Monday, July 29

Music Monday-Song Five, Ian Andrews

Ian Andrews

I had forgotten what freedom meant. Sure, there is always the notion that freedom is a political concept, or something to do with not being in jail or prison. But there is an inherent freedom of spirit, and this spirit is almost always found in the innocence of children. Everything is new, nothing is impossible, the world is magic.

I sat in the reclining chair on the porch of the cabin thinking back to those times where I understood what pure freedom was like. Nearing my eighty-fifth year, memories weren't so easy anymore, but I could still feel that spark of magic hidden inside me. Of course, the magic wasn't just inside me. I remembered perfectly the day Simon and I found the small door in grandpa's shed. Simon had talked me into climbing into the shed through an unlocked window in the back where we could not be seen.

I fiddled with all the rusty tools and machines. Simon shushed me when I accidentally knocked over a glass jar of screws and nails. We both froze, but after a moment we relaxed, confident we weren't heard after all. Then Simon whispered "Hey, look at this." I lazily turned around and pushed passed the lawnmower. There in the floor was a door. The door was pressed into the wooden floor of the shed. It was ornate, with elegant spirals carved on its surface, and a glimmering handle made of glass. It even had hinges made of faded gold that screwed into the floor.

"What is that?" I asked although not really expecting an answer from Simon. The look on his face told me he knew as little as I did.

"Should we open it?" He asked, a mixture of fear and giddiness splayed across his face.

"Sure. But it was your idea to come in here so you open it." I replied. I may have been a 12 year old Tom Boy, but I was still enough of a girl to have some common sense. Tentatively, Simon reached his had around the glass handle, took another look at me, then twisted the knob slowly. A warm light escaped out of the door as he swung it wide. To our confusion, we realized the door led down, but we were looking at a flat landscape. A field as far as one could see with trees on either side. It was dizzying to stare downward into a world that seemed sideways. I took a step back, but then suddenly realizing Simon was stepping into the door.

"Simon!" I shrieked, but then clamped my hand over my mouth to stifle my outburst. Simon was grinning ear to ear as he dipped his leg through the door.

Then more of him went and before I knew it, he was standing in the field through the doorway. He looked back at me and beckoned with his arm.

"Come on!" He said. "It's warm here. I think I hear a stream. Come on, sis!" He thrust his hand through the door from below me. I still couldn't get the angle right, but after I took his hand, I closed my eyes. Simon pulled me through. As I slowly opened my eyes, I could see two suns in the sky beaming down across a field of what I first thought was grass. I leaned closer to see small, green fronds of animals, like the ones found in the coral reefs in the ocean. They flitted back and forth, occasionally snagging a small insect out of the air.

I heard the stream nearby as well, and turned toward the line of trees. "What do you think this place is? Are we in danger, Simon?"

"I don't know, sis. I don't think so. It feels nice here. Like clothes right after mom takes them out of the dryer. I want to find that stream, you coming?" I hesitated at first, but seeing Simon bounding merrily toward the trees, I followed. We passed through the tree line almost at once, both of us sprinting now, and came to a small gorge filled with purple water. I saw fish in the water, glowing with rainbow lights. I rubbed my eyes thinking I was seeing an illusion, but when I looked again the fish still glowed luminescent under the clear, purple water.

I began to spin in circles, my head raised to the canopy above. Suddenly I found myself laughing uncontrollably. Simon joined in. All at once, we both fell to the ground, dizzy and laughing like mad people. Simon looked at me. "I told you grandpa was hiding something in there, didn't I?"

"Yeah, but how did you know?"

"Because every time he came out of the shed, he had a big smile on his face. That's how."

Saturday, July 27

Show Off Your Skills, 7/27/13, Carl Braid

Carl Braid

The Real Truth
I walk the streets
head held high
my boots will gleam
at passers by
my jeans are pressed
and worn with pride
braces in view
with every stride
a polo shirt
all buttoned up
a Crombie coat
to fill the look
a shaven head
im looking sharp
shame that people
judge at the start
a racist thug
or misguided youth
if only people
new the truth
of what a skinhead
truly means
instead they look
to movie scenes
and place us all
in the midst
of Nazi flags
and racial digs
and propaganda
fueled by hate
and far right groups
with different traits
so spend some time
an read a book
before you decide
to give that look
and think of how
it feels to me
linked to others
immaturity
and when you've finally
found the truth
of real skins
you'll see the proof
that we don't live
for blood and hate
its ignorance
that's caused this debate

Thursday, July 25

Music Monday-Song Four, Ian Andrews

Ian Andrews

The car lights scattered across the glass of the surrounding buildings as the Cadillac swerved around the corner. Lyra, a stoic little girl who looked no more than 12 years old sat behind the wheel with calm determination dressing her face. Slick Mike stood through the sunroof with his guns aiming toward the back of the car. Bullets streamed back and forth between Mike and the four cars that followed them in pursuit.

Despite the wind whipping around him, Mike's fedora didn't budge from his head, but his black trench coat streamed around him like dark battle banners. With a gun in each hand, a cigarette clenched between his teeth, and his sunglasses pressed onto his face, he fired endlessly into the windshields of the pursuers.

