Babble On #Poetry Challenge No.125 #haibun#haiku

At the Faery Whisperer it’s time for Colleen Chesebro’s Weekly #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge No. 125, using synonyms for “origin & write”. Like it or not here is a haibun.

poetry-badge-blue-2.pngIn the beginning was the Word. So they say. They say the Word was spoken by the Creator, that speaking was Creation, and the idea was, it was to be all Good. They say that Creator was the first voices in the head, but it was scary because Creator was the Author and the Voice, and the characters got confused.

There was give and take. Deals were made; deals were broken. People needed a lexis to stand on. Books were made. Pages were taken from books. Words rained and reigned and reined.

The people  marveled at the words in their ears and in their hands and in their power. But because they were not prepared to listen they could not hear. Unable to hear, they babbled. On and on. Still, they grabbed at sticks and scratched in the dirt and tried to draw themselves back towards Creation.


Words the tools we wield

Sharp, blunt, cold; soft, warm, healing;

We create our world




six sentence story copy.jpgSitting at his laptop to do his pre-season reconnaissance as he called it, he reviewed the recordings from the an-cam to see if it warranted a return to that overgrown cellar hole to erect his tree stand before bow season began next week.

This clearing was especially attractive to deer because of a gnarled apple tree, the only surviving witness to the time when a family would have occupied a house that would have stood where now there was a barely perceptible depression that held fifty-foot maples.

Though tumbled stonewalls provided ample evidence that all these wooded acres had once been fields and farmsteads, the wildness of the treed land made it hard to imagine, but thinking back to that overgrown cellar hole surrounded by thick brush and swamp on one side and steep ledge on the other, it was somehow easy to imagine that that particular farm would have been isolated and poor even back in its heyday.

Looking through the images from the an-cam he knew the trek in to that spot had been worth it; the motion sensor had been activated by a doe and her fawn and then another, and finally an enormous ten-pointer.

He sat up, intent on the screen, curious as to why the deer suddenly froze, then leapt away into the woods and out of camera range; he shivered involuntarily, knowing for certain only that he would not be hunting in that area.

Forever afterwards he would try to reconcile the presence of a little girl in an old-fashioned dress and thick leather shoes in the middle of the woods in the middle of the night, a little girl who smiled right at the an-cam before vanishing far more abruptly than the deer had.


Denise has put the prompt out. It’s “clear“. Go to GirlieOnThe Edge to link your story and read and comment on others. The link opens on Thursday. Rules? Six Sentences. Play nice.

How D’Ya Do? (An interview series)

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Come by ShiftnShake this Friday (12:01 A.M. EST) to read the first ever interview in the new How D’Ya Do blogger interview series!


If you are a blogger who regularly hosts prompts and challenges for the rest of us prompt challenged writers, feel free to contact me to schedule your interview. Otherwise I will start knocking on your doors, in no particular order. I am encouraged that Freya Pickard did not shut the door on me and has agreed to take part in my inaugural interview.

Come by to see Freya this Friday.

Stepping Up

The prompt word for Six Sentence Stories is “perch”. Go to GirlieOnthe Edge to link your own six sentence story or to read more offerings. I am using the prompt to further Ilene Higginbottom’s career. See the entire Ernest &  Marge & Ilene series as is and so far here

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Ilene had begun the interview with confidence and high hopes but as it progressed she knew it was not going well and before he could continue with his canned questions and condescending commentary she shared with the middle school principal her intuition that he was not going to hire her for the secretarial job.

“Administrative Assistant, Ms. Higginbottom, and before you presume that I have made up my mind, please, do tell me what gives you the leg up on the other candidates that happen to all have more experience and education.”

The middle school principal’s unfortunate word choice precipitated an awkward silence in which his face turned successive shades of darkening pink as Ilene carefully uncrossed her right leg and put her artificial leg forward.

“As a middle school principal I am sure that you can appreciate the value of different experiences and varied educational backgrounds, Mr. Penny; you should consider me for the position because I’m a hard worker who will always step up.”

