#99Word Stories; Disappearances

The March 28, 2022, story challenge from Charli Mills at Carrot Ranch is to: In 99 words (no more, no less),write a story about disappearance. It can be an event, act, or subtle theme. Who or what disappears? Does it fade or explode? Can it be explained or experienced? Go where the prompt leads! Submit by April 2, 2022 at Carrot Ranch.

Some of you may remember these characters:

Disappearing Acts by D. Avery

“Hope, you’ve been a while with your chickens this morning.”

“You won’t believe it. Hattie’s eggs are gone.”

“She’s sitting them.”

“Not anymore. Every single egg Hattie was sitting on has disappeared!”

“Hope, is this an April Fools’ joke?”

“I had nothing to do with the disappearing eggs.”

“Did a fox get them?”

“No, no fox.

“Huh. I wonder. Hattie must be upset.”

“She seems pretty happy they’re gone.”

“Okay, take me to the henhouse, show me these disappeared eggs.”

“Daddy! How can I show you something that’s disappeared? But I can show you something that has appeared. Chicks!”


“Why, look. Hattie’s already got them out scratching in the yard. They’ve forgotten all about those egg shells they’ve left behind.”

“The chicks will disappear too. Their downy feathers will disappear. But pinfeathers will appear, then real feathers. Even their shrill little peeps will disappear, replaced by clucking like Hattie’s.”

“You’re right Hope. Their spindly little legs will grow scaled and sturdy. Their wings will fill out and they’ll fly. Just like you.”


“Daddy, remember when Hattie was a spunky little chick? Now she’s a spunky mother hen.”

“Yup. Disappearances, new appearances, and constants. Just like you.”


Be sure to go to Carrot Ranch to read the complete “Free Pie” collection from last week. And there’s always the Ranch Yarns with Kid and Pal’s responses HERE.

d’Verse Haibun Monday; Cherry Blossoms

It’s Haibun Monday at d’Verse , the pub for poets, where Frank J. Tassone is serving cherry blossoms as our prompt. I know that cherry blossoms are an iconic symbol of spring, but I broke some rules and kept my haibun more local. Cherry blossom time is a ways away here. It is Mud Season and Sugaring Season, and before you know it it will be black fly season.

Catching Snow by D. Avery

Spring is the gray of a cloud blanketed sky, of maple bark, of a galvanized sap bucket, of the steam drifting over the pan. Spring is the brown of muddy roads, of last fall’s leaves clinging in soggy clumps to melting snowbanks; it is the brown of new syrup, warm and sweet. Spring is the white of clouds in blue sky, and the white of big lazy flakes of sugar snow. We lift our faces to the snow, to watch it, to feel it on our lashes, to laugh with it, and to look through it to the maple branches overhead and see the swelling buds. The conversation is now about how much longer sugar season will last, as robins call for green.

snow petals

brush cherry cheeks  

and are gone

#PicoftheWeek; Friends

Mother Earth's design
rooted in diversity
no one stands alone  

By now you know I am using the bingo sheet created by Maria Antonia as a prompt for the weekly photo but might be surprised at this take on “Friends”. But that bit of high ground is being shared by two balsam, two yellow birch, a white birch and I can’t quite make out the fourth species. In her book Finding the Mother Tree Suzanne Simard reveals that trees do not compete with one another, but cooperate and communicate, even with other species. Read this book. Trees have much to teach us about being human.

Check out Maria’s  #2022picoftheweek to see how you can participate in this fun prompt.

#SixSentenceStories; Harmony

A Six Sentence Story is a story told in exactly six sentences. It could also be a six lined or six stanza poem; it could be a soc, a bots, or creative non-fiction. Thing is, our hostess Denise, at GirlieOntheEdge, is pretty easy going. Six sentences, and this week include the word “harmony“. Link up your story, read others, have fun.

Silent Accord by D. Avery

Harmony Entwistle flat out couldn’t carry a tune but she could carry on in an argument and certainly could carry a grudge. The only thing sharper than her shrill voice were her features and the biting wit she directed at her husband Lester, noting with glee his every fault.

Lester Entwistle felt he was suffocating in the dissonance of their marriage and after too many discordant years he conducted a plan. He purchased a tuba, a rather large one, with a hard case for transport.

When Harmony Entwistle’s one friend, Melody McNasty, rang one day and inquired whether Harmony was in the house, Lester almost answered yes, but informed her that Harmony was away. Then he hung up and enjoyed the peace, the tuba shining where it stood uncased, big and brassy and silent.

d’Verse Quadrille #148; Papered Poems

It’s Quadrille Monday and De Jackson (aka WhimsyGizmo) is the publican at d’Verse , the pub for poets. All we have to do is pen a poem of precisely 44 words, including some form of the word paper. Visit the pub to link in and to read more papered poems.

Airdrop by D. Avery

I am a world

traveler piloting my

paper plane I

navigate by paper maps

the kind that are hard to refold


flying reconnaissance

in my paper airplane

taking note until

I might finally find the right words

lock in

then release

paper-parachuted airdrop

#PicoftheWeek; Footprints

sap rises ringing 
remembrances pulse drumming
spring’s sweet reveille 

This week, using the bingo sheet created by Maria Antonia as a prompt, I am sharing “Footprints” for my weekly photo. The dirty crusty snow and the sap buckets mean these prints are leading into spring! How sweet it is.

For #2022picoftheweek Maria also offers a “Reader’s Edition”: If you’re not really into photography, but you’re a reader, you can also play the reader’s version. Just post a photo of a book you’re reading that has something to do with the prompt. (Eg: For a book about Valentine’s Day, you can check off the “Tickled Pink” prompt.)⁠

#WWP #253; Catacombs

The Weekend Writing Prompt word is “catacomb”, to be used in a prose or poetry piece of only 77 words. Join in as a reader and/or writer at Sammi Cox’s place.

Buried Past by D. Avery

Now Granma won’t go into the cellar but Granpa says she constructed what he calls the catacombs. “A long time ago.”  

The catacombs are a maze of stacked boxes. There’s Granma’s parents’ boxes and boxes of stuff from when she was little. I like looking at Uncle Jim’s comic books and his war medals. But usually I go through the closer boxes. My mother’s don’t contain obituaries like Uncle Jim’s. Sometimes that makes me feel more sad.

#99Word Stories; Free Pies

The March 14, 2022, prompt from Charli Mills at Carrot Ranch is to: In 99 words (no more, no less),write a story about free pie. What kind of pie and freedom? Who is involved with pies? How is it free? Go where the prompt leads!Submit at Carrot Ranch by March 19, 2022.

Sisters In Arms by D. Avery

“Remember our playhouse?”

“Hiding from our brothers?”

She moved some loose bricks. “We made a stone oven.”

“Yes! We’d make the most fantastic stews!”

“Shh.” She traced her friend’s thin raised cheekbone. “Our brothers might hear you.”

“One time they threw rocks, trapping us inside.”

“But we had mud pies. Traded pies for freedom.”

Outside, the Russian artillery continued to pound and pummel the neighborhood.

“I would eat one of those pies now. Let’s gather some ingredients, make a stew.”

But there was nothing in their small shelter, just a sliver of hope, which they shared to the last.

Be sure to go to Carrot Ranch to read the complete “Robotic Writer” collection from last week. And there’s always the Ranch Yarns with Kid and Pal’s responses HERE.

#SixSentenceStories; Ingredients

Below is a Six Sentence Story, a story told in exactly six sentences, and this week includes the word ingredient. Our hostess is Denise, at GirlieOntheEdge. Link up your story, read others, have fun. Oh, you may not get this season where you are, but it is high Mud Season just now in northern Vermont.

Sweet by D. Avery

“Look, I appreciate your enthusiasm and poetic license and all that, but please, I just need you to stop, I need to concentrate on driving.”

For that wasn’t icing and marble cake, it was actual ice, compacted snow coating the rutted road, the mud underneath that frozen-slick in the cool morning.

Her daughter shrugged and fell silent, stopped describing the treacherous road as if it were a delicious dessert. But as they topped the hill and eased around another curve she grinned again. “Ok, but just look at that lemon meringue sky with the sun glowing through the fog.”

She sighed, because the warm sunny day that was forecast combined with the snowmelt were the perfect ingredients for what was sure to be thick syrupy chocolate pudding on the return trip that afternoon.   

d’Verse Poetics; Leave Your Hat On

 Mish is tending bar at d’Verse, the pub for poets tonight, and would have us “Pay homage to the hat in a poem.”

Well, who doesn’t have a favorite hat? Mine isn’t about style, but simple practicality. I noticed this summer that my hat, like winter, was never too far away. Hats off to this prompt!

Wooly Good Hat by D. Avery

I remember last October

When first the snow began to fall

But that was not when first I donned it

Was more like August I recall

A woolen tuque upon the head

Keeps morn and evening chill at bay

When the frost up top the mountain

Lasts ever longer through the day

I wear my tuque all through winter

Overwarm as I backwoods ski

Glad to have the covering when

My sweat-soaked hair begins to freeze

Other days it’s pulled down low

Covers frost kissed brow and lobes

With white packed peak of fresh new snow

That wool tuque still keeps out the cold

Warm temps march into April

Steady as the maples’ rising sap

Still chill in lee of mountain and hill

Only fools would remove their hats

May you take your wool tuque camping

Even into June or July

Late night sessions in rain damp winds

You’ll be glad you kept it near by

If you want year round comfort

There’s two items just can’t be beat

A woolen tuque upon the head

And woolen socks upon your feet.