A Dark and Stormy Man

Mabel knew she’d found a winner when she met Shane -tall, dark, handsome. He came into her life on a dark and stormy night. Unfortunately, she’d mistaken his kid glove-approach as a gentleness that didn’t exist.

No, Mabel sighed as she looked out into the storm, there was no more Shane. Her tears matched those streaming down the windowpane.

“‘Scuse me, ma’am,” a deep voice said. Mabel glanced up through wet eyelashes to see a burly man in a plaid shirt. “I couldn’t help but notice you weren’t too happy.”

The man sat. “Could I buy you a coffee?”

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

©2020 Chel Owens

Written after reading Carrot Ranch‘s prompt this week: kid gloves

October 8, 2020, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that includes kid gloves. A prop in the hands of a character should further the story. Why the gloves? Who is that in the photo, and did he steal Kids’ gloves (of the Kid and Pal duo)? Consider different uses of the phrase, too. Go where the prompt leads!

Respond by October 6, 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.

As I Lay, Here

Gentle windpaths brush my skin,
or touch the trees;
As I lay, here.

Raindrops cry down shadowed walls,
or outside panes;
As I lay, here.

Greying stormclouds dance within,
or mar the sky;
As I lay, here.

Sunlight beams ‘gainst bedroom halls,
or ‘gainst the world;
As I lay, here.

Storms without and storms within,
all in my mind;
As I lay, here.

 

©2020 Chelsea Owens

 

3 Things Challenge: The Wife Stands Alone

Di of Pensitivity has a three word challenge! The words are: self, assaulted, hedgerow.

—–

High winds and slanting rain meant the perfect day for working. Grimwin looked up into the blurriness and felt his lips and cheeks tighten into a grin.

“No pesky sunshine today, self.”

Self smiled as well.

He grabbed at an expectant satchel lumped near the front hole; startled, it *eeeped* as he lifted it. Fortunately, the satchel also enjoyed dismal weather. If it’d had olfactory pockets, its beaten leather would have inhaled deeply at the worm-puddle scents that assaulted it from without the tunnel.

Instead, only Grimwin sucked a musty lungful and scampered to the surface. His still-grinning head popped up within the damp and wilting hedgerow.

“EEEEEEEK!” screeched the farmer’s wife.

Grimwin had enough time to wonder why in the Underworld that sturdy human was gardening today, of all days, when a solid, metallic *thunk!* sent gremlin and satchel back down to a silent dark.

 

©2019 Chelsea Owens

A Tribute to Frank Prem

Today I highlight the work of poet Frank Prem. I’ve enjoyed Frank’s poetry since my first days of blogging and have been inspired to write responses twice.

He possesses the unique gift of speaking in the voice of the objects he writes about; in movement and poignancy.

The following is my paltry attempt at mimicry, so you might all experience his style:

rain (in season)

I am a piece
of gray
a mist
a cloud

evaporate

I am a drip
a tear
from North Wind’s eye

don’t go
he cries

don’t
go

I am
the autumn rain

deluged

oh please
don’t go

©2019 Chelsea Owens

Suddenly Spring

Where once the tingling, Jack Frost taste
Bit bent and ser’ious mien,

A sky-rinsed stretch of waking Earth
Draws out unfurling green.

And called upon by nature’s pow’r,
Or, by a lace-tipped wing,

Th’ smiling, newborn flora shouts
Happ’ly: Suddenly spring!

 

The Choice of Three: Roll Your Initiative

Continued from Peregrine Arc’s writing prompt….

Although a heavy, musty dust chokes the corners and edges of every room in the derelict house; the silver pocket watch, gold candelabra, and string of pearls upon the dresser appear untouched. I read the note again:

You who so boldly enter this realm, lay down your tools and be away from this hell. 

But should you still keep Adam’s vain, stay awhile and forego your shame.

An object of three you see with your mortal eyes. Which one shall be your coveted prize?

My senses feel heightened as my anxiety levels rise. Who left this note? These objects? Most importantly, I wonder at who I chased. What I chased. Where did he go?

Was there a ‘someone’ at all?

Despite my worries, I can’t help but feel intrigued by the message and pristine items before me. I read the words for a third time and wonder what they mean. “Lay down (my) tools?” “This hell?” That sounds serious. What is “Adam’s vain?”

My imagination, though tickled, reverts back to teenage years spent tucked in Johnny Platt’s musty basement. The dim lamp we plugged into about three extension cords shone pewter figurine shadows across our wet-erase marker map.

“Roll your initiative,” Johnny’s friend, Dwight, said with glee. We all knew what that meant: we’d stirred up trouble, and we had to fight it.

After a terrible battle of 3,872 orcs; Paladin, Ranger, Fighter, and Thief emerged victorious. Our Mage, on the other hand, succumbed to a curse inflicted in the last encounter; Mike was busily rolling up another character as Dwight listed our prizes.

“There’re 4 healing potions, 500 gold, a jeweled dagger, and a ring.” The Dungeon Master’s eyes glittered as much as the dagger surely did.

“Are they magic?” Kevin, the thief, always wanted to know.

Dwight shrugged. “Run a check.”

Johnny gave him a look. “We can’t. Mike’s dead.”

“I know!” Kevin said. “I’ll try them out.” Addressing Dwight, he declared, “My character examines the dagger.”

As per usual, Dwight rolled a die behind his book. His face was impassive. “It looks expensive.”

“All right; I’ll keep it.” As I and the others in our group began protesting, Kevin waved a hand. “I’m gonna split the costs once I sell it!” We settled down, ever wary of the dodgy thief. “Now,” he continued, “I’m going to put on the ring.”

Another masked roll from the DM clattered on the table. He cleared his throat and we could hear the excited tone Dwight always had trouble hiding when something unexpected happened in the campaign. Something that was usually the result of a stupid decision. We were doomed. “You begin to feel rather strange… like the world has never made sense and now you see clearly. You eye each of your party members jealously; but, never fear -you’ll get what’s yours once they’re asleep….”

“Crap, man!” I said.

“What?” Kevin asked in a panic.

“Change your alignment on your sheet,” Dwight grinned. He stroked his Machiavellian chin. “You’re now Chaotic Evil…”

A small noise from a corner brings my attention back to the present. I turn but only see shadows. Perhaps a section of flooring gave way there, as well. Who knows how many panels I broke in my mad rush to this strange, spooky nursery?

As my eyes pass over the note and the items it references, my fingers twitch a bit.

Kevin ended up murdering everyone but the Paladin in our group. Johnny only survived by the divine influence of his deity, thus finishing off the little thief and his ring in the ensuing Blessing.

My fingers quiet. No, not worth it. If there’s one thing D&D taught me, it was to never take chances with a strange object.

I cast my gaze around the room as I back out of it, even stealing glances over my shoulders. I’ve seen enough scary movies to know that one ought to never not look a certain direction. That’s how you end up getting stuffed in a bathtub by a dark, long-haired ex-lover of your husband.

My return to the porch is less hasty than my leaving of it, particularly since I’d left random, haphazard holes in the hallways and had to dodge them. I look at one in passing but only see swirling, pitch-dark dust. I wonder how far I might have fallen if I’d broken through.

Not soon enough, I regain the porch and my lunch. The rain is still falling, though not in torrents. I won’t be able to finish mowing with wet grass. “Reschedule, it is,” I tell the vacant property. Stooping, I pack up my lunch and self and rise and head down the creaking porch steps. I pass the ancient lawn mower, still parked near the hawthorn bush. I push it into the bush; perhaps that will stave off some rust.

As I near my car the rain slackens and a waterlogged sun peeks out. I can’t help but look back. I see the old, old house; yellow, peeling paint muted in the recent showers. Just before I get into the driver’s seat, I catch a movement from an upstairs window.

I look back, heart racing a mile a minute, but there’s nothing. It’s only a gold candelabra, glinting in the new light.

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Photo Credit:
Rikki Austin

Behind the Blogger Tag Thingamajig

Thank you, P’Arc for the nomination! I know it’s not Thursday, but we’ll just ignore that and move on.

Here are the questions with my answers:

1. Why did you start blogging & why have you kept blogging?
I kind-of, sort-of wrote on Facebook. Like, wrote wrote. My goal was to post quality content with immediate results from my adoring fans in real life.
It turned out to be really hard on my self-esteem, watching ‘friends’ re-post crap and ignore my pearls. A truly wonderful (intelligent, beautiful, amazing, kick-a**) friend of mine suggested I move my act over to blogdom.

2. What is your favorite type of blog post to write?
Hands-down: humor. Even with a serious or non-fiction post, a bit of personality gets me giggling at myself.

3. What are your top 3 favorite blog posts?
From myself: I enjoyed my how-to on writing poetry, “Let’s Stay In Bed Today,” and “The Case of the Kitchen Cacophony.”
From other bloggers; I most enjoy reading short stories, humor, poetry -anything well-written, really.

4. What are some of your favorite things to do to relax?
I love curling up with a good bag of potato chips and French onion dip, with only my current book or video game to judge me.

5. What are 3 of your favorite things?
Running in the rain, cuddling during a movie, and satisfying creation.

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6. What are your proudest blogging moments?
Hmmm… that time I broke out to composing every day instead of pasting what I’d already done; and every. single. time someone leaves me a thoughtful comment.

7. What are your hobbies outside of blogging?
Ha ha ha ha ha…. Oh. Maybe you were serious.

8. Describe your personality in 3 words:
Repressed, tired creationist.

9. What are your top 3 pet peeves?
Intentionally unkind people, Intentionally ignorant people, and children singing pop songs.

10. What’s something your followers don’t know about you?
Welllll… if I answered that, it wouldn’t satisfy the question any more.

I’m not sure who I’ve mentioned before and honestly feel too exhausted to double-check. So, here are some blogs you all ought to check out:

Ruth at Ruth Scribbles.

J of Thru Violet’s Lentz.

Stephen, down by the Fractured Faith Blog.

Masercot, who shouldn’t be given a computer at Potatoes and The Promise of More Potatoes.

Geoff LePard, aspiring member of MP’s Flying Circus who writes from TanGental.

Just ’cause I didn’t list you, it doesn’t mean I don’t love you. I’m firing on about half a cylinder and can therefore only recall the last two blog posts I read. Anyone can play; I’m not picky.

——

THE RULES:

• Thank the person who nominated you

• Answer all the questions down below

• Pingback to the creator: Ellyn@Allonsythornraxx

• Nominate 5+ bloggers you’d like to know more about, to do this tag.

THE CREATOR IS:

Ellyn@Allonsythornraxx

 

Photo Credit:
Geetanjal Khanna

WINNER of the Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest

Has the bleak midwinter weather got you down? Try our collection of elemental limericks!

This week’s winner was tough to forecast, but I settled on the first of two poems submitted by Molly Stevens:

Untitled piece

by Molly Stevens

Why does I freeze in Maine year round?
Shouldn’t I be Florida bound?
Palm trees, iced tea, flickering fleas,
And green pies made with limes of key!
Unless, of course, my ship runs aground.

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

Admittedly, Molly’s ‘B’ lines of her limerick were longer than is traditional, but I could only see how much that added to the terrible nature of her construction. I also liked her near-rhymes, her references that somewhat-related to a theme, and that she kept to a limerick format (in general).

I had so much fun reading through the other entries, even if the writers did not read all the directions. Or, to their credit, maybe they felt too shy to write a limerick. For the others, great work! So funny!

Speaking of the others, here they are in submission order:

Untitled piece

by Molly Stephens

Snow, sleet and freezing rain,
Pounding on my window pane,
Do I care
Enough to swear?
Dreaming of a life in Brisbane.

—–

Rain

by Karen

the thunderous rain comes falling down
it hits the ground without a sound
it splashes in puddles
without any trouble
and gathers in holes in the ground

—–

Snow

by Karen

snow is white when it leaves the sky
and yellow on the ground, but please don’t try
they say not to eat
it isn’t a treat
but you’ll heave if I tell you why

—–

Untitled piece

by Geoff LePard

It’s wet
Yet
I get
Het
Up if turns out nice and I have to water the garden.

It pours
Befores
I bores
The in-laws
With my moaning about having to get the hosepipe out.

The rain
‘S a pain
Yet I refrain
Again
From saying the bloody sunshine isn’t what I need right now.

This drought
Ought
Not to have caught
Me out.
English weather is almost as annoying as spelling.

—–

Whether weather wether

by Bruce Goodman

A ewe asked a ram, known as “Heather”,
Whether a wether was a misspelling of weather?
I’ll show you one day
Why missing more than an A
Prevents us from getting together.

—–

Untitled piece

by Bladud Fleas

gravity dictates
precipitates
fall
that’s all
mates

is it snowing?
I ask knowing
the white stuff
ain’t fluff
the wind’s blowing

—–

Untitled piece

by Cricket Muse

There once was a terrible storm,
That changed from cold to warm.
The snow and sun mixed
and couldn’t be fixed,
Which is why parkas and shorts were worn.

—–

Untitled piece

by RH Scribbles

in Texas you never know if
it will rain now or in a jiffy
it won’t even snow
so off to school I go, bro
the teachers will all be so beachy

Keep up the ‘good’ work, everyone! See you for next week’s contest!

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The Weekly Terrible Poetry Contest

Hello and welcome to our ninth week of terribly poeting.

Looking for directions? See “How To Write Terrible Poetry.”

Beside learning the awfulness that is terrible poetry construction, I feel a lesson is in order regarding limericks. A limerick follows a rhyming pattern (AABBA). It follows a specific meter; the Lords of Wikipedia say that is an anapaest meter.

Here’s an example limerick I wrote awhile back:

There once was a mother of four
Who never could sweep up her floor.
The clothes and the toys
Were stuck beneath boys.
Daddy wonders who taught them to swore.

Knowing all this, here are the rules:

  1. Topic: The Weather.
  2. For length, you gotta do a limerick. Or two. Don’t make us sit through more than that, please.
  3. The poem needs to rhyme in AABBA format, but you don’t have to use exact rhymes. Use near rhymes just to drive us up the wall if you’d like.
  4. Make it bad. Make Edward Lear appear to you in the middle of the day to criticize your format and word usage.
  5. Keep it PG-rated.

You have till 8:00 a.m. MST next Friday (January 18, 2019) to submit a poem.

Post your poem or a link to it in the comments, or fill out this somewhat nifty form.

I really do read them all, but have an occasional underage helper climbing on my lap while I’m typing. I’m going to double- and triple-check everything next week before publishing.

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