Without waiting for Principal Penny to respond Ilene hurried away down the corridor, but paused to look into the office that she had wanted to work in, the office with its two walls of windows that looked out on the entryway and the lobby, and its two walls of file cabinets, upon which a mop-haired boy perched haughtily, his Vans dangling at eye level with Ilene. Ilene raised her eyes and fixed the boy’s gaze, holding it until he hopped down off the cabinet and sat in a chair, all without a word, all witnessed by a slack jawed principal who heard himself tell Ilene Higginbottom that she was hired, and could she possibly start tomorrow.

Admitting Denial

DzdgFAeXcAAiTMq.pngIt’s funny because it’s true. If you agree it’s because you know.

If we were to talk about the elephant on the page, what color would it be? The funny truth so succinctly portrayed is that writing is a consuming obsession.

The man in the picture may have at least two obsessions, two powerful habits that impact his life and perhaps those around him, but why is it that only one of them is generally acknowledged as a bad habit? Only one of his habits has a tried and true twelve-step program that has been adapted and adopted by other quitters of other bad habits and depravities. Yes, he can find support and counseling for his addiction to alcohol and even his compulsive gambling. But his compulsive writing? All bets are off.

His inclination, (he might say destiny) is to seek other writers, (some might say enablers). Unlike the group he met with over his other addiction, this group is not at all alarmed for him when he admits to voices in his head. “Write on!” they say. They are not concerned when he admits to not attending fully to his day job, the pay job, because of his preoccupation with writing. They nod and smile knowingly when he talks about a recent all-nighter when he wrote pages and pages of gibberish. “There’s some gold in there,” they encourage. “Glean it, spend another night or any stolen time and revise it. Write on!” They all joke about their wild antics, writing on napkins in restaurants, about looking as if they are taking notes in meetings when really they are drafting a novella that just came to them. They all know first hand that writing is a distraction to the lives they are expected to live. They know that it is highly unlikely that writing will ever improve their finances. Yet they applaud our pictured writer when he admits he’s thinking of leaving his day job (the pay job) so that he can attend more fully to his writing addiction. “Yes! Go for it! Write on!”

I ask you, dear Writers, why are writers not taken in hand by their loved ones and committed as other addicts might be, for their own good? I imagine you’ll tell me something about discovery versus recovery, but please do tell me.



working-template-for-ff-challenges106.pngThe February 14, 2019, Carrot Ranch prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about valentines. It can be Valentine’s Day, the exchange, love for another, romance, or friendship. Have a heart and go where the prompt leads!                              The prompt led to the expanding group of friends who often end up at Ernest and Marge‘s place. The long version, 613 words, is on the Ernest and Marge page, way down near the end.




“S’up Nard?”
“Marge. Ernest. Was at the auto parts store; thought I’d stop by.”
“You’re shop foreman now, why’re you the one always running to the parts store?”
“Good to get fresh air.”
“Ha! Who is she?”
“Nard’s blushing,” Ernest noted. “There is someone!”
“There is. Can Kris and I join you and Ilene and Lloyd tonight when you go out for dinner?”
“This Kris must be special; you’ve never introduced your lady friends.”
“Yeah. One thing to know though…. Kris is the new parts man. Kristof.”
Ernest recovered first. “Does he make you happy?”
“Nathan’s Grille, 6:30.”
“Nard. Kris? Hello. Take a seat.”
“Leonard,” Ernest corrected Marge.
Kris laughed. “I call him Lenny. I guess this is a surprise?”
“I’ll say. At the dealership Nard always joked around insinuating that Lloyd was gay when all this time it was Nard trying to get his motor running with the wrong parts.”
Kris snorted, choking on his beer. “That’s what I told him!”
Clearly hidden, behind walls of glass—”
“Lloyd, let me finish this poem! I know a rhyme.”
“Don’t, Marge. This is a family friendly place.”
“And this is our family. Welcome Kris. Congratulations, Leonard. Cheers.”



Agitation,    by D. Avery

“Okay, I really need some cream. I can’t believe I didn’t get enough the last time shopping and now I’m right in the middle of five different baking projects. Take the car but take it easy.”

They lived rural, but not so rural that there was a cow around. They lived on a back road, but not so far back that a trip to town and the store was really anything more than an inconvenience, an expenditure of time and gas, but a trip that delighted the newly licensed teen, who was always looking for wheel time.

“Listen, I don’t need this cream so badly that you need to speed, so just take your time. Drive carefully!” she yelled after him as he gleefully raced out the door waving the keys overhead.

“Of course, Mom!”

He went straight to the store and because he managed to arrive in record time, he had extra time to further hone his driving skills on the return trip. No small feat of navigation, the return trip involved a network of back roads that eventually linked back to their back road. Some of these back roads were further back than others; some were quite twisty, some quite bumpy, and all were washboarded, so that going straight, even on the straightaways, was a challenge at the speeds he attained. At the four corners where the last long back road linked at long last with their back road he found there was space enough to blow some donuts. And having at last come full circle, his route finished, chore complete, he coasted though the last corner then turned quite neatly and slowly into their driveway. He parked the car expertly and precisely in its spot, walked into the house, and hung the keys on the peg.

“Where’s the cream?”

“Oh yeah.”

He returned to the car and picked the carton of cream up from the passenger’s side floor where it had somehow tumbled. He meticulously wiped the carton clean with his shirttail before parading it ceremoniously in to his mother, who opened it immediately. When she tipped the carton of cream into her mixing bowl nothing poured out. Opening the carton up wider she discovered butter.

He could not explain how the carton contained butter. Picking up the opened carton, he examined its thickened contents as well as its boldly printed label, which clearly said cream.

“Huh. Do you want me to go back to the store?”


This 410 word story has been revised and reworked from an earlier six sentence story. I am republishing it because it is new and improved and because I am linking it to Stevie Turner’s “Share Your Story” contest. Yikes.



This is the third, the first being Crunch, and the second being six sentence story copy.jpgPlugged, all written as Six Sentence Stories, the weekly prompt hosted by Denise at GirlieOntheEdge. Head on over to share  your six sentence story that uses the word ‘milestone’. 



Mom never said too much when we were both boxing, especially when we fought against one another, but now she’s practically my publicist, promoting my matches so she can promote my brother, updating the press and the fans as to his condition, telling them, “He’s off the respirator, breathing on his own, a milestone, but still in the fight of his life.”

The papers loved her and her unwavering faith that my brother would emerge from his coma, her belief that he would recover, but they also loved the story of how he got there, beaten unconscious by his little brother in a boxing match.

Mom downplays that as much as she can, says things like, “He used to fight with his brother, now he fights for his brother,” and I go along with Mom’s brotherly love story, get in the ring as often as I can to try and help out with the medical bills.

My matches sell out, packed with people hoping to see me lose my temper again, hoping to see me beat another man almost to death, but the fans have been disappointed. I, who was leading in my division, am fighting like a third rate amateur, not hitting hard enough, letting my guard down; I haven’t won a match since putting my brother in the hospital.

Mom listened to the fight in my brother’s hospital room, but she doesn’t say anything about my latest loss; she’s too full of news about him, claims he smiled, another milestone.

Loosed (quadrille #73)


It’s the Monday before Valentine’s Day, so Quadrille #73, the d’Verse offering brought to us by De Jackson (aka WhimsyGizmo), is entitled  A Prelude to a Kiss. The poem must be exactly 44 words and must include the word kiss. Eww, romance. Here goes.



Oh, how the drunk slip

unmoored, three sheets,

loosed lips finally admit

love for you with sloppy kiss.


Lying silent at retreat of night

awash in dawn’s rising tide of light

sober scared, lips clenched tight.

You turn to me, and kiss me right.



Have a Great Fall

“Mom, I’m going to Tommy’s.”working-template-for-ff-challenges101.png

“Destiny looks uncomfortable driving that Tonka bulldozer. And what’s that sign she’s holding? What are you two up to now?”

“We’re gonna protest. Tommy and his GI Joe built a humpty-trumpty wall out of snow.”

“Marlie, I’m sure GI Joe is just following Executive orders.”

“That’s what Tommy said. But I don’t like walls like that.”

“It’s cold out. Wear this hat.”

“Tommy’s dad does not like this hat. At all.”

“I know. Here. I made a little one just like it for Destiny. And here’s one for GI Joe too.”

“Awesome! Thanks mom!”



Another take on Charli’s Carrot Ranch February 7, 2019 Flash Fiction Challenge to in 99 words (no more, no less) write a story that includes a sign. It can be a posted sign, a universal sign, a wonder. Go where the prompt leads. Check it out.