick ‘em up?”

“She ain’t for sale.”

I smiled, “He. Poppy is he or him. Now, what’s it gunna take?”

***


Look both ways when you hear familiar voices.
Mind the gaps, but buy it, build it, make it, or take it.
Whatever gets your ride to roll.

Click on brother Bert’s smile to be picked up and driven to other wonderful 100-word (or fewer) stories.

Monday’s Rune: Pride Month Poetry


Looking Both Ways

There’s tragedy in America
and over the world today.
One that has always been there
brewing trouble bubbling,
either hidden or ignored.

Without love, honor, and respect
inside and out,
sans pity and pride, compassion, and sacrifice,
we are doomed
to be less than
the best of humanity’s history.

Let nature and nurture battle on,
let knowledge
and wisdom wrestle
with feeling and emotion.

Nature’s questions asked without fear,
safe for all, with courage
to face battles between
sweet dreams of hope
and nightmares of reality.

Ally with truth, with
compassion, without weakness or fear,
with hope to continue
standing with universal rightness.


Look both ways and try, try, try to understand, it’s not magic, man.
Mind the gaps in the human condition as you embrace its diversity.

Note: I will be reading this poem (and others) at the Lark & Owl Booksellers in Georgetown, TX, 30 June 2022 @ 7:30 PM.

Friday Fictioneers for June 24th 2022

Sliding off the summer solstice, now fully back in her Mistress role as maven of Friday Fictioneers, Rochelle has selected a photo of a suspicious looking senior gentleman entering a resale store, cane in hand. My fib-ulous 100 words follow the photo by John Nixon.

Click the PHOTO PROMPT © John Nixon to trip on over to la belle Rochelle’s purple tent-blog to get the script on how to jump in and play.

Genre: Old Fart Fiction
Title: Secondhand Security
Word Count: 100

***

I didn’t think they would need security. It was a fun gig that beat boring-ass Wally world.

The text, 4 guns @ seconds, meant four armed robbers at the secondhand store.

It was close.

There’s no fool like an old fool, but younger is dumber.

I smiled as I walked in.

I cane-zapped one guy as I ‘tripped.’ The owner shot another.

Number three went down when he shot himself in the foot. The fourth man just gave up and started to cry hysterically.

As we were cleaning up the owner said, “Just like the good old days, right, Dad?”

***


Look both ways when taking on more responsibility.
Mind the gaps, walk slowly, and carry a stun gun walking stick.

Click on the stun gun for more takes on the photo prompt.

This is one of my favorite old-fart Texas guy scenes from the movie, Secondhand Lions.

Monday’s Rune: Perspective Poetry

Saturday (June 18th) , I wrote this poem at the Round Rock Writers Guild Word Yoga (poetry) exercise Zoom workshop. My friend, Kathrine, said she wanted to see it here. Who am I to disagree?

Her excellent blog is published at: https://lklatham.com/. Her exceptionally wonderful books of dark, speculative fiction designed to beguile the imagination and convince you the things that go bump in the night are real is sold wherever great lit can be had.

 


A Moment of Time

My mantra is right here, right now
in this place with my life
that is the sum total
of forty-million moments;
some so frightening
I thought I would die,
others so boring
I thought I would die,
but here I am,
right here, right now,
just me—Mister Bill—
and my 40-million moments,
greedily hoping for
ten or twenty million more,
when frightening or boring
are equally
(un)important to me.


Look both ways with awareness of time, but this moment is all we have.
Mind the gaps for good days and bad, as pleasantry is a matter of perspective.

Monday’s Rune: A Metamorphosis


When does it happen, if it happens at all?
The innocent child becomes a troubled teen,
Then a vicious young man with an M-sixteen,
Or a rivetted young woman focused on his fall.

Is this the formula of a coming dystopia?
Is the excitement of the fight so much greater
Than desire for tranquility and gods’ opium?
Is power over people the dark masturbator?

Some change. Many don’t. Over time
We all morph and grow to some degree
For better or worse, but will I ever be free?
Human life’s permanent paradox of paradigm.


Look both ways with conscious contemplation of then and now.
Mind the gaps for lessons of fortitude,
not the comfort of fear.
You can only die once, Bukowski notwithstanding.

Friday Fictioneers for May 20th 2022

To shed light on her creative corner, Mistress Rochelle, our lady of many talents, has cast upon us a home-grown photo of her own, to be transformed into no more than 100 gifted words with which we tell a fictioneer’s story for Friday, 20th of May, when we celebrate the 76th birthday of another lady of wonder and many gifts, Cher.

 

Click on Rochelle’s corner to be whisked over to her page for the why and wherefore of FFs. If you decide to cop her picture, she asks that you tell her how you used it. All FF pics are owned by the contributor, in this case, Rochelle herself.

Genre: Autobiographical Fiction
Title: Secret Friends
Word Count: 100

***

Home alone at last. No one to say no.

To the dark, dark, dramatic cellar. The one dim light bulb cast eerie shadows over dark corners. The crypt like odor. What mysteries? What hidden fears and excitement?

A wet dirt floor crunched as I searched. I found him hiding behind the old coal furnace. He swore to protect me if I never told.

