What is the difference between dying and dying?

We, all of us, are dying
but only some are dying

What is the step between
this life
and the next

Is it like a step or a

misstep

into darkness

Or, is it many steps of a    journey       toward          LIGHT

Or is it
blissful
nothing

while those left behind hold your empty hand and shout your name
–in an echoed space–
and young children stand alone on the landing from whence you stepped, confusion fear loss fear hope fear sadness fear pain fear fear fear

in each

tiny

tear

We, all of us, are dying
but only some are dying

What is the step between
this life
and the next

and why do we not install a railing?

©2021 Chel Owens

Time Lost, and Found

His gnarled, brusque, tannin hands caressed the watch band. He’d found it and its watch face along Lake Superior; brushed it from forgotten memories and dormant agate stones. Now, warmed in his fingers, the band changed. He saw it new, cut, fresh, oiled; attached to his grandfather’s timepiece for his son’s eighth birthday.

A long time later for one as rough as he, the old leatherworker released a breath. Rising, he set the wind-worn watch on his curio shelf near a faded photograph and a curling crayon picture. Tears in eyes, he shuffled out to put the kettle on.

©2020 Chel Owens

In response to Carrot Ranch‘s prompt:

November 5, 2020, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about lost time. You can write a realistic scenario or something speculative. How does lost time impact the character of your story? Bonus points if you include a 1982 brown rubber watch Go where the prompt leads!

Respond by November 10, 2020. Use the comment section [on the site] to share, read, and be social. You may leave a link, pingback, or story in the comments. If you want to be published in the weekly collection, please use the form.  Rules & Guidelines.

One More Day

Smoky, slatted sunlight lay in lines across the staring face. Soon, only a muted glowing shone there as the associated hand pulled the blinds closed again. *Snap*

He’d said he’d be different; for one more day. That had been a gigantic step, vocalizing. Into the dark of night and mind he’d stood and whispered, “Tomorrow, I go out.”

A laugh escaped the lips. Whose, he did not know; but then, he did. A distant memory of non-lined sunlight views and happier company than his own filtered to recollection.

Then; he was sure he’d laughed. Then; she had, too.

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What came to me for Carrot Ranch‘s prompt this week: for one day.

July 25, 2019, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story that includes the phrase “for one day.” The words single out a special occurrence. What is the emotion and vibe, where does it take place and why? Go where the prompt leads!

Respond by July 30, 2019. Use the comment section below to share, read, and be social. You may leave a link, pingback, or story in the comments. If you want to be published in the weekly collection, please use the form.  Rules & Guidelines.

 

Photo Credit:
Ethan Sykes

 

©2019 Chelsea Owens

WINNER of the Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest

At looooong last, I’ve had time that I should have spent feeding my children and cleaning my house to spend on choosing a winner.

And that winner is: Deb Whittam.

Untitled piece

by Deb Whittam

i got you out when it
was darker than the darkest
night, when the silence
wasn’t golden, it was burnt
like toast forgotten in the
toaster, when all stared at me
not perplexed, kind of,
mean, if you know what I mean,
mean like Mexican bean beans.

it was you that brought
sunlight to my life, that made me
feel accepted and perhaps
even like liked
it was you who made others
smile, not that kind of smile
when they are placating you,
but that kind of smile when they
think what you said was actually
a little bit funny

where are you now, where could
you be hiding … in a suitcase perhaps
perhaps, then it was the best
of times, but now it is the worst
of times, for you, I miss you oh
sense of humor who stood by me when
I couldn’t think of what to say but,
now you are gone, gone as in absent, perhaps
forever, forever, ever

Congratulations, Deb! You are the most terrible poet of the week!

As is the norm every contest, the choosing felt brutal. I narrowed things down to about three poems; based on sounding like an elegy, losing something, and (of course) being terrible. Deb’s concoction had several bad poetry elements like repeated words that had no reason to repeat, and that it felt very much like a serious poem -but really was not.

As is also the norm every contest, the other entrants were hardly losers (winners?). Read below and see if you can keep a straight face:

An Allergy

by Bruce Goodman

Oh woe is me
For I have lost my Virginity
Somewhere between the pharmacy
And under the Linden Tree.