Midnight had fallen on the city like a blanket of smothering darkness. The streaks of tracer rounds slide across the highway between cars. Lyra deftly maneuvered between cars, careful not to even side-swipe an innocent. It was the Lost Men she was concerned about.

"Michael?" Lyra asked as she spun the wheel of the big car to a hard right. "I'm busy, Lyra! What is it?" Slick Mike yelled down into the sunroof, still clenching his cigarette between grinding teeth.

"Michael, I don't think she is going to make it." Lyra said this about a slumped over body in the back seat. Jennifer, she thought, but names weren't necessarily important. Lyra was all business.

"What the fuck, Lyra?! Just get us to the bridge!" Mike fired a few more rounds. The Lost Men had stopped firing as much, and were now getting out of their cars. Several had climbed out onto the roofs of the cars. Mike hated them. He hated their three-piece suits, and their spider-like legs, and how they could emulate almost any human characteristic except for a face. The faces were always blank. Well, blank except for that shit-eating grin that every one of them wore. It was almost a taunt to the humans. "We're happy to see you" that grin said. But to Slick Mike, that grin meant it was feeding time.

"Michael?" Lyra called up again. This time, Mike bent down into the car. The Lost Men weren't firing anymore. They were positioning themselves to board the Cadillac. If that happened, not even Mike's ability to control light would save them.
"Lyra! Goddammit! I know, I know!"

"Bend it, Michael. We aren't going to make the bridge." Lyra was always calm, never yelled or even seemed afraid. She just spoke truth. The spider-legged Lost Men had unveiled their hooks and barbs; muscled tendrils that sprang from their backs. The grinning bastards were swinging them toward the car.

Mike dove into the sunroof, took hold of Lyra and the body of Jennifer, and then swung his hand in front of them. Suddenly, they were hidden. They were in the In-Between. The cars careened past them as if they were ghosts. Mike dragged the body of Jennifer to the side of the road. Ghostly images swam around them. He looked down at Jennifer, who he now realized was dead. Without turning to face Lyra, Mike said "We have to go." Lyra nodded as they turned and made their way back into the city, swimming through the gloom of the In-Between.

'Next time we'll save one,' thought Mike. 'Next time'.

Wednesday, July 24

Music Monday-Song Four, Letitia Minnick

Music Monday is a music prompt writing event done each week in the Show Offs Community on Google Plus. Each week we take a different song, listen to it and write about how that song makes us feel. This piece was written for Song Four embedded below.

Letitia Minnick

Human Resources

Flywheels spin in a hiss of steam
as teeth bite into teeth
and gears turn.

The grand machine,
oiled by its own flesh,
is determined to wring blood
from a stone.


This poem was written for this music as a music prompt. For the full effect listen to the music while reading this poem.

Tuesday, July 23

Prompt Tuesday-Image Thirteen, Bekkie Sanchez

potato

Bekkie Sanchez

Potatoman

It was hot, so hot that even the birds were absent from the sky as Potatoman stood up and smeared the dirt from his hands onto his overalls. He was 25 years old and at 6’5” weighing 290 lbs. was a formidable man. He was a simpleton, a town clown that everyone made fun of although he didn’t really understand this. Potatoman was singularly aware of one thing and one thing only. His potato's, and they meant everything to him.

It was harvest time and he needed the money this year badly. That’s what the nice lady had told him when she came out to his place. The farm could be taken away. He didn’t understand the why’s but he couldn’t lose the farm!

His father had dropped dead in the potato field when he was 2 years old leaving his mother to work the farm and raise him by herself. Potato farming was back braking work even for two people, the dirt in the field was hard and the hours long.

When his mother noticed that he wasn’t developing the skills that most children had at his age she took him to the doctor for the first time since birthing. When the doctor told her the bad news she hardly reacted and quietly took him home. That night she shot herself in the head leaving him alone in the world without even a proper name. As he got older the town dubbed him Potatoman.

Potatoman didn’t have a tractor but he had a draft horse to pull his plow. A gentle giant of a plow horse muscling through a potato field with a simple giant of a man lumbering behind him. As they reached high ground in the field they were silhouetted on the ridge by the setting sun. It was time to head back to the barn and supper.

When he got near the barn Potatoman noticed his small field of prize potato's for the County Fair were disturbed. He couldn’t believe his eyes as he stood there, mouth agape and rubbing his eyes. Could he trust his eyes? He closed them and peeked through his eyelashes, but no, it was still true! He quickly tied the horse and ran over to the field as fast as he could as the dust scattered around his feet.

He dropped to his knees in the dirt wildly looking around. He hurt himself falling so hard but he didn’t care. His heart was pounding and he shook with rage. Usually Potatoman had no use for words but he managed to moan; “My potatoes, what happened to you?” He didn’t expect an answer but talked to them all the same.

Someone had dug them all up and piled them into a shallow hole just like a grave and he knew who. It had taken him awhile to come to this conclusion, after all he was slow and he figured he had spent some time on his knees in the field as it had gotten dark. But it had to be Ed.

Ed was a townie who drank too much and his farm was falling apart but Ed made money working at the local plant and didn’t care much for the farm anyway. In fact he despised farms and farmers, his father had been a farmer and he hated every minute of growing up as a dirt pusher. Being the only son, he had inherited the farm anyway after his father had died penniless and it was just miles away from Potatoman’s farm.