Now in my office I write about him. I sketch and paint him. Is he still there? Does he remember? Will I see him again? Will anyone believe me?

I was his friend; he was my protector.

***


Look both ways for what was then and what lives now in many memories,
be they fact or fiction.
Mind the gaps to be filled for the pleasure of the picture.

Click on your favorite Cher decade to find the squares and more magnificent stories.

Monday’s Rune: Hurry & Wait


Call Alice or Jody Call

Hurry up! and then wait
might be a cliché to some.
Army’s GI Joes claim it
as their own,
but we’ve all been rushed
and rushed, hurried along,
forced into quick-step like
anthropomorphic white rabbits
through Alice’s wonderland story
(not Arlo’s restaurant one)
and Grace’s slick psyche-song.

Rushed to somewhere
only there to wait,
and wait some more,
and then wait longer.
(‘twas no rarity, either.)
On top of that,
just like the mad hat,
they’d (we) add five minutes,
early
plus five,
and then five more,
(if not ten) minutes early.
A military obsession
greater than want of
any weapon
or crazy-ass war.

Embrace the suck
if it makes it
better how ya feel,
about it all,
been there,
done that,
was not late,
but had to wait.
We’ll all be early
for our own
funerals, unless
it’s Oxford
(not Tulsa) time,
when late is just fine.


Look both ways if you’ve had “some kind of mushroom.”
Mind the gaps and “remember what the dormouse said, feed your head.”

 

NaPoWriMo April 2022 (Day 22)

Click this image to open today’s prompt page with links to more poems.

Today’s one-thirtieth of NaPo prompts challenged me to write a poem that uses repetition. I may repeat a sound, word, phrase, image, or any combination. I chose a name. (Note: published one day late because someone forgot to click on publish.)


When Nothing Else Can

Maybe Bukowski was right.
We are strange, we of the people.
Is someone’s world better
when we’re not in it?
Bukowski’s is gone.

Bukowski had a point
about hate’s self-sufficiency,
better to not care at all if love
needs so much help. Gratuitous
masturbation of the psyche
is all about Bukowski.

Bukowski was right when he said,
the world is full of boring, identical,
mindless people. They run from the
rain but revel in tubs of bubbles and water.
Where’s the glory here? said Bukowski.

Bukowski didn’t tell me to find what I love
and let it kill me, but I blame it on Bukowski anyway.
There is a loneliness in this world, wrote Bukowski.
Just drink more beer, more and more beer, now
that’s really Bukowski!

I think Bukowski was right when Hank said that
sissies have hard lives. And most important for me,
Bukowski said, nothing can save you except writing,
and equally important, a poem knows when to stop.
I think what Bukowski said is nuts, but also too true,
so it stops, but this is not the end of this Bukowski bit.


Look both ways when sampling the sweet and the sour.
Mind the gaps for clues of generations.

Friday Fictioneers for April 22, 2022

Mistress Rochelle, the colorful manager and FF maven of artistic madness, prompts us today, with the aid of a Carole Erdman-Grant photo of an abandoned building with a marvelous paint job.

PHOTO PROMPT © Carole Erdman-Grant Click on the picture to zip on over to Rochelle’s page for all the news and graphic rules.

Genre: Family Fiction
Title: Overheard Gen Art
Word Count: 99

“Mom! Look at that! It’s beautiful. Let’s get dad to buy it.

Julie, that is junk. It’s sad—the worst of gang graffiti. It’s ugly.

Mother, you have no taste. That rocks—it is the fucking bomb. That’s great urban art.

Sweetheart, that is not art. It’s gang turf tagging and watch your language. This was once a nice place to eat. Now look at it: a concrete canvas for bored morons.

It’s metaphorical, Mom. You’re so shallow. If dad doesn’t buy it, I’ll kill myself.

And if he does you won’t have to because I’ll kill you both.”


Look both ways for all that is seen and felt.
Mind gaps and don’t touch the wet paint.

Click on Mels (sic) drive-in from the American Graffiti movie to find more fictioneering.

NaPoWriMo April 2022 (Day 19)

Click the graphic for the prompt page and more poems by other participants.

Today’s challenge is to write a poem that starts with a command.

I wrote my poem as a more respectful, loving plea rather than a command, but the words suit the prompt’s intent well, as far as I’m concerned. My inspiration was the Peter, Paul, and Mary song, Day Is Done.


Our Day Undone

Tell me why you are sad, my son.
Let me hold your hand and listen
as you speak of woe. Call me
to your side as we talk, and we walk.
Stay near me. Tell me your regrets,
intone unknowns we both fear.

Is it wise for us to ask why, sadness
so deep we must cry? Tell me,
my son. I’ll be right here
until my last day is done. Burden my
purpose of commitment. I ask no easement,
but for your silence to clear.

Allow me to share this distress and bother
just as I’ve carried you before. I rejoiced
in your life, now let me suffer with you
the worst of your troubles. Let us be
like some small support
as we lean upon each other
and lift this load
until the healing is done
and sadness has passed.


Look both ways mindful of love’s burden.
Let compassion fill the gaps,
allow time and love to ease the pain until the day is done.

If you’re not familiar with the tune: