CRLC Challenge; Author’s Chair (another one)

These ones are grateful for their shelters, are proud of what they have built, though their houses are not as warm as our nush wetus. Even Bradford’s home is not as comfortable as Swany’s was in Cornhill. But like Swany, he has a chair and a small table where he marks on big leaves they call paper. Bradford reaches for his bible as Standish reaches for his musket.

I want this magic, these marks the English make and interpret. When I am sachem, Bradford will be obliged to share the secret of marking leaves. I will know this power.

Here’s another one for the Carrot Ranch September 23, 2021, prompt to, in 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about an author’s chair. It can belong to any author. Where is it located and why? Does it have special meaning? Go where the prompt leads!

Yes, this is another 99 from the viewpoint of Tisquantum, also known as Squanto. While the literature indicates Tisquantum did aspire to depose Massasoit and become sachem, I am only speculating for the sake of flash fiction that he may have aspired to learn to read and write. But he quickly became fluent in spoken English and was shrewd enough that he might have seen some advantage in written language to himself. For more on this historical figure, check out the pilot of the Saddle Up Saloon’s ‘Author’s Chair’.

Saddle Up Saloon; D. Avery in the Author’s Chair

There’s a new feature at the Saddle Up Saloon. Every second Monday, beginning next month, the Author’s Chair will be pulled out for any writer to read something and then answer questions and comments. This is a trial run as I try to see what could go wrong. (I am still unsure how the audio finally managed to get there!) Let me know what you think and if you would like to take a seat in the Author’s Chair.

Carrot Ranch Literary Community

“Pal, I thought the Author’s Chair feature weren’t till October.”

“Yep, hopin’ ta git someone ta read on October 11th. This here’s like a pilot.”

“Well, I’m sure it’ll take off. Okay, so we won’t have much of a role ‘cept ta innerduce, somethin’ like:

Howdy, D. Avery. Welcome ta the Author’s Chair.”

“Hello Kid. Pal. Thank you for trying this out with me.”

“What did ya bring ta read t’day?”

“I want to share something you haven’t seen but that was prompted through the weekly challenges. You might recognize Tisquantum, more commonly known as Squanto, from responses to earlier Carrot Ranch prompts. This following one I wrote for the recent “Big Black Horse” prompt:

Reined In

They were the size of moose. Slany called those animals horses. He laughed when I asked if they tasted like deer.

I remember a black one I saw, bigger and more…

View original post 251 more words

CRLC Challenge; Author’s Chair

Over at Carrot Ranch the September 23, 2021, prompt is to, in 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about an author’s chair. It can belong to any author. Where is it located and why? Does it have special meaning? Go where the prompt leads!

Respond by September 28, 2021. Use the comment section at Carrot Ranch 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.

The Gift

“My surprise is this secondhand chair?”

“Overused and underappreciated.”

“No, Dear, it’s a nice chair; used but—”

“I wasn’t talking about the chair.” 

“What inspired you to get me this chair, of all things?”

“It’s an author’s chair.”

“So, it’s valuable?”


“Belonged to somebody famous, a well-known writer?”

“Not yet. But someday. Is it comfortable?” 

“Very. A good fit. Tell me though, what makes this an author’s chair?”

“Your butt.”

“My butt?”

“It’s time. I’ll fix up the boys’ old bedroom. Your new commute will be from the coffee pot to this chair.” 

“To this author’s chair.”

I do hope you go to Carrot Ranch to read about a virtual Author’s Chair that will be a regular feature at the Saddle Up Saloon beginning in October. This is an opportunity for you!


Head on over and see Colleen Chesebro at the Saddle Up Saloon. Below is my response to her monthly double ennead challenge. Points awarded if you see how I bent the rules of the double ennead form.

Breathe in Autumn’s harvest.
Nature’s smudging cleanse!
Every step a cidery press of scents
green melting in fall fire
summer ferns kneel brown.

See Autumn’s praise-songs.
Gatherings of voices!
Choired trees exalting in crackling colored tongues
tart air an apple bite
wing strokes flute bell skies.

Hear Autumn’s palette.
Offerings of colors!
Quicksilvered moonshadow songs of coyotes
red leaves’ raining patter
blue forgotten dreams.

Carrot Ranch Literary Community

Happy September! Welcome to a new Carrot Ranch double ennead monthly poetry challenge. Every third Monday of the month, I’ll be here at the Saloon with another challenge to help get your poetic juices flowing. Each month, we will explore a different theme or image to inspire our poetry. Take your time, there’s no hurry! You have an entire month to write your poem.

HINT:You can find this post again by typing:double ennead challengein the search box to the right of the Carrot Ranch banner. That will bring up the most recent challenge post. ❤

Check out the poems from last month HERE

The wordEnneadmeans nine, and a double nine is ninety-nine! Carrot Ranch is famous for 99-word flash fiction. Now, the ranch has its own syllabic poetry form written in 99 syllables!

The Double Ennead comprises five lines with a syllable count of 6/5/11/6/5, (33 SYLLABLES…

View original post 373 more words

CRLC Challenge; Big Black Horse

The challenge from Carrot Ranch? In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about a Big Black Horse. It can be a horse, a metaphor or an interpretation of KT Tunstall’s “Big Black Horse and a Cherry Tree.” Go where the prompt leads! Respond by September 21, 2021. Use the comment section at Carrot Ranch 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. Here are two from me.

Fair Play

“These aren’t like Lucienne’s team of Morgans.”

“No, they’re not Hope.”

“And they’re not like the horses we saw at the pull this morning.”

“They most certainly are not. These are fancy riding horses.”

Hope studied the high stepping horses in their fancy tack. “That one Daddy. The big black horse.”

“She’s a beauty, alright. And big. Are you sure?”

“Yes Daddy.”

“Do you want help getting on?”

“I can do it Daddy.” Stepping into the high stirrup and swinging herself into the saddle, Hope rode round and round while her father watched from the edge of the carousel.

Medicine Horse

A shadow softened the sharp rays that pinned him to the sunbaked ground. He opened his eyes to see the soft nostrils that blew a cooling caress; saw an unshod hoof of the big black horse that nudged him until he struggled onto its back. 

‘What big black horse?’ the townsfolk asked. 

Recovered, he would avenge himself against the men who’d left him to die. But their horses, still saddled, a boot hanging in a stirrup, clattered into town ahead of the big black horse. 

‘What big black horse?’ the townsfolk asked, for there was no sign of it.

CRLC Challenge; Cooking Show & SixSentenceStory; Island

On Course

It was a marvel what she produced in such a short time and with so little space, just a narrow counter top and a butcher block kitchen island. 

She commandeered the small kitchen, flour clouding the roiling tempest of her activity. Then, while the oven did its transformative work she swabbed the surfaces and restored calm as she stowed the dishes and debris from her preparations. Snapping a table cloth over the butcher block, she displayed her confections. There was Black Forest cake, lava cake, and even rocky road ice cream. The butcher block was an enchanting desserted island. 

The September 9, 2021, prompt from Carrot Ranch: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about the cooking show. It can be any cooking show, real or imagined. Who is there? What happens? Make it fun or follow a disaster. Go where the prompt leads! Respond by September 14, 2021. Though the Six Sentence Story link up isn’t open until Wednesday, I needed the boost of this week’s prompt word ”island” to help me over the hurdle of Charli’s prompt. So, there it is, 99 words in six sentences.

#SixSentenceStory; Deal

It’s Six Sentence Story time again, prompt word ”deal”. This is what came this week, six sentences, in 52 words. Go to GirlieOntheEdge for the link to more Sixes and be sure to leave one of your own. Anything goes, as long as it’s a Six.


They have converged at a crossroads and are conversing…

“Really, you’re the real deal? So… like, what is the deal, what do you want from me?”

“I don’t make deals; I want nothing for myself, but do want your actions and words to come from loving kindness.”



Saddle Up Saloon: Anyone Can Poem

Yep, anyone can poem and Chel Owens will help you along. She is the Verse-atile host every first Monday at the Saddle Up Saloon. Come by for the prompt, stay for the chomp.

Carrot Ranch Literary Community

If’n your summer (or winter) has been as busy as mine, I shore do ‘preciate your comin’ back for more poeming.

Still, I didn’t get many volunteers in last month‘s offer to send me your poem needing a bit of meter-tinkering. The offer is open, even if you’re reading this months or years after its posting.

Now, on to more FUN poetry specifics:

If my #1 pet peeve is meter, my #2 is when people write poetry for entirely the wrong reasons and are therefore showing off.

Their work is flowery, superfluous, showy, fluffy, wordy, adverby -in short, too much tell AND show in some of the worst ways possible. Their poem ends up a mash of obscure words and emotional pleas that lack a concise theme.

If a poet is new to The Game, s/he will do this innocently.

If a poet is old to the game, s/he…

View original post 434 more words

CRLC Challenge; Prom Dress


A June night. Prom night. ‘A Night to Remember’. “You’re beautiful,” he said.

An August evening. “I’ll do the right thing,” he said. “I’m working full time… we can live with my mom.”

A September morning. She would have been at college. It was a small wedding.  

The baby came in March. “He’s perfect,” he said. “He looks just like his father,” his mother said. 

Another August evening. He held the sleeping baby while watching baseball with his mother.

“I’m going out,” she said. 

“Home run!” they shouted, waking the baby. 

She left her prom dress and son behind. 

September 2, 2021, Carrot Ranch prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story to the theme, “not everyone fits a prom dress.” You can take inspiration from Ellis Delaney’s song, the photo, or any spark of imagination. Who doesn’t fit and why? What is the tone? You can set the genre. Go where the prompt leads! Respond by September 7, 2021.