He was constantly harassing Potatoman driving his truck past the farm and throwing beer bottles at him, scaring his horse and calling him names. He had even hit his poor horse with a bottle once and Potatoman threw it back expertly taking out a tail light as he pulled away.

He was a mean, foul, smelly man and Potatoman was sure he had done it. His hands clenched into fists and his stomach hurt as he felt the anger surge through him once again. He had never felt this way before and it was a powerful feeling. He began to like it. After all, it was his potato’s, his precious prize potatoes for the season and they were ruined. What about the farm?

Hearing the horse whinny broke him out of his spell. Hours had went by and the horse was hungry but could wait. He stood up surprised at feeling no weariness in his legs for he had been kneeling for so very long. He felt surprisingly calm as he walked the short distance to the barn to get his ax. He decided to sharpen it for good measure. Tools are to be taken care of!

Potatoman headed off to Ed’s farm to confront him. He white knuckled his ax handle seething with hate as images of his ruined potato’s flashed in his mind. Images of Ed blooded and limp danced within these thoughts. As he was passing the ruined pile he swore he saw a light underneath it.

He stopped in his tracks confused and blinking. It was a light and looked to be under his ruined potatoes. Keeping his ax handy he ran back over to the patch and resumed his kneeling position over them taking in the sight of it. His rage had not been quenched but he was mesmerized by this sight. Were his potatoes trying to talk to him?

He set his ax aside and ran his hands over them lightly. He felt afraid, yet great excitement as he picked one up. “Put me down!” A voice screamed out. He jumped out of his skin dropping the potato with a thump as he heard; “Ouch! That hurt you dummy!”

He sheepishly looked around searching the darkness for the person speaking to him. There was no one that he could see. It was a new moon and in his rush he didn’t have a lantern. It sounded like it was under the pile of potatoes, something to do with the light. By now he was stumped and his mind was not grasping much more.

“Who is there?” He asked searchingly. There was no answer except for his thumping heart pounding in his ears. Suddenly the light went out and the darkness closed in around him as he heard snickering in the darkness. He felt a bottle fly by his head, it was that close.

Now Potatoman was slow but he still felt the same emotions as anyone else and he was terrified. He knew it was Ed and his no good townie friends and at that moment the full impact of what they had done finally filtered into the right part of his mind to reconnect with his earlier anger just as a bottle hit him in the head.

When he came to, he was laying in the dirt where he had fallen. He felt his head and found a large throbbing lump on the side of it. He remembered a light under his potatoes. He was foggy about the details when he heard his horse and it was screaming. 

He spied his ax where he had left it and grabbed it. He rose to his feet slowly feeling his head injury start to bleed as a ribbon of blood ran down his face and into his eye. Blinking it away he tried to clear his head. His horse was in the barn, no, he had left it tied up…

Then he heard it again only this time he sprang into action closing the ground between them quickly, so quickly that they didn’t have a chance to react. They were drunk by now, so full of hard liquor that they could hardly stand, but that didn’t keep them from beating his horse as they tried to make it pull the plow over the unforgiving ground and his remaining potato crop in the field.

The lantern light shown on his poor horse floundering in the mud they had driven it into and they were whipping it into a frenzy as foam poured from it’s mouth. Potatoman was livid. First his prize potatoes and now his poor horse! He snapped like a dry twig grabbing the first man by the jacket and spinning him around; “Who; oh, it’s Potatoman!” The drunken man sputtered as Potatoman neatly split him in two with his ax.

“Ed! Potatoman is awake!” Someone cried and the lantern went out. Potatoman didn’t need lanterns as he knew every blade of grass on his property. They had abandoned his horse and he comforted it as he listened to them hide. He looked around the field at his potato crop and as he took it all in, buried his head in his horses mane and sobbed like a baby.

Not for long because a tiny thought was working it’s way into the creases of his very simple mind. A thought with a hint of anger, no more than a hint, then like a flood! Without drying his tears he gripped his ax tightly and feeling every inch the monster they thought him to be he went after them. He’d kill them all but he really wanted one person.

Potatoman had the upper hand whether he knew this or not because Ed’s car was parked nearby and they had not gotten to it to get away. Also they were drunk and with no place to really hide had been stupid enough to hide in the barn.

Ed was busy hiding behind a large barrel wondering where his friend had went. Their plan had been to stay together. He wanted to call out and was mighty drunk, but he wasn’t stupid. He waited.

Potatoman entered the barn and stopped, listening in the darkness. He already knew where one man was he could hear him as he stumbled around in the unfamiliar territory. Ed could hear him too and cringed inwardly. Potatoman was on the unsuspecting man in an instant and Ed heard every whack as he was cut and then pommelled into a pile of his former self.

Ed moved quietly under the cover of darkness as the noise subsided. He peeked at the scene. He could just make out a large glistening pile of something…he crept forward trying to see where Potatoman had went. He had to make it to his car but he had lost his keys!

Suddenly a large hand sprang from the darkness and grabbed Ed from behind. He found himself looking into the eyes of Potatoman. Not the childish, stupid, clown of a Potatoman; the one he grew up with. No, because Ed had awakened something bad in Potatoman, and he could see it on his face.

“Potatoman, you know I was just kidding around like always.” Ed had that old twinkle in his eye and for a moment Potatoman hesitated. Then he remembered, he had no use for words or people and Ed was one of the worst people!

Then Ed was screaming, just like the rest of them screamed but not for long as Potatoman axed him into tiny little pieces. For good measure he stomped on his remains until they resembled his drunken friends in the other puddles and Potatoman finally felt better.

When he was finished without one sound Potatoman walked out of the barn. He returned with Ed’s car and drove it in. He had a can of gas just for occasions like this and distributed it evenly around the barn. He made sure his animals weren’t hiding anywhere inside and lit it.

Without looking back he walked outside over to his horse and patted it. The barn fire was huge and only the rising sun peeking over the ridge could demand more attention. His farm was lost and so were his beautiful potatoes!

Potatoman unhooked his horse from the plow rigging and led him across the ruined potato field they had been plowing just the day before. He walked towards the ridge and the sun.

Sunday, July 21

Show Off Your Skills, 7/18/13, Brian Smith

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Brian Smith

Dog Or God? Depends Who's Asking

Actually after that realization I had my first talk with God. I told him if he sent me somebody that loved me just for me I'd never try that again & I would always try to be the best person that I could be. A month later I was blessed by a breeder with a 6 & a 1/2 week old male Rottie pup that I could afford. She figured she had a $125 in him so that's all she charged me for a pup that she could have got 2 grand out of. I wouldn't go out of the house by myself if ever. I wanted to kill every tweaker I knew & I only seemed to know tweakers. I had made the mistake of being someone that had come up with the best crank they'd ever seen. A week & a 1/2 after buying Gimli 1 of my seizures left me unconscious & I have sleep apnea. I had a minor stroke that I did not go to the hospital to treat because if they ran a blood test I was screwed. A week or 2 later at only 10 weeks Gimli started giving me hell a little while before I had a seizure. I not only figured out why dog is god spelled backwards I figured out that you have to be careful what you ask for because I'd asked for something I thought was totally different but I still got exactly what I needed. A couple of months later a $5000 contract was rumored to be out on my puppy because I wasn't so desperate for attention anymore & none of them could get me to let them take me where I needed to go to fill their order. I only got into what I was dying to make a couple family members safer & get some attention. I found out no matter what I was just someone between them & a rock. My friend & tattoo artist heard about the contract & went to a couple of bike clubs he did skin art & branding for & informed them of it & they put out the word if anybody touched that puppy them & everybody around them would be fucked. The offer was quickly retracted & we were left alone to save up for a plan ticket to Seattle. Even though I did not get the mate I was asking for I have kept my deal with God every since. I may not be someone anyone wants but I'm someone most people want to call friend.

This is a comment from a post on Google Plus in the Show Offs community and I have consent to post this from the writer. It is not fiction it’s a real event.

Friday, July 19

Prompt Tuesday, Image-Thirteen , Letitia Minnick

potato

Letitia Minnick

Market Day

It was late Wednesday night and Jack knew the time had finally come.

The market was always crowded Thursday mornings and O'Mealy would be there with his produce cart panting after every pretty girl who dared to come too close to him. Jack had spent half his life watching the old man and his late night limps to his garden. It wasn't until O'Mealy had turned his attention to Jack's kid sister, Emmy, that Jack began to wonder what the dirt bag was up to. When Emily disappeared, Jack had finally had enough.

The night was moonless and Jack, with a pocket light and a heap of suspicion, had garnered all of his wit and will and lay waiting in that midnight field for the geezer to answer his questions. He had quickly hid behind a pitted and wheel-less Plymouth Fury when he saw the shambling figure trudge toward the dark garden.

O'Mealy had begun to dig. Jack could hear the shovel pierce the dirt and waited for a steady rhythm before leaning out for a better view. What he saw confused and confounded him. At the base of the old man's feet the ground was aglow. Thinking it some kind of illusion, Jack crawled closer to the light and was immediately spell-bound. The vegetable rows were alive and writhing, twisting and curling in impossible contortions. Tiny faces turned in silent screams as leaves at once reached for the sky and beat upon the earth—pleading for mercy from the reaping. Mesmerized, Jack stood upright and walked with purpose toward the garden.

Then all went black.
O'Mealy lifted the shovel from the back of Jack's head and smiled at the blood streaming into the small irrigation trenches running through the garden rows.

"It'll be a better market day than I figg’rd." O'Mealy chuckled and threw Jack over his shoulder like a sack of potatoes.

Thursday, July 18

Prompt Tuesday, Image-Thirteen , James Graham

potato 

James Graham

Fire Lizard Eggs

Fire Lizards know more than you think. They even control you at this very moment but you would not know it, as you are blind to their influence.

During the life cycle of the Fire Lizards the male Fire Lizard subconsciously pre-texts a Human subject for his brood. The technique developed by the Fire Lizard is to set a Motivating Mantra into the Man's mind. During the gestation phase of the Eggs, the frequency of reinforcement of the Mantra is  then further enhanced by social pressure also manipulated by the male Fire Lizard.

Once the female has laid its eggs and as they have become fertilized over a period of intensely violent sexual encounters, the Human subject becomes self possessed in one mind to change his behavior in some strange way due to his self analysis while focused on his Mantra. He feels his social pressure and becomes disturbed and as he tries to change his relationship of proximity physically from his current location towards his feelings of peacefulness that he finds leads him to the Glowing Eggs.