If you should see it running about
Give me a shout
Even if you are in doubt.
I have no idea how it got out.

It was here one minute and then gone
Quick as a flash, it didn’t take long.
Where could have I gone wrong?
I feel such a ning-nong.

I desperately want my Virginity back
To lose it is a great lack.
My mother says it’s my own fault, that’s a fact,
And anyway, she says, Virginity is a stupid name for a cat.

—–

Brain Matter

by Ruth Scribbles

Alas my brain
Was drained
through a strainer
Of multi media
Input and output.
What a pain!
It’s gone
With the wind
Wound up like a
String of yarn
Wrapped around
My phone
My brain was painfully
Drained!
Matter is spaced
It’s gone… my brains
Are gone
Pieces are sliding
I can’t catch them
Glue won’t help
My file cabinet has been
De-filed
I can’t even cry
Because my brain
Doesn’t know that–
It is gone gone gone

—–

I Miss My Phone

by Larry Trasciatti

My very heart and soul do break,
So forlorn and woebegone
When I , alone with my pajamas on
Have been begrudged my telephone.

I go to Google’s Hangouts and
Punch my number into the keys.
And hope and pray that maybe please
Its dulcet ring will soon arise.
O I suspect where it may be
Perchance in my pajama bottom
At least that’s where it was last autumn.
And just where are they when I need’em?

If it into my pants pockets was tossed
And only for a moment lost
I hope that soon our paths will have again crossed
And it will not in a machine get washed.

—–

Gone for Good, Gone for Bad

by Trent McDonald

Even keeled
In a fair wind
Keeping my balance
In all things emotional
I have lost thee!
How, oh how, could it be?

You are the one thing
That keeps me safe!
Without you
I would be beaten up
All of the time
You make me watch my mouth
my language
All of the time
I don’t insult bigger guys
Because of you
But now you are gone
To wherever such things go
No more
Gone

I see only red
I can’t find you
When the world is red!
Darn it,
I hate red!
And it is pissing me off
To no end!
The red is growing
I am trembling
I need to punch something
Because you are gone!!!!
GET BACK HERE!!!!!!!
Arrggggggghhhh!!

Ah, my temper
where can you be?
I have lost my temper once again
And the world
Will never be the same

—–

FLOWERS ON THE COFFIN

by Chirayu

May I live or die
But my love
will never die”

These words are
written on an
old maple leaf
which is still
on the coffin of the boy
who once said this
lines to his love.

Actual, this maple leaf is a valentine gift once given
by the boy to his girl
which last even after his death.

—–

Elegy For My Smartphone

by Joanne Fisher

Bitter the world becomes

when you lose your smartphone

Time and again at the days beginning

when I used to switch my phone on

to see the latest notifications

I must now mourn it’s absence

there is no one I can now

communicate to without Twitter

or Messenger

Without it how do I dare

open the doors of my heart?

When before I used to happily post away

not ever needing to guard my thoughts

but with it’s loss my world dwindles

day by day, and passes away

Where has my Facebook gone? Where is Twitter?

Where has Tumblr gone? Where the texts? Where my

player of music?

Where the Uber Eats? And where the pleasures of

my solitaire app?

Sad at heart I bind my feelings in fetters

I dream I still have my phone

then I wake and it’s absence

is more heavy on my heart

aching for it’s touch screen

and it’s comfortable place in my hand

Nothing is easy in this world when

even our phones are in the hands of fate

here tweets are fleeting, here texts are

fleeting, here Snapchat is fleeting,

without my smartphone the whole world

becomes a wilderness.

—–

By Any Other Name

by Jon

Euphemisms abound around this truth that’s hard to face;
My admission – I avoid it – staring blankly into space.
My loss has now beset me. My lament has brought me low.
Ever more do others notice. Clearly they’re no longer stowed.
Ere I pursued that line of thought, I prob’ly should have paused,
Alas too late, as now is clear, my marbles I have lost!

—–

Thar’ She Blows

by Peregrine Arc

I’ve had it up to here
My patience has disappeared.
No longer am I diplomatic;
no longer are we being quite so pragmatic.

You’ll get it done, you’ll jot it here
Two weeks later and it’s–oh dear!
It isn’t done, it isn’t well?
Well who could’ve bloody telled?

It’s no matter, I forgive
Just sign this paper here, no motive.
For my patience has gave, it is no more
For your incompetence has made me forlorn.

I’ll measure your shoulders, I’ll dig the hole
And into your coffin with prayers you’ll go.
For I’m tired of hearing you’ll do something soon
When you’d just as well promise me the moon.

—–

Elegy to My Last Pair of Glasses

by Leanna Jones

Farewell my glasses, farewell to thee,
I hope you know what you meant to me.
When you entered my life, I was delighted
But now your departure has left me short sighted.
I can’t watch EastEnders or read the news.
I can’t put on lipstick or lace up my shoes.
I now live in darkness, and perpetual blur,
With only the memories of how good things were.
Oh why did you go! Why did you flee!
I’m lost without you, quite literally.
An empty space on the side of my bed
And nothing to touch on the top of my …
Oh silly me, they’re always found there
I’ll check first next time, before I buy a new pair.

—–

Leon Hodges

by Violet Lentz

Ain’t never knowed no one like ol’ Leon Hodges. All piss, vinegar, and moonshine. Had a mouth a man shouldn’t a et with, couldn’t read a book, d’nt know a letter from a line.

He told some great tall tales tho’, ‘bout women, an wine, an song. Don’t know the truth of nar a one, ‘ccept ’bout how his first marriage up an’ done gone wrong.

Don’t know if he had any chi’drn, if he did, he never spoke a none to me, and I’d a have ta say he woulda, as I was prolly close to him, as another man could be.

When the news come of his passin’, it come down hard up on my heart- I ain’t gone lie. I’ll tell ya the truth, that mans leavin’ done tore this man apart.

All the times I shook my head and said, ‘You damn ol’ bastard liar!’, I’d give anything for one more night, with ol’ Leon, spinnin’ yarns in front o’ a good hot fire.

He was a good man, bl’eive that, cause I wouldn’t tell you no lie, was the best damn friend I ever had. Gol dang it Leon! Why’d ya up ‘n die?

—–

To Misplace is to Lose

by Michael B. Fishman

Hark thee temper, I loseth
thee
free…
quentlee.

Careless me.

Lo temper, a canker-blossom
you’re really pretty awesome
and more so even if you could come
across some
patience.

Look at that car! Says my beastly patience crassly. Oops, lost.

These lousy lines aren’t moving. Obnoxious and clumsy patience, plump and scary. Oops, lost.

He was out at home? What? That flabby umpire is blindingly blind! Oops, lost.

My lusty patience. Silly and sometimes witty. Mysteriously mysterious. And imperious. Why so serious? You joker.

Oh proud patience: my paltry pretender of a painfully prickly persistence. Would you obey me if I didn’t mislay thee?

—–

Thank you to so many entries this week! You certainly made the contest difficult to judge! Please tune in tomorrow for next week’s prompt.

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Deb: D. Wallace Peach created this graphic that you can use (if you want) for a badge of honor as the winner:

The Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest

Welcome to 25th Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest!

I’ve been reading about different types of poetry and am interested in pursuing an elegy. According to dictionary.com, an elegy is a content description and not a type of poem. It is written to lament a person’s death. “The purpose of this kind of poem is to express feelings rather than tell a story.” Apparently, it is a serious thing.

Very serious.

  1. Our Topic, therefore, is a regular item that we constantly misplace. Write an elegy to it.
  2. The Length depends on exactly how attached you were to those car keys, sunglasses, or third child; but please do not go longer than 200 words.
  3. Rhyming is optional. Use your powers wisely.
  4. The most important rule is Make it Terrible. After you deliver your elegy in as heartfelt a string of adjectives as our world has ever known, I want all funeral directors (the world has ever known) to kindly interrupt you by way of dropping a casket on your head.
  5. Keep the rating at PG or nicer.

You have till 8:00 a.m. MST next Friday (May 18) to submit a poem.

Use the form below if you don’t want the world to read your artistry… till next week. Leave me a comment saying that you did as well, just to be certain. I will then be able to tell you whether I received it.

Or, for a more social experience, include your poem or a link to it in the comments.

Have fun!

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Photo credit:
Mayron Oliveira