Once within the influence of the Eggs, they hatch and the emerging Fire Lizards consume the stupid Human. If you feel yourself fleeing your current location without reason while muttering to yourself, if you even can realize you see the eggs, do not go near the eggs, you have been warned. No one has survived this ever, so beware!

Show Off Your Skills, 7/18/13, Bekkie Sanchez

CosmeamitSchmetterling

Bekkie Sanchez

Life Anew

Surfing the breeze
on a purple flower,
wet wings drying
under the hot sun.
A spent cocoon
laying dormant
as life emerges,
anew.

Better to be
like the butterfly.
Spreading your wings
to a new  existence.
Leaving behind
the old shell,
becoming more.

Your wings
now ready
to carry you
into the world.
Anew.

Show Off Your Skills, 7/18/13, Dolly Piper

Dolly Piper

LLA-Dolly_Poetry_MyWhirligigLife[3]

Wednesday, July 17

Show Off Your Skills, 7/17/13, author MSCHELL

author MSCHELL

BAD DISPOSITION OR A WORSE SITUATION                       

(SHE HAD A SECRET).....
He treated her like a dirty piece of gum stuck to the bottom of his shoe
berated, intimidated a constipated piece of turd
there was no love making only man handling sex taking
why do you stick around, never understood why she didn't stand her ground
at some point, some time and place something's gotta give
a stunted growth, this aint no way to live
one day her baby girl asked "why cant we just leave"
that was the breaking point her incentive enough to deceive
so she packed up there stuff and left that woman beat'n,
womanizing, liar a shortly written note
this is what she had to say, in the note she wrote:

I'm done, I'm out you sorry ass sack a shit
I'm done with this loveless relationship, I give up and I quit
I'm outta this dump. I'm leaving you along with all the bills
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, your gonna need to see a doctor
because what I also leave you with is gonna require lots and lots
of pills....

Music Monday-Song Three, Letitia Minnick

Music Monday is a music prompt writing event done each week in the Show Offs Community on Google Plus. Each week we take a different song, listen to it and write about how that song makes us feel. This piece was written for Song Three

Letitia Minnick

Ascension

Free...
Weightless and rising through
the obliqueness of white mist
refracted into pristine prisms
by an indeterminate light.

Remembrance reverberates in sounds
unspoken yet all-encompassing
as white gives way to black
and diffused rainbows meld
into nebulas and galaxies spiral
to dance with the stars.

Mass is no more...
all dissolves into nothing
and everything.

Monday, July 15

Music Monday-Song Three, Ian Andrews

Music Monday is a music prompt writing event done each week in the Show Offs Community on Google Plus. Each week we take a different song, listen to it and write about how that song makes us feel. This piece was written for Song Three

Ian Andrews

He wasn't sure how but Daniel could breathe water. He remembered falling off the railing of the ship but he wasn't sure when or how it happened. He found himself drifting in a cool current that swept around him. All manner of strange creatures glided by him lazily, turning their eyes to him in a curious but almost accepting manner; as if they knew he was where we was supposed to be. 

Long stalks with orbs of bio-luminescent light sparkled in the vastness of the space surrounding him. His eyes blinked with disbelief. Was he dead? He didn't feel dead. He ran his hand to his heart and could feel it beating. His lungs were impossibly pulling in the water and pushing it out as if it were air. He looked downward, or at least what he thought was downward, and that is when he saw her. Her?

A woman with soft features, kind eyes, and a sweet smile upon her lips stared up at him from just a few feet below. He swiveled in the water to get a better look at her.  As he did, she shifted slightly to conceal her naked form. He thought that perhaps she wasn't ashamed and was toying with him. The heart-melting smile still on her face and her eyes flashed in a way that made Daniel think that this underwater maiden wanted him to follow her. Then she suddenly turned and swam deeper into the water.

He hesitated at first but then decided if this was either a dream or some spectacular afterlife, he had no choice but to follow. Getting his bearings, he pulled his way through the cool water in the direction the girl had swam. A soft blue light began to swell around him, but he could not make out the source. It was warm and inviting and Daniel felt this was the place the girl had wanted him to come so he swam onward.

He began to see more creatures; fish of magnificent size and color, jellyfish that glowed with a thousand colors, and what appeared to be other people. They all stared at him with the same warm regarding smile on their beautiful faces. Not one of them appeared old or sick and he could clearly see they were young bright beings who somehow were projecting emotion throughout the water.

Daniel was so taken aback by the sight, that he failed to see her swim up beside him.  As he turned his gaze to meet her face, she smiled even wider. He suddenly felt as though he was in love with this woman but he didn't know why or how. All he knew was he could feel his heart flutter and he longed for her.

She must have sensed his longing because she took his hand and guided him into a nearby cave. Inside, the wall was a sheer drop and stretched on in either direction into the interminable darkness. As she pulled him inside it opened into a deep room of sorts. There were small lights coming from rocks caused by various glowing worms that crawled slowly along the cave’s surfaces. 

The girl's eyes motioned to a bed of soft green billowy material that looked like green cotton. She laid him on the bed and for the first time allowed him to see her naked form. She was flawless but looked vaguely familiar. Tentatively, Daniel reached out a hand to touch her skin and she allowed him to do so.

Daniel's mind suddenly filled with an overflow of emotion. No not quite emotion, as he realized it was her thoughts and her memories. He now knew her name, and she knew his. All this was conveyed silently between them in a matter of moments. It was obvious to Daniel that these beings evolved a deeper way of connecting.

Then without warning, she kissed him. It was a small kiss but a kiss with a promise and he knew from touching her and sharing her deepest thoughts that they had shared something special. He knew that she wanted him to be with her.

Daniel stared into her eyes, tracing his hand across her cheek. If this was to be his death and afterlife, he would embrace it without question. As he was considering this her eyes took on a surprised, somewhat quizzical look.

Taking his hand she gazed deeply into his eyes as he clearly heard her, just like she was speaking to him; "Oh no Daniel, you’re not dead. You are exactly where you’re supposed to be and you've come home." Her thoughts echoed in his mind. He was home.

Sunday, July 14

Music Monday-Song Three, Bekkie Sanchez

Music Monday is a music prompt writing event done each week in the Show Offs Community on Google Plus. Each week we take a different song, listen to it and write about how that song makes us feel. This piece was written for Song Three

Bekkie Sanchez

Lake Michigan

Knee high dune grasses
slicing delicate skin
as I walk.
Droplets of blood
ooze forth.

My feet squeak
in singing sand
in the hot
noonday sun
as I climb
Mt. Baldy.

Over the
whitecaps of
the great lake
l spy Chicago.

Blinding light
reflecting off
the water
reminds me
of my sunglasses.

I fish them
out of
a back pocket
retrieving
broken frames.

Friday, July 12

Romancing The Stone

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Romancing The Stone, 2/8/14

We sculpt our paths
Revealing layers
Chiseling away obstructions
Cementing relationships
Sometimes cracking the surface.

You carve the stone
Chip away at the bad
And expose the good
And maybe emerge
From the rock unscathed.

Bekkie Sanchez ©

Thursday, July 11

Prompt Tuesday, Image-Twelve, Letitia Minnick

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Letitia Minnick

Hearing the Hammer

My father once told me
he wanted to sculpt--
to release the hidden treasure
sleeping in the stone.
But our backyard in suburbia
wouldn't accommodate a grand adventure
and he didn't have the time.

Michelangelo.
Da Vinci.
Rodin.
I cannot look upon their work
without feeling
my father's hand upon my own
wanting
to pick up the chisel--
to breathe life
back
into his desire.

Music Monday-Song Two, Letitia Minnick

Music Monday is a music prompt writing event done each week in the Show Offs Community on Google Plus. Each week we take a different song, listen to it and write about how that song makes us feel. This piece was written for: Song Two

Letitia Minnick

Sifting Through Aftermath

Feet shuffle past
debris of what was--
now wanton wasteland.

Weary voices watered
down as if talking
through tin tunnels,
grasp at fog
while wind chimes,
broken,
punctuate the would-be pain.

Music Monday-Song Two, Ian Andrews

Music Monday is a music prompt writing event done each week in the Show Offs Community on Google Plus. Each week we take a different song, listen to it and write about how that song makes us feel. This piece was written for: Song Two

Ian Andrews

Gil stared at the television. There was the same terrible infomercial being splayed across the screen; the same one they always played at two AM on a weekday. It's not that he really paid attention. Something about a knife set or a revolutionary new electric waffle-maker. Who the fuck uses a waffle-maker?

Gil could hear shuffling in the kitchen and knew that Marci was awake. Had the noise of the TV awaken her or was she just being the light-sleeper she'd always been? Either way, the argument they'd had only hours ago still burned in his mind. Of course he was going to take the job. Why was she always so bent out of shape about his job choices? He had to pay the rent somehow, and her arts and craft, despite being very well made, didn't sell as much as they would need to keep the lights on and food on the table.

In thinking back, Gil supposed Marci was just worried. Streaks of light fragmented across the living room. Gil slumped into the couch with a beer in his hand. Having been out of work for almost a year, things had gotten bad. It's true what they say: couples fight about money, and all the other little things that eat away at a relationship. The little things kill. But the job. Now that was a sticking point for her. For some reason she had been strongly against it. Of course, Gil knew it was not an ordinary job, and certainly not without its perils, but the money was just too much to turn down.

Finally, after hearing Marci rummage through the fridge for what seemed like forever, Gil stood up, a tall and muscular man, and made his way quietly to the kitchen. There stood his wife of 15 years. Marci wore a shabby bathrobe as she peered into the fridge with slanted eyes as if she was looking for the meaning of life within. She wouldn't find it behind the eggs or week-old milk carton neither one of them had managed to throw away.

"You know we don't really have anything, right?" Gil managed a question as Marci remained hunched over and still filing through the refrigerator.
"I know."  She replied almost absently. Still, she searched on. Gil half-wondered if there was something in there he might actually be interested in, but then decided against it. If it wasn't expired, it was something he was sure he wouldn't want to try to choke down at two in the morning only to have it come up in the toilet tomorrow. Eating while drinking always made him sick.

"So, I know you probably don't want to talk about this now but it's been on my mind since you went to bed. The job.  I've..." Marci stood upright abruptly and slammed the refrigerator door.
"Jesus, Gil!  I thought we already talked about it. You are not taking that job and that's the end of it."
"Marci, I just don't see the problem here. I mean, think of the pay. You wouldn't have to clip coupons all the time. We could get a decent fucking TV for Christ's sake." Marci just glared at him as he tried desperately to justify his position on the matter.
"So, you think just because you will be making more money that it's suddenly okay to do what you would be doing to those poor..." Her sentence broke off as she began to cry.

Marci buried her sobbing face in her palms. Gil, suddenly feeling terrible about upsetting her again, cradled her quivering frame into his broad chest, and squeezed. "What do you want me to do, sweetheart? Tell me." Gil whispered into her neck, his beer-laden breath wafting across her nostrils.
"Oh great!"  Marci pushed him away. "Now you're drunk and trying to have this conversation with me? What the fuck, Gil?" Marci threw her hands out in defiance. This provocation turned Gil's sympathy into anger. 
"Yeah, so what?  I've been drinking! Do you think I like the idea of it all? No, goddammit! I don't want to even think about it, but I have to take care of us, and if it comes down to this and starvation, I choose this!" Gil managed to pull the application from the nearby table, crushed the paper in his balled fist, and shook it at Marci. She gawked in disbelief but then a look of resignation fell onto her face. Marci knew as well as he did that they would not be able to make it another month on arts and crafts and unemployment. 
"Fine," Marci said curtly. "You take the job, but you just remember for every body you cut open to rob of its organs that it was once human; once someone's son or daughter!" Marci stormed out of the kitchen and slammed the bedroom door.

Gil grabbed another beer from the fridge. He sat back down on the sagging sofa and continued to stare blankly at the infomercial. Tomorrow he started his new job as an organ thief.

No-Prompt Thursday-Nine, Letitia Minnick/Last No-Prompt Thursday

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Letitia Minnick

History
forgotten
in family fun and fireworks

Sacrifice
sugarcoated
by the promise of apple pie
and a high school marching band

Freedom
taken for granted
by a generation
respecting nothing
but the self-importance of now.

Music Monday-Song Two, Bekkie Sanchez

Music Monday is a music prompt writing event done each week in the Show Offs Community on Google Plus. Each week we take a different song, listen to it and write about how that song makes us feel. This piece was written for: Song Two

infinity

Bekkie Sanchez

"It's My Song"

So beautiful and free
I felt just like that once
The world my Wonderland
And I could do no wrong.

Blinded by my youth
Forever was my troth
Until that mighty fall
Into the rabbit hole.

My body aged and bent
Weakening my mind    
My youth is spent and gone
A lie I told myself.

Wednesday, July 3

Prompt Tuesday, Image-Eleven, Letitia Minnick

21

Letitia Minnick

Capitulation

Focus blurred by bleary eyes struggling
with the language of legalities--
theretofore and henceforward,
the soul surrenders to the whispers
of ancient wisdom pleading
a case against pragmatism--
making art of monotony,
pivoting plain proposals
into poetry.

Music Monday-Song One, Ian Andrews

Music Monday is a music prompt writing event done each week in the Show Offs Community on Google Plus. Each week we take a different song, listen to it and write about how that song makes us feel. This piece was written for: Song One

Ian Andrews

Angel had spent the last two days wondering where her time went. Between the drugs and the frequent blackouts, it was only appropriate that she not remember. But to wake on the third day inside a dirty motel room with a dead body on the floor, and blood covering every inch of the squalid, single-bed domain...how could she begin to explain anything to herself, let alone the police? Jodie was there on the recliner. Her arms were covered in blood but she didn't seem to have any injuries. Angel had just woken up and had been staring at the carnage in the room for what felt like hours. It may have been hours, or only a few moments. She couldn't tell time anymore. The human wasteland before her was just too overwhelming.

Jodie stirred a bit in the chair and then felt back into motionless sleep. Did Jodie know? Was she responsible? Angel could remember meeting some people at a local bar. They were from out-of-town. Some rich kid on a road trip with his two friends. She vaguely remembered a party and piles of cocaine spilling onto the glass coffee table that was now the centerpiece of this catastrophe. Angel's mind flashed with images of laughter. Then, suddenly, her mind was assaulted with flashes of pain and red. Had she done this? A quick scan around her sitting up in bed revealed she was nude except for a long t-shirt. She had no visible marks, no wounds. There was some blood splattered on her thighs but not her blood, she was certain of that.

Tentatively, Angel pulled the covers from her body and stepped gingerly onto the carpet as if the world itself would fall apart should she make more than a whisper of a sound. As her field of vision rounded the end of the motel bed, she saw the first body. There was a name assigned to that body but she just could not remember who he was. Her hand covered her mouth as she gaped in confusion and utter disbelief. She flicked her eyes between the body and Jodie in the chair. Did Jodie do this? How had things gone terribly wrong?

The memories came flooding in. She and Jodie had gone to the local pub; a complete dive by anyone's standards. But the music was good and the bar staff didn't card. Angel was only 19. After a few drinks, she and Jodie decided to approach the table of boys. There was Cody, Dan who preferred Daniel, and Devil, clearly a nickname. Small talk was made, drinks were ingested, and the suggestion was made by someone at some point that some powder was the next logical step in the equation for the evening. Everything seemed fine until the motel.

Angel stared wide-eyed at the second body in the corner. That was Devil. A well-muscled young man with not a care in the world. Now he was face up, eyes cold and dead peered into the ceiling as a towel rod jutted from his chest. Now two dead bodies lay on the floor. For some reason, Angel knew where the third boy had been resting. She cautiously stepped between stains and limbs until she reached the bathroom. Daniel was laying face down in the tub, blood running up and down either side. It looked like a heavy object was used to smash in the back of his head. Small rivulets of blood still streamed from his open mouth that hung open above the basin of the bathtub.

Angel was stricken with a sense of disbelief and fear. She didn't remember any of this. Jodie would remember. But should she wake Jodie? What if Jodie had done this and was simply napping until she had enough strength to finish her off? The paranoia began sinking into Angel's heart like a metal slug. Angel knew what she had to do. She quickly tiptoed from out of the bathroom, grabbed for her pants on the floor, also covered in blood, and would run out into the morning sun screaming for the police.

But what would she tell them? She didn't remember what happened. She would be arrested for sure, charged with drug and alcohol use at the very least; perhaps even murder. Did she pawn it all off on her best friend of many years who lay sleeping in the recliner? Sick with fear and unknowing, Angel pulled on her pants and sat on the floor wrapping her arms around her knees as she tucked her body in on itself.

“Did you like last night?” A voice came from the recliner. Angel didn't turn to look at her. She knew the only living person in the room was speaking, the only person who may know what happened so she asked the question; “What happened, Jodie?”

“You were a handful but as you can see, I took care of it for you. Now we just have to clean up the mess. You don't remember do you?” Jodie seemed so calm, so in control and Angel didn't remember. She shook her head. Jodie smiled and pulled herself from the recliner. Her arm snaked around Angel's shoulders and pulled her in tight as she sat beside her on the floor.

“You know, being the best friend of a vampire can be a tough job,” Jodie said matter-of-fact. “Next time I might not be around to bail you out so you had better learn to control this thing.” Jodie leaned her head against Angel's shoulder. The memories of the previous night suddenly became clear to Angel as she in turn rested her head against Jodie's. “I love you!” Angel told her, almost distantly.

“I know you do sweetheart, I know you do.” Jodie sighed, stood up and got to work placing the bodies into black bags.

Music Monday-Song One, Letitia Minnick

Music Monday is a music prompt writing event done each week in the Show Offs Community on Google Plus. Each week we take a different song, listen to it and write about how that song makes us feel. This piece was written for: Song One

Letitia Minnick

On the Run

Concussion waves
turn dust to smoke
obscuring all but impact.
Light filters in frantic
fingers pointing at nothing
as pathways fade to black
sucking shoe soles
into an undertow abyss.
Staccato shots pierce the din
followed by further detonation
and all goes dim--
not stopped
but stunned
and so, the chase continues...

Music Monday-Song One, Pensador Louco

Music Monday is a music prompt writing event done each week in the Show Offs Community on Google Plus. Each week we take a different song, listen to it and write about how that song makes us feel. This piece was written for: Song One

Pensador Louco

- no title -

Time. Running. My feet move as fast as they can. Faster than sound. Faster than the sound of my heart. Not as fast as I wish they did.

Footsteps behind me. Like a flash. So close. What do they want from me, these people? Run. Blood pounding like deaf drums in my ears. Run. Run. Hands. So close to touch me. So eager to grab me.

Claws. Dirty nailed fingers, twisted into claws. Almost. If I could ever find a way out. Any way out.

I'm sick. Ill. Thin blood, yellow, stained, pumping into a heart that still doesn't know it's all but close to a sickening end. Faster. Run. Nowhere to run.

More hands. A cat screams in the distant woods. Like a frightened dead baby being born. Ill.

Begging the hands and feet to stop. I wish I could scream louder. Cry harder. Escape in quiet.

Disease in me. Turning memories into pain. Oh, my memories. I'd trade them all for a chance to be away. The cat knows it's too late.

Rip, torn shirt. I fall. My knees scratching in the dust and stones. Blood. Excruciating pain. The feet stop. The hands are all around me. Tearing my clothes. Myself. To pieces. My thoughts shred to festering bloody pieces. All falling down. All of them.

Flowing from open wounds and merging into the assaulting hands. I'm ill. I'm dying. I have no reason to run anymore.

And there is a bonfire nearby.

Bright. Red. Hot. I know what the hands want with me. Purification. Moral. My body deprived of every sense but the burning, senseless sentence of fire. No. No. Stop. It hurts.

All so close to the end now. The cat knows. I know. Too late.

For them.

Open flesh. My flesh. Pouring like gold through their hands. Melting in their clothes. The fire is so close now. The heat is unbearable, but it isn't hot enough to cauterize my wounds. Yellow sickness. Liberated from my body. This is my flesh. Eat it.

Breathe it. Live with it.

I'm being thrown into the bonfire and the flesh burns, but my illness flies into the air. They can't stop me for I am an ill wind.

I go pass the willows. I pray the cult with their lungs and body. My own flesh turned to a golden yellow bible. Stronger than their purification. Higher than their red hot cure. Faster than their morality.

And in the woods, somewhere, I know a silent cat is smiling.

I am.

Long live the